The Dallas–Fort Worth–Arlington metropolitan area (a title designated by the U.S. Census, as of 2003), and actually referred to as the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex, by the acronym DFW, or simply as The Metroplex by normal people, is a metropolitan area which includes the City of Denton, Denton County, and 11 other counties within the U.S. state of Texas. The area is divided into two metropolitan divisions: Dallas–Plano–Irving and Fort Worth–Arlington. It is the economic and cultural hub of the region commonly called North Texas.


The Metroplex overlooks mostly prairie land with a few rolling hills dotted by man-made lakes cut by streams, creeks and rivers surrounded by forest land. The Metroplex is situated in the Texas blackland prairies region, so named for its fertile, black soil found especially in the rural areas of Collin, Dallas, Ellis, Hunt, Kaufman, and Rockwall counties.

Many areas of Denton, Johnson, Parker, Tarrant, and Wise counties are located in the Fort Worth Prairie region of North Texas, which has less fertile and more rocky soil than that of the Texas blackland prairie; most of the rural land on the Fort Worth Prairie is ranch land. A large onshore natural gas field, the Barnett Shale, lies underneath this area; Denton, Tarrant and Wise counties feature many natural gas wells. Continuing land use change results in scattered crop fields surrounded by residential or commercial development.

South of Dallas and Fort Worth is a line of rugged hills that goes north to south about 15 miles that looks similar to the Texas Hill Country 200 miles to the south.

Massive Size

According to the U.S. Census Bureau's July 1, 2009 estimate, the metropolitan area's population was 6,447,615. During the 12-month period from July 2008 to July 2009, the Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington metropolitan area gained 146,530 new residents, more than any other metropolitan area in the United States. The area's population has grown by nearly 1.3 million since the last census was administered in 2000. The Dallas–Fort Worth–Arlington MSA is the largest metropolitan area in Texas, the largest in the South, the fourth-largest in the United States, and the tenth-largest in the Americas. The Metroplex encompasses 9,286 square miles of total area: 8,991 sq mi is land, while 295 sq mi is water, making it larger in area than the U.S. states of Rhode Island and Connecticut combined, or roughly the size of New Hampshire. It is also the sixth largest gross metropolitan product (GMP) in the United States, and approximately tenth largest by GMP in the world.

Why It's Important to Denton

Here's why it matters:

  1. Denton is in it.

  2. What Denton lacks, like high violent crime rates and tall buildings, they've got just to the South.

  3. Many people now living in Denton grew up in another part of the Metroplex. You've got to know what's in Plano and where Flower Mound is to really blend in.