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Highland Park is a town in central Dallas County, Texas, United States. It is among the five wealthiest locations in Texas, and the most affluent suburb of Dallas. The population was 8,564 at the 2010 census. It is located between the Dallas North Tollway and U.S. Route 75 (North Central Expressway), 4 miles (6 km) north of downtown Dallas.
Highland Park is bordered on the south, east and west by Dallas and on the north by the city of University Park. Highland Park and University Park together comprise the Park Cities, an enclave of Dallas.
Addresses in Highland Park may use either "Dallas, Texas" or "Highland Park, Texas" as the city designation, although the United States Postal Service prefers the use of the "Dallas, Texas" designation for the sake of simplicity. The same is true for mail sent to University Park.
The land now known as Highland Park was bought in 1889 by a group of investors from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, known as the Philadelphia Place Land Association, for an average price of $377 an acre, with a total of $500,000. Henry Exall, an agent, intended to develop the land along Turtle Creek as Philadelphia Place, exclusive housing based on parkland areas in Philadelphia. He laid gravel roads, and dammed Turtle Creek, forming Exall Lake, before the Panic of 1893 brought a blow to his fortunes, halting development. Afterwards, he began a horse breeding farm. In the 1890s, Exall Lake was a common picnic destination for Dallas residents.
In 1906, John S. Armstrong (the former partner of Thomas Marsalis, the developer of Oak Cliff), sold his meatpacking business and invested his money in a portion of the former Philadelphia Place land, to develop it under the name of Highland Park. He chose this name as it was located on high land that overlooked downtown Dallas. Wilbur David Cook, the landscape designer who had planned Beverly Hills, California, and George E. Kessler, who had previously planned Fair Park and most of downtown Dallas, were hired to design its layout in 1907. Notably, twenty percent of the original land was set aside for parks. A second development in Highland Park was developed in 1910.
In 1913, Highland Park petitioned Dallas for annexation, but was refused. The 500 residents voted to incorporate on November 29, 1913, and incorporation was granted in 1915, when its population was 1,100. The first mayor of Highland Park was W. A. Fraser. A third and fourth development were added to the town in 1915 and 1917, respectively. In 1919, the city of Dallas sought to annex Highland Park, beginning a lengthy controversy that lasted until 1945. J. W. Bartholow led the fight to resist the annexation. The final major land development occurred in 1924. In 1931, Highland Park Village was constructed, the first shopping center of its kind in the United States. The distinctive Moorish Style ornamental metalwork and lighting in Highland Park Village were created by Potter Art Metal Studios, a 90-year-old custom metalwork company still in existence today.
Because of its location near Dallas, Highland Park had, by the early 1930s, developed a moderately large (8,400) population, with a few businesses. Eventually the school districts and newspapers of Highland Park and University Park were combined. In the 1940s, after the failure to annex Highland Park, Dallas began annexing the land surrounding it. Reaching a population high of just under 13,000 in the late 1950s, Highland Park afterwards grew only by building houses on the remaining vacant lots, and by the destruction of old buildings. Since 1990, Highland Park has maintained strict zoning ordinances. Known for its quality housing, the town still has many parks running along Turtle Creek and is home to the Dallas Country Club.
Highland Park became somewhat famous in the early 1980s when the popular television show Dallas used to shoot on location there. The 2012 TV series GCB took place in the fictitious "Hillside Park", which is likely a stand-in for Highland Park; however, the residence in the show where the mother of the main character, "Amanda Vaughn", lived is actually located in East Dallas. From the Netflix original show, House of Cards, main character Claire Underwood (played by Robin Wright) grew up in Highland Park.
Highland Park is located at 32°49′49″N 96°48′4″W (32.830178, -96.801103).
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 2.2 square miles (5.7 km2), all of it land.
Highland Park is about 3 miles (4.8 km) north of the center of Dallas.
The climate in this area is characterized by hot, humid summers and generally mild to cool winters. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Highland Park has a humid subtropical climate, abbreviated "Cfa" on climate maps.
As of the census of 2010, there were 8,564 people, 3,411 households, and 2,426 families residing in the town. The population density was 3,824 people per square mile. There were 3,717 housing units at an average density of 1,659.7 per square mile. The racial makeup of the town was 94.4% White, 0.5% African American, 0.0% Native American, 2.8% Asian, 0.0% Pacific Islander, 1.0% from other races, and 1.1% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 4.0% of the population.
The remainder of the information in this section is based on the census from 2000. In terms of formal education, Highland Park is Texas' second best educated city, after its neighbor University Park, with 76.6% of adults age 25 or older holding an associate degree or higher, and 74.7% of adult residents possessing a bachelor's degree or higher.
There were 3,411 households; 33.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 60.6% were married couples living together, 5.3% had a female householder with no husband present; 32.7% were non-families; 29.1% of all households were made up of individuals; and 9.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.46 and the average family size was 3.06.
In the town, the population is spread out with 27.2% under the age of 18, 3.7% from 18 to 24, 24.8% from 25 to 44, 29.7% from 45 to 64, and 14.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 42 years. For every 100 females, there were 87.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 82.4 males.
In 2000, the median income for a household in the town was $149,389 and the median income for a family was $200,001. Males had a median income of $100,000+ versus $43,594 for females. The per capita income for the town was $97,008. About 1.6% of families and 3.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 2.5% (.025) of those under age 18 and 0.5% (.005) of those age 65 or over.
Highland Park has earned a reputation for having some of the most expensive property prices in the Dallas area. The median home value in Highland Park is $1,649,700,.
The Highland Park Town Hall houses municipal services. The first floor houses the general administrative offices, the Building Inspection Department, the Engineering Department, and the Utility Billing and Customer Service Department. The second floor houses the Town Council Chambers, the Finance Department, and Municipal Court. The Spanish Colonial architecture building was designed by architects Otto Lang and Frank Witchell. The Highland Park Department of Public Safety and the Highland Park Public Library are adjacent to the town hall.
The town council authorized the purchasing of a fire engine and the construction of a fire house after the 1913 incorporation. The town hall was built in 1924. During the same year, a new fire station opened next to town hall. As time passed, the town hall received several renovations. One connected the town hall to the public safety building. In 2003 a portion of the public safety building was razed, and a new facility was built in its place.
Highland Park employs a public safety department instead of separate police and fire/EMS departments. The public safety officers are certified as firefighters, peace officers, and paramedics. They work 24-hour shifts (with the next two days off), varying their role during the shift. EMS medical direction is provided by the BioTel system through UT-Southwestern Medical School, which provides this service to the majority of fire/EMS departments in Dallas County.
Public primary and secondary schools in Highland Park are operated by either the Highland Park Independent School District or the Dallas Independent School District.
Most of the city (areas east of Roland Avenue) is served by the Highland Park Independent School District (HPISD). The HPISD portion is served by McCulloch Middle School and Highland Park Middle School, which share a campus located partially in Highland Park and partially in University Park, and Highland Park High School in nearby University Park, which was ranked as the 15th best high school in the United States by the Jay Mathews Challenge Index used by Newsweek in 2008.
Two elementary schools in Highland Park, Armstrong and Bradfield, serve sections of Highland Park.
A portion of Highland Park (areas west of Roland Avenue) is zoned to Dallas Independent School District. The area is within Trustee District 2 As of 2008 Jack Lowe represents the district. DISD schools that serve western Highland Park include Maple Lawn Elementary School, Rusk Middle School, North Dallas High School.
Prior to fall 2006, Williams Elementary School, Marsh Middle School, and W. T. White High School served western Highland Park. After fall 2006 western Highland Park was rezoned to the schools that serve it as of 2008.
The Highland Park Public Library is adjacent to the Highland Park Town Hall. The library building and art gallery first opened in 1930. As time passed, the art gallery was repurposed as town council chambers and a portion of the library. In 2008 the library underwent major renovations.
Highland Park is home to the Highland Park Village shopping center.
The Highland Park Centennial Literary Festival is held in the community.
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