Mayor Mattie Parker was succinct in describing how things in Fort Worth are going.

“I’m here to tell you today that the state of Fort Worth is absolutely strong,” she said during her State of the City address Oct. 6 at the Fort Worth Convention Center.

In her hourlong speech, the second-term mayor touched on a variety of topics, some dealing with the recently passed $2.6 billion budget, while also looking forward to changes residents can expect this fiscal year.

The full story

Parker said the city is growing by 100,000 every year, and with a population of more than 950,000, Fort Worth is the 13th biggest town in the United States. She added that Fort Worth has seen more real estate growth than Dallas recently and ranks fourth in the country.

“People are quite literally voting with their feet,” Parker said. “When people could live anywhere, they’re choosing to live in Fort Worth.”

Parker added that the Dallas-Fort Worth metro area is on pace to surpass Chicago as the third largest population center in America in the next 10 years.

Zooming in

Parker honed in on public safety as one of her talking points, mentioning the approved budget will fund 106 new employees for the police department, including more than 60 officers and creating a third crisis intervention team.

In 2022 the Fort Worth Police Department CIT teams had:
  • 9,984 service calls
  • 237 high-risk mental health interventions
  • 67 firearms seizures
Parker noted that murders are down 18% in the first quarter of 2023 compared to the first quarter of 2022.

The fire department will add 76 new positions.

“When you call 911, first responders need to be there as quickly as possible," Parker said. "We are right-sizing public safety to meet the growing needs of our city."

The details

Parker announced the creation of Good Natured Fort Worth Greenspace Initiative. She said the city loses about 50 acres of natural open space per week to development, and this program is aimed at bringing a public-and-private partnership to enhance green-space investment in the city.

She hopes to preserve at least 10,000 acres of open space over the next five years.

“Fort Worth is the fastest-growing city in America and is also currently half-developed,” she said. “We must meet this moment. We have an opportunity, responsibility and urgency right now to protect natural areas and to preserve critical watersheds and green and blue spaces across our city. Leaving this city better than we found it starts now, and the generations to come are depending on us taking this seriously.”

She stated that Oncor provided a $1 million donation to help start the initiative.