Plano, Texas

Plano (/ˈpln/ PLAY-noh) is a city in Collin County and Denton County, Texas, United States. It had a population of 285,494 at the 2020 census.[4] It is part of the Dallas–Fort Worth metroplex.

Plano, Texas
City of Plano
Legacy Town Center
Legacy Town Center
Flag of Plano, Texas
Official logo of Plano, Texas
Location within Collin County
Location within Collin County
Map of USA
Map of USA
Location within Texas
Map of USA
Map of USA
Location within the United States
Coordinates: 33°01′11″N 96°41′56″W / 33.01972°N 96.69889°W / 33.01972; -96.69889Coordinates: 33°01′11″N 96°41′56″W / 33.01972°N 96.69889°W / 33.01972; -96.69889[1]
CountryUnited States
CountiesCollin, Denton
 • TypeCouncil-Manager
 • MayorJohn B. Muns
 • BodyPlano City Council
 • City managerMark Israelson
 • City72.04 sq mi (186.59 km2)
 • Land71.69 sq mi (185.67 km2)
 • Water0.36 sq mi (0.93 km2)
Elevation666 ft (203 m)
 • City285,494
 • Density4,012.96/sq mi (1,549.42/km2)
 • Metro
7,102,796 (DFW Metroplex)
 • Demonym
Time zoneUTC−6 (CST)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−5 (CDT)
ZIP Codes
75023-26, 75074-75, 75086, 75093-94
Area codes214, 469, 945, 972
FIPS code48-58016[3]


Plano, Texas in 1891. Toned lithograph by A.E. Downs, Boston. Published by T. M. Fowler & James B. Moyer. Amon Carter Museum, Fort Worth, Texas

European settlers came to the area near present-day Plano in the early 1840s.[5] Facilities such as a sawmill, a gristmill, and a store soon brought more people to the area. A mail service was established, and after rejecting several names for the nascent town (including naming it in honor of then-President Millard Fillmore),[6] residents suggested the name Plano (from the Spanish word for "flat") in reference to the local terrain, unvaried and devoid of any trees. The post office accepted the name.[6]

In 1872, the completion of the Houston and Central Texas Railway helped Plano grow, and it was incorporated in 1873.[6] By 1874, the population had grown to more than 500.[5] In 1881, a fire raged through the business district, destroying most of the buildings.[5][6] Plano was rebuilt and business again flourished through the 1880s. Also in 1881, the city assumed responsibility for what would eventually become Plano Independent School District (PISD), ending the days of it being served only by private schools.[5]

At first, Plano's population grew slowly, reaching 1,304 in 1900 and 3,695 in 1960.[5] By 1970, Plano began to feel some of the boom its neighbors had experienced after World War II. A series of public works projects and a change in taxes that removed the farming community from the town helped increase the population. In 1970, the population reached 17,872,[5] and by 1980, it had exploded to 72,000.[5] Sewers, schools, and street development kept pace with this massive increase, largely because of Plano's flat topography, grid layout, and planning initiatives.

During the 1980s, many large corporations moved their headquarters to Plano, including J. C. Penney and Frito-Lay, spurring further growth. By 1990, the population reached 128,713,[5] dwarfing the county seat, McKinney. In 1994, Plano was recognized as an All-America City.[7] By 2000, the population grew to 222,030,[5] making it one of Dallas's largest suburbs. Plano is surrounded by other municipalities and so cannot expand in area, and there is little undeveloped land remaining within the city limits. But as of July 2012, one large tract of land was being developed: Turnpike Commons[8] at the intersection of Renner Road and the George Bush Turnpike (also bordered by Shiloh Road to the east). The development is expected to feature apartments, medical facilities, restaurants, a Race Trac gas station, and a hotel.

In 2013, Plano received a top score in a national livability index according to an algorithm created by, a Toronto-based company specializing in such data.[9] AreaVibes ranked Plano at the top of the list of U.S. cities with populations between 100,000 and 10 million. Another chart, "Best Places to Live in 2013", also ranked Plano first.[10]


Plano, Texas
Climate chart (explanation)
Average max. and min. temperatures in °F
Precipitation totals in inches
Source: NWS

According to the United States Census Bureau, Plano has a total area of 71.6 square miles (185.5 km2).

Plano is about 17 miles (27 km) from Downtown Dallas.[11]


Plano is in the humid subtropical climate zone. The highest recorded temperature was 118 °F (48 °C) in 1936. On average, the coolest month is January and the warmest is July. The lowest recorded temperature was -7 °F (-22 °C) in 1930. The maximum average precipitation occurs in May.


Historical population
Census Pop.
U.S. Decennial Census[12]
Map of racial distribution in Plano, 2010 U.S. Census. Each dot is 25 people: White, Black, Asian, Hispanic or Other (yellow)

As of the census of 2010,[3] Plano had 259,841 people, 99,131 households and 69,464 families, up from 80,875 households and 60,575 families in the 2000 census. The population density was 3,629.1 people per square mile (1,400.8/km2). There were 103,672 housing units at an average density of 1,448.6 per square mile (559.3/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 67% White (58.4% Non-Hispanic White[13]), 7.5% Black, 0.36% Native American, 16.9% Asian (6.5% Asian Indian, 5.2% Chinese, 1.2% Vietnamese, 1.2% Korean, 0.6% Filipino, 0.2% Japanese, 1.9% Other), 0.1% Pacific Islander, 3.86% from other races, and 3.0% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino made up 14.7% of the population (10.6% Mexican, 0.5% Puerto Rican, 0.2% Cuban, 3.5% Other).

Plano is the 9th largest city in Texas and the 71st largest in the United States. As of 2009 western Plano has a higher concentration of Asians, while eastern Plano has a higher concentration of Hispanics and Latinos.[14]

Of the 99,131 households, 35.8% had children under the age of 18. Married couples accounted for 56.7%; 9.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.9% were non-families. About 24.4% of all households were individuals, and 5.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.61, and the average family size was 3.15.

Data indicates that 28.7% of Plano's population was under the age of 18, 7.0% was 18 to 24, 36.5% was 25 to 44, 22.9% was 45 to 64, and 4.9% was 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34. For every 100 females, there were 99.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 97.2 males.

According to a 2007 estimate, the median income for a household in the city was $84,492, and the median income for a family was $101,616.[15] About 3.0% of families and 4.3% of the population were living below the poverty line, including 4.6% of those under age 18 and 7.8% of those 65 or older.

In 2007, Plano had the United States' highest median income among cities with a population exceeding 250,000, at $84,492.[16] As of 2010, Plano had a median income of $103,913 annually. According to crime statistics, there were four homicides in Plano in 2006, the lowest rate of all U.S. cities of 250,000 or more people.[17]

Foreign-born residentsEdit

As of the 2000 U.S. Census, of the foreign-born residents, 17% were from China, 9% from India, and 4% from Vietnam;[18] a total of 30% of foreign-born residents came from these three countries. That year, 22% of Plano's foreign-born originated in Mexico.[14]

Chinese AmericansEdit

Along with Houston, Plano has one of Texas's two major concentrations of Chinese Americans.[19] According to the 2010 U.S. Census there were 14,500 ethnic Chinese in Plano. Of cities with 250,000 or more residents, Plano has the sixth-largest percentage of ethnic Chinese, making up 5.2% of the city's population. Charlie Yue, the executive vice president of the Association of Chinese Professionals, estimated that about 30,000 Plano residents are Chinese and that many "don't participate in government activities, like the census".[20]

Chinese professionals began to settle Plano by 1991.[21] As of 2011 the Chinese restaurants in DFW catering to ethnic Chinese are mainly in Plano and Richardson.[22] Most of the DFW-area Chinese cultural organizations are headquartered in Plano and Richardson. Plano has six Chinese churches[20] and supermarkets including 99 Ranch Market and zTao Marketplace.[23]


Top employersEdit

Rent-A-Center headquarters office building in Plano, Texas
The Shops at Willow Bend, Plano's upscale shopping mall[24]

According to the Plano Economic Development 2017 Leading Employers Report,[25] Plano's top 10 employers are:

# Employer # of Employees
1 Capital One Finance 5,500
2 DXC Technology 4,000
3 Bank of America Home Loans 3,400
4 Red Bee Media (fka Ericsson Broadcast and Media Services) 3,200
5 Toyota Motor North America, Inc. 2,900
6 Frito-Lay 2,500
7 J.C. Penney Company, Inc. 2,420
8 NTT Data Services (fka Dell Services) 2,250
9 Texas Health Plano (fka Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Plano) 1,680
10 Medical City Plano (fka Medical Center of Plano) 1,600

About 80% of Plano's visitors are business travelers, due to its close proximity to Dallas and the many corporations headquartered in Plano. The city also has a convention center owned and operated by the city. Plano has made a concerted effort to draw retail to its downtown area and the Legacy West in an effort to boost sales tax returns. It has two malls, The Shops at Willow Bend and The Shops at Legacy. Collin Creek Mall closed in 2019. There is an area that has apartments, shops, and restaurants constructed with the New Urbanism philosophy.[26] An experimental luxury Walmart Supercenter is at Park Boulevard and the Dallas North Tollway.[27]

Headquarters of major corporationsEdit

Some of the country's largest and most recognized companies are headquartered in Plano. Legacy Drive in ZIP Code 75024, between Preston Road and Dallas North Tollway, has many corporate campuses. The following companies have corporate headquarters (Fortune 1000 headquarters) or major regional offices in Plano:[28]

In 2014 Toyota Motor North America announced its U.S. headquarters will move from Torrance, California, to Plano.[33] In 2015, Liberty Mutual announced its plans to build a new corporate campus just a few blocks east of Toyota's, bringing an estimated 5,000 jobs to the community.[34] In January 2016, JP Morgan Chase and mortgage giant Fannie Mae announced they would move their regional operations to Plano, bringing a combined 7,000 new jobs to the community.[35]

Arts and cultureEdit

The Plano Public Library System (PPLS) consists of the W.O. Haggard, Jr. Library, the Maribelle M. Davis Library, the Gladys Harrington Library, the Christopher A. Parr Library, the L.E.R. Schimelpfenig Library, and the Municipal Reference Library. The Haggard Library houses the system's administrative offices.[36]

Historic sitesEdit

Parks and recreationEdit

Haggard Park in October 2015
Dickens in Downtown Plano 2014 Lighting of the Tree

Although Plano is named for the flat plains of the area, large trees abound in the city's many parks.[37] One such tree, estimated to be over 200 years old, is in Bob Woodruff Park, near Rowlett Creek on the city's east side.[38]

There are two main open space preserves: Arbor Hills Nature Preserve (200 acres) which contains a pond in honor of Vasil Levski[39] and Oak Point Park and Nature Preserve (800 acres). Bob Woodruff Park and Oak Point Park and Nature Preserve are connected by biking trails, making the green space one large uninterrupted park space larger than New York City's Central Park (840 acres). Go Ape, a family-friendly place with outdoor activities like ziplining and Tarzan swings, is at Oak Point Park and Preserve.[40] The Plano Balloon Festival, which happens every September, also takes place at Oak Point Park and Preserve. Another open space is Haggard Park, which hosts the annual Plano AsiaFest in May.[41] Acreage of all spaces the Parks Department manages totals 3,830.81. The Plano Master Plan has the acreage growing to 4,092.63 when complete.[42]

There are five recreation centers: Tom Muehlenbeck Recreation Center, Carpenter Park Recreation Center, Oak Point Recreation Center, Liberty Recreation Center, and Douglass Community Center. Carpenter Park Recreation Center, Oak Point Recreation Center, and Tom Muehlenbeck Recreation Center have an indoor pool, while Liberty Recreation Center has an outdoor pool.[43] Plano Senior Recreation Center is a recreation center dedicated to seniors. There are three swimming pools owned by Plano Parks & Recreation: Harry Rowlinson Community Natatorium, Jack Carter Pool, and Plano Aquatic Center. All the pools are indoor except Jack Carter Pool. Douglass Community Center houses the Boys & Girls Club of Collin County. For pet owners, there are The Dog Park at Jack Carter Park, The Dog Park at Bob Woodruff, and Dog Park at Windhaven Meadows Park.

The City of Plano also owns and operates four performing arts venues and a conference center under the auspices of the Parks and Recreation Department: the Courtyard Theater, the Cox Playhouse, the Amphitheater at Oak Point Park, McCall Plaza, and the Oak Point Park Nature and Retreat Center.

  • Neighborhood parks: 249.13 acres
  • Linear parks: 629.27 acres
  • Community parks: 1,120.65 acres
  • Open space preserves: 1,324.13 acres
  • Special use areas: 46.57 acres
  • Golf courses: 461.06 acres


Local governmentEdit

The Municipal Center in October 2015

Plano has a council-manager form of government, with a part-time city council that sets city policy and a city manager responsible for city operations. The Plano City Council has eight members elected on a nonpartisan basis in staggered odd-year elections every other May. Council members and the mayor are elected by and serve the city at large. Council members serving in places one, two, three, and four must reside in that district, and the mayor always serves in place six. The mayor receives a yearly stipend of $8,400, and each council member receives $6,000.

All council members, including the mayor, serve a maximum of two consecutive four-year terms.[44] The mayor and city council members could serve for a maximum of three consecutive three-year terms until voters approved changes to the city charter in 2011.[45]

The 38th mayor of Plano was businessman Harry LaRosiliere, who was elected the first African-American mayor of Plano in 2013.[46] Plano elected its first African-American city council member, David Perry, in 1990.[47]

On December 8, 2014, the city council passed an amendment to its civil rights act to include sexual orientation and gender identity as protected.[48]

In the 2008 fiscal year Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, Plano reported $194 million in revenue, $212 million in expenditures, $278 million in total assets, $31.4 million in total liabilities, and $337 million in cash and investments.[49]

Plano is a voluntary member of the North Central Texas Council of Governments association, the purpose of which is to coordinate individual and collective local governments and facilitate regional solutions, eliminate unnecessary duplication, and enable joint decisions.


Dallas's wealthy northern suburbs were solidly Republican and in 2005, the Bay Area Center for Voting Research ranked Plano, the largest of them, the United States' fifth-most conservative city.[50] It has become more competitive in national elections as its population has diversified, shifting toward the Democratic Party since 2016, when Donald Trump won the city by a narrow margin. In 2018, Beto O'Rourke became the first Democrat to win the city in a statewide election in the 21st century, and in 2020, Joe Biden won the city by an even larger margin. But in local and state elections, Plano still leans Republican, voting to reelect Governor Greg Abbott in 2018 and narrowly reelecting Republicans to the Texas House of Representatives and Texas Senate in 2018 and 2020.

2020 US Presidential Election precinct results by margin of victory
Plano city vote by party in Presidential elections [51][52]
Year Democratic Republican Third Parties
2020 53.50% 72,736 44.75% 60,840 1.76% 2,389
2016 45.31% 49,522 50.12% 54,784 4.56% 4,988
2012 37.44% 37,435 60.74% 60,733 1.82% 1,817
2008 39.70% 42,441 59.11% 63,193 1.19% 1,280
2004 31.07% 30,387 68.06% 66,562 0.87% 852
2000 25.65% 20,888 71.78% 58,447 2.57% 2,093
Plano city vote by party in Class I Senate elections [51][52]
Year Democratic Republican Third Parties
2018 52.35% 55,804 46.85% 49,941 0.81% 859
2012 36.94% 35,813 60.01% 58,183 3.06% 2,963
2006 28.75% 15,040 68.91% 36,047 2.34% 1,225
2000 18.22% 14,634 79.29% 63,674 2.49% 1,999
Plano city vote by party in Class II Senate elections [51][52]
Year Democratic Republican Third Parties
2020 48.86% 65,024 48.87% 65,039 2.26% 3,013
2014 31.65% 18,134 64.63% 37,028 3.72% 2,131
2008 35.79% 36,916 61.81% 63,753 2.40% 2,480
2002 30.55% 17,156 68.45% 38,441 1.01% 566
Plano city vote by party in Gubernatorial elections [51][52]
Year Democratic Republican Third Parties
2018 44.43% 46,993 53.67% 56,757 1.90% 2,008
2014 37.03% 21,331 61.57% 35,461 1.72% 991
2010 35.62% 18,992 61.71% 32,904 2.67% 1,427
2006 26.11% 13,828 47.15% 24,970 26.74% 14,164
2002 25.07% 14,294 73.52% 41,910 1.93% 1,102

In 2014, Plano's City Council passed an expansion of the city's Equal Rights Policy that included anti-discrimination protections for gay, lesbian, and transgender individuals.[53] The ordinance drew the ire of conservative groups such as the Liberty Institute, which argued that it infringed on business owners' religious rights.[54] Many civil rights organizations were not supportive either, such as the Human Rights Campaign, which argued that the policy's exclusion of transgender individuals rendered the ordinance not worth defending.[55]

State representationEdit

Plano is split between the 66th and 67th Districts in the Texas House of Representatives, and is wholly contained in Texas Senate District 8.

Republican Matt Shaheen represents Texas House District 66, and Republican Jeff Leach has represented Texas House District 67 since 2013. Republican Angela Paxton represents Texas Senate District 8.

Federal representationEdit

Republican Congressman Van Taylor has represented Texas's 3rd congressional district since 2019. Plano is represented in the United States Senate by Republicans Ted Cruz and John Cornyn.


There are 70 public schools, 16 private schools, and two campuses of the Collin County Community College District (Collin College).

Primary and secondary schoolsEdit

The Plano Independent School District serves most of the city. Student enrollment has increased dramatically over the past few decades. Plano has a unique high school system, in which grades 9-10 attend a high school and grades 11-12 attend a senior high.[56] There are three senior high schools (grades 11–12) in PISD; Plano East, Plano, and Plano West.[56] In Newsweek's 2012 list of best national high schools, Plano West was ranked as 22nd (#1 in Texas), Plano Senior as 108th, and Plano East as 243rd.[57] Small portions of Plano are served by the Lewisville Independent School District, Frisco Independent School District, and Allen Independent School District (Commercial Only for Allen ISD).

Plano schools graduate more of their students than comparable districts. In 2010, 93% of Plano Independent Student District students graduated from high school, 18 percentage points higher than Dallas ISD's rate.[58] In 2012, Plano Independent School District announced that 128 seniors were selected as National Merit Semifinalists.[59]

Plano has given $1.2 billion in property tax revenue to other school districts through the Texas "Robin Hood" law, which requires school districts that are designated as affluent to give a percentage of their property tax revenue to other districts outside of the county.[60] In 2008, PISD gave $86 million. Controversy erupted when the salaries of teachers in less affluent districts—such as Garland ISD—exceeded the salaries of teachers in districts that had to pay into "Robin Hood".[61]

In the 2013–14 school year, Plano ISD has opened two 4-year high school Academies, one focusing on STEAM (STEM education plus Media Arts) called Plano ISD Academy High School, and the other on health science. Additionally, the district has modified its existing International Baccalaureate program to allow freshman and sophomores in the program to be housed at Plano East Senior High School.[62]

In addition to Catholic primary and middle schools, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Dallas operates John Paul II High School in Plano. Non-Catholic private schools in Plano include Great Lakes Academy, Spring Creek Academy, Yorktown Education, and Prestonwood Christian Academy. In addition, the Collin County campus of Coram Deo Academy is in the One Church (previously Four Corners Church) facility in Plano.[63]

Colleges and universitiesEdit

Entrance to the Spring Creek campus of Collin College in Plano, Texas

Plano is the home to two campuses of Collin College, one at the Courtyard Center on Preston Park Boulevard and the larger Spring Creek Campus on Spring Creek Parkway at Jupiter.[64] DBU North, a satellite campus of Dallas Baptist University, is in west Plano, and offers undergraduate and graduate courses and houses the admissions and academic counseling offices.[65]



A DART Red Line train at the Downtown Plano station

Plano is one of 12 suburbs of Dallas that opt into the Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) public transportation system. During most of its membership in DART, Plano was lightly served by bus lines, but in 2002, the Red Line of the DART Light Rail project opened stations in Downtown Plano and at Parker Road, which provide access to commuters traveling to work elsewhere in the Dallas area. The Orange Line traverses the same route for selected weekday/peak hour trips. The Silver Line is also planned to run through Southern Plano. Approximately 1% of the city's population uses DART. The Parker Road station charged for parking for non-member city residents from April 2, 2012 – April 3, 2014 as a part of the Fair Share Parking initiative. Two DART park-and-ride bus facilities, separate from the rail lines, are within Plano: Jack Hatchell Transit Center and Northwest Plano Park & Ride.

Plano was the first city in Collin County to adopt a master plan for its road system. The use of multi-lane, divided highways for all major roads allows for higher speed limits, generally 40 mph (64 km/h), but sometimes up to 55 mph (89 km/h) on the northern section of Preston Road. Plano is served directly by several major roadways and freeways. Central Plano is bordered to the east by U.S. Highway 75, the west by Dallas North Tollway, the south by President George Bush Turnpike (Texas State Highway 190 (east of Coit Road)), and the north by Sam Rayburn Tollway (Texas State Highway 121). Preston Road (Texas State Highway 289) is a major thoroughfare that runs through the city. Plano is the largest city in Texas without an Interstate Highway.

Plano opened a new interchange at Parker Rd. and U.S. 75 in December 2010. The single-point interchange is the first of its kind in Texas. The design is intended to reduce severe congestion at this interchange. According to reports traffic congestion has been reduced 50-75%.

Plano is roughly 30 miles northeast of Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport; it is the primary airport serving Plano residents and visitors.

Fire departmentEdit

The Plano Fire-Rescue has 386 full-time firefighters[66] who operate out of 13 stations.


The Plano Police Department is an accredited agency[67] and is the principal law enforcement agency serving Plano. The department is led by Police Chief Ed Drain.[68] The Plano Police Department has authorized staff of 414 sworn Officers, 178 full-time civilian employees, and 79 civilian part-time employees.[68] The department is a member of the North Texas Crime Commission and uses the Crime Stoppers program.

In 2010 and 2011, ranked Plano the "Safest City in America" for cities with populations over 250,000.[69] Plano is consistently recognized and awarded by the National Association of Town Watch (National Night Out Awards),[70] the National Sheriff's Association, and the U.S. Department of Justice for "Excellence in Neighborhood Watch".


Plano is part of the North Texas Municipal Water District, headquartered in Wylie, Texas. Lake Lavon is the district's principal source of raw water. Plano's water distribution system includes:

  • 10 elevated towers
  • 12 ground storage tanks
  • 54.5 million-gallon water storage capacity
  • 5 pump stations
  • 225 million-gallon daily pumping capacity
  • 1,080 miles of water mains
  • 65,965 metered service connections

Notable peopleEdit

Sister citiesEdit

Plano's sister cities are:[114]

Plano's sister city also was Brampton, Canada, however the relationship ended in 2018.[115]


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