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about Greenwich

Greenwich (41n02, 73w38 EST) is a town located in Fairfield County, Connecticut. As of the 2000 census, the town had a total population of 61,101. The town is served by the Metro North Railroad (the four stations are called Greenwich, Cos Cob, Riverside and Old Greenwich) and is approximately a 50 minute train ride to Grand Central Station in Manhattan. It is home to many Hedge funds and other financial service companies that have left Manhattan. The town consists of several distinct sections with their own mailing addresses and zip codes, such as Cos Cob, Riverside, and Old Greenwich. Glenville has its own zip code as well although the mailing address used is Greenwich. Byram, another neighborhood uses the Greenwich name and zip code as its mailing address. There are many other neighborhoods within Greenwich such as Belle Haven, Banksville, Chickahominy, Backcountry, Milbank, Milbrook and Mianus to name a few.

The town has three Selectmen and a Representative Town Meeting (RTM). The RTM must approve all budgets, and consists of 230 elected representatives, which is more than the State Senate or State House combined. RTM members are not paid. The three selectmen are elected on a town-wide basis, although each person can only vote for two members. This assures that there will almost always be one Democrat and two Republicans or two Democrats and one Republican. While voter registration is skewed in the Republican's favor, they do not have a lock on the Selectman's chair, and Democrats have held the seat recently. Many of the other town committes have equal representation between Democrats and Republicans, regardless of the vote breakdown, since each individual can only vote for half as many seats as are available.

The downtown area of Greenwich consists primarily of Greenwich Avenue, a one way street that has many restaurants, boutiques, and antique shops. Chain retailers include Waldenbooks, Saks Fifth Avenue, the Gap, Restoration Hardware, CVS/pharmacy, Starbucks, and Subway. Retail space on Greenwich Avenue is extraordinarily expensive. Greenwich Avenue is also somewhat unique in that it does not have traffic lights, but instead has individual traffic officers at each intersection directing traffic. The sections of the town each have smaller shopping areas, but these are much smaller than Greenwich Avenue. Old Greenwich, however, is home to Garden Catering, a deli made famous throughout Greenwich by its deep-fried chicken.

Interstate 95 goes right through the town, and there are four exits from I-95 in Greenwich, exits 2 through 5. The Boston Post Road (also known as East or West Putnam Avenue or simply Route 1) also goes through town, as does the Merritt Parkway, although the Merritt Parkway is a considerable distance from the downtown area. In 1983, the Mianus River Bridge, which carries traffic on Interstate 95 over an inlet, collapsed, resulting in the death of three people. Later investigations revealed that pins holding the support beams were not adequate. Highway traffic had to be diverted onto local streets.

Real estate in Greenwich is very expensive when compared to the national average, and is about on par with some nearby communities such as Darien and New Canaan. The high property values, however, cause property taxes to be very low, on a percentage basis.

The town has a beach on Long Island Sound called Greenwich Point (often referred to as Tod's Point). Originally, this beach area, which is on a peninsula and also includes picnic areas, was open only to town residents and their guests. However, a lawyer from nearby Stamford, Connecticut sued, saying his rights to freedom of assembly were threatened because he was not allowed to go there. The lower courts disagreed, but the Supreme Court of Connecticut agreed, and Greenwich was forced to amend its beach access policy. A beach pass is $10 per person and $20 per car and must be purchased at the town civic center.

Greenwich geography

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 174.2 km² (67.2 mi²). 123.9 km² (47.8 mi²) of it is land and 50.3 km² (19.4 mi²) of it is water. The total area is 28.88% water.

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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Greenwich, Connecticut".

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