About Ft. Bend County
Located in the south-eastern coastal plains of Texas, just west & southwest of Houston, Ft. Bend county is one of the fastest growing counties in the United States.
Real Estate developers are rapidly changing the landscape and economy of the county. Once a rural farming area, the Fort Bend County is being transformed into bedroom communities to serve Houston commuters, plus master planned neighborhoods to serve new industrial & service industry growth.
Over two dozen new residential neighborhoods are currently under construction in fort Bend county, with home prices from $100,000 to $500,000 & up. Rural communities are quickly being enveloped and changed by the rapid growth of these new Houston suburbs. Drivers along rural county roads are often surprised to see brand-new gated communities, surrounded by cow pastures and cotton fields.
The county seat is in Richmond, located on the Brazos River. The 869 square mile is generally flat, with a few areas of slightly rolling hills, and the soil is typically sandy loam to clay, except in the rich river valleys.
The Brazos River was once a major source of commerce, with river barge freight traffic to Richmond, but the river has silted up and no longer supports commercial traffic. Now, parks and planned residential developments line much of the river banks.
Neighboring Rosenberg, founded at the junction of two railroads, now greatly exceeds Richmond in population. Rosenberg, located west of Richmond, has also been able to expand its extraterritorial destrict over a large part of the remaining unicorporated area of the county. As excess population continues to overflow from Houston, that claim on land for expansion will likely lead to Rosenberg eventually becoming a major Texas city.
Fort Bend County now has several projects in progress, to develop recreational parks along the banks of the Brazos River. The San Bernard River forms the western boundary of the county, and numerous small streams feed both rivers.
Commercially developed mineral resources are oil, natural gas, sulfur, gravel, sand, and clay. As with much of Texas, many old oil fields dot the landscape, with the majority of remaining fields now producing mostly natural gas.
Cotton, rice, corn, and a variety of other crops are grown throughout the county, although the rapid expansion of residential construction is gradually squeezing out agriculture in the east and northern parts of the county. Numerous “planned community” suburbs of Houston are under contruction throughout the county, particularly near the major highways.
Rainfall averages more than 45 inches per year, although occasional tropical storms and hurricanes can greatly increase that amount.
Major highways include Interstate 10 and Interstate 59, as well as the Grand Parkway which is under construction as a partial loop around the west side of the Houston Metro area.
Due to the growth of Houston bedroom communities in recent decades, once rural Fort Bend County is undergoing a drastic change of identity. Master planned communities, office parks, and redevelopment of formerly shrinking small towns has greatly changed the population makup and politics of the county.