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Red Oak to lead county growth

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RUSTY WELLER

Ellis County Press Managing Editor

With Red Oak to lead the way, phenomenal growth is predicted for several Ellis County communities over the next quarter century. 

More than quadrupling in population, Red Oak is expected to gain 12,050 residents by 2025, according to a new study by the North Central Council of Governments. That's an expected 335 percent increase of 15,650 residents over the next 25 years. The survey, based on 1995 figures, lists the community's population at 3,600.

Exploding futures also are seen for Midlothian and Ovilla, which are supposed to more than triple their number of residents through 2025. Waxahachie is expected to nearly double in population, with Ennis forecast a 49 percent growth in population.

However, very little growth is forecast for Ferris or Wilmer. The survey's website - www.dfwfuture.com -- did not provide information on Palmer, Hutchins, Italy or other Ellis County communities.

Overall, the 30-year survey anticipates Ellis County's population growing 116 percent to 196,800, with 28,150 additional jobs and 38,100 new homes.

Midlothian, listed at 5,800 in 1995, is predicted to gain 19,100 new residents by 2025. The 229 percent explosion would give the city a population of 13,300.

The story is supposed to be much the same for Ovilla's population, forecast to soar from 1995's 2,550 to 5,450 - a 214 percent gain of 8,000.

County seat Waxahachie, while anticipating a more modest 91 percent, is supposed to have 34,900 residents, an increase of 16,650 from a listed total of 18,200.

Ennis, listed at 14,100 residents in '95, is supposed to grow to 21,000 by 2025.

Jobs in Red Oak are predicted to climb 93 percent for a total of 3,950. Red Oak households are supposed to climb to 5,550.

Overall, an additional 2.8 million people are expected to squeeze into North Texas by 2025. The anticipated increase of almost 69 percent supposedly means 1.1 million additional households and 1.6 million more jobs.

The study anticipates Midlothian mushrooming in jobs from 1,650 to 4,900 and in households from 2,050 to 7,000. Similarly, Ovilla is seen soaring in jobs from 100 to 450 and in households from 600 to 2,700.

Waxahachie's jobs are to increase from 10,750 to 20,700, with households up to 12,400 from 6,700. Ennis should gain 4,200 jobs to total 11,850.

Ferris, though, is only forecast to gain 150 residents over the 30-year span - only a seven percent growth factor. Ferris' job outlook is better, with a 71 percent gain forecast for 2,050 by 2025.

While Wilmer is only supposed to grow 12 percent to 2,800, its jobs are expected to expand 177 percent to total 1,800. 

The North Central Council of Governments used 1995 as a starting point to fashion its 30-year forecast. Researchers studied housing and job statistics for eight counties in addition to Ellis. Included in the study were Collin, Dallas, Denton, Johnson, Kaufman, Parker, Rockwall and Tarrant.

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