In 1902, Maia achieved the status of vila (town). Maia was granted city status (cidade) on 23 August 1986. Due to a nation-wide administratively reform, the 3 parishes that formed the city's territorial limits, Gueifães, Maia and Vermoim, were merged, forming the Cidade da Maia parish (freguesia).
Twin towns — Sister cities
The following places are sister cities to Maia:
- Andrézieux, France
- Mantes-La-Jolie, France
- Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, Canada
- Mbombela, South Africa (pre-deal)
- UMA POPULAÇÃO QUE SE URBANIZA, Uma avaliação recente - Cidades, 2004 Nuno Pires Soares, Instituto Geográfico Português (Geographic Institute of Portugal)