City Guide of Allen, Texas

Overview Tab

History: Originally Allen was inhabited by two tribes — the Caddo and Comanche — before European and American immigrants settled in the early 1840’s. The original township of Allen, Texas, was first located along both the Houston and Texas Central Railroad which was built in 1872. Allen’s name came from the influential Ebenezer Allen, who was one of the promoters of the railroad as well as a former attorney general of Texas. The Central railroad allowed for quick sale of crops before going bad and is known to be the subject of Texas’ first train robbery. From the years of 1908 to 1948, the city was simply a stop between the Texas Traction Company line from Denison to Dallas. With only a few hundred residents, Allen was officially incorporated as a recognized city in 1953. After the implementation of U.S. Route 75, the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, and surrounding developments, Allen has grown to become a large suburb in Dallas with over 84,000 residents.

Location: Allen, Texas, is located within Collin County. The county is named after Collin Mckinley who was one of the five men to sign the Texas Declaration of Independence. Collin is the seventh most populous county in Texas with the Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, Texas Metropolitan Statistical Area, and a small portion of the city of Dallas under its belt. All in all, the county stretches over 886 square miles. Closely neighboring counties include: Grayson, Fannin, Hunt, Rockwall, Dallas, and Denton.

Commutes: Residents of Allen are lucky enough to be in close proximity to major highways. These being U.S. 75, U.S. 380, Dallas North Tollway, President George Bush Turnpike. As well as State Highway 5, 78, 289, 121, and 66. These can all be accessed within fifteen to thirty minutes depending on exact location and traffic. Commutes to places like Downtown Dallas, DFW International Airport, University of Dallas, or the University of North Texas-Dallas will be quick via the interstates and highways listed above. Most, if not all, of the popular destinations in Collin County are surrounding the city.

Culture: Allen contains a diverse population of people who come from a wide variety of backgrounds. No matter if you are in a married couple, family of four, or a single parent, there is a place for you somewhere in the city. Allen prides themselves on being an inclusive, safe, and inviting environment for all. There are exceptional schools in the city, not to mention award-winning golf courses, nationally-recognized parks, and more restaurants and shopping than imaginable.

Local Government:

City Council
The Mayor of Allen and six other elected council members serve three-year terms where they approve the annual budget, set policies, enact ordinances, and regulate zoning and development throughout the city. They hold meetings each month where both members and non-members can address important issues.
Phone: (214)509-4105
Address: Council Conference Room, First Floor, Allen City Hall, 305 Century Parkway., Allen, Texas 75013
Email: Council Member – coa@cityofallen.org

Mayor’s Office
The Mayor of Allen is actively involved in creating and facilitating community activities and events. The Mayor’s office also adopts and enacts new ordinances in benefit of the people of Allen. In addition, they oversee the city’s main departments including police, transportation, education, and housing.
Phone: (214)509-4107
Address: City Secretary’s Office, Allen City Hall, 305 Century
Email: sterrell@cityofallen.org

Chamber of Commerce
The Allen Fairview Chamber of Commerce is a non-profit organization that aims to invest all of their time and money into improving local businesses, building up community development, strengthening the Allen Independent School District, and providing a safe, inclusive environment to all residents.
Phone: (972) 727-5585
Address: 210 W McDermott Dr, Allen, TX 75013
Email: info@allenfairviewchamber.com

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Overview: The Allen Independent School District (Allen ISD) is the largest public school district which covers the entire city of Allen, Texas, as well as portions of McKinney, Plano, and Parker. There are various elementary, middle, and high schools. As well as a few special achievement and higher education centers and even a “Freshman Center” school namely Lowery Freshman Center. In total, Allen ISD has twenty-three distinct schools. Allen ISD is home to the second-largest high school in the state of Texas, Allen High School. The Texas Education Agency rates school districts by assigning them into one of four categories: (1) exemplary, (2) recognized, (3) academically acceptable, or (4) academically unacceptable. The Allen ISD itself was “recognized” in 2006, 2008, 2009, and 2011. In the year of 2010, they received a rare and honorable “exemplary” status for quality education.

School Districts: There are two school districts within Allen, Texas. As mentioned before, there is one large school district which covers practically the entire city of Allen — Allen Independent School District. The public school district has over 23,822 students and is home to about twenty-three schools. In general, the average student-teacher ratio is 16 to 1. There is also the Lovejoy Independent School District (Lovejoy ISD) which is a bit smaller. Lovejoy ISD has six schools within the district and around 3,946 students. It is categorized as a “5A” school for athletics, fine arts, and academic competitions. It was also the winner of the State of Texas HEB Excellence in Education Award for school districts.

Schools:

Elementary Schools
Four Allen schools ranked among the top five elementary schools in the entire state of Texas. Out of the top fifty schools in Texas, Allen claimed a whopping twelve spots. Kerr Elementary was ranked number one, with Evans, Bolin, Boon, and Beverly following closely behind. Many factors were taken to account when determining these ratings — educational proficiency, student-teacher ratio, student diversity, and more. Kerr, the top-rated school, has exceptional test scores. With 98% of students scoring high in math and 97% scoring well in reading.

Middle Schools
There are seven middle schools in Allen, Texas. All of which are public. Four are located in the Allen Independent School District, while the other three are in the Lovejoy Independent School District. Willow Springs and Sloan Creek are highly regarded in Lovejoy ISD. If you prefer Allen ISD, Walter and Lois Curtis, as well as Ereckson are above-average selections. Unfortunately students do not have the option to opt for a private institution while attending middle school in Allen, however there are some in the surrounding areas which can fall under “school choice” if need be.

High Schools
Allen has a multitude of public schools as well as one private school, Lucas Christian Academy, which focuses on educating students through a religious program of Christian faith. In the Allen ISD Allen High and Lowery Freshman Center are both regarded as “A” schools. Lovejoy ISD has one high school, Lovejoy High, which is also an “A” school in addition to ranking 27th out of the 1,624 public high schools in the state of Texas.

Private Schools
There is a pretty good selection of private schools to choose from depending upon religion, grade, area, and so on. A majority are montessori schools — (1) Watters, pre-k through 1st. (2) Pebble Creek, pre-k through 6th. (3) Heritage, pre-k through 1st — all within the Allen ISD. In contrast, Good Tree Academy, serving students kindergarten through 8th grade, is a muslim school located within Allen. Lovejoy ISD does not have any private institutions located within its district.

Housing Tab

Overview: There are five different types of housing within the Allen, Texas area. Single-family, small apartment buildings, apartment complexes, townhomes, and mobile homes. Single-family and apartment complexes account for over 90% of the entire housing market. The amount of new construction and established buildings are virtually half and half. Fifty percent of housing was built from the 2000’s on, while most of the older housing available was built from the years of 1970 to 1999. Whether you’re interested in renting or owning a property, Allen has something for you. Most housing has three to four bedrooms, although there are fewer bedroom properties and five or more bedrooms available as well. Some of the most popular neighborhoods include Custer Meadows, Twin Creek, Beacon Hill, Montgomery Farm, Starcreek, and Quail Run. These neighborhoods range from master-planned communities to tight-knit housing.

Single Family Homes
Over 80% of all housing available in the city of Allen, Texas, are single-family homes. Allen is considered a suburb, therefore most residents are either young professionals or families looking to settle down. Thus, the supply of two bedroom housing is extremely low and on average, only one to two listings are on the market each month. Pricing regarding homes in this area are fairly consistent with the national average. As always, neighborhood, land, amenities, etc., will determine the approximate price per square foot.

Apartments
Most of the new construction being done in Allen are of single-family homes, townhomes and then apartments, in this particular order. Essentially, construction is being done throughout the entire city. However, there are clusters of new homes near Old Bethany Road, Watters Road, and Curtis Lane. On average, the properties usually contain three to four bedrooms and a large square footage amount ranging upwards of 1,900. Montgomery Ridge, Connemara, Montgomery Farm Angel Field East, and Village at Twin Creeks, are just a couple of neighborhoods which have a high concentration of newly-built properties.

Townhomes
There is a great mix of new construction and established townhomes in Allen. Often times, residents will be given the option to rent or to buy the property. Available townhomes are located near or around W. McDermott Drive, Bethany Drive, and W. Exchange Parkway. Properties will likely be within the two to four bedroom range. Square footage in townhomes are a bit lower than single-family option as it generally falls within 1,800 to 2,000 square feet. This may be a great middle ground for a small family or couple living in the area, rather than living in a larger, pricier home, or tight apartment.

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Things to Do Tab

Overview: Foodies, nature lovers, and shopaholics alike will all fall in love with Allen, Texas. No matter what you may be into, this city has it. By far, the Allen Event Center is one of the best things to do. The Center hosts shows and events all year long such as Disney on Ice, Ladies of the 80s, and Russ. If you’re into sports, watch an Allen Americans game or hit some golf balls at the award-winning Courses at Watters Creek. Nature and music combine for special nights out at the Watters Creek at Montgomery Farm. Here you can enjoy all sorts of local musicians in the area who play music ranging from country to jazz. Shoppers will be sure to enjoy the Lone Star Mercantile which contains a whopping 200 vendors, selling collectibles, antiques, and more.

Retail & Entertainment

Parks & Recreation
There are plenty of options when it comes to parks and recreation in the city. Residents can cool down Don Rodenbaugh Natatorium community pool or skate the night away at Allen Community Ice Rink. The Edge is every extreme sports enthusiasts’ dream. In addition to a media and game room, The Edge also has a skate park, BMX park, and hockey rink.

Shopping
Allen is known for their upscale and picturesque shopping centers. Watters Creek is a favorite, with exceptional food, stores, and spas, all packed within one location. The Village at Fairview, Allen Premium Outlets, and The Village at Allen are also popular shopping destinations.

Art & Culture
The Allen Arts Alliance focuses on celebrating all forms of art through school programs, businesses, and civic organizations. Within this umbrella, comes the Allen Civic Ballet, Allen Heritage Guild, City of Allen Public Art, Orchestra and Symphony Chorus, and many, many more organizations.

Night Life
If you are in the mood for a live DJ or just want a relaxed night out and some good food there are a plethora of options for you to choose from in the city. Vee Hookah Lounge is known for their booming music and exceptional food. The Brass Tap, Bar Louie, and The Lion & Crown Pub, are also great for a night out.

Restaurants
Allen offers cuisines of all kinds. If you’re in the mood for mexican, La Finca Chiquita and Torchy’s Tacos is the way to go. For delicious pastas, try Mio Nonno an authentic Italian restaurant and city gem. Of course the city also offers chain favorites like Cheesecake Factory, In-N-Out Burger, and Uncle Julio’s.

Neighborhoods Tab

Overview: There are three main neighborhoods in Allen — Twin Creeks, Wetsel, and Watters Crossing — all of which have a multitude of subdivisions. The first neighborhood, Twin Creeks, surrounds The Golf Club at Twin Creeks and spans from W. Exchange Parkway to just short of Cluster Road. The second neighborhood is Wetsel. Wetsel is conveniently located near State Highway 5, as well as a variety of dining and shopping options. The last neighborhood, Watters Crossing, is situated in the dead center of multiple schools such as Creme De La Creme, Frances E. Norton Elementary, Primrose, Twin Creeks KinderCare, and Ereckson Middle. In the end, residents will decide upon a neighborhood depending on what matters most. A family with kids may love the Watters Crossing area, while a busy body will truly enjoy living in Wetsel, and a sports enthusiast — in Twin Creeks.

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