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Commercial Real Estate

The 10 Best Dallas Suburbs

photography by Scott Womack

10. Allen

photography by Scott Womack

Annual growth since 1990: 7.6%
Average home sales price in 2009: $231,095
Median age of residents: 31.4
Families with kids under 18: 56.3%
Median household income: $78,924

What they say: Two decades ago, people moved to Allen because it was a good place to raise a family. Back then, it had a Dairy Queen, Walmart, and a grocery store. In some ways, not much has changed. It is still touted by locals as one of the best places to grow up. But long-time residents might not recognize much else about their city. Residents love the Allen Eagle Escadrille (the high school band), award-winning library, parks, tree-lined medians, exemplary schools for all socioeconomic levels, quiet neighborhoods, and low crime rate. The east side of the city is older, with smaller, more affordable homes and a Braum’s. The west side is home to Allen Premium Outlets (the mother ship of upscale bargain hunters) and Allen’s own version of the West Village—Watters Creek, which is perhaps the loveliest suburban setting to shop at Origins or Ann Taylor Loft before enjoying the wine at Cru or Brooklyn-style pizza at Grimaldi’s. Allen homes start at $150,000 and go up to about $1.85 million. 

What we say: This is the first time Allen has made it into the top 10. Despite being the largest of our top 10 suburbs—and large doesn’t generally bode well when you’re talking about crime and ambiance—Allen’s data is impressive. Last year, the CQ Press ranked Allen the safest city in Texas with a population of 75,000 or more and the ninth safest in the country. Some might ask, “What is there to do in Allen?” Ha. You’ve got the Allen Philharmonic Orchestra and Symphony Chorus, Civic Ballet, community ice rink, Don Rodenbaugh Natatorium, KidMania playground/spray ground, and a premier skate park/BMX course kids from Dallas drive to. All that plus a summer youth fishing derby and family bike days. Allen has in the works the biggest high school football stadium in the country—the $60 million Allen Eagles Stadium, set to open in the fall of 2012. When you’re making high school football headlines in Texas, you’re doing something.

See our complete rankings of the 62 best Dallas suburbs here.