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The 10 Best Dallas Suburbs

Take our tour of the greatest places to live outside of Dallas.
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photography by Elizabeth Lavin

4. Southlake


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photography by Elizabeth Lavin
Population: 26,900
Annual growth since 1990: 6.9%
Average home sales price in 2009: $564,077
Median age of residents: 36.7
Families with kids under 18: 60.7%
Median household income: $131,549

What they say: People generally list two reasons for moving to Southlake: the schools and convenience to all things Dallas/Fort Worth, including the airport. This is a popular executive relocation town. Once here, locals become rabid Dragons fans (every team in the Carroll district is the Dragons, not just the four-time state champion Carroll Dragons football team). Shopping and dining are great, centered mostly on Southlake Town Square, which gives the place a small-town feel. People speak unkindly about the Southlake ladies who lunch after tennis with their ill-mannered, entitled children. The schools are among the best around but highly competitive, which is trouble if you’re trying to get into a state university with the 10 percent rule. One parent’s son had a 93 average upon graduation and was not even in the top 50 percent of his class. Houses here start close to $400,000 and go up to $10 million, with most falling in the $500,000 to $750,000 range.

What we say: Southlake, which was No. 1 on our list in 2006 and No. 2 in 2008, took a hit this year from safety and housing appreciation (as did its inner-city suburban sisters, the Park Cities). In the past decade, the Carroll Dragons have been state champions at girls golf, wrestling, boys track, girls soccer, girls cross-country, boys swimming, boys cross-country, football, boys golf, boys baseball, and boys soccer—oftentimes more than once. The high school’s robotics team also has a history of state championship trophies. Carroll High School has twice won the UIL Lone Star Cup for combined athletic, academic, and arts achievement, coming in second two other years. This, from the Carroll Dragons booster club website, sums it up: “There is no day off for a Dragon. Dragons know they are expected to excel.”

See our suggestions for having some child-like fun in Southlake Town Square.

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