63 North Texas towns ranked. Which came out on top? Which sank to the bottom? And where does your community fall on the list?
This is the first year we’ve included Fairview in our survey of suburbs. Squeezed between Allen and McKinney, it touts itself as “keeping it country.” As recently as 1990, only 1,554 people lived here. But a lot has changed since then. Fairview started out a quiet farming community and remained that way until the late 1980s. That’s when developers discovered the area and started building large houses on 1- to 3-acre lots (as mandated by city ordinance in many places). Growth has been steady ever since. The population now stands at 7,390 (a 376 percent increase in the past two decades), as high earners, often empty-nesters, figured out they don’t have to live in the big city to have all its conveniences. For years, the only retail was a 7-Eleven. That changed three years ago when an enormous, two-headed development opened. It straddles an east-west road that marks the border of Fairview and Allen. In Fairview, it’s called The Village at Fairview; in Allen, it’s called The Village at Allen. Now there’s a Dillard’s, JCPenney, Macy’s, and Whole Foods—and only 200 of the 800 acres have been built out. The beauty is that all this concrete sits on the western border of the town. No commercial development is allowed on the other side of Fairview, giving the entire place the feel of a traditional suburban bedroom community—albeit a bedroom that might be featured in Home & Design magazine.