The Future of Denton…

Whether you’re ready or not, whether you’re for it or not, the truth is- Denton, TX is about to change.  In fact, it’s about to boom in a big way!

You know, for years I had viewed Denton as a hole-in-the-wall city that I couldn’t wait to get out of.  Horrible roads, nothing to do, nowhere to go, boots and cowboy hats, etc…  If you wanted to shop, you went to Lewisville.  If you wanted a job, you went to Dallas.  If you wanted Starbucks, you went to Carrollton.  If you wanted to take a girl on a date, you went to Frisco or Grapevine.  If you wanted a social life, you went back home on the weekends- that’s the way it was (and still is for some!).  In fact, if it weren’t for Denton Bible Church, I wonder just how long ago I would have left!

I can only imagine that some of you students reading this are thinking the same thing I always thought… I’m just here to get my degree and then I’m out- God forbid I ever call Denton “home!” If that’s you, then just keep reading, as there may be a few more options here in this city to throw into your future considerations…

There are some plans in the works to overhaul Denton as we know it.  As Plano is peaking in it’s capacity and Frisco nearing the same, developers and major corporations are looking to Denton as their new market of growth.  Strategically triangulated between Dallas, Ft. Worth & Oklahoma- Denton is currently the 18th fastest growing city in America (per capita).  And with the city of Denton finally throwing out its ancient old “no big business” law a few years ago, the growth is about to take off!

Read this article from the Denton Record Chronicle, then come back to my blog for some final thoughts…

[CLICK HERE for the article] 

Here’s some other interesting links:

So as you can see, a lot of change is coming… And from this article, as well as from other sources I’ve spoken with- here’s the major faces of change that we’ll be seeing…

  • More retail shops & businesses coming (something to do)
  • More housing & residential neighborhoods being developed (somewhere to live)
  • More schools and educational centers being built (somewhere to learn)
  • More large companies and distribution centers re-locating here (somewhere to work)
  • Better roads being built (hang in there, they will be done in time!)

In addition you have UNT & TWU growing faster than ever as well!

So a lot of change is coming! But why do I mention all of this…?

Two reasons…

1.) For some of you, this means there is a new job market opening up.  It means in the coming years, you won’t necessarily have to move down to Dallas to get a job.  And by that, I mean a career.  I’m not just talking about working at the new Starbucks, Kohls, Target, Wal-Mart, Sam’s Club, etc. that are opening up (though for some, that would be perfect!) – I’m talking about opportunities in graphic design, architecture, education, business, marketing, medicine, art, etc… A whole new market of opportunities are just around the corner (with decent salaries and benefits).  So at the very least, that’s just something to keep on the radar…

But more importantly, this is why I write this…

2.) People.  There’s a whole chunk load of people who will be moving to Denton soon (and are moving now).  Bear with me on my thoughts here… Currently, Dallas is the 2nd most moved-to city in the United States.  It used to be that everyone moved to cities like Chicago, Miami, New York, L.A., etc… But that’s no longer true.  They’re moving to places like Atlanta, Dallas, Phoenix, & Charlotte.  And with Denton placed geographically as it is to the DFW area, they’ll be moving here as well.  And so the city is currently making room for the growth.  So in 10 years from now, the population of Denton could easily double. 

But the question I keep asking myself in all of this is “who’s gonna reach these people for Christ?- and what kind of church is it going to take to reach out and win the souls of these people who are moving here?”  Hate the changes if you want; be frustrated at the Fry St. face-lift all you want… but the fact is, people are now coming here in droves- and they’re not all Christian farmers and ranchers like we once had.  They’re internationals, New Yorkers, Chicagoan’s, businessmen, artists, etc..  We may still be in the Bible belt, but with liberal schools like UNT & TWU, and the climate of change that is coming our way- the buckle of that belt is slowly loosening.

And while I’m still more sure than ever that the majority of us here at Denton Bible, the Village, Cross Timbers, etc. (with the vast amount of biblical knowledge and resources that we have) need to move to other unchurched places and share the wealth that we’ve been given- I’m also seeing a day fast approaching where we’re going to need some of our graduates to plant here as a missionaries and help reach this ever-changing, ever-growing culture for Christ.  We’re going to need collegians in our churches to commit to sticking around, digging in their roots, committing to the local church, and penetrating our surrounding neighborhoods and businesses with the redeeming message of the Gospel!

So whether you’re a small-town person or not, you can’t argue that both the potential & need for the Gospel are ripening big time with the changes that are heading our way. 

I’m not sure what the future holds for my family and I concerning Denton, but I have to tell you, this kind of stuff really gets me excited about some of the possibilities for reaching this community for Christ!

Anyway, just some food for thought…

-Shea  

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~ by Shea Sumlin on November 6, 2006.

2 Responses to “The Future of Denton…”

  1. Well written, well put…very exciting…never heard someone describe Denton as well as you just did! That’s really exciting about the growth taking place there…

  2. […] no doubt the face of Denton is about to change.  For implications of this growth, read my blog from back in […]

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