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Greensboro is third-largest city by population in North Carolina and the largest city in Guilford County and the surrounding Piedmont Triad metropolitan region. According to the 2012 U.S. Census Estimate, Greensboro’s population is 277,080. In 2003, the previous Greensboro-Winston-Salem-High Point metropolitan statistical area (MSA) was re-defined by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget, resulting in the formation of the Greensboro-High Point MSA and the Winston-Salem MSA. The 2010 population for the Greensboro-High Point MSA was 723,801. The Greensboro-Winston-Salem-High Point combined statistical area (CSA), popularly referred to as the Piedmont Triad, had a population of 1,599,477.
Greensboro is located at the intersection of three major interstate highways (I-85,I-40 and future I-74) in the Piedmont region of central North Carolina.
In the 1890s, the city began to attract attention from northern industrialists, including Moses and Caesar Cone of Baltimore. The Cone brothers established large-scale textile plants, changing Greensboro from a village to a city within a decade. By 1900, Greensboro was considered a center of the Southern textile industry.
During the twentieth century, Greensboro continued to expand in wealth and population. Rapid growth led to construction of grand commercial and civic buildings,including the Guilford County Courthouse which remains standing today. Other notable industries became established in the city, including Vicks Chemical Co.
During this period of growth, Greensboro experienced an acute housing shortage. Builders sought to maintain a construction goal of 80 to 100 affordable housing units per year in order to provide homes for workers. Greensboro’s real estate was considered “the wonder of the state” during the 1920s. Growth continued through the Great Depression, as Greensboro added an estimated 200 new families per year to its population. The city earned a reputation as a well-planned community, with a strong emphasis on education, parks, and a profitable employment base.
The urbanization of Greensboro during the early twentieth century was influenced greatly by the popularity of the automobile, which enabled citizens to live farther from the city center in more suburban surroundings. A series of “streetcar suburbs” were established, including Glenwood, Hamilton Lakes, Lake Daniel, Latham Park, Lindley Park, O. Henry Oaks, Rankin, Starmount, Sunset Hills and Westerwood. Many of these neighborhoods include some of the city’s finest public parks. Recent neighborhood additions include sprawling large-scale planned unit developments such as Adams Farm, Lake Jeanette, The Cardinal, New Irving Park, and Reedy Fork Ranch.