Business Journal: DeFuniak Springs/Freeport Timeline
DeFuniak Springs/Freeport Timeline:
1834: Settlers start landing boats at what later will become Freeport.1881: A railroad surveying party chooses a site for a train station, naming it DeFuniak Springs.1901: DeFuniak Springs is incorporated. 1929: Construction begins on U.S. Highway 331.1939: Construction begins on the original Choctawhatchee Bay bridge.
1941: World War II brings new jobs and residents to the region.1961: Interstate 10 expands through Northwest Florida, passing south of DeFuniak Springs. 1963: Freeport incorporates.1995: DeFuniak Springs becomes an enterprise zone. Savings to businesses in the first five years totals $17,000.1997: Freeport receives an enterprise-zone designation.2001: Freeport builds an industrial park. 2002: Developers begin buying thousands of acres of open land around Freeport, kicking off a real estate boom in northern Walton County.2003: Expansion of the DeFuniak Springs Municipal Airport begins with the addition of 10 hangars. Construction also starts on an industrial park adjacent to the airport. 2005: The state begins building a U.S. Highway 331 bypass at Freeport at a projected cost of $35 million. The bypass is expected to be complete by fall 2007. Freeport hires its first city planner. 2006: DeFuniak Springs hires a city planner. Construction gets under way on Hammock Bay, Owl’s Head and Freeport Plantation residential developments, as well as the 24-building Bay Grove office park.