|Official Name:||Fairfield, Iowa|
|Subdivision Name:||United States|
|Area Total Km2:||15.2|
|Area Land Km2:||14.9|
|Area Water Km2:||0.3|
|Area Total Sq Mi:||5.9|
|Area Land Sq Mi:||5.7|
|Area Water Sq Mi:||0.1|
|Population As Of:||2000|
|Population Density Km2:||639.9|
|Population Density Sq Mi:||1657.4|
|Utc Offset Dst:||-5|
|Postal Code Type:||ZIP codes|
|Blank Name:||FIPS code|
|Blank1 Name:||GNIS feature ID|
Fairfield lies at (41.007166, -91.965910)Web site: States Census Bureau] US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990]. 2011-04-23. 2011-02-12. . The geography is typical of the great plains of the American Midwest: around the town is rolling farmland specializing in corn, soybeans and hogs. Running west-east through the town is U.S. Highway 34; the city of Burlington is to the east. North-South is Iowa Highway 1, leading north to Iowa City and south to the Missouri state border.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 5.9 square miles (15.2 km²), of which, 5.7 square miles (14.9 km²) of it is land and 0.1 square miles (0.3 km²) of it (2.21%) is water.
As of the censusWeb site: States Census Bureau] American FactFinder]. 2008-01-31. of 2000, there were 9,509 people, 4,063 households, and 2,372 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,657.4 people per square mile (639.6/km²). There were 4,463 housing units at an average density of 777.9/sq mi (300.2/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 94.35% White, 0.99% African American, 0.16% Native American, 2.53% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 0.73% from other races, and 1.21% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.64% of the population.
There were 4,063 households out of which 30.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 45.2% were married couples living together, 10.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 41.6% were non-families. 35.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.22 and the average family size was 2.90.
In the city the population was spread out with 23.7% under the age of 18, 8.7% from 18 to 24, 23.1% from 25 to 44, 30.9% from 45 to 64, and 13.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 42 years. For every 100 females there were 92.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 89.1 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $31,202, and the median income for a family was $46,138. Males had a median income of $34,750 versus $24,830 for females. The per capita income for the city was $19,673. About 10.1% of families and 14.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 17.7% of those under age 18 and 9.9% of those age 65 or over.
Fairfield is governed by a seven-member city council headed by a mayor. The current mayor, Ed Malloy, was first elected in 2001. Mayoral terms are two years. City council members serve staggered four-year terms. The council consists of one representative from each of the city's five wards, plus two at-large representatives. As of 2008, city council members are Susan Silvers (at large), Myron Gookin (at large), Ron Adam (Ward 1), John Revolinski (Ward 2), Ray Mottet (Ward 3), Martha Norbeck (Ward 4), and Daryn Hamilton (Ward 5). The chief administrative officer of the city is John F. Brown.
Fairfield is the home of Maharishi University of Management, formerly known as Maharishi International University (MIU) established in 1974. Its campus is that of the defunct Parsons College, which closed its doors in 1973. Many residents moved to Fairfield to participate in the practice of Transcendental Meditation. The university campus, located on the north side of Fairfield, is home to two large golden domes used for the group practice of TM-Sidhi program and the Yogic Flying technique.
Maharishi Vedic City was incorporated in 2001, by individuals who practice the Transcendental Meditation and TM-Sidhi program. It is located a few miles north of Fairfield.
Fairfield was the site of the first and second Iowa State Fair. The first fair was held October 25-27, 1854 on 6acres of land surrounded by a ten foot high fence. The total cost to hold the fair was around $320, and public admission was 25 cents per person. It is estimated that between 7,000 and 10,000 fairgoers attended this historical event.
On the first Friday night of every month Fairfield plays host to 1st Fridays Art Walk, which attracts visitors from all over the Midwest. The art walk showcases many local artists in various galleries and business-galleries around the downtown area. In the warmer months live musical performances can be heard in multiple locations throughout the evening.
Fairfield is also home to the Fairfield Arts & Convention Center, a new civic center, included in the Civic Center is the Stephen Sondheim Center for the Performing Arts, which opened December 7-10, 2007. It opened with 7 famous Broadway stars: Liz Callaway, Len Cariou, Donna Lynne Champlin, Kristin Huffman, Richard Kind, David Malis, and Pamela Myers, all of whom are connected in some way with Stephen Sondheim's many famous plays such as, Sweeney Todd, Company, Assassins, and Into the Woods. The center was the first theater in the world named after Stephen Sondheim. Another Sondheim theater now exists in London.
The nearest international commercial airport is in Cedar Rapids, approximately 90 miles (145 km) to the north. Bus service to Fairfield is provided by Greyhound Lines affiliates Jefferson Lines and Burlington Trailways.
Like many towns in the region, Fairfield was sited in the late 1830s along the route of one of the developing rail systems. Fairfield used to be served by Amtrak, the national passenger rail service. Amtrak carries passengers west-east on the California Zephyr, with passenger stations in Mount Pleasant, Iowa (25 miles to the east) and Ottumwa, Iowa (25 miles to the west).
The Rock Island Line also passed through Fairfield, but closed in the late 1970s. The old steel trestle has been removed from its crossing, and the walking trail that will some day circumnavigate the town uses part of the old roadbed.
Evidence of other long forgotten rail lines can be found in the woods around town. A particularly charming section of narrow gauge roadbed can be found cutting its way through Whitham Woods, a park at the west edge of town.
Likely due to the presence of Parsons College and the faculty it drew from more upscale communities, the architecture in Fairfield reflects a certain worldliness that is unusual in such a small prairie town. Fine residential structures, including examples of designers George Franklin Barber, Barry Byrne, and Frank Lloyd Wright grace the residential neighborhoods. Commercial and institutional architecture were influenced by the Louden industries, including the Louden Foundry. Many workers' houses can be found in Fairfield, mostly all made of wood, although brick is used around the commercial square. Fairfield also had the first library built west of the Mississippi by Andrew Carnegie.