Blog :: 10-2011

Best town in Connecticut is....... GREENWICH!

Rating the Towns 2011


What makes one city or town better than another? It's impossible to give a definitive answer, of course, because of all the variables involved, not only in the towns themselves but in the eyes of the beholders there. Some of us like urban neighborhoods and an easy walk to an ethnic bakery, others prefer long driveways and the sound of crickets at night. Many like the idea of living near the shore, others don't like the smell of low tide. And lots of us prize things that are hard to quantify, like community spirit, or a religious community, or the nearness of family and friends.

Still, the goal of "Rating the Towns" is to identify the areas--schools, crime, cost of living, local economy, leisure and cultural opportunities--that most people seem to think most important when they judge the quality of local life.

This time around, there has been a slight shifting in our four population groups, reflecting the results of the 2010 census. A number of towns have grown into the next larger population group, usually resulting in a higher finish in the rankings.

We hope you find these ratings useful, whether you're transferring to Connecticut from out of state, looking for a new town to live in or seeking ways to improve the old one. And if you live in a Connecticut town too small to be included here, don't worry--we'll be rating and ranking the small towns, under 10,000 population, in our March 2012 issue.


The Numbers We Used

EDUCATION: This category combines five elements: the 2009, 2010 and 2011 Mastery Test results for 4th, 6th and 7th grades; results of the 2009, 2010 and 2011 Connecticut Academic Performance Test (CAPT); local SAT scores for 2008, 2009 and 2010, and the percentage of 2010 public high school graduates who went on to two- or four-year colleges. Test scores are weighted more heavily.

ECONOMY: The strength of the local economy was determined by the 2011 Public Investment Community score, compiled by the Office of Policy and Management, which rates all Connecticut towns under a formula based on population, per capita income, the adjusted equalized grand list per capita, the unemployment rate, the equalized mill rate and per capita aid to children.

COST OF LIVING: This category weighs most heavily the median price of a single-family house purchased in the first six months of 2011, a figure that predicts many other local expenses. The sales figures are provided by The Warren Group.

CRIME: This category is based on major crimes (murder, rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary, motor-vehicle theft) committed in 2007, 2008 and 2009 per 1,000 population, the most recent figures available from the state Department of Public Safety.

LEISURE/CULTURE: Includes local library expenditures per capita in 2010, the number of theaters, museums, festivals, concert venues, historic sites, colleges and universities, golf courses, local newspapers, radio stations, state parks and forests, voter turnout in the 2008 election and good local restaurants.

Rating the Towns 2011: Population Over 50,000

After falling behind Fairfield in the 2009 rankings, Greenwich has regained what it probably believes to be its rightful place at No. 1. Its school test scores wavered a bit a couple of years ago but now have resumed the top spot. Still, you may wish to save over a million dollars on the median price of a house and consider Fairfield, where the schools, crime rate and local economy are exemplary, and the views of Long Island Sound can be just as sweet.

Elsewhere, Stamford and West Hartford have switched places at Nos. 3 and 4. Both cities continue to see interesting residential, retail and restaurant changes in their downtowns (both are well worth a trip). Meriden made slight improvements in this population group in school results, crime and its above-average library expenditures per capita to move from last place in 2009 up to No. 12 this time. Meanwhile, Stratford benefits from going over 50,000 in population, according to the 2010 census, and joining this larger group. Last time, it languished near the bottom of the 25,000-to-50,000 group, but here it cracks the Top 10.

As a group, the state's most populous cities continued their struggle with poor schools, high crime and shaky local economies. However, as we've pointed out before, if you don't have school-age children and aren't particularly worried about crime, a few of the major cities offer rich cultural amenities and a lot of house, condo or apartment for your money. New Haven and Hartford finished well ahead in the number of cultural outlets available, from concerts and theater to good restaurants galore.

Click Here to see the stats for the Top 10 Towns.

Town Education Crime Economy Cost Leisure Total
1. Greenwich 1 1 1 19 4 26
2. Fairfield 2 2 2 17 6 29
3. Stamford 6.5 6 3 18 3 36.5
4. W. Hartford 3 7 7 15 5 37
5. Danbury 10 3 5 13 8 39
6. Milford 4 5 6 14 14 43
7. Norwalk 8 11 4 16 7 46
8. Hamden 11 4 8 11 13 47
9. Manchester 9 8 10 9 11 47
10. Stratford 6.5 9 9 12 16 52.5
11. Bristol 5 10 11 10 17 53
12. Meriden 13 12 13 5 15 58
13. New Haven 15 19 17 6 1 58
14. Waterbury 16 15 18 1 10 60
15. Hartford 18 18 19 4 2 61
16. Bridgeport 19 17 15 2 9 62
17. West Haven 12 13 12 8 18 63
18. New Britain 17 16 16 3 12 64
19. E. Hartford 14 14 14 7 19 68

Greenwich Property Transfers/Sales (September)

September 1:

  • 80 Mead Avenue: Gregory L. and Kathleen L. Cartine to Brigid Barry; $612,900.
  • 89 Cos Cob Avenue: Frank G. Caruso Jr. to JIC Victory Street LLC; $500,000.
  • 150 Pine Street: Richard Adamo and Kirsten Burgess to Attilio and Jennifer LaPietra; $474,000.
  • Parcel A Keofferam Road: Richard W. Dickey, trustee, to Little Cove LLC; $2,350,000.
  • 3 Highland Road: Jason H. and Antoinette Terrana to James P. Malloy; $700,000.
  • 167 Riverside Avenue: William J. and Virginia Caragol to Daniel and Tracey Koorbusch; $2,460,000.

September 2:

  • 38 Meeting House Road/Howard Road: Frank J. Gilbride II, trustee, to Raymond and Yanina LaChance; $3,000,000.
  • 18 Cottontail Road: Carol K. Crowley, trustee, to Kelley C. Haslun; $675,000.
  • 5 Buena Vista Drive: Thomas Bikkefeld and Hadi Hajjar, trustees, to Gordon S. and Carla R. Forsyth; $550,000.
  • 160 Mead Avenue, Unite E: Selen RMOF REO Acquisition LLC to Martha A. Downen and Zaven Kaprielian; $379,950.
  • 151 Old Church Road: Kenneth F. and Allyson S. Kates to Richard D. and Margot J. Stephenson; $5,595,000.
  • 453 E. Putnam Avenue, Unit 2B: Michele Prisinzano to Lorenzo M. Chiappetta; $318,637.80.
  • 5 Oak Lane: Gregory S. Hannigan and Robert S. Hannigan to Patricia J. Hannigan; $2,250,000.

September 6:

  • 27 Grove Street: Juan M. and Shannon Bassalik to Stephen F. Carolan and Carol Swift; $1,639,000.
  • 51 Forest Avenue Unit 150: Cornlis P. and Maria M. Gaanderse to Fabio Signori and Ana Zelic; $670,000.
  • 245 Glenville Road: Elizabeth Adams Levy, Guy D. Barresi and Ann Barresi Ferenbach to Vincent J. Ferraro; $600,000.
  • 14 Georgetowne North: Albert H. and Ruth T. Fenn, trustees, to Ronald T. and Katherine D. Barba, trustees; $815,000.
  • 4 Hunter Street: Estate of Edward Clark to Joseph Piazza; $525,000.
  • 12 Indian Rock Lane: Thomas J. and Kathleen Yoho to Warren and Nicole Silver; $1,310,000.

September 7:

  • 12 E. Lyon Farm Drive: The Helena Davies Estate Tax Sheltered Trust to Carol K. Crowley Estate Tax Sheltered Trust; $394,250.
  • 12 E. Lyon Farm Drive: William D. Davies Jr. to Carol K. Crowley, individually and as trustee; $394,500.
  • 58 Ridge Street: Kevin M. Steckel and Roberta L. Riess and Nadya P and Eric R. Jayaweera; $3,637,500.
  • 50 Lafayette Place, Unit 4-G: Rainaldi Realty Investments LLC to Marcos and Blanca Sanchez; $340,000.

1 Ennel Drive: Brook L. Davidson to Noelle M. Moone and Christopher Burdick; $815,000.

September 9:

  • 50 Carriglea Drive: Peek Patterson LLC to John T. Avellino, trustee; $8,500,000.
  • Greenwich Hills, Unit 19, Garages 1 & 2: Mary Altman to Jean Mann; $530,000.

September 13:

  • 15 Field Road: Bruce Kirkpatrick Jackson, executor, to Edward R. Servick II; $1,245,000.
  • Putnam Hill Apartments, Bldg. 3, Apt. 4C: Mary M. Durland to Barbara Bologna; $405,000.
  • 33 Alpine Road: Michelle Litt to David and Joselynn Cheng; $2,125,000.

September 14:

  • 32 Oval Avenue: Springstream Exchange Co. LLC to David W. and Jacqueline M. Dowling; $945,000.

September 15:

  • 8 Somerset Lane: Estate of Barbara J. Binder to Kyle S. Shepard; $737,500.
  • 9 Cameron Drive: J. Clark Coleman to MEJM LLC; $2,650,000.
  • 23 - 35 Sherwood Place: Antra Richardson to Brunswick Sherwood Holdings LLC; $5,700,000.

September 16:

  • 9 Woodside Road: Howard and Orit Crocker to 9 Woodside Road LLC; $7,730,000.
  • 4 Joffram Lane: Dolores J. Justus, trustee, to James P. Cowie; $1,580,000.
  • 24 Nimitz Place: 24 Nimitz Place LLC to John and Charlotte O'Neill; $1,775,000.
  • 19 Tomac Avenue: Christopher A. and Lara Laitala to Nicholas G. Brooke A. Bohnsack; $2,300,000.
  • 14 Lake Drive: Bogdan and Jane Piotrowski to Tat Ming Tsang and Lai Wan Lam; $955,000.
  • 10 Indian Chase Drive: George R. Hinman and Emilie K. Hinman, revocable trusts, to Justin and Jennifer Shaw; $3,800,000.
  • 7 Meadowbank Road: Paige A. Costigan and Mathew P. DeFusco to Kristin E. and Robert C. Lang II; $3,875,000.

September 19:

  • 103 Havemeyer Place: Malcolm Dickinson to Robert and Chin-Yu Sarah Bruch/Huo; $685,000.
  • 8 Ridge Road: The Parish of Christ Church to Juan Miguel and Shannon Bassalik; $800,000.

September 20:

  • 409 Sound Beach Avenue: Donna M. and Jeffrey Shaw to Lara and Christopher M. Laitala; $3,370,000.
  • 15 Pierce Road: Kathleen M. Strit to Robert and Judith English; $955,000.

September 21:

  • 1329 King Street: Robert C. Bouza to Timothy D. and Sharon Houle Randall; $630,000.
  • 8 Meadow Lane: Bernard and Eugene Zoldessy to William R. and Catherine J. Holligan; $1,500,000.
  • 42 High Street: JoAnn P. Stein to Donald J. Selinger; $485,000.

September 22:

  • 15 Flintlock Road: Amory A. and Peter E. Spizzirri to Douglas F. and Jeanne J. Downard; $2,900,000.
  • 21 Indian Field Road: German F. Martinez to Morgan R. and Ana K. Pritt; $550,000.
  • 4 Old Farm Lane: Louise A. Finch to John and Gwendolyn Weiss; $1,985,000.

September 23:

  • 25 Stillman Lane, Lot 3: Indian Spring Limited Partnership to Jade Home LLC; $1,825,000.
  • 35 Terrace Avenue: Elizabeth Pulitzer to Gordon Fu; $1,350,000.

September 26:

  • 9 Lockwood Drive: Mary Helen and Edward R. Servick III to Carl F.R. Persson; $1,200,000.
  • 242 Pemberwick Road: John and Jeanetta Zehalka to Kristen Burgess and Richard Adams; $920,000.
  • 116 Cutler Road: Vera Constandaki to Sarah D. and Brian R. King; $870,000.

September 27:

  • 4 Sound Shore Drive: Matt and Melanie L. Yildizlar to Genssler Enterprises LLLP; $3,140,000.
  • 158 Round Hill Road: Genssler Enterprises LLLP to 158 Round Hill Road LLC; $4,750,000.

September 28:

  • 11 Pin Oak Lane: Dominic F. and Bonnie C. Butera to Ali Chiang Tsao; $1,300,000.
  • 39 Bible Street: Rosaria A. Venneri to Michael Ferro; $75,000.
  • 7 Hollow Wood Lane, Parcel A: Estate of Wanda Novak to Hollowood LLC; $175,000.
  • 48 Indian Field Road: Edward H. and Valerie D. Anderson to Michele L. Lisi and Richard S. Westover; $980,000.
  • 56 Orchard Place, Unit East: 56 Orchard Place LLC to Melanie L. Matt Yildizlar; $1,371,250.

September 29:

  • 6-7 Sound View Court: Frances M. Franze to Eugene Sala; $662,000.
  • 446 Valley Road: Victoria L. and Clifford W. Herman III to Kathryn C. Gill and Joann G. Ellsworth, co-trustees; $540,000.
  • 5 Quintard Avenue: Linda G. Grunow to Christine Zummo; $3,300,000.
  • 36 Sound Beach Ave: Mary M. Connolly to Liang Jiongda and Xu Tiancheng; $900,000.
  • 51 Ridge Street: Estate of John A. Brander to Ashley R. J. Honey; $775,000.
  • 1 and 3 Smith Street: Micik Brothers,LLC to Alexander A. Ioffe; $535,000.

September 30:

  • 124 Havemeyer Place: Kay Copploa to John C. and Delores Evans; $975,000.
  • 37 Butler Street: Cynthia A. Bolt to Ana Rojnica and Martin Gonzalo; $1,010,000.
  • 51 Forest Avenue, Unit 5: Thomas Moore and Brenda A Cherry to Bert Pulitzer; $640,000.
  • 5 Sunset Road: Penry W. and Melissa C. Price to David and Susan Leibowits; $4,700,000.
  • 25 Meadow Drive: Edward J. and Cathleen A. Kreppein to Barry W. Rickert II; $735,000.
  • 4 Forest Avenue: Carmine and Lucille Scalia to Linda Grunow; $1,630,000.


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    Home Party Consultants, Find A Home Party Consultants, Join Home Party Consultants... [...]Greenwich Property Transfers/Sales (September) | Greenwich Blog | Greenwich Real Estate - Scott Elwell[...]...

    Thing 216: France in Greenwich? ah, oui!!!

    Versailles ..... yum is the first thing to say. Located on Greenwich Avenue, this French bistro is spot on with its cuisine, atmosphere and decor.  Just take a look at the image below...this quiche is just one of the many offerings each day at our local bistro.

    Each day, fresh breakfast pastries hit the avenue with a smell of freshness and flavor that make one run from the train. Around lunch you will find the bistro filled with locals who come to chat with one another over a lovely lunch of crepes, salads, delicate sandwich and soups leaving with a feeling of satisfaction one can find in France itself.  The reliability and regularity of this eatery is comforting and so is the decor. Small tables with delicate tiles and outdoor tables make Versailles not only a destination in France, but in Greenwich as well. Make sure to stop by and look at their website:

    Garden Catering has added "Bill Grad's Tax Cut-let" to their menu!

    Isn't everyone's wish to have a Garden Catering sandwich named after them?  As a candidate for Greenwich Tax Collector, I'm proud to announce that Garden Catering Ham Ave location has added the "Bill Grad Tax Cut-let" special to their menu from today through election day, 11/8!

    Garden Catering, 177 Hamilton Avenue, Greenwich, CT 


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      [...] this afternoon!  What a perfect way to spend this beautiful day filled with friends, music, Garden Catering & family time!  Don’t forget to vote this Tuesday 11/8! Bo Carpenteri [...]

      Things 215: Autumn Saturdays at Ralph Lauren! All are invited for Cider and Cookies to Celebrate our Community!




      As the fall season kicks into full gear with beautiful foliage and brisk temperatures, Ralph Lauren of Greenwich opens its doors this Saturday as a place of warmth and social gathering.  All residents of our community are invited, illustrating once again the lovely community aspect of the town of Greenwich.  This is simply an event to bring our town together in a beautiful setting to enjoy one another's company and appreciation of life in Greenwich.  The store will have on display its entire fall line including women, mens, home and children's clothing available for order.

      Come and meet the wonderful sales professionals at Greenwich and newest additions to the team, managers Alessandra Sunko and Kim Michael.  Both ladies have been with the company for years in the Madison Avenue location and New Canaan, however, we are now fortunate to have them in our own very store in Greenwich.  In addition to clothing and furniture, come to view and purchase the wonderful book selection for adults, children and young professionals. Dylan Lauren's book about her candy bar is available and so are a number of other iconic Ralph Lauren books that one can treasure for a lifetime.

      Don't forget...Saturday, October 15th....265 Greenwich at Ralph Lauren and Fall in Fashion!








      Thing 214: Get Ready...for Greenwich Eats Week!


      Greenwich is home to some of the best dining in the northeast without a doubt.  From October Sunday October 16th - Friday October 21st our lovely community has the opportunity to celebrate the restaurants of Greenwich through a variety of special offerings.  A number of restaurants including:

      Beach House Cafe, Greenwich, CT - (203) 637-0367

      Centro at the Mill Restaurant, Greenwich, CT  - (203) 531-5514

      China White, Greenwich, CT - (203) 674-8577

      Douro, Greenwich, CT - (203) 869-7622

      Greenwich Tavern, Old Greenwich, CT  (203) 698-9033

      Il Sogno, Port Chester, NY (914) 937-7200

      JT Straw's Bar & Grill, Port Chester, NY - (914) 937-9695

      Lolita Cocina & Tequila Bar, Greenwich, CT - (203) 813-3555

      L'Escale Restaurant Greenwich, CT - (203) 661-4600

      Moe's Burger Joint Greenwich, CT - (203) 990-0119

      Morello Bistro, Greenwich, CT- (203) 661-3443

      My Favorite Place, Greenwich, CT - (203) 769-1300

      Pasquale's, Port Chester, NY - (914) 934-7770

      Pierangelo, Greenwich, CT -  (203) 869-3411

      Pomodoro, Riverside, CT -  (203) 698-7779

      ReNapoli Pizza and Chicago Beef, Old Greenwich, CT (203) 698-9300

      Restaurant Jean-Louis, Greenwich, CT -(203) 622-8450

      Sam's Bar & Grill Port Chester, NY - (914) 939-2001

      Sonora, Port Chester, NY  - (914) 933-0200

      The Ginger Man, Greenwich, CT - (203) 861-6400

      The Willett House, Port Chester, NY - (914) 939-7500

      Tomatillo Taco Joint Port Chester, NY -  (914) 939-7500


      The best part is that not only is there a fabulously priced fixed menu for dinner...from $18.11 to $30.11, but also special dishes JUST FOR this special week!  A la carte items will be on the menu in celebration of this culinary festival and it is a time to take advantage of before it passes.  Make reservations asap!


      How a Greenwich CT firm became 100% Mac.

      How Steve Job changed a Greenwich CT firm.When Belpointe Asset Management launched I went out and bought 6 PCs. I'd always used Macs but unfortunately in 2007 the financial world was 100% PC.

      At the time my staff had only used PCs and so I assumed the need to support them on PCs would be minimal. Boy was I wrong.

      Normal usage resulted in six months of fighting corrupted files, viruses, unreliable network connections and the worst computing environment imaginable. Having come from Macs and never experiencing this before I was slowly going insane.

      Keeping six PCs up and running on Windows XP was a full time job. I did not have this time. There was no way I could manage money and raise assets if I had to act as a full time CTO.

      It was 2 am and I was surrounded by four down PCs when I snapped. Within fifteen minutes I spent just over $6,000 ordering a bunch of Macs. The next morning I got reamed by my business partner, but it was worth it.

      The arrival of the Macs immediately saved me twenty hours a week in IT support. The Macs just worked and this meant I could get back to growing my company.

      Thanks Steve. - Greg