Best Places to Live

McKinney, TX

Population: 194,617
Photo Courtesy of Chad Hatcher/McKinney Convention & Visitors Bureau (MCVB)

McKinney makes the impossibly large and concrete-filled DFW metroplex seem quaint, small and downright charming. But don’t think this sweet Texas town has a slow pace of life — they’re quickly becoming one of the fastest growing economies in the country thanks to a large presence of manufacturing and tech companies.

In addition to its booming economy, McKinney also made our list because of its low crime rate, which is 46% lower than the national average, making it a great place to raise a family and sleep well at night.

Local Obsession: Friday Night Lights in McKinney is no joke — and they love watching their McKinney Lions at their new $69.9 million(!) stadium that holds 12,000 football fans.

Climate Described in 6 Words Or Less: Mellow winters mixed with blistering summers

Top Industries and Employers: The top industries in McKinney are healthcare, manufacturing, and finance. The top employers are Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems and Globe Life Insurance, formerly known as Torchmark, which is a financial services holding company.

Local Dream Job: Analyzing everything (and actually getting paid for it) as an actuary for a financial company in town.  

Quintessential Meal: Bring an extra Wet-Nap to chow down on the brisket plate at Hutchins BBQ & Catfish, routinely named one of the best barbecue restaurants in the country

Favorite Weekend Activity: There’s nothing better than a lazy afternoon in historic downtown McKinney, which has some of the city’s best restaurants, shopping, and bars — all in an adorable, walkable package

After-Work Meetup Spot: Settle down for a pint at The Celt Irish Pub in historic downtown McKinney (rumor is, this joint used to be a brothel)

Best Local Beer: Strong and unexpectedly sweet, the American Wheat from Tupps Brewery is brewed with orange peel and coriander.

Free Way to Have Fun: If you can handle it, pick up your mountain bike and ride the eight-mile trail around Erwin Park for a little extreme fun.

Truly Hidden Gem: Mom and Popcorn, a sweet nostalgia shop in town, serves up a variety of your favorite kernels.

- Jamie Birdwell-Branson

Read More:

Moving to Texas? Here’s Everything You Need to Know.

8 Reasons to Move to Texas

“I love everything about the Historic Downtown McKinney square. Any given day of the week, we are able to make our way downtown to enjoy coffee, fine dining, all manner of shopping, live music/nightlife and special events. It is one of our favorite places to be, morning, noon or night.”

- Michele Bernard, publisher of the McKinney Foodie

McKinney, TX Ranking Data