The current shift to remote work and virtual learning delivered a disruption to all of us earlier this year and is now the new normal. As a result, manypeople are accelerating a recent trend of moving to Fairfield County for a suburban lifestyle. As writting in The Wall Street Journal, “moves from New York City to Connecticut have more than doubled from the prior year since the city’s shutdown began in March.”
New residents may feel a bit uncomfortable leaving the ‘big city’ life behind for the sprawling suburbs. If that is you, we have assembled this resource to help new residents discover a new normal in a new place.
If you are considering the suburbs as your new normal, moving to Fairfield County is one of the most sought-after places to live in Connecticut. Getting to and from NYC is not a problem either. It takes the same time to travel to Grand Central Station for local residents as it does for those living in the “Outer Boroughs.”
Drawing from our coworking community members primarily from these seven suburban towns… we’ve put together a list of resources to help you fit right in these hotspots.
Living (Home and Community)
According to Wikipedia, Fairfield County suburbs lie in the southwestern corner of Connecticut. It is the most populous and, between 2010 and 2018, the fastest-growing county in the state. The county’s population was 916,829, as documented in the 2010 census, and is estimated to have increased to 943,332 by 2019.
CityData.com states that, as of March 2019, the cost of living index is 131.7. Though this is considered high compared to the US average cost of living index of 100, there is something for everyone in Connecticut’s county closest to NYC:
- Open spaces
- Corporations and small entrepreneurial companies
- Remote virtual work options for displaced workers
- Diverse cultures
Fairfield county boasts of the following features:
- Miles of coastline size (which is two times the size of Staten Island)
- Five town beaches
- Eleven colleges, universities and junior colleges
- Countless suburban parks and ball fields
- Twelve public and municipal courses
- A vibrant lineup of restaurants and stores.
Here are Fast Food Facts about Fairfield County:
|Grocery stores:||223||2.50 / 10,000 pop.|
|Supercenters and club stores:||5||0.06 / 10,000 pop.|
|Convenience stores (no gas):||76||0.85 / 10,000 pop.|
|Convenience stores (with gas):||151||1.70 / 10,000 pop.|
|Full-service restaurants:||861||9.67 / 10,000 pop.|
Fairfield County thrives with the USA’s most affluent suburban communities. The City of Stamford is its bustling business hub. Greenwich, one of its surrounding towns, is popular with family offices and investment firms.
Pockets of innovative Small Business and Startup communities power the IT/Technology scene and there is a strong fintech and digital media presence.
- One Fairfield County Startup Community is Stamford Innovation Week
- And be sure to check out some Fairfield County Virtual Events at HAYVN’s Event Calendar
Along with its suburban features, Fairfield County’s amazing business climate shows promise as city workers and telecommuters return to work remotely. Many find they can successfully live and work here, while minimizing trips to NYC.
Companies of all sizes have restarted operations, though implementing full or part-time remote and virtual work-from-home policies as the new normal are a long-term operational strategy. Productivity remains to be the top priority and coworking offers an important piece of the logistical puzzle.
There are conducive spaces that cater to small companies, ‘work-from-anywhere’ employees, and college-bound students. These coworking spaces offer plenty of networking and community-building opportunities if you are new in town.
Flexible working spaces near home in the suburbs and the short-term private office, desk and meeting room rentals a popular choice. Meeting rooms and conference rooms, especially, are in-demand as mission-critical meetings are on the rise. Safety at the shared office and co-working spaces is always a priority.
You will find the suburbs of Fairfield County hospitable if you are working on your college career, as well. As mentioned, there are 11 colleges, universities, and junior colleges here. Most Fairfield County schools have called for hybrid methods this Fall semester.
Combining limited in-person and online virtual learning education until the curve flattens is simply the safest path forward. This is a big change in the online learning experience. Virtual teaching and learning are not entirely new for universities and students. COVID-19 has made it more mainstream.
Students now attend virtual learning classes online in their bedrooms, in the living room, or kitchen. There is a larger and immediate need for on-demand, affordable spaces that are conducive for study-work environments, with uninterrupted internet.
Recreation (Parks, Leisure Activities)
There is no shortage of outdoor leisure activities for everyone in the suburbs. There are over 20 local attractions in Fairfield County. Restaurants and other establishments that reopened follow strict social distancing measures and observe the mask mandates.
There is always something new to add to your bucket list. The county’s rich cultural heritage will leave any visitor spellbound! Here is a portable List of Museums in Fairfield County, Connecticut.pdf. If you have kids, here are the top 20 places you can take your whole family.
Here is the HAYVN Community’s Top 10 List (in alphabetical order):
- Bruce Museum
- Lake Mohegan recreation area
- Maritime Aquarium
- Sherwood Island State Park
- Soundwaters Coastal Education Center at Cove Island
- Shakespeare on the Sound
- Stamford Museum & Nature Center
- Stepping Stones Museum for Children
- The Glass House (new Canaan)
- Weir Farm National Historic Park
Not in Fairfield county but worth the short drive:
- Sleeping Giant State Park
- Silver Sands State Park
If You Are Moving to Fairfield County – Welcome!
The last 6 months have forced us to reorient the way we live, work and play. Undoubtedly, these are extraordinary times. We will rebuild and we will be safe. Starting anew may be grueling, but it does not have to be a cold or lonely time. Your move to Fairfield County may just be one of your most unforgettable experiences as well.
So let us be one of the first to say, “Welcome to Fairfield County!” We hope you find this list of resources helpful.
HAYVN, a Thriving Thirty winner in the April 2020 Best Companies in Fairfield County, matches the reality of what we have to offer. We are opening our doors to remote workers, college students, entrepreneurs and businesses alike.
HAYVN offers our members access to office-grade technology, convenience, and safety. We are a community that is in business to welcome and support you. It is a safe venue for new beginnings.
Founded in 2018, HAYVN is a flexible workspace for enterprising women (and men) to connect, create and grow. Along with a vibrant & engaged coworking community of entrepreneurs and business professionals, HAYVN is a business HUB, offering short- and long-term office space leases, meeting rooms rentals, and events to support local businesses. HAYVN is proud to be a Certified B Corporation™ and a CTNext partner. We believe in using the power of business to build a more inclusive and sustainable economy and have met the highest verified standards of social and environmental performance, transparency, and accountability. HAYVN’s workshops and signature programs encourage women of all colors and ages and acts as an incubator for developing skills and pursuing funding. Visit our beautiful safe ‘HAYVN’ in Fairfield County, CT at 320 Boston Post Road, Darien, CT, 06820.