Central Arkansas

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Central Arkansas

Little Rock-North Little Rock-Conway, AR MSA
Skyline of Little Rock, Arkansas - 20050319.jpg
Downtown Little Rock
Map of Arkansas highlighting Central Arkansas.svg
  Central Arkansas
  Pine Bluff MSA
  Searcy μSA
Coordinates: 34°44′10″N92°19′52″W / 34.73611°N 92.33111°W / 34.73611; -92.33111 Coordinates: 34°44′10″N92°19′52″W / 34.73611°N 92.33111°W / 34.73611; -92.33111
CountryFlag of the United States.svg  United States
StateFlag of Arkansas.svg  Arkansas
Principal cities Little Rock
North Little Rock
Conway
Area
  Urban
258.3 sq mi (669 km2)
  MSA4,085.18 sq mi (10,580.6 km2)
  CSA7,150.31 sq mi (18,519.2 km2)
Population
 (2016)
   Urban
431,388 (US: 89th)
   MSA
734,622 [1] (US: 76th)
   CSA
905,847 [2] (US: 60th)
Time zone UTC−6 (CST)
  Summer (DST) UTC−5 (CDT)
Area code(s) 501 & 870

Central Arkansas, also known as the Little Rock metro, designated by the United States Office of Management and Budget as the Little Rock-North Little Rock-Conway Metropolitan Statistical Area, is the most populous metro area in the US state of Arkansas. With an estimated 2016 population of 734,622, it is the most populated area in Arkansas. Located at the convergence of Arkansas's other geographic regions, the region's central location make Central Arkansas an important population, economic, education, and political center in Arkansas and the South. Little Rock is the state's capital, and the city is also home to two Fortune 500 companies, Arkansas Children's Hospital, and University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS).

Contents

History

The site known as "little rock" along the Arkansas River was found by explorer Bernard de la Harpe in 1722. [3] The territorial capitol had been located at Arkansas Post in Southeast Arkansas since 1819, but the site had proven unsuitable as a settlement due to frequent flooding of the Arkansas River. Over the years, the "little rock" was known as a waypoint along the river, but remained unsettled. A land speculator from St. Louis, Missouri who had acquired many acres around the "little rock" began pressuring the Arkansas territorial legislature in February 1820 to move the capital to the site, but the representatives could not decide between Little Rock or Cadron (now Conway), which was the preferred site of Territorial Governor James Miller. The issue was tabled until October 1820, by which time most of the legislators and other influential men had purchased lots around Little Rock. [4] The legislature moved the capital to Little Rock, where it has remained ever since.

Geography

Central Arkansas is located in the Southern United States (commonly known as the South in the US), and within a subregion commonly known as the Upper South. The South is a distinct cultural region reliant upon a plantation economy in the 18th and 19th century, until the secession of the Confederate States of America and the Civil War.

The region is the point of convergence for four other Arkansas regions: the Ozarks to the north, the Arkansas River Valley to the west, the Arkansas Delta to the east, and Piney Woods to the southwest.

Barge traffic passes under the Main Street Bridge on the Arkansas River between Little Rock and North Little Rock River Traffic in Little Rock.jpg
Barge traffic passes under the Main Street Bridge on the Arkansas River between Little Rock and North Little Rock

The Arkansas River crosses the region, and serves as the dividing line between Little Rock and North Little Rock. The Arkansas is an important geographic feature in Central Arkansas, requiring long bridge spans but allowing barge traffic to the Port of Little Rock and points upriver.

Demographics

Central Arkansas includes both the Little Rock-North Little Rock-Conway MSA, though the broader Little Rock CSA is also considered Central Arkansas. The MSA is defined by the United States Office of Management and Budget as Faulkner, Grant, Lonoke, Perry, Pulaski and Saline counties. The CSA definition adds the Pine Bluff metropolitan area adding Cleveland, Jefferson, and Lincoln counties, and the Searcy Micropolitan Area, which adds White County.

It is the core of the broader Little Rock-North Little Rock Combined Statistical Area (CSA). Its economic, cultural, and demographic center is Little Rock, Arkansas's capital and largest city. The Little Rock Combined Statistical area spans ten counties and had an estimated population of 905,847 in 2016. [2]

Prior to 2002, the area consisted of four core counties: Pulaski, Faulkner, Saline and Lonoke. The area was later expanded to include adjoining Perry County to the west, and Grant County to the south. The city of Conway was designated as a third principal city for the MSA by 2007.

Population, land area & population density (2016 Census)
County
Ref.
PopulationLand
mi²
Land
km²
Pop.
/mi²
Pop.
/km²
Pulaski County [5] 393,250759.761,967.77503.8194.52
Faulkner County [6] 122,227647.881,678.00174.867.49
Saline County [7] 118,703723.601,874.12148.057.14
Lonoke County [8] 72,228770.731,996.1888.734.25
Grant County [9] 18,082631.811,636.3828.310.93
Perry County [10] 10,132551.401,428.1218.97.30
Central Arkansas734,6224,085.1810,580.57179.869.42
Jefferson County [11] 70,016870.752,255.2388.934.32
Lincoln County [11] 13,705561.521,454.3325.29.73
Cleveland County [11] 8,241597.781,548.2414.55.60
Pine Bluff MSA91,9622,030.055,257.8145.317.49
Searcy μSA [12] 79,2631,035.082,680.8474.528.76
CSA905,8477,150.3118,519.22126.748.92
Arkansas2,988,24852,035.48134,771.2756.021.62

2000 Census

MSA

As of the census [13] of 2000, there were 610,518 people, 241,094 households, and 165,405 families residing within the MSA. The racial makeup of the MSA was 75.40% White, 21.02% African American, 0.44% Native American, 0.96% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 0.87% from other races, and 1.27% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.07% of the population.

The median income for a household in the MSA was $37,912, and the median income for a family was $44,572. Males had a median income of $31,670 versus $23,354 for females. The per capita income for the MSA was $18,305.

CSA

As of the census [13] of 2000, there were 785,024 people, 304,335 households, and 210,966 families residing within the CSA. The racial makeup of the CSA was 73.97% White, 22.73% African American, 0.42% Native American, 0.85% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 0.80% from other races, and 1.20% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.93% of the population.

The median income for a household in the CSA was $35,301, and the median income for a family was $41,804. Males had a median income of $31,192 versus $22,347 for females. The per capita income for the CSA was $16,898.

Communities

Communities are categorized based on their populations in the 2000 U.S. Census.

Places with more than 100,000 inhabitants

Places with 50,000 to 100,000 inhabitants

Places with 10,000 to 50,000 inhabitants

Places with 1,000 to 10,000 inhabitants

Places with 500 to 1,000 inhabitants

Places with fewer than 500 inhabitants

YearMetropolitan
Statistical Area
Combined
Statistical Area
2014 est.729,135902,443
2005 est.645,706820,846
2000 Census610,518785,024

Economy

The Little Rock Regional Chamber of Commerce, the oldest association in Arkansas, has produced the following list of largest employers in Central Arkansas.

EmployerNumber of employees
State of Arkansas32,200
Local government28,800
Federal government9,200
University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 8,500
Baptist Health7,000
Little Rock Air Force Base 4,500
Acxiom 4,380
Little Rock School District 3,500
Central Arkansas Veterans Healthcare System 3,500
Entergy Arkansas 2,740
Pulaski County Special School District 2,700
AT&T 2,600
CHI St. Vincent Health System 2,600
Arkansas Children’s Hospital 2,470
Dillard's 2,400
Verizon Wireless 2,000
Union Pacific Railroad 2,000
Arkansas Blue Cross Blue Shield 1,800
Dassault Falcon Jet Corp. 2,000
CenterPoint Energy 1,800

Source: Little Rock Regional Chamber of Commerce

Higher education

Notable colleges and universities

SchoolEnrollmentLocationTypeNicknameAthletic Affiliation
(Conference)
UALR SSC1.jpg
University of Arkansas at Little Rock
11,848Little Rock Public
State University
Trojans NCAA Division I
(Sun Belt)
Non-Football
TorrLib.jpg
University of Central Arkansas
11,487Conway Public
State University
Bears and Sugar Bears NCAA Division I FCS
(Southland)
HendrixCollegeMainEntrance.JPG
Hendrix College
1,348Conway Private
liberal arts college
Warriors NCAA Division III
(SAA)

Infrastructure

Transportation

Major highways

I-30 terminates at I-40 in North Little Rock Northern terminus of Interstate 30, Little Rock, AR.jpg
I-30 terminates at I-40 in North Little Rock
US 167 in Sheridan US 167 in Sheridan, AR 001.jpg
US 167 in Sheridan
U.S. Route 270 in Sheridan, Arkansas. US 270 in Sheridan, Arkansas.jpg
U.S. Route 270 in Sheridan, Arkansas.

Aviation

Clinton National Airport LittleRockNationalAirportWideView.jpg
Clinton National Airport

The Clinton National Airport in Little Rock is the largest commercial airport in the state, with more than 100 flights arriving or departing each day and nonstop jet service to eighteen cities. [14] North Little Rock Municipal Airport, located across the Arkansas River, is designated as a general aviation reliever airport for Clinton National by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). [15] Central Arkansas also has several smaller municipally owned general aviation airports: Conway Airport at Cantrell Field in Conway, Saline County Regional in Benton, Grider Field in Pine Bluff.

Professional sports

Dickey Stephens Park Dickey Stephens Park.jpg
Dickey Stephens Park

The city of Little Rock is home to the Arkansas Travelers. The Travelers are the AA Minor League Baseball affiliate of the Seattle Mariners. They compete in the Texas League and play their home games at Dickey-Stephens Park.

See also

Related Research Articles

Stone County, Arkansas U.S. county in Arkansas

Stone County is located in the Ozark Mountains in the U.S. state of Arkansas. The county is named for rugged, rocky area terrain of the Ozarks. Created as Arkansas's 74th county on April 21, 1873, Stone County has two incorporated cities: Mountain View, the county seat and most populous city, and Fifty-Six. The county is also the site of numerous unincorporated communities and ghost towns.

Saline County, Arkansas U.S. county in Arkansas

Saline County is a county located in the U.S. state of Arkansas. As of the 2010 census, the population was 107,118. at the 2010 census. Its county seat and largest city is Benton. Saline County was formed on November 2, 1835, and named for the salt water (brine) springs in the area, however, it is pronounced "suh-LEAN" instead of the typical pronunciation, "SAY-lean". Until November 2014, it was an alcohol prohibition or dry county.

Pulaski County, Arkansas U.S. county in Arkansas

Pulaski County is a county in the U.S. state of Arkansas with a population of 391,911, making it the most populous county in Arkansas. Its county seat is Little Rock, which is also Arkansas's capital and largest city. Pulaski County is Arkansas's fifth county, formed on December 15, 1818, alongside Clark and Hempstead Counties. The county is named for Casimir Pulaski, a Polish volunteer who saved George Washington's life during the American Revolutionary War.

Prairie County, Arkansas County in Arkansas

Prairie County is located in the Central Arkansas region of the U.S. state of Arkansas. The county is named for the Grand Prairie, a subregion of the Arkansas Delta known for rice cultivation and aquaculture which runs through the county. Created as Arkansas's 54th county in 1846, Prairie County is home to four incorporated towns, including DeValls Bluff, the southern district county seat, and two incorporated cities, including Des Arc, the northern district county seat. The county is also the site of numerous unincorporated communities and ghost towns. Occupying 676 square miles (175,000 ha), Prairie County is the median-sized county in Arkansas. As of the 2010 Census, the county's population is 8,715 people in 4,503 households. Based on population, the county is the ninth-smallest county of the 75 in Arkansas.

Lonoke County, Arkansas County in Arkansas

Lonoke County is a county located in the Central Arkansas region of the U.S. state of Arkansas. As of the 2010 census, the population was 68,356, making it the eleventh-most populous of Arkansas's seventy-five counties. The county seat is Lonoke and largest city is Cabot. Lonoke County was formed on April 16, 1873 from Pulaski County and Prairie County, and was named as a corruption of "lone oak", after a large red oak in the area that had been used by a surveyor to lay out the Memphis and Little Rock Railroad.

Hot Spring County, Arkansas County in Arkansas

Hot Spring County is a county located in the U.S. state of Arkansas. As of the 2010 census, the population was 32,923. The county seat is Malvern. Hot Spring County was formed on November 2, 1829, from a portion of Clark County. It was named for the hot springs at Hot Springs, Arkansas, which were within its boundaries until Garland County was formed in 1874. It is an alcohol prohibition or dry county. However, there is no record of this law.

Faulkner County, Arkansas U.S. county in Arkansas

Faulkner County is a county located in the Central Arkansas region of the U.S. state of Arkansas. As of the 2010 census, the population was 113,237, making it the fifth most populous of Arkansas's seventy-five counties. The county seat and largest city is Conway. Faulkner County was created on April 12, 1873, one of nine counties formed during Reconstruction, and is named for Arkansas Militia Colonel Sandy Faulkner, a popular figure in the state at the time.

Austin, Arkansas City in Arkansas, United States

Austin is a city in Lonoke County, Arkansas, United States. The population was 2,038 as of the 2010 census and an estimated 3,693 as of 2018. It is part of the Little Rock–North Little Rock–Conway Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Cabot, Arkansas city in Arkansas

Cabot is the largest city in Lonoke County, Arkansas, United States, and a suburb of Little Rock. As of the 2010 census, the population of the city was 23,776, and in 2018 the population was an estimated 26,573, ranking it as the state's 19th largest city, behind Jacksonville. It is part of the Little Rock–North Little Rock–Conway Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Carlisle, Arkansas City in Arkansas, United States

Carlisle is a city in Lonoke County, Arkansas, United States. It is the easternmost municipality within the Little Rock–North Little Rock–Conway Metropolitan Statistical Area. Carlisle was incorporated in 1878. As of the 2010 census it had a population of 2,214.

Coy, Arkansas Town in Arkansas, United States

Coy is a town in Lonoke County, Arkansas, United States. The population was 96 at the 2010 census, making it the smallest incorporated community within the Little Rock–North Little Rock–Conway Metropolitan Statistical Area, as well as one of the smallest in the state.

Humnoke, Arkansas City in Arkansas, United States

Humnoke is a city in Lonoke County, Arkansas, United States. The population was 284 at the 2010 census. It is part of the Little Rock–North Little Rock–Conway Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Keo, Arkansas Town in Arkansas, United States

Keo is a town in Lonoke County, Arkansas, United States. The population was 256 at the 2010 census. It is part of the Little Rock–North Little Rock–Conway Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Lonoke, Arkansas City in Arkansas, United States

Lonoke is the second most populous city in Lonoke County, Arkansas, United States, and serves as its county seat. According to 2010 United States Census, the population of the city is 4,245. It is part of the Little Rock–North Little Rock–Conway Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Scott, Arkansas Census-designated place in Arkansas, United States

Scott is an unincorporated community and census-designated place (CDP) in Lonoke and Pulaski counties in the central part of the U.S. state of Arkansas. The population was 72 at the 2010 census. It is part of the Little Rock–North Little Rock–Conway Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Ward, Arkansas City in Arkansas, United States

Ward is the third most populous city in Lonoke County, Arkansas, United States. The population was 4,067 at the 2010 census. It is part of the Little Rock–North Little Rock–Conway Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Boise metropolitan area Metropolitan area in Idaho, United States

The Boise City–Nampa, Idaho Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) is an area that encompasses Ada, Boise, Canyon, Gem, and Owyhee counties in southwestern Idaho. It is distinct from the wider Boise City–Mountain Home–Ontario, ID–OR Combined Statistical Area, an area consisting of seven counties in southwestern Idaho, and Malheur County, Oregon anchored by the cities of Boise and Nampa. It is the state's largest officially designated metropolitan area and includes Idaho's three largest cities – Boise, Nampa, and Meridian. Nearly 40 percent of Idaho's total population lives in the area.

Seattle metropolitan area Metropolitan area in Washington, United States

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Memphis metropolitan area Metropolitan area in the United States

The Memphis–Forrest City Combined Statistical Area, TN–MS–AR (CSA) is the commercial and cultural hub of The Mid-South or Ark-Miss-Tenn. The census defined combined statistical area covers ten counties in three states – Tennessee, Mississippi, and Arkansas. As of census 2010 the MSA had a population of 1,324,108. The Forrest City Micropolitan area was added to the Memphis area in 2012 to form the Memphis–Forrest City Combined Statistical area and had a population of 1,369,548 according to census estimates. The greater Mid-South area as a whole has a population of 2.4 million according to 2013 census estimates. This area is covered by Memphis local news channels and includes the Missouri Bootheel, Northeast Arkansas, West Tennessee, and North Mississippi.

Texarkana metropolitan area City in Arkansas & Texas, United States

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References

  1. "Metropolitan Statistical Area". U.S. Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 3, 2019. Retrieved July 12, 2017.
  2. 1 2 "Combined Statistical Area". U.S. Census Bureau. Archived from the original on February 3, 2019. Retrieved July 12, 2017.
  3. "History" (2002) , p. 96.
  4. "History" (2002) , pp. 96-97.
  5. U.S. Census Bureau (July 1, 2016), Pulaski County QuickFacts from the US Census Bureau, U.S. Census Bureau: State and County QuickFacts, retrieved December 18, 2017
  6. U.S. Census Bureau (July 1, 2016), Faulkner County QuickFacts from the US Census Bureau, U.S. Census Bureau: State and County QuickFacts, retrieved December 18, 2017
  7. U.S. Census Bureau (July 1, 2016), Saline County QuickFacts from the US Census Bureau, U.S. Census Bureau: State and County QuickFacts, retrieved December 18, 2017
  8. U.S. Census Bureau (July 1, 2016), Lonoke County QuickFacts from the US Census Bureau, U.S. Census Bureau: State and County QuickFacts, retrieved December 18, 2017
  9. U.S. Census Bureau (July 1, 2016), Grant County QuickFacts from the US Census Bureau, U.S. Census Bureau: State and County QuickFacts, retrieved December 18, 2017
  10. U.S. Census Bureau (July 1, 2016), Perry County QuickFacts from the US Census Bureau, U.S. Census Bureau: State and County QuickFacts, retrieved December 18, 2017
  11. 1 2 3 U.S. Census Bureau (July 1, 2016), Jefferson, Lincoln, and Cleveland County QuickFacts from the US Census Bureau, U.S. Census Bureau: State and County QuickFacts, retrieved December 18, 2017
  12. U.S. Census Bureau (July 1, 2016), White County QuickFacts from the US Census Bureau, U.S. Census Bureau: State and County QuickFacts, retrieved December 18, 2017
  13. 1 2 "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau . Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  14. "Airport Info - Little Rock". Arkansas Department of Aeronautics. Archived from the original on January 26, 2015. Retrieved January 16, 2015.
  15. "Airport Info - North Little Rock". Arkansas Department of Aeronautics. Archived from the original on January 26, 2015. Retrieved January 17, 2015.