Magazine lists WL as among the best places to live
- Kara Hansen
- West Linn Tidings - News
In case you didn't already know: West Linn is a great place to live.
That's according to Money magazine's 2009 list of America's best small towns.
West Linn, which ranked No. 64 among the best places to live, and Lake Oswego, No. 79, are the only two Oregon towns to make this year's cut.
The annual ranking, which appears in the magazine's August issue, used CNNMoney.com's Best Places database to compare towns with populations of 8,500 to 50,000, examining crime rates, school data, diversity levels, median family incomes and home prices.
Those deemed worthy of the 'best places' titles are expected to have strong local economies as well as great schools, affordable housing and little crime.
West Linn was noted for offering low tax rates compared to other parts of the metro area. And while many residents leave the suburb each day to commute to work in the city, there are also plenty of telecommuters and small-business owners, the magazine found.
It highlighted the farmers market in the historic Willamette neighborhood, where vendors offer art and food each Tuesday during the summer season, as a perk.
In addition, the town's proximity to the Willamette and Tualatin rivers was considered a plus because of recreational opportunities available on the water.
Lake Oswegans also have ample opportunity for water sports on the Willamette, the magazine found. They also have access to an 18-hole public golf course and indoor tennis facilities, although residents pay high home prices, the authors said. They noted one other drawback of Lake Oswego: 'The town is not particularly diverse.'
Lake Oswego made a separate list this year as well. In a top 25 ranking of '6-figure towns,' Lake Oswego was No. 17, with a median family income of $119,630 per year. The 'best places' average was about $97,441. The median family income in nearby West Linn was listed as $115,171 per year.