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      Allen Reviews

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      Nice veneer, but issues with law enforcement and school district
      When my family moved here, we were excited about the possibilities of a great school district (by ratings online, exemplary schools, etc.), which was a GREAT change of pace from California (whose schools were once great and today not-so-much).

      We have now lived here 15 years and I certainly feel qualified to discuss some of the points made in both previous reviews discussing police-harassment and shopping/getting around town, as well as discussing some of the less-than-desirable attributes of the local school district that is now $1 billion (yes, with a "b") in debt with bonds used to finance the rapid expansion of the schools and fund the construction of a $60 million football stadium.


      The are great if your child is a 'typical learner.' By the term 'typical learner,' I mean any child that is geared toward sitting still and receiving instruction/following rules. Our two sons are both more creative and active, while our daughter is a 'typical learner.' Our sons had some emotional issues and both are phenomenal at building / designing / imagining projects, but neither is geared toward Horace Mann's factory model of education, and the school is woefully under-funded when it comes to addressing students like our sons. For example, the school district made it a priority to fund a $60 million high school stadium in 2009 (during the Great Recession, regardless of when the government believes it "ended") and yet provided little to no funding for children in need of assistance or a different learning environment. Unfortunately they still call this "special education" and the child is labeled. My oldest managed to graduate and move onto the Marine Corps. My youngest is now a freshman and has been struggling for most of his academic career. He wants to learn welding and make sculptures and build vehicles - the school said if he wishes to learn to weld, he should "enroll in FFA and learn to weld a fence." {face palm}

      Law enforcement.

      I may have been tempted to disbelieve any reports of impropriety by police in Allen, hand I not personally witnessed a number of incidents. I'm a skateboarder and I've NEVER been harassed by police until moving to Allen. Their 'harassment' consisted of running my car's plates EVERY MORNING when I met with friends at the skatepark before work. EVERY MORNING for at least 3 years, the police would run my plates. I can only imagine their heartache as each time the plates were run, NOTHING came back - LOL. They did this to me and my friends, all of whom considered ourselves Pioneers of Industry - men involved in finance, law, medicine, manufacturing, and real estate. Men who own their businesses and sell to people around the world. If the police only knew... (or, maybe they did and were checking every day, praying they could bring one of us down).

      My oldest son is a skateboarder (or was, before enlisting in the Marine Corps), and he never spoke disrespectfully to police and actually knew the law and his rights, so his interactions with law enforcement, often though they were (these guys have a bone to pick with anyone on a skateboard), he never had any trouble. One day, however, I did call into the local Allen PD to speak with one officer's CO for his disrespectful treatment of my son on the street and was assured the CO was "dealing with" the officer (whatever that means; probably buying him beer after shift).

      I have a number of friends and acquaintances who've been harassed by Allen PD. In one case, there was a car accident. Allen is fond of the double-duty lanes (i.e., one for left hand turns, one for left hand turn OR go straight). My friend's daughter was in the "left or go straight" lane and someone from the lane to her right (go-straight-only) decided to pull a left-turn and slammed into her car. The perpetrator lied and said she herself had been in the left-or-go-straight and despite tons (literally - the cars) of physical evidence, tire marks and witnesses, the police decided to take the word of the "adult" woman liar. The only way this situation was resolved was an investigation by my friend's insurance company and once they had sorted the situation and collected witness statements, the police had no choice but to re-write their report and change it to fit the facts.

      In another case, an acquaintance's son was pulled over coming home early (3AM) from a friend's house where he'd been gaming. The police demanded they search his car after he passed their field sobriety tests. He knew his rights and said "no" so they cuffed him and sat him on the median for an hour or two, just to wait for other officers to arrive. Finally a good officer arrived and un-cuffed the young man and released him.

      Third case, my own youngest child - when an infant - was sick with a very high fever. I had taken my oldest with me to church that day and on my way home, received a call from my wife to pick up more infant ibuprofen, because the infant tylenol wasn't working on his fever. When I pulled up to the house, EMTs were there - turned out my son had suffered a febrile seizure because of the fever. Low and behold, the police show up (due to the call, ambulance needed for an infant) and accused me of taking my son and throwing him against the wall (WHAT?!?!). Despite there being zero evidence to support such a fantastic allegation, I calmly explained I wasn't even home when he seized, and in fact had been at church with my oldest child and stopped to get infant ibuprofen on my way home. The officer did not believe me and persisted in his line of questioning until an EMT pulled him aside and explained the situation. The officer turned and walked away - no apologies offered, no nothing - he simply disappeared.

      Lastly, when my youngest was about 5, we walked to the Wal Mart neighborhood market and while crossing the street on our way home (on a signaled cross-walk - we had the right of way) an officer comes barreling through the intersection right at me and my son - no lights, no sirens. I jumped in front of my son and grabbed him while trying to waive at the officer to let him know we were there. He was VERY ANGRY with me and angrily signaled for me to get out of his way, and he tore off down the road - never turning on lights or sirens, and moving fast enough I could not get his car number and report him.


      The outlet mall has been open in Allen since we moved here in 2004. It was renovated and expanded sometime between 2016 and 2018 - and they added stores and built a new parking lot to the north (and folks would be way less frustrated if they bothered to park there and walk a bit rather than fight to get the closest spot to whichever store...). The city has allowed the construction of a number of restaurants and retail stores, and brought in thousands of apartments. Unfortunately, this growth has led to a lot of traffic and crowded streets and newcomers from outside Texas that honestly have no manners and don't understand how to drive. The drivers have all become very aggressive (or maybe just aggressive out-of-towners have moved in?) and often will NOT wait for pedestrians using the lighted, signaled cross-walks to get across the street. They honk angrily and move aggressively toward them - seriously not joking - my youngest and his friends experience this nearly every time they go out in town. We've seen several accidents at a nearby intersection, yet the police refuse to patrol the area during traffic-hour, so these folks never seem to get the message that they can't drive like maniacs in such populated areas. I get honked at and receive lots of nasty looks because I refuse to drive much above the speed limit. A number of people every day charge down Exchange Parkway (east of Greenville) at 50+ mph and often run the lights, blowing through right-turns on red, even with cars in the intersection - it's bonkers - I'm thinking about putting up a camera to capture the mayhem while driving so I can send video to the police (whom I do not trust, but have no one else to turn to in an effort to get these knuckleheads to slow down and drive responsibly).

      The drugs referenced in 2016 review is true. Since I moved here, it's been speculated that maybe it's the pressure of living in a highly ranked school district, or it's the pressure of students knowing their rankings and how they rate against their peers (Worst. Idea. Ever.) however there has been a huge problem in the area with heroin and cocaine. I can't speak to the allegation of unreported violent acts, but the drugs are a concern, however they seem to be everywhere.

      I don't know if it's the boredom from not ever having ever gone without, however there is a group of students at the high school that are infatuated with what they THINK is gang life. It's usually a bunch of privileged white kids pretending they're hard and claiming gang affiliation - it's nothing. I grew up in Southern California with different gangs fighting on campus and the police rolling up, cracking skulls, making arrests, and students not coming back to school due to their involvement with various incidents. The schools in Allen all have "SROs" (Security Resource Officers) on duty all day, every day.

      Allen is basically its own little bubble. The cost of living has skyrocketed due to the influx of people from around 2009 through 2016 - driving up home prices and making property taxes sky high combined with an out-of-touch school district that was FINALLY put in check when their last $400 million bond failed in the general election. Seriously - the district currently has $1 billion estimated to repay - we don't need any more.
      19 -4
      This place is overrun with corruption
      and that corruption is the police. do not come here if you are A) under 21B) wealthyC) you think this is a "safe" city.If you are under 21 and walk or drive around you WILL be stopped by the police.If you are wealthy and drive a nice car or live in a richer neighborhood you WILL be pulled over If you think this is a good place to raise children you are wrong. There is meth, heroin, and violent acts that are never reported to keep the city in good report.The police will follow you until they find anything minute enough to pull you over. Like not using a blinker on a one way road, not putting on your blinker "long enough" before a turn, making a wide turn ( turning into the middle lane). They will disregard you if you know your law and they will only say to take it up with the judge. THEY DO NOT CARE ABOUT YOU. THEY DO THIS EVERY DAY. IT WILL HAPPEN IF YOU LIVE HERE.and dont even think about visiting. they will find something wrong with you, and make you come back to the city for court. THIS IS A TRAP-TOWNPlease dont move here. This is a hell hole.
      24 -19
      Off To The Courses
      After moving from Denver to Allen, TX three years ago, I can say that I wouldn't change the decision for anything. I love the area, and the people who live in the city are as friendly as if I had known them for years. One of the negative things about the city is that everything is spaced out. In order to get from one part of town to another, I need a car. There is public transportation, but it can be difficult to find a seat, especially in the early morning hours.

      I have found that this is a town for golfers. There are so many courses for beginners to those who should be in the professional league. TopGolf is one of the most popular courses, especially for those who have played extensively, and there are several events held through the year that I have seen. Twin Creeks has one of the largest clubs in the area for golfers. I'm a person who loves shopping, and when I moved here, I was thrilled to discover Allen Premium Outlets. This is a large mall that has some of the name brand stores that you would expect to find in larger cities. The prices are unbeatable as it's an outlet mall. Many of the items for sale are leftovers from the larger stores, which is why the prices are so cheap. Avoid going during the holiday season as it gets very busy. My favorite place to shop in the outlet mall is Abercrombie and Fitch. Walters Creek is another area that has small stores and restaurants. This is an area where I can park my car and walk from one business to another.
      11 -20
      Source: The Allen, TX data and statistics displayed above are derived from the 2016 United States Census Bureau American Community Survey (ACS).