Westwood, Massachusetts

Westwood is a town in Norfolk County, Massachusetts, recently ranked by CNN/Money and Money magazine as one of the Best Places to Live in the United States. Boston Magazine listed Gay Street in Westwood as one of the Best Streets in the Boston area. Westwood is also considered one of the wealthiest towns in Massachusetts.

First settled in 1640, Westwood was officially incorporated in 1897, the last town to split from the original town of Dedham. The town of Westwood operates under a home rule charter. This means that the town is given a degree of autonomy with regard to internal affairs. The charter mandates a board of selectmen, open town meeting and an executive secretary form of government. Selectmen and other town officials are elected through an open town meeting or formal election but the board of selectmen appoints on its own secretaries who manage public safety, recreation and other services. The board calls for an open town meeting (usually annually) to consider issues beyond the scope of its governance.

Points of interest in Westwood include Hale Reservation (beaches, several walking trails and other outdoor areas, Westwood Library the Colburn School (built in 1877 and listed in the National Register of Historic Places). Commuter rail service from Boston’s South Station is provided by the MBTA with the Route 128 station on its Providence/Stoughton Line and the Islington station on its Franklin Line.

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