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making it the 27th-most populous city in Texas and the 12th-largest city in the Dallas–Fort Worth metroplex.
A Texas land grant led to the formation of Denton County in 1846, and the city was incorporated in 1866.
The arrival of the Texas and Pacific Railway in 1881 gave Denton its first rail connection and brought an influx of people to the area.
Denton lies on the southern end of what is commonly referred to as "Tornado Alley"; the National Weather Service occasionally issues tornado watches, although tornadoes rarely form in the city.
The city receives about 37.7 inches (96 cm) of rain per year.
As a result of the universities' growth, educational services play a large role in the city's economy.
Residents are served by the Denton County Transportation Authority, which provides commuter rail and bus service to the area.