Few cities in the country can match the wide range of appealing opportunities you’ll find in College Station. Whether you are looking to start a successful career or business, want a safe place to raise a family, or desire a quiet location to spend your golden years, College Station has it all.
Ideally located in central Texas’s heart within a three-hour drive of five of the nation’s 20 largest cities, College Station is the home of Texas A&M University, one of the nation’s largest public institutions. The city’s resilient and robust economy diversified in recent years as a high-tech research and development hub, and its unemployment rate consistently ranks among the lowest in the country.
Careers and Business
College Station’s population has grown by more than 34 percent since 2010 to rank among the nation’s fastest-growing cities. That rapid growth has created exceptional business opportunities that have spurred impressive job growth.
In early 2021, the Milken Institute ranked College Station as the best-performing small city in Texas based on jobs, wages, and high-tech growth. In 2019, Forbes rated College Station as the nation’s second-best city for business and careers, while SmartAsset ranked it among the top 16 boomtowns in America. The city also boasts one of the lowest property tax rates in Texas.
Quality of Life
College Station is consistently rated among the country’s best college towns, thanks to Texas A&M’s 65,000+ students, who supply a healthy diversity of race, culture, and nationality that reflects the community’s spirit and timeless values.
The Aggies are members of the mighty Southeastern Conference, making big-time college sports a major attraction. The school’s football team regularly attracts crowds of more than 100,000 loyal fans who fill local hotels, restaurants, and stores.
In 2020, Niche.com ranked College Station among the nation’s best places for public schools (No. 15), raising families (No. 25), and overall quality of life (No. 26). The community is also rated as the fourth-safest city in Texas.
The George Bush Presidential Library and Museum is one of the region’s most popular tourist attractions with more than 125,000 annual visitors. Another top attraction is the Brazos Valley Veterans Memorial that features a world-class collection of memorials for every American war.
The City of College Station maintains 58 public parks that cover almost 1,400 acres. Many include tennis and basketball courts, swimming pools, dog parks, playgrounds, picnic pavilions, walking paths, and nature trails. The city also has a competition-quality skate park, a nature center, and a large outdoor amphitheater and festival site.
Adult and youth recreational programs include popular sports such as softball, basketball, volleyball, kickball, and tennis, along with summer swim lessons and a competitive youth swimming team.
College Station is also the only city in the country with nationally accredited departments in parks, public works, water, fire, police, and public safety communications.
The community’s origins go back to the founding of the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Texas, which opened in 1876 as the state’s first higher education institution. Because of the school’s isolation, administrators provided facilities for those associated with the college, and the campus became the focal point of community development.
The area was designated as College Station, Texas, by the U.S. Postal Service in 1877. The name was derived from the train station located west of the campus.
In 1938, the community’s growth influenced residents’ desire to create a municipal government. They submitted a petition representing on and off-campus interests to the college’s board of directors, which had no objection and suggested that a belt around the campus be included in the proposed city.
The City of College Station was incorporated by a vote of 217-39 on Oct. 19, 1938. The first city council meeting was on Feb. 25, 1939, in the Administration Building on the A&M campus.
The city council adopted a governmental structure similar to the council-manager form of government. At the time of incorporation, state law did not allow a general law city to hire a city manager. As a result, College Station employed a business manager until 1943, when the state began permitting general law cities to use the council-manager form of government.
College Station was the first general law city in Texas to employ a city manager. When College Station’s population exceeded 5,000 in 1952, College Station voters approved a home rule charter for the council-manager form of government.