If you want to start a conversation with any Fairview "old-timer", just ask them what they think about their city motto "Keeping it Country". They'll probably either roll their eyes or just give you a disgusted look. Fairview, even twenty years ago, was totally different than it is today.
Twenty years ago, there was no sign on Hwy 75 even indicating you were driving through the town. Before all the Fairview shopping came in, I remember talking to Allen residents who had no idea where Fairview was. There was no Allen Premium Outlet Mall. The only commercial on Stacy Rd was a little driving range and vehicle storage yard. Stacy Road was a little two lane blacktop.
River Oaks was there, but Oakwood Estates Phase 1 was hardly more than dirt roads cut out of the woods. There wasn't even a bridge to Phase Three. When we were looking at lots in Phase 3, we had to drive all the way around to Country Club and enter the development from the back.
One of the challenges in selling homes in Fairview back then was the complete lack of shopping. Buyers told me they loved the area, but they asked where people did their shopping. There was very limited shopping in Allen so Fairview residents had to drive to McKinney or Plano for groceries, restaurants, doctor's offices, etc.
It was big news when a 7-11 announced they were building a store at the NEC of Greenville and Stacy Rd. I don't know this to be a fact, but I was told it took two years for them to get through the entire process from first application to completion. The town of Fairview took their time to make sure it had a nice design and reflected the feel they wanted for the town. I understand it was the busiest 7-11 in the country for some time after it was built.
Ironically, when all the shopping started coming in, sellers started asking if all the development and traffic would hurt their home values. I told them it was just the opposite. That would make their homes easier to sell, and it sure has. All the new shopping on both sides of Stacy Road has really helped kick off the home development in Fairview. Many buyers want the feel of living a little in the country, but they don't want the drive to city services.
What's happening in Fairview and Lucas (to a lesser extent) is called "infilling". Lots that have been passed over by buyers and builders for one reason or another are finally being taken down. Buyers can't be as choosy as they once were and having to settle for less desirable lots by location, configuration, or price. Especially if the lot is in Lovejoy ISD.
Below is an example of that infilling. You've probably driven by this little home at the NEC of Stacy Rd and Old Stacy Rd. a hundred times. You might not have paid any attention to it. I wondered how someone was going to build on the lot because of its configuration and size plus, it's on a very busy four lane road. Sure enough, there's a structure being framed right next to it. When it comes down you might not even notice.
Some day I'm going to build a page comprised of all the Fairview and Lucas special little places that have already either disappeared or I feel sure will some day disappear. This home will be on the page. When your kid asks you "Do you remember that little "Christmas Tree" they used to hang beer cans on as ornaments?" I'll have it for you.