44. Spring, Texas

161409_BPL_Top50_44Spring
Courtesy of the Town of Spring
AT A GLANCE
Population 94,639
Median Home Price $210,187
Property Tax $3,143
Unemployment rate 5.3%
Commute time 25 minutes

This suburb of Houston defies urban sprawl. The town cherishes Old Town Spring, a downtown area made up of Victorian-style homes that have been converted into local shops. The stores get gussied up in November and December when visitors descend for the holidays. In April and May, people flock to Old Town again to enjoy music and food during Spring’s annual Texas Crawfish Festival.

Spring residents are also spared long commutes. ExxonMobil recently opened offices to accommodate 10,000 employees on the northern edge of town. And Spring is less than ten miles from The Woodlands, a master-planned community north of Houston, where major corporations such as Andarko Petroleum Corp. have headquarters. Low oil prices have hurt job growth in this energy-centric city. But other industries are helping pick up the slack. Huntsman, a chemicals manufacturer, is headquartered in The Woodlands, and Aon Hewitt, a global human resources firm, also has offices there. Two new hospitals, slated for completion next year, will bring more healthcare jobs. Meanwhile, the cost of living is low. The median price for a single-family home in Spring is only about $210,000, and Texas has no state income tax.

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