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Brooklyn Opens Branch Office in Somerville

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Somerville has an uproariously enviable problem: It's getting too hip.

The city of meatpacking and factory-belching, the city once (and sometimes still) known as Slummerville, the city that wanted to be a bedroom community so achingly it nixed its trolley stops, now teems with the sorts of youngsters who inhabit certain au courant areas of Brooklyn, San Francisco and popular cinema. Beth Teitell's excellent piece in today's Globe explains:

[I]n general hipsters are known — and admired or mocked — for riding fixed-gear bikes, wearing suit vests and thick glasses frames, adopting hobbies like chicken raising, and affecting snobbery for microbrews and a general more-ironic-than-thou attitude. Whatever they are, they're amassing in Somerville, which claims to be the only city in the country that conducts a happiness survey. The 2010 Census found that the city has the second-highest proportion of residents between the ages of 25 and 34 in the United States. That places Somerville right after Hoboken "but ahead of Cambridge," said Daniel Hadley, director of SomerStat, the mayor's data analysis team.

Still, it's not all hilarity with stereotypes: the influx of the young and ironic has real-world consequences in a city grappling with how to plan for its long-term future (first thing: bring the damn trolley stops back). Residents from back in the day are being forced out by rising housing costs, negating one of the major selling points of Somerville vis-a-vis its surroundings: The hispterification may date from 1995, when the abolition of rent control in Cambridge sent deal-seekers pouring over the border. LOL.
· Somerville Worries It's Growing Too Hip [Globe]
· SomerVision Sees 6,000 New Homes, Lots of Green Line Riders [Curbed Boston]