Cities, noted RenÃ© Descartes, should provide âan inventory of the possible,â a transformative experienceâand a better lifeâfor those who migrate to them. This was certainly true of seventeenth-century Amsterdam, about which the French philosopher was speaking. And itâs increasingly true of Texasâs fast-growing metropolisesâHouston, DallasâFort Worth, Austin, and San Antonio. In the last decade, these booming cities have created jobs and attracted new residentsâespecially young families and immigrantsâat rates unmatched by coastal metropolitan areas. Approximately 80 percent of all population growth in the Lone Star State has been in the four large metropolitan areas since 2000. Texas now boasts two of the nationâs five largest metros, the first time any state has enjoyed that distinction. At its current rate of growth, Houston could replace Chicago as the nationâs third-largest city by 2030, and the DallasâFort Worth region could surpass Chicagoland as the nationâs third-largest metropolitan area by the 2040s.