We’re #19. That’s Rich!

Nearly every day, someone sends me a story with a Westport ranking.

Our school system is #1 (or #5 or #163) in the state (or nation).

We are the 13th most livable community in the country, or the 29th safest.

We have the most dogs per capita in Connecticut. Or Teslas. Or toaster ovens.

Most of those emails are quickly deleted. Statistical parameters are arbitrary. Some of the surveys are contradictory (Staples is rising in the rankings! No, it’s falling!) The stories themselves are clickbait.

But here’s one worth publishing. It’s based on fairly hard data.

And, on this slow news day, it’s sure to generate comments.

Bloomberg has just released its list of “America’s 100 Richest Places.” The only criterion: average household income (according to 2016 US Census data).

The richest community in the country is Atherton, California. That Silicon Valley town — near Stanford University, Facebook headquarters and other wealthy, high-status, high-tech stuff — had an average household income of $443,400.

A typical house in Atherton, California …

Scarsdale, New York was 3rd ($387,600). The first Connecticut town was Old Greenwich (#7, $334,900). Darien was 10th ($327,900).

Westport is the 3rd Connecticut town on the list. We check in at #19. Our 2016 average household was $282,400.

Let the comments begin.

(Click here for the full Bloomberg story. Hat tip: Avi Kaner)

… and a typical one in Westport. (Okay, it was recently sold by a guy named Harvey Weinstein.)

11 responses to “We’re #19. That’s Rich!

  1. Bruce Fernie - SHS 1970

    Looking at Harvey’s house… I can’t believe that anyone doesn’t think that there isn’t money in being a perv.

  2. The only ranking that may concern Westporters at the moment maybe where we rank on power restoration as many of us remain without power.

  3. That’s all??
    :):)

  4. I’m surprised that New Canaan didn’t make the top 100 list. Lots of $million+ McMansions there.

  5. This could be said about many towns, and paraphrased to apply to many people: Westport was a nicer place when it wasn’t so rich.

  6. “richest places” doesn’t measure happiness

  7. Completely agree with Peter Blau’s comment. It had lots more charm when it wasn’t as “rich”

  8. Hanne Jeppesen

    I lived in Westport in 1967 and 69, and for a few years after I left (for NYC) I would visit often. I arrived in Westport as an au pair from Denmark in January 67. I grew up in very modest circumstances in the country 30 miles south of Copenhagen, my Dad was a Gartner, my parents never owned a car, not unusual back then for a lot of Danes. When I came to Westport I noticed the houses were a lot bigger than most houses in Denmark, and everyone had a car, even young college kids, not something I was use to, so to me Westport was wealthy, and I do believe it was. I still found a nice place to live, people were friendly, I was accepted by young people my age, and invited to parties, and was asked out on dates.
    I now live in Northern California, and for several years I lived 10 minutes from Atherton, I moved because the cost of living got too high. However, I work at Macy’s at Stanford Shopping Center, which is about 10 minutes from Atherton. I’m a sales associate and the customers that shop at Macy’s are always looking for deals, I always get questions like “Is this on sale?” “Can I use my coupon” etc. Certainly we get customers from less affluent area than Atherton, and both Menlo Park, and Palo Alto have areas with not so affluent housing, but I suspect and many of our customers are quite well off and could easily afford merchandise at regular price. The job market is tight in Palo Alto MacDonalds that are locating in the Shopping Center are starting new people at $13.00-15.00 and hour. Still is not enough to afford an apartment or even a room in the area.

  9. Robert Mitchell

    Dan,

    Today’s NYT reports that Harvey Weinstein has sold his Amagansett waterfront estate, but no mention of Westport.

    Mistake, or did he have two East Coast waterfront estates?

    Regards,

    Bob

    • Bob, Weinstein’s two houses on Beachside were bought by Andy Bentley (who, with Eve Potts, authored the Historical Society’s 2015 book The New Yorker In Westport).
      Wally Woods

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