63 North Texas towns ranked. Which came out on top? Which sank to the bottom? And where does your community fall on the list?
Leaders and lovers of Richardson would no doubt like to forget that Mike Judge modeled King of the Hill after their city. Richardson isn’t selling crass pop culture or propane. It’s selling high tech, high education, and a high acceptance for cultural diversity. Yes, that includes ethnic restaurants—Persian, Lebanese, Brazilian, Salvadoran, the kind of traditional Chinese places with pig heads greeting you in the entryway. But it goes deeper than that. Amir Omar (elected in 2009) is the first Muslim city council member in North Texas, for example. Like many locals, Omar, the son of immigrant parents from Iran and Palestine, moved to Richardson because he works in the telecom industry. He’s also getting an MBA at the University of Texas at Dallas. When he and his family moved to Richardson five years ago, it seemed an obvious choice among suburbs. “First-tier suburbs oftentimes do have some challenges,” Omar says. “What makes us unique—and maybe is the reason why we haven’t had as many of those challenges—is our history. Richardson was born out of a whole lot of people who moved here because of Texas Instruments. You had all this cutting-edge technology, all these really high-level intellectuals leading the city and the school board. The city has thrived because of that.” Or, as Hank Hill would say, things are good here, I tell you what.