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Burrillville #26: RI’s Best Communities 2012

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

 

Burrillville

If you build it (and by it, we mean the state's most beloved chicken dinner restaurant), they will come. And stay. And build, in the faraway corner of northwest Rhode Island, a community that offers terrific affordability in tough economic times and a low crime rate. For the nearly 16,000 Rhode Islanders who call Burrillville home, this kind of quiet living is worth lining up for. But this year's Best Communities rankings found inconsistencies in Burrillville's overall picture that drove it down in the rankings--from last year's #13 to #26 in 2012.

Some of the news was still good--the Median Housing Price dropped by $20,000 to $191,000 in 2012, making Burrillville the #4 most affordable community in Rhode Island. But a drop in Median Household Income combined with the most recent tax rates shifted the town's Economic Condition ranking down 9 spots, from #15 in 2011 to #24 in 2012. Mediocre NECAP performance remained at #30 for the second year in a row, but with this year's formula placing more emphasis on Education, this drove Burrillville's ranking south as well. On the positive side, Burrillville continues to post one of the best Safety scores in the state, remaining at #5 for the second year running.

Burrillville by the numbers

Established: 1730
Population: 15,955
Median household income: $67,408
Median housing price: $191,000

2012 Best Communities rankings

Overall ranking: 26
Affordability ranking: 4
Education ranking: 30
Economic condition ranking: 24
Safety ranking: 5
Arts & Culture ranking: 17
Restaurants & Bars ranking: 27

History in a nutshell:

Although Burrillville was established in 1730, the first European settlers arrived in Burrillville in the late 17th century. From its inception, Burrillville was a community based on agriculture and most of its inhabitants were farmers. Aiding to the success of the local agriculture are the series of waterways which imbue the town. Beyond Burrillville’s agricultural past, some of the town’s larger waterways were harnessed during the 19th century to power the textile mills. Since then, Burrillville has become a pleasant residential community with most of its townspeople working out of the town.

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