The Houston Area Survey  
The Houston Area Survey
Home All Survey Questions Current PowerPoint Research Reports Other Publications Research Opportunities Contributing Sponsors Contact


Stafford, Texas

Stafford is a city in the U.S. state of Texas, within the Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land metropolitan area. The city is mostly in Fort Bend County, with a small portion in Harris County. As of the 2010 census, Stafford's population was 17,693, up from 15,681 at the 2000 census. As of 2018, the population had risen to an estimated 21,265.

In 1884, Stafford had 50 residents, two general stores, and a grocer. By 1896, the settlement had a population of 300. By 1914, the population fell to 100. In 1931, 320 people lived in Stafford. This increased to 400 residents in 1946. Stafford incorporated as a city in 1956.

The Southwest Freeway (Interstate 69) passes through the northwest part of Stafford, leading northeast 16 miles (26 km) to the center of Houston and southwest 18 miles (29 km) to Rosenberg. U.S. 90 Alternate passes through Stafford as Main Street, leading west 5 miles (8 km) to Sugar Land and northeast 18 miles (29 km) to the Houston East End.

The city of Stafford has several areas of extraterritorial jurisdiction. These two areas are within the Houston Independent School District, including an area at Beltway 8 and Stafford Road and another area between Beltway 8 and Murphy Road. One area within the Alief Independent School District is next to the City of Meadows Place along Interstate 69/U.S. Route 59. Areas in the Fort Bend Independent School District include a portion of the Fifth Street and an area around U.S. Route 90 Alternate, Dulles Avenue, and Avenue E. The City of Stafford has avoided annexing these areas, because doing so would give it territory in school districts other than the Stafford Municipal School District (SMSD) and the city wants its city limits and the SMSD to have the same area. The SMSD cannot annex these areas without the permission of the other school districts.

Of the 6,750 households, 33.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 45.1% were married couples living together, 16.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.6% were not families. About 27.9% of all households were made up of individuals living alone, and 4.8% of individuals living alone were 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.62 and the average family size was 3.25.

The median income for a household in the city was $61,084, and for a family was $63,244. Males had a median income of $46,023 versus $40,549 for females. The per capita income for the city was $27,082. About 6.3% of families and 9.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 10.4% of those under age 18 and 9.3% of those age 65 or over.

Originally, Stafford was an agricultural community. As of 2009, it has operations from commercial, manufacturing, retail, service, and wholesale industries which pay sales and franchise taxes to the city. Stafford is known internationally for attracting valve manufacturing companies; 11 are located here. Stafford has 15 business parks, one shopping center, and 19 hotels and motels.

The City of Stafford stopped levying nonschool property taxes in 1995. It is the only Houston-area city and is the highest populated city in Texas to do so. Sales and franchise taxes from businesses fund the city.

The city is served by the Houston Community College System. The HCCS Southwest College includes the Stafford Campus at 10041 Cash Road. In spring 2012, the headcount enrollment at the Stafford Campus was 8,139.

The city has the only municipal school district (Stafford Municipal School District) in all of Texas. In 1977, Stafford broke away from the Fort Bend Independent School District (FBISD), which caused several rounds of federal litigation; and, by 1981, it was finally declared that the Stafford Municipal School District was constitutional. Almost all of Stafford was in FBISD, with a minuscule portion in the Houston Independent School District. All of Stafford is now zoned to the Stafford Municipal School District, which is the only municipal school district in Texas that is controlled by the city. Residents pay property taxes to the school district.

When most of Stafford was a part of FBISD, Staffordshire Elementary was located in Stafford. Staffordshire housed Black students in grades 1-4. Black secondary school students attended the M.R. Wood School in Sugar Land. At the time FBISD formed in 1959, white students could attend one of two elementary schools, and they attended a middle school in Sugar Land and a high school site in Missouri City; the latter two sites now house Lakeview Elementary School and Missouri City Middle School. Dulles High School became the high school for white students in FBISD. In September 1965 Fort Bend ISD desegregated, and at that time Staffordshire School closed. Staffordshire students were reassigned to E. A. Jones Elementary School in Missouri City. Dulles Junior High School served as FBISD's sole junior high school from March 1965 to August 1975. Dulles High became the only zoned high school for students of all races in FBISD until Willowridge High School in Houston opened in 1979.

Home | All Survey Questions | Current PowerPoint | Research Reports
Other Publications | Research Opportunities | Contributing Sponsors | Contact