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Fayetteville, Arkansas

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Posted (edited)

I am curious as to what anyone thinks about Fayetteville. I have heard some people make some comparisons to Santa Fe and Flagstaff. I have also heard people refer to it as a smaller version of Austin and Albuquerque. Ironically mainly western cities. Although I would say that northwest Arkansas is probably the least 'southern' part of Arkansas. It seems to be influenced some by the midwest. Accents even seem to be a little mix of southern and midwestern. There are four main cities in the metro area but Fayetteville is the largest and also tends to get the most attention. Fayetteville is currently the third largest city in Arkansas. With the current growth rate is could pass up Ft Smith in the next 10 years. Despite it not being that big of a city I believe it plays an important role in the state. Yes the University and the Razorbacks certainly help. But one thing I've noticed is that Fayetteville seems to be a trendsetter for the state. It was the first city to establish a smoking ban over a year ago. Pine Bluff has recently followed suite and Little Rock is still discussing it. Fayetteville was also the first city in Arkansas to talk about a TIF district and after all the commotion in the courst was the first city to impliment a TIF district. Some Arkansas cities have modeled their Farmer's Market after ours. There almost seems to be an attitude with much of the state that they wait to see how something works out first before they implament it. I imagine Little Rock does it's fair share too. But maybe it's because Fayetteville is a smaller city and a little closer to size of other cities in Arkansas. Anyway, does anyone have any thoughts or comments or questions?

Edited by Mith242

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Posted

Fayetteville is a nice city. I think it represents the state very well, and is definitely up with Little Rock in terms of progressiveness ;) . As mentioned before, the U of A system really helps. It causes quite a bit of a ripple effect on other areas: like education, thereby business, thereby infrastructure. Because of the college campus, it seems to have many qualities of a bigger city: lots of college degrees, lots of diversity, good education, fairly good infrastructure, name brand businesses, music scene, and, yes, progressive population. Like I said before, it seems to redeem the fundamentalism of NW Arkansas to a good degree. The notion of a Midwest influence wouldn't surprise me. Then again, to me at least, any parts of the south with sizable populations (basically the metro areas) seem to have large influence from the North. In Little Rock, I would say close to half or more don't even have a southern accent (or at the most a slight southern accent). I know I don't.

I'm not sure yet if I agree with TIF, but we'll see.

Is Fayetteville the fastest growing of the NW cities? Also, how many years away do you think the NW metro is from forming a continous city (I asked a similar question)? And once it forms a continous city, is it possible that Lowell would be used to build a skyscraper lane for the metro?

The NW Arkansas metro is such a strange beast. It needs a cool nick name, like NC's Triangle. Maybe the "Quad Cities." Or even "Quin Cities," if Lowell is truly growing that fast. As I've said too many times, this place is expected to outgrow Little Rock's metro, but it has yet to develop a true Urban center---a crucial part of a good metro. Right now it's four very independent cities, but I wonder how far off it is before it becomes one entity---probably a good 20-30 years. But once that happens, the possibilities are astounding. In fact, it will probably be similar to Oklahoma's Tulsa and OK City dominating the OK culture and economy.

Damn, this is a thread in itself!

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Posted (edited)

What's happening in NWA is going on in successful cities all across the South. Carpetbaggers, so to speak, are realizing the benefits of living in the South--great weather, low cost of living, friendly people, jobs, etc. What this means is that these cities are losing their cultural uniqueness and becoming homogenized--this includes accents. If you look at the astounding population growth of the region, and realize that most immigrants are not going to be from the South, then you really have a cultural transormation. You are hearing some Midwest accents, because that is where the people are really from. As these people become established in the communities, and teach in the schools, the transormation will no doubt continue. As I said, it's not just happening here. This is happening in all thriving southern metros: Charlotte, Dallas, Houston, Atlanta, and basically all the big Florida cities. Atlanta is even sometimes referred to as the New York of the South, and not because of its skyline. The natives of NWA until recently, about a couple decades ago, had very, very, southern accents. I met a man who sounded like he could be from the Arkansas or Mississippi Delta, and was almost shocked to find out he was from Springdale because I'm so used the transplant population there. Keep in mind, these were small, quiet towns in the Ozarks until recently, and so the population there doesn't represent what Ozark culture is. If you've seen an old documentary on the area, the residents talk like the hill people of Tennessee or North Carolina, and of course that's because people from these states settled the region.

Little Rock on the other hand, not really having had boom or bust cycles throughout its history, has retained much more of its historical character. Yeah, there are transplants just like everywhere, but most residents have a pretty thick southern accent.

Edited by Arkansawyer

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Posted (edited)

Actually when I was talking about accents I meant people who were born and raised here. Yes accents have changed a lot just in the last decade. We actually have more people moving in from California than any other state. Also quite a few from Missouri and Oklahoma. We of course also have a large growing hispanic group. But going back to accents you do have some thick ones around also. It seems once you get into the mountains you pick a strong somewhat Appalachian accent. Fayetteville is on the edge of mountains. But Springdale, Rogers and Bentonville are relatively flat. I'm not sure when this area will start having more of an urban character. It doesn't helped that you have the population spread out. Honestly I think there are many people who don't want it to feel like a 'big city'. Fayetteville is actually one of the slower growing cities. Fayetteville is more expensive than most other areas. Fayetteville has purposely slowed down growth to try to keep things in control. Fayetteville by far has the strictest building codes. It is common knowledge they have denied some requests and had then simply go to other northwest Arkansas cities. I know some Fayetteville residents aren't too happy that the city council have 'run off' a lot of businesses and growth. Rogers has really taken advantage of this. I'd say most growth is in Benton County. Wal-mart told many of it's vendors they they wanted them to start having offices near it's headquarters. That's really driven Benton County's growth. Bentonville also seems to be trying to control growth so Rogers really seems to be the one growing. It's getting to where many businesses and restaurants are picking Rogers over Fayetteville. If things stay this way I could see Rogers perhaps being the 'big city' of northwest Arkansas somewhere in the future. Fayetteville can seem a little odd sometimes. In a lot of ways I don't think Fayetteville wants to be a 'big city'. I wouldn't be surprised if Fayetteville would eventually put a restriction on how big or tall of a building you can build. Santa Fe has very strict building codes. I don't think you can build anything over 4 stories there. Now I not saying Fayetteville would do the same thing. But I wouldn't be surprised either. When they released a study saying that I-540 needed to be widened to 6-8 lanes that freaked out a lot of people. A lot of people don't like the idea of a 8 lane highway up here. There seems to be a fine line on taking on all this growth but also trying to keep some of the old character. If there already had been a bigger city up here it would probably be different. When I moved here in '89 the population signs for Fayetteville were around 36,000. Granted that was the 1980 census so it was out of date. But most of these places were pretty small not that long ago.

Edited by Mith242

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Posted

Here's some info I found on Fayetteville. All of this comes from a new website.

http://fayetteville.com/

Highlights:

* 4th fastest MSA for job growth and 1st in income growth according to Forbes Best Places 2005, with an overall ranking of #7 in the nation

* Currently, the MSA is experiencing a rapid growth rate of approximately 1000 new residents per month

* Within a 25-mile radius of the MSA live 437,367 people and a 50-mile radius shows a population of 835,232 with growth rates of 39.7% and 30.7% respectively over the last five years

* The Fayetteville MSA in Northwest Arkansas had a population growth 3.5 times the growth rates of the U. S. and 13.2 times more than the State of Arkansas from 1990 to 2000

Category Fayetteville

Fayetteville Population 62,078

County Population 174,077

MSA Population 390,881

Trade Area Population (estimate) 673,048

Median Family Income $49,457

Median Household Income $41,037

Unemployment Rate 2.60%

Crime Index* (2003) 314.7

U.S. Average = 330.6

Fayetteville Area Population Statistics

Trade Area 673,048

Fayetteville MSA 390,881

Fayetteville 62,078

Fayetteville City Population Growth

Projected Population Growth City of Fayetteville

2005 63,595

2010 70,760

2015 77,760

2020 85,090

Source: US Census Bureau American Community Survey, 2003

Fayetteville MSA Population Growth

Projected Population Growth Fayetteville MSA

2005 401,436

2010 463,220

2015 535,852

2020 621,405

Source: US Census Bureau American Community Survey, 2003

Fayetteville Ethnicity Distribution

Race Fayetteville MSA

White 86.50%

Black 5.10%

Native American / Pacific Islander 1.30%

Asian 2.60%

Hispanic or Latin Origin 4.90%

Other 2.00%

Source: U.S Census Bureau, 2003 Estimate

Age Groups

Age Group Fayetteville MSA

Under 5 6.3%

5 to 14 10.4%

15 to 19 10.0%

20 to 24 17.9%

25 to 34 17.4%

35 to 44 12.4%

45 to 54 11.1%

55 to 64 6.1%

65 to 74 3.9%

75 to 84 3.1%

85 + 1.5%

Source: ESRI BIS and Urban Advisors Ltd, 2003

Projected Growth in Age Groups

Having a continuous influx of youthful-energetic employees in a workforce is essential if a community wants to experience sustained economic growth. Projections show that Fayetteville is on a healthy course for growth in all age groups with significant gains in people age 20 to 24. Having experienced employees is also a necessity when seeking talented leadership with the knowledge and skill to lead an organization. Fayetteville expects to gain 19.0% more workers age 45 to 54 in the coming years to fill this crucial role.

Population by Age 2003 2008 Percent Change

Under 5 6.3% 6.4% 7.0%

5 to 14 10.4% 10.2% 9.0%

15 to 19 10.0% 9.6% 6.0%

20 to 24 17.9% 18.1% 21.0%

25 to 34 17.4% 16.3% 7.0%

35 to 44 12.4% 12.2% 10.0%

45 to 54 11.1% 11.9% 19.0%

55 to 64 6.1% 7.1% 16.0%

65 to 74 3.9% 3.7% 2.0%

75 to 84 3.1% 3.0% 2.0%

85 + 1.5% 1.5% 2.0%

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Posted

Wow, that website's really nice. Lots of interesting stuff to read. The MSA will grow by over 200,000 over the next 15 years! that's crazy :s

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Posted (edited)

Here's Fayetteville's population figures.

chart_popl_graph_1.gif

Here's Little Rock's population figures.

chart_popl_graph_1.gif

Edited by Mith242

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Posted

I guess this doesn't apply much to the Arkansas forum. But I believe in the last few couple of years the Fayetteville metro has passed up the Springfield Missouri metro. making the largest metro in the Ozarks. Of course Springfield still has the largest city population. I think it will be quite a while before any city is able to overtake Springfield's city population since it's all divided up into different cities here in northwest Arkansas.

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Posted

That's awsome. Springfield statistics:

Executive Summary

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Posted

I think Springfield gets some advantages being as close to it is to Branson.

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Fayetteville's also fairly close to Fort Smith, no? That's why the 50 mile radius population is so big.

According to google, Springfield is 45 miles away from Branson. Fort Smith 57 from Fayetteville.

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Fayetteville's also fairly close to Fort Smith, no?  That's why the 50 mile radius population is so big.

According to google, Springfield is 45 miles away from Branson.  Fort Smith 57 from Fayetteville.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

That is true. With the Boston Mountains between us sometimes it seems that Ft Smith farther away than it is. After I posted the Arkansas's other metro I realized I left out Ft Smith, although there wasn't anymore room in the title anyway.

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I've wanted to mention this before but I haven't had any luck finding any pics of the development. On College Avenue just east of the Square is the old Mountain Inn here in Fayetteville. It's been vancant since the late 80's to early 90's and hasn't been in very good shape in a while. It's been one of the few eyesores in the city. They're in the process of tearing it down and are redeveloping the whole block. It mainly consisted of the inn and an old parking garage but there was also some old shops. In it's place they are putting in a hotel (four star I think) some condos and some shops and restaurants on the ground floor and a parking deck. It's a bit of a shame nothing is being saved, bit I don't think any of the buildings were in very good shape. It looks like a nice development. I saw one design in the paper once but there wasn't a mention of the architect and I haven't had any luck finding any pics on the web. Hopefully once they get past the demolition stage more info will come out.

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I've been meaning to post some pictures in the Little Rock and Hot Springs boards of the two cities, but my sister has my digi cam charger :-(. So, until then, no new pictures.

The best source for AR photos is arkansas.com...but I doubt they have what you're looking for.

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A while back ago northwest Arkansas was trying to make plans on what it should do for the future. There has been some trouble getting getting certain jobs filled, particularly at the Wal-mart headquarters. Perhaps people don't think quite as badly of Arkansas as in the past but many people still do not have a very positive impression of it. But anyway some jobs were hard to fill because they were having a hard time getting people who were willing to relocate to Arkansas. Eventually there was talk that northwest Arkansas should try to distance itself from the rest of Arkansas to try to help get rid of that image. Of course it eventually got out and needless to say much of the rest of the state wasn't too pleased. That was a while back, eventually Wal-mart has had a bit of an easier time getting people to come into the area. But this amoung a couple of other things have had some sections of Arkansas somewhat unfriendly to northwest Arkansas. But anyway just curious if anyone remembers any of this, or has any comments about it.

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A while back ago northwest Arkansas was trying to make plans on what it should do for the future.  There has been some trouble getting getting certain jobs filled, particularly at the Wal-mart headquarters.  Perhaps people don't think quite as badly of Arkansas as in the past but many people still do not have a very positive impression of it.  But anyway some jobs were hard to fill because they were having a hard time getting people who were willing to relocate to Arkansas.  Eventually there was talk that northwest Arkansas should try to distance itself from the rest of Arkansas to try to help get rid of that image.  Of course it eventually got out and needless to say much of the rest of the state wasn't too pleased.  That was a while back, eventually Wal-mart has had a bit of an easier time getting people to come into the area.  But this amoung a couple of other things have had some sections of Arkansas somewhat unfriendly to northwest Arkansas.  But anyway just curious if anyone remembers any of this, or has any comments about it.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Hmm interesting. I posted a relavent comment on "Southern Accents."

It doesn't surprise me. There's such a negative stereotype of the state that being asked to relocate would be hard for anyone, even to Little Rock.

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Like I said this was a little while back. I do think things have gotten better. But of course there's still a lot to be desired.

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There is one factor that I do really like easily over the rest of Arkansas. It tends to be a little cooler up here. Maybe it's not always a big difference, but at the time I write this Fayetteville still hasn't hit 90 yet. It should soon, but I don't think there are too mayn areas in the state that haven't hit the 90's yet. Not sure why I brought that up, but there it is.

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There is one factor that I do really like easily over the rest of Arkansas.  It tends to be a little cooler up here.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Conversely, the winters outside of NWA are much milder.

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Conversely, the winters outside of NWA are much milder.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I don't mind some colder winters. It's not like it's North Dakota type winters here. Maybe the biggest winter problem here in Fayetteville are the steep roads that can often be closed for periods anytime there is snow or sleet. But I'd still take it over the hot humid summers elsewhere in the state. Not that it's that much cooler up here. :D

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Posted (edited)

This news really doesn't pertain to Fayetteville but to northwest Arkansas. Most people in this area are familiar with the Market at Pinnacle Point. It's been there for years and helped establish the Pinnacle Hills area as probably the fanciest, classiest area of northwest Arkansas. It carries a lot of gourmet, high end food. It also has classy deli. It's done well for years and they eventually opened up stores in Tulsa, Chicago and Des Moines. Even planning a store in Kansas City. But the other stores never really caught on, that and they tried to build other stores very quickly. Earlier this year they had to close all their other stores but kept the location in Rogers open. But unfortunately they couldn't get themselves out of debt and have announced on the local news here that they will be closing. It's really a shame and simply reinforces the fact that it's basically a two person race up here between Wal-mart and Harp's. It might be a surprise to some that we don't have any of the other chains that are around the state; Kroger, Albertson's, Harvest Foods, Brookshire's. Now the only truely unique grocery store left is Ozark Natural Foods in Fayetteville.

Edited by Mith242

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Posted (edited)

This news really doesn't pertain to Fayetteville but to northwest Arkansas.
Edited by Arkansawyer

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Posted (edited)

I have thought about how Northwest Arkansas only has Wal-Mart and Harp's. I know Little Rock and North Little Rock have multiple Kroger stores, and Harvest Foods are pretty common all over the state. I know that Hot Springs had an Albertson's a few years ago, but was shut down almost immediately when the new Wal-Mart Supercenter opened. I'm not aware of any other Albertson's in the state. Brookshire's is quite a common store in South Arkansas, especially Pine Bluff, and has stores in Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, and Mississippi. Piggly Wiggly, out of Memphis, still has some stores in Arkansas. Anyway, why do you think that NWA has such a limited grocery market? Is it Wal-Mart?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Pretty much, a number of chains have looked into locating to northwest Arkansas but none of them ever actually tried. Most of them seem to be worried about competing with Wal-mart in it's own backyard. That's the only logical response I can come up with. In the past I can understand, there wasn't a large population up here so no one ever bothered. I'm pretty sure there are in Kroger's in Ft Smith. By the time this area had grown enough to get someone's attention Wal-mart was already getting into the grocery business. For a while people from other parts of the country would visit Harp's to see how they seem to hold out against Wal-mart. Wal-mart has certainly hurt Harp's business but they seem to be holding out okay. They are building two more stores soon, one in west Fayetteville and one in west Springdale/Tontitown. Which will also mean new Wal-mart/Neighborhood Markets soon. They seem to love putting one of their stores right next to Harp's. I wouldn't say it would be easy but a place like Albertson's could compete here if they tried. They tend to go after a different market than Wal-mart. Just like Target is succeeding attracting a different market than Wal-mart. That's what has surprised me a little with Harp's. They do sorta go after a different type of shopper than Wal-mart, but they have also refused to just be a niche type store and have lowered prices to compete with Wal-mart.

Edited by Mith242

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They released some new estimates for the census figures. I only got to see some flash on the screen while I was watching the local news. Little Rock was around 184,000. Ft Smith around 82,000. Fayetteville about 65,000 and Springdale a surprising 61,000. I think it might have even been closer to 62,000. I keep hearing how Springdale has been really growing rapidly, but still seeing figures like that surprises me. Rogers seemed like it was around 48,000 and Bentonville around 29,000. As fast as Springdale seems to be growing if the figures are right it could pass up Fayetteville in not too long. Ironically it's not really known for much. Headquarters for Tyson, I believe it's also the headquarters of George's, which also deals with chickens. Well with eggs that is. It also has the Jones Center. It has a lot of conference rooms, I think maybe a small library. It's probably known more for it's indoor sporting facilities. Indoor pools, indoor skating rink, indoor tennis courts, you get the picture. Springdale is seen more as the blue collar city of northwest Arkansas. Aside from the original AQ it's not really known for it's restaurants. It's mainly become a bedroom community for Fayetteville and the rest of northwest Arkansas. It's always been known for it's cheaper price of houses. If things keep going you'd think Springdale would eventually be able to start developing into more than just a bedroom community. It's also ironic how much bigger the Washington County cities are compared to the Benton County cities, but Benton County is bigger overall.

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They released some new estimates for the census figures. I only got to see some flash on the screen while I was watching the local news. Little Rock was around 184,000. Ft Smith around 82,000. Fayetteville about 65,000 and Springdale a surprising 61,000. I think it might have even been closer to 62,000. I keep hearing how Springdale has been really growing rapidly, but still seeing figures like that surprises me. Rogers seemed like it was around 48,000 and Bentonville around 29,000. As fast as Springdale seems to be growing if the figures are right it could pass up Fayetteville in not too long. Ironically it's not really known for much. Headquarters for Tyson, I believe it's also the headquarters of George's, which also deals with chickens. Well with eggs that is. It also has the Jones Center. It has a lot of conference rooms, I think maybe a small library. It's probably known more for it's indoor sporting facilities. Indoor pools, indoor skating rink, indoor tennis courts, you get the picture. Springdale is seen more as the blue collar city of northwest Arkansas. Aside from the original AQ it's not really known for it's restaurants. It's mainly become a bedroom community for Fayetteville and the rest of northwest Arkansas. It's always been known for it's cheaper price of houses. If things keep going you'd think Springdale would eventually be able to start developing into more than just a bedroom community. It's also ironic how much bigger the Washington County cities are compared to the Benton County cities, but Benton County is bigger overall.

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