We’re 73!

Looking for a website with dorky graphics and dubious statistics that purports to rate “cities” (like Westport) based on demographic data?

Click on AreaVibes.

You’ll learn that our population is 25,749 (as of when?), with a population density of 1,287 people per square mile, and a male/female ratio of 0.9:1.

There is no Benetton in Westport. And our population doesn't look like one of their ads either.

95% of us are white.  We’re 2.62% Asian, 0.84% African-American, 0.17% American Indian, 1.01% mixed race, 0.24% “other race,” and exactly 0.00% Native Hawaiian.  There is no listing for “Hispanic.”  (I know it’s not technically a race, but still…).

Our median household income is $153,436.  Per capita income: $94,290.

The cost of living here is 12% higher than the average for the state — and a whopping 43% more than the national average.

Fortunately, our crime index is 51% lower than Connecticut’s average, and 70% below the US as a whole.

70% of us are married, though it’s unclear whether that includes all of Westport or just the adults.

But then things get sketchy.

According to AreaVibes, Westport’s unemployment rate is 3.3%.  (According to the Connecticut Department of Labor yesterday, it’s 5.9%.)  AreaVibes says the state average is 4.5% — and the national average is 5.9%.  President Obama will do cartwheels at that news.

Our student-teacher ratio of 11:1 is lower than the Connecticut (14:1) and national (16:1) averages — but, AreaVibes tells users, there are “2 colleges & universities” in Westport.  You learn something new every day.

The median year a home here was built is 1956.  Sounds reasonable — but then you read that the median value of a Westport home is $1,729,000 (the state average is $467,885; national, $237,162).  Realtors, I’m sure, are frothing at that stat.

One of our 5 train stations.

Our average 1-way commute is 41 minutes.  19% of us take public transportation to work (trains, presumably), while 2 percent of us supposedly walk to work.  Eleven percent work from home.

But wait — according to AreaVibes, there are 5 Amtrak stations in town.  Perhaps the ones I have never heard of are located on the campuses of our 2 colleges and universities.

It all works out to an AreaVibe score of 73.

Compared to what?  100?  1,000?  What’s Fairfield’s score?  Greenwich’s?  Palm Beach’s?

Who knows?  To get another “city” score, you have to search again.  There’s no handy chart.

Maybe that’s a project a student at one of our Westport universities can work on.

10 responses to “We’re 73!

  1. Wow…there hasn’t been a Benetton in Westport since I lived there. And that’s like, a million years ago. Good going Vibe. Must be on one of those college campuses or in the Amtrak station.

  2. Sensible One


    Not only do we have five Amtrak train stations, I was delighted to see that we have three airports! No more traveling to LaGuardia or JFK for me!

  3. Dan

    you are sooooo funny.

    thanks for making me laugh!

  4. The Dude Abides

    I never trust these “studies” or “polls.” They always ranked Houston as the “Fatest City in America” based soley on the number of restaurants. They didn’t wander over to Memorial Park or Rice track to see thousands of runners every morning at 4:30 a.m. The Dude does not get good vibes from AreaVibes . . .

  5. I hold a B.A degree from No. Compo University and an MBA from Power’s Court College. Where have the rest of you been?

  6. For a fascinating, and likely more accurate, look at demographic data for Westport, and cities across America, check out city-data.com

  7. Pingback: Link of the day: 06880 Blog « the transatlantic diablog

  8. The city-data’s website looks like it has less accurate data then AreaVibes. It is pretty awful to try and dig around for info, as well. I actually dig the areavibes.com website in comparison.

  9. Hi everyone!

    My name is Jon Russo, I am co-owner of http://www.areavibes.com. First off, I’d like to say thanks to Dan and everyone else (especially Hendy:) for all the feedback regarding the site. It has been very valuable.

    AreaVibes was designed to help people learn more about US cities by providing useful information in a variety of different categories. It’s been a long process to collect, verify and display the data – over a year’s worth of work in fact. Unfortunately, when Dan reviewed the site it was still a work in progress and as he pointed out, there were a couple items (ok more than a couple) that needed to be updated or properly explained.

    We’ve been working hard to make adjustments based on the feedback we received and have hopefully corrected all of the items that were pointed out in Dan’s post.

    We continue to welcome any feedback anyone might have and will continue to ensure that the data is accurate and that AreaVibes is as user friendly as possible. We are also working on creating a section where visitors can login and create reviews for each city. We’d like to welcome Dan and any other Westport resident to help others by creating a review for the city!