Harker Heights is a city in Bell County, Texas, United States. As of the 2010 census, 26,700 people resided in the city, up from a population of 17,308 in 2000. This makes Harker Heights the third-largest city in Bell County, after Killeen and Temple. Incorporated in 1960, the city derives its name from one of the two original landowners and founder, Harley Kern. Harker Heights is part of the Killeen – Temple – Fort Hood metropolitan area. People usually refer to the town as just "Heights".
Harker Heights is located near Fort Hood, a major United States Army post that was designated a permanent military facility in 1950. As the post expanded, the surrounding civilian population increased. Water Control and Improvement District No. 4 was established on land near the Killeen city limits and the military post in 1955, and included the land owned by Pinckney R. Cox and Harley Kern, two hog farmers.