Waco /ˈweɪkoʊ/ is a city which is the county seat of McLennan County, Texas, United States. It is situated along theBrazos River and I-35, halfway between Dallas and Austin. The city had a 2010 population of 124,805, making it the22nd-most populous city in the state. The US Census 2013 population estimate is 129,030. The Waco Metropolitan Statistical Area consists of McLennan and Falls Counties, which had a 2010 population of 234,906. Falls County was added to the Waco MSA in 2013. The US Census 2013 population estimate for the Waco MSA is 258,974.
|City of Waco|
|Nickname(s): "Heart of Texas"|
Waco is located at 31°33'5" North, 97°9'21" West (31.551516, -97.155930).
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 95.5 square miles (247 km2). 84.2 square miles (218 km2) of it is land and 11.3 square miles (29 km2) of it is covered by water. The total area is 11.85% water.
The town of Waco was built around the Waco Suspension Bridge, which was a crucial crossing of the Brazos River upon completion in 1870. Today, downtown Waco is relatively small when compared to other larger Texas cities, such as Houston,Dallas, San Antonio, or even Fort Worth, El Paso, or Austin. However, each day, nearly 20,000 people commute to and from work in downtown. It is also the location of the McLennan County Courthouse.
In May 1953, the worst tornado in Texas history struck downtown Waco, killing 114 and injuring hundreds. It caused millions of dollars in damage and dented Waco's economy for years after. Downtown Waco is home to the ALICO Building, which was completed in 1910, and was once the tallest structure in the Southwest. Downtown Waco, where Dr Pepper soda was invented, is also the location of the famous Dr Pepper Museum.
A scenic riverwalk along the east and west banks of the Brazos River stretches from the Baylor campus to Cameron Park Zoo, about seven miles in all. This multiuse walking and jogging, lighted trail passes underneath the Waco Suspension Bridge and captures the peaceful charm of the river.
Major Waco attractions include: