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Community Snapshot

Lexington

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June 3, 2008

THE GOODS: Best known as the site birthplace of the American Revolution, Lexington is particularly appealing to those who want to live in an historic town but don't want to sacrifice all the Big City has to offer. A bevy of good eats in a robust downtown area include Japanese, Thai, Italian and American. Numerous parks, museums, and even an old-fashioned movie theater offer entertainment. The health conscious – and those looking to escape high prices at the pump – can begin their commute into Boston with a bicycle ride along the Minuteman Bikeway to the Red Line at Alewife Station. Recreational opportunities abound, youth sports are big and the schools are top-notch.

PROS: Though pricier than many surrounding communities, Lexington still offers opportunities for first-time buyers, especially those willing to consider a condominium. Mid-priced homes tend to be compact Capes and younger Colonials that sacrifice space for the Lexington address. Generally though most homes occupy the upper tiers of the market, whether antiques and other older properties or custom homes or newly-built condos in upscale developments.

CONS: Locals fret that high housing costs have put Lexington out of reach of young families. The Route 2 commute can be a drag, and lunch and rush hours produces waves of blinking brake lights on Massachusetts Avenue in the heart of the business district.

BRENDA J. BUOTE

Median home price: Single family, $695,000
Residential tax rate: $11.69
Average tax bill: Single-family home $6,799
Choice location: The season farmer's market in downtown is considered among the best in the region.
Cocktail party nugget: Douglas A. Melton, the father of human embryonic stem cell research, is among the town's many notable residents.
SOURCES: The Warren Group, Mass. Department of Revenue, Joyce Murphy of William Raveis Real Estate in Lexington, Lexington Historical Society

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