Fayetteville is located in central North Carolina and serves as the county seat of Cumberland County. Among other things, the city of 200,000 is known as the location of Fort Bragg, one of the nation's most significant army bases. Fayetteville is also one of North Carolina's chief centers of higher education, with several universities and other institutions located within the city.
Fayetteville's population is about 200,000. The 2000 census reported a much smaller population of around 121,000. The massive population increase is due mainly to the annexations that were undertaken by the city in the 2000s. Even aside from the annexation, though, Fayetteville's rate of growth has been far higher than the national average.
Over the last few decades, Fayetteville's violent crime rate has been significantly higher than that of the nation as a whole, though such incidents seem to have decreased in recent years.
ECONOMY AND INDUSTRIES
For much of the 20th century and up to the present day, Fayetteville's growth and economic life have been strongly attributable to the presence of Fort Bragg, one of the nation's largest and most well known U.S. Army installations. The population of the fort alone is around 30,000; the large number of troops stationed there, in conjunction with the necessity of its servicing and maintenance provides Fayetteville with a major source of revenue and employment. Pope Air Force Base, also located in Fayetteville, serves a lesser but similar role in the city's economy.
Fayetteville also benefits from its status as one of the nation's leading golf resort destinations; the city boasts around two dozen prominent courses, making the area a major draw for tourists.
NEIGHBORHOODS AND DISTRICTS
Most of the population in the city of Fayetteville is urban. Neighborhoods and districts of Fayetteville accommodate around 53,400 houses, out of which more than 48,400 are occupied. Of the occupied houses, more than 25,800 are owner-occupied while renters occupy around 22,600 houses. On average, a house in Fayetteville costs significantly less than the statewide median price.
The walkability of Fayetteville is excellent. Almost all the places, such as grocery stores, schools and restaurants are within a mile's distance from the center of the city.
The neighborhoods in Fayetteville include Stoney Point, Arran Lakes, Haymount, Ramsey St., Spring Lake, Robeson St.
Downtown Fayetteville is home to a number of great restaurants, antique shops, museums and historic sites. The Arts Center, Transportation Museum, Airborne Special Operations Museum, and Fascinate U Children's Museum are all located in downtown Fayetteville. Festival park, a new site for hosting festivals, is also downtown.
- Methodist University: Previously known as Methodist College, Methodist University enrolls about 2,200 students each year. The university is nationally known for its extraordinarily successful athletics program, with the school's teams and individual-event participants having won an unusually large number of championships during its comparatively brief existence. Academically, Methodist University is best known for its Business Administration and Physician Assistant programs.
- Fayetteville State University: This historically black university enrolls more than 6,000 students each year and offers a wide range of degree programs for an institution of its size. Fayetteville State University was founded in 1867 as a school for black children before serving as a teacher's college and eventually taking on its present form as a general university under the umbrella of the University of North Carolina System in 1972. The university's student radio and NPR-affiliated station, WFSS-FM, is popular throughout the city for its jazz programs.
- Fayetteville Technical Community College: In order to better cater to aspiring students who might have difficulty enrolling elsewhere, Fayetteville Technical Community College operates under an 'open door' policy whereby applicants who lack the educational background deemed necessary to succeed in a desired program are enrolled in the college's Developmental Studies program. The school also offers a number of distance learning courses and is formally associated with the North Carolina Community College System.
ARTS AND ENTERTAINMENT
- Cape Fear Botanical Garden: This garden serves as a horticultural center for students and professors of nearby Fayetteville Technical Community College. The garden features more than 2,000 plant varieties as well as several specialty gardens.
- Hope Mills Golf Course: Dating back to the 1930s, Hope Mills is one of the oldest courses in North Carolina and a traditional favorite among local golfers.
- Fayetteville Area Transportation Museum: This locally popular museum is housed in a restored railroad depot, which dates back to the late 19th century. Exhibits cover a wide range of transportation-related subjects, including steamboats, trains, and even the Native American trails to be found in the Fayetteville area. Other topics tackled there include the history of important local trading posts of the 18th and 19th centuries, such as Cross Creek and Campbelton.
- Cape Fear River Trail: With its wide paved path, Cape Fear River Trail has long served as one of the city's most popular spots for hiking, biking, and the like. The trail consists of about four miles through a scenic array of local flora, marshes, and North Carolina hardwood trees, with views of the adjoining Cape Fear River available throughout. Over 700 varieties of trees and plants are also on hand, as well as some 150 species of bird and a diverse array of lizards and amphibians. The trail is open year-round.
- Arnette Park: This 100-acre park encompasses both natural woodland terrain and man-made facilities such as baseball fields, picnic pavilions, concession stands, horseshoe pits, disc golf courses, tennis courts, and nature trails.
- Mazarick Park: Consisting of some 80 acres, a portion of Mazarick Park overlooks Glenville Lake, which is equipped with both a fishing pier and rowboats. Also on hand are a softball field, tennis courts, and several hiking trails.
- J. Bayard Clark Park: The purpose of J. Bayard Clark Park is to maintain the area's natural habitats and to provide public education regarding regional wildlife and other ecological matters. The area includes three hiking trails, a Nature Center equipped with educational displays and live specimens of local swamp dwellers, camping facilities, and a picnic area overlooking a small waterfall. Resident park rangers oversee a retinue of guided tours as well as nature fairs and other events.