After Decades in the Doldrums, Sleepy Mesquite Finally Showing Signs of Rebirth

MESQUITE -- Seemingly left behind in a deep slumber as decades of growth spread across the rest of North Texas, Mesquite is finally showing signs of waking up.In a city that hasn't had a new subdivision in 15 years, frames for new homes rising near Interstate 20 at Lumley Road are a welcome sign of life.And while Mesquite's population quadrupled from 1960-90, only a couple neighborhoods have been added since. During that same time, other areas of the city aged, including a key roadway from Dallas where 150,000 drivers a day got a very drab 1960s first impression of Mesquite.But things are improving. With 4,000 acres available for development, four freeways -- and a fifth on the way-- along with other amenities of an established city, Mesquite is in a valuable position."We believe it's the beginning of the next boom," said Jeff Jones, assistant city manager.SmartAsset, which provides home ownership and mortgage services online, recently ranked Mesquite as Texas' healthiest housing market -- and No. 2 in the nation. Its annual study factors housing stability, risk, ease of sale and affordability. The average time for house to stay on the market in Mesquite is about 14 days. Homes in the sub-$200,000 price range are in high demand and Mesquite is full of them. Because most are more than 20 years old and less than 2,000 square feet, the average cost in the city is closer to $150,000. The affordable housing impacts other parts of the community, including the Mesquite Independent School District."MISD's growth in recent years comes from neighborhoods turning over," said Laura Jobe, the school district's communications director. "As people get older and move on, new, younger families are moving in."Moving on up  Continue reading...

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