FAIRFIELD, Conn. -- Residents of one Gold Coast town have a new reason to brag: MONEY Magazine has chosen Fairfield as the 44th Best Place to Live in America in its 2014 edition of the popular list.
West Hartford, which ranked 45th, was the only other Connecticut community to earn a spot on this prestigious list.
The magazine chose the 50 best municipalities throughout the nation with populations of 50,000 to 300,000 using 50 factors, including local economy, housing market and schools. Click here for the complete list, which was led by McKinney, Texas.
"About a third of Fairfield residents brave the 75-minute commute to New York City via express train during the week. The payoff: weekends in a (town) with a thriving downtown, lively restaurant scene and five miles of beaches on the Long Island Sound coastline," The magazine said.
“The schools are among the state’s best (the town’s two high schools are in the top 25 in the state), and Lake Mohegan is a popular hiking and freshwater swimming spot. And though home prices have steadily climbed since the recession ended, Fairfield is more affordable relative to neighboring towns in the county.
"The commute to NYC got easier in 2012 when a new rail station opened, offering plentiful parking, unlike the station in the center of town, which had a years-long waiting list. There’s also a strong local job market thanks to two locally based Fortune 500 companies, General Electric and tea-maker R.C. Bigelow.”
First Selectman Michael Tetreau touted the honor.
“In this 375th anniversary year, our entire community should be so proud of not only receiving this incredible honor, but earning it more than once over the past few years," he said. "With our excellent school system, strong local economy and a community that offers the best value and is more affordable than neighboring towns in the county, Fairfield has something to offer for everyone.”
Data for Fairfield’s ranking included population, median family income, projected job growth, median home price, average property taxes, colleges, universities, reading test scores, and math test scores. Additional data included quality-of-life issues such as air quality index, public safety and the percentage of the population who commute, walk or bike to work.
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