By Deane Barker

Definition: a residential community further out of an urban core than a suburb, but still within commuting distance

It’s a portmanteau of “extra” and “urban.”

The Brookings Institution published a report in 2006 that identified three criteria:

  1. Economic connection to a large metropolis.
  2. Low housing density: bottom third of census tracts with regard to housing density. In 2000, this was a minimum of 2.6 acres (11,000 m2) per resident.
  3. Population growth exceeding the average for its metropolitan area.

Why I Looked It Up

Found in a book about a lawsuit:

In 1999, as Ted Lyon worked on the Smalley case, he hired a security firm to sweep for listening devices in his offices, located on the fifth floor of an office tower in the Dallas exurb of Mesquite.

I did some measuring, and Mesquite is 12 miles out of the Dallas central core, so it fulfills #1 in the Brookings criteria above. However, satellite photos show that it has very dense housing, so there’s no way to fulfills #2. I have no idea about #3.

The Wikipedia page for Mesquite describes it as a suburb, but maybe it was different in 1999? Or maybe these things are just really subjective?

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