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Overview

Introduction to Lafayette, Louisiana

Lafayette is located in the southern central part of Louisiana, at the intersection of Highways 10 and 49. It is the fourth largest city in Louisiana and is the only major city in Louisiana that has grown in population since the year 2000. Lafayette resides in an area called Acadiana, which is known as the Cajun Heartland, and is the unofficial Cajun Capitol of the south. Lafayette lies 15 miles west of the Atchafalaya Basin and 35 miles north of the Gulf of Mexico and is surrounded by bayous, swamps and marshes along with forests and prairies. The city got its name in 1844 when it was named after the French Marquis de Lafayette.

Lafayette has a history almost as colorful as the history of the state of Louisiana, which actually was governed by 10 different flags from the period of time beginning 1541 until 1803 when it became a possession of the United States. The rich French heritage of Lafayette was mainly due to "Le Grand Derangement" in 1755. That year, thousands of French Canadians were forced from their homes because they refused to renounce their Catholic religion for the Anglican Church and pledge allegiance to the British flag. More than half of the Acadians lost their lives as their homes and crops were burned by the British and they floundered at sea. Most of the survivors ended up in Louisiana after the King of Spain allowed them to settle in South Louisiana. They eventually ended up in the areas around Lafayette, where they could raise their own crops and fish and trap according to their traditions. Thus, the Cajun culture was born. Interestingly, the word Cajun originated when the French of noble ancestry would call the Acadians "le Cadiens," dropping the "A." Later, the Americans who could not pronounce "Cadien" shortened the term and just called them "Cajuns". These Cajun people were known for their unique culture. They are deeply religious, hard working but enthusiastic and fun people. Their food, spicy and flavorful, became famous throughout the country and still is a favorite among the visitors of the "Bayou Country."

In 1803, Louisiana had become a part of the United States. President Thomas Jefferson negotiated the Louisiana Purchase with Napoleon because of the region's importance to the trade and security of the American mid-west. Much of the produce of the mid-west traveled down the Mississippi River so this area became vital for America. The fertility of the land in this region gave rise to important crops such as sugar and cotton, making the planters of Lafayette some of the richest in America. After the Civil War, sulfur was discovered in 1869 and oil was discovered in 1901. Now Louisiana has become one of the leading producers of oil and natural gas in the country.

Lafayette Points of Interest

Lafayette has a strong tourism industry, attracted by the wonderful Cajun food of this region. It has more restaurants per capita of any city in the entire area. The city has a thriving arts community, consisting of theatre, visual arts, and especially music. Cajun music is a combination of bluegrass and French with a little European folk music thrown in. Almost every weekend, there is a music, dance or street festival and the city is known for its great Mardi Gras celebrations when Lafayette explodes with color and wild costumes.

Because of its year-long warm climate, Lafayette is known as "The Sportsman's Paradise". The bayous and swamps are great places for canoe rides and the fishing is very popular. In addition, there are championship golf courses nearby and lots of hiking and biking trails to explore. The Louisiana Ragin Cajuns is the team name of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. In 1960, the name referred only to the football team which was formerly called the Bulldogs, but now the name refers to all the sports of the university, including basketball and baseball. And, since 2003, Lafayette is home to the Lafayette Bayou Bulls, its semi pro football team.

Lafayette has a diversified and interesting college life. The University of Louisiana at Lafayette is the largest campus within the eight-campus University of the Louisiana System and the second largest university in Louisiana. It is recognized mostly for its excellence in computer science and its graduate courses in environmental biology. In addition, Lafayette is home to the South Louisiana Community College and the Louisiana Technical College at Lafayette.

Located only 135 miles from New Orleans, Lafayette is a popular destination for tourists looking for the flavor of New Orleans; the food, music and festivals rival its famous neighbor and the warm climate is perfect for a relaxing southern vacation. As the Cajuns say, ""Laissez Les Bon Temps Roulez," or "Let the Good Times Roll!"

Demographics

People

Total Population125,808
Male Share of the Population48.9%
Female Share of the Population51.1%
Senior Citizens12.4%
Employed Population 16+63,335
Age of the Population34

Families

% of people married38.3%
Average household size2

Education and Earnings

Population % with Bachelor Degree or Higher35.4%
Median Earnings25+$35,190
Median Earnings Without High School Qualification$16,248
Median Earnings With High School Degree$26,446

Wealth

Median Family Income$65,999
% Above Poverty Level81%
% Below Poverty Level19%

Commute & Sprawl

Average Commute Time21 minutes
% Working from Home2.8%
% Walking and Biking to Work3.4%
% Using Public Transportation0.8%

Housing

People Living Alone33.8%
Median Gross Rent$824
Median House Value$177,100

Ancestry

Other(often includes Hispanic and African American)41.6%
French Except Basque20.1%
German8.2%
English6.4%
Irish5.8%
Italian3.8%
Canadian3.6%
Scottish0.9%
Arab0.8%
African0.7%
Dutch0.7%
Polish0.6%
Swedish0.4%
Welsh0.4%
West Indian0.4%
Russian0.3%
Lebanese0.3%
Norwegian0.2%
Haitian0.2%
Palestinian0.2%
Trinidad Tobago0.1%
Nigerian0.1%
Ukrainian0.1%
Jamaican0.1%
Hungarian0.1%
Brazilian0.1%
Belgian0.1%
Syrian0.1%
Egyptian0.1%
Czech0.1%
Danishn0.1%
Portuguese0.1%
Iranian0.1%
Greek0.1%
Romanian0.1%
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Lafayette Almanac

CategoryValue
County Lafayette Parish
Standard Zip Codes70501, 70503, 70506, 70507, 70508
P.O. Box Zip Codes70502, 70505, 70509, 70593, 70596, 70598
Company Zip Codes70504
Phone Area Codes337
Time ZoneAmerica/Chicago
Approximate Latitude30.24
Approximate Longitude-91.99

Lafayette Climate

Nearest Weather Stations

Notes:

  • Temp ranges are avg daily min and max for the month
  • Precipitation is rainfall (and rainfall equiv of snowfall)

StationLAFAYETTE REG AP
Distance2.7 miles
Jan Temp42 to 62 F
Apr Temp58 to 78 F
Jul Temp74 to 91 F
Oct Temp58 to 81 F
Annual Precip62.1 inches
StationGRAND COTEAU
Distance14.5 miles
Jan Temp41 to 62 F
Apr Temp56 to 79 F
Jul Temp72 to 93 F
Oct Temp57 to 82 F
Annual Precip63.2 inches
StationNEW IBERIA
Distance21.8 miles
Jan Temp41 to 61 F
Apr Temp58 to 78 F
Jul Temp73 to 91 F
Oct Temp59 to 80 F
Annual Precip60.8 inches

Nearby Cities and Towns

LocationPopulationMedian Family Income
Breaux Bridge8,331$43,481
Broussard10,221$83,839
Carencro8,420$49,282
Duson1,980$35,455
Scott8,687$68,165
Youngsville10,878$91,907

Lafayette Public Libraries

Lafayette Public Library
301 W CONGRESS ST
Lafayette, Louisiana
(337) 261-5781

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More Information for Librarians

Lafayette Hospitals

Acadia Vermilion Hospital
(Proprietary)
2520 N University Ave
(337) 234-5614
Community Specialty Hospital
(Proprietary)
408 Se Evangeline Trwy
(337) 234-4031
Heart Hospital Of Lafayette
(Proprietary)
1105 Kaliste Saloom Road
(318) 449-1370
Women's & Children's Hospital
(Proprietary)
4600 Ambassador Caffery Pkwy
(337) 521-9100
Lafayette Physical Rehabilitation Hospital
(Proprietary)
307 Polly Ln
(337) 314-1111
Lafayette General Surgical Hospital
(Proprietary)
1000 W Pinhook Rd Ste 100
(337) 289-8088
Lafayette General Medical Center
(Non-profit)
1214 Coolidge Blvd
(337) 289-7991
Our Lady Of Lourdes Regional Medical Center
(Non-profit)
4801 Ambassador Caffery Pkwy
(337) 470-2000
Optima Specialty Hospital
(Proprietary)
1131 Rue De Belier
(337) 991-0571
Lafayette Surgical Specialty Hospital
1101 Kaliste Saloom Road
(337) 769-4100
The Regional Medical Center Of Acadiana
(Proprietary)
2810 Ambasssador Caffery Parkway
(337) 981-2949
Park Place Surgical Hospital
4811 Ambassador Caffery Parkway
(337) 237-8119
Lafayette - Amg Specialty Hospital
(Proprietary)
310 Youngsville Hwy
(337) 839-9880
Lafayette Behavioral Health Unit
(Non-profit)
302 Dulles Dr
(337) 262-4100
Louisiana Extended Care Hospital-lafayette
1214 Coolidge Street
(337) 289-8180
Post Acute Specialty Hospital Of Lafayette
204 Energy Drive Parkway
(337) 232-1905
University Medical Center
(Non-profit)
2390 W Congress St
(337) 261-6000
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Lafayette Public Schools

Early College Academy
320 Devalcourt Dr
(337) 521-8956
High
Total Enrollment 203
David Thibodaux Career And Technical High School
805 Teurlings Dr
(337) 262-5962
Other
Total Enrollment 447
Milton Elementary School
222 West Milton Ave
(337) 521-7740
Primary
Total Enrollment 869
Lafayette Middle School
1301 West University Ave
(337) 521-7900
Middle
Total Enrollment 536
Lafayette High School
3000 West Congress St
(337) 984-5284
Other
Total Enrollment 2383
Edgar Martin Middle School
401 Broadmoor Blvd
(337) 521-7910
Middle
Total Enrollment 740
S.j. Montgomery Elementary School
600 Foreman Dr
(337) 521-7750
Primary
Total Enrollment 570
N. P. Moss Middle School
805 Teurlings Dr
(337) 521-7920
Myrtle Place Elementary School
1100 Myrtle Place Blvd
(337) 521-7760
Primary
Total Enrollment 313
Northside High School
301 Dunand St
(337) 521-7990
Other
Total Enrollment 852
Plantation Elementary School
1801 Kaliste Saloom Rd
(337) 521-7780
Primary
Total Enrollment 541
Prairie Elementary School
2910 Ambassador Caffery Parkwa
(337) 521-7790
Primary
Total Enrollment 850
Truman Elementary School
200 Clara St
(337) 521-7810
Primary
Total Enrollment 427
W. D. Smith Career Center
200 18th St
(337) 521-7570
Other
Lafayette Charter High School
516 East Pinhook St
(337) 521-7585
High
Total Enrollment 98
Alternative Instructional Model Academy (aim)
516 East Pinhook Rd
(337) 521-7580
Other
Ossun Elementary School
400 Rue Scholastique
(337) 521-7770
Primary
Total Enrollment 872
O. Comeaux High School
100 West Bluebird Dr
(337) 521-7970
Other
Total Enrollment 1900
Acadian Middle School
4201 Moss St
(337) 521-7840
Middle
Total Enrollment 541
Acadiana High School
315 Rue Du Belier
(337) 521-7950
Other
Total Enrollment 1741
L.j. Alleman Middle School
600 Roselawn Blvd
(337) 521-7850
Middle
Total Enrollment 1018
Alice N. Boucher Elementary School
400 Patterson St
(337) 521-7610
Primary
Total Enrollment 786
Paul Breaux Middle School
1400 South Orange St
(337) 521-7860
Middle
Total Enrollment 780
Broadmoor Elementary School
609 Broadmoor Blvd
(337) 521-7620
Primary
Total Enrollment 685
Woodvale Elementary School
100 Leon Dr
(337) 521-7830
Primary
Total Enrollment 603
Live Oak Elementary School
3020 North University Ave
(337) 521-7730
Primary
Total Enrollment 704
N. P. Moss Annex
801 Mudd Ave
(337) 521-7590
Other
Evangeline Elementary School
610 East Butcher Switch Rd
(337) 521-7670
Primary
Total Enrollment 647
Carencro High School
721 West Butcher Switch Rd
(337) 521-7960
Other
Total Enrollment 1232
J.w. Faulk Elementary School
711 East Willow St
(337) 521-7680
Primary
Total Enrollment 652

Lafayette Private Schools

St Genevieve Elementary School
201 Elizabeth Ave
Elementary
Total Enrollment 492
St Genevieve Middle School
91 Teurlings Dr
Elementary
Total Enrollment 177
Family Life Christian Academy
2223 Dulles Dr
Elementary
Total Enrollment 119
Immaculate Heart Mary School
800 12th St
Elementary
Total Enrollment 91
Sts Leo-seton Catholic School
502 Saint Leo St
Elementary
Total Enrollment 498
Lafayette Christian Academy
220 Portland Ave
Combined Elementary And Secondary
Total Enrollment 696
Cathedral Carmel School
848 Saint John St
Elementary
Total Enrollment 721
Holy Family Catholic School
200 Saint John St
Elementary
Total Enrollment 143
Our Lady Of Fatima School
2315 Johnston St
Elementary
Total Enrollment 845
Ascension Episcopal School
1030 Johnston St
Combined Elementary And Secondary
Total Enrollment 662
First Baptist Christian School
201 W Convent St
Elementary
Total Enrollment 175
Gethsemane Christian Academy
701 E Pinhook Rd
Elementary
Total Enrollment 39
St Pius Elementary School
205 E Bayou Pkwy
Elementary
Total Enrollment 644
Teurlings Catholic High School
139 Teurlings Dr
Secondary
Total Enrollment 653
Sources :
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