Business View Magazine - March 2016

18 Business View Magazine - April 2016 Business View Magazine - April 2016 19 Bedford, Texas In the heart of dallas/fort worth Bedford is a suburban city located in northeast Tarrant County, Texas, in the “Mid-Cities” area between Dallas and Fort Worth. The area’s first settlers arrived in the late 1840s, and a settlement developed in the 1870s, after Weldon Bobo moved from Tennessee and estab- lished a general store and gristmill to serve area farm- ers. Bobo and a group of farmers agreed to name their community Bedford, after the county in Tennessee from which many of them had come. In the 1880s and 1890s, Bedford was a booming town, with a population between one and two thousand. But its early prosperity ended in the early 1900s, when two important rail lines, the Dallas-Fort Worth Interurban and the Rock Island line were built, bypassing the city. Businesses and residents moved, and the post office closed in 1909. Truck farming and dairying were prev- alent from 1910 through the 1930s, but there were no more than eighty residents in Bedford as late as 1940. Bedford’s population began to grow again slowly after World War II, because of the construction of nearby military bases and defense plants, and the opening of the Bedford Boys Ranch, a home for wayward boys aged ten to fourteen. By 1970, the town had more than 10,000 residents and in 1974, the Boys Ranch became the town’s biggest park. The decade of the 1970s saw the establishment of an industrial park, shopping centers, and restaurants, as well as the completion of the nearby Dallas-Fort Worth Inter- national Airport. The population increased to some 20,800 in 1980 and about 44,000 in 1990, with 400 businesses. Today, Bedford is home to approximately 47,000 residents and 1,800 businesses. “One of the things that we pride ourselves on in the City of Bedford is the very business-friendly orienta- tion,” says Jim Griffin, Bedford’s current Mayor. “We try to work very hard to cultivate new business growth and expansion in our city. One example of that is the largest Harley Davidson dealership in Texas, top five in the nation - Adam Smith Harley-Davidson. They have built a 70,000 square-foot showroom and facility that’s going to be the catalyst for a project that we’re embarking upon here called ‘Bedford Commons,’ a re-development of about 40 acres that’s going to be a combination of residential living units, restaurants, and business opportunities.” AT A GLANCE WHO: Bedford, Texas WHAT: A suburban city of 47.000 WHERE: Located between Dallas and Ft. Worth WEBSITE : retail retail