I am referring to Norwood, Massachusetts, a middle-class suburb 15 miles south-west of Boston.
Norwood is located near the geographic center of Norfolk County.
The town's population has remained relatively steady at around 30,000, although the demographics have changed somewhat over the last couple of decades.
Approximately 80% of the population is white, most of whom are Catholic (predominantly Irish, with smaller groups of Italian, Polish, and Lithuanian).
15% of the population is Asian, with an almost equal number of Middle Easteners and Indians.
The remaining population is mainly Brazilian and African-American.
Along with Marshfield, Braintree, and Stoneham, Norwood has traditionally been a bastion of Irish-American residents, many of whom are justifiably proud of their heritage.
There is a fairly large, and active, Middle Eastern community in Norwood. Iranians, Syrians, and Lebanese are the predominant groups. Norwood is one of the largest towns in Massachusetts with a sizeable Muslim population not to have a Mosque.
Norwood does have a Synagogue, although Muslims easily outnumber Jewish residents at least 10-1.
There is convenient mass transit to Boston. There are three Commuter Rail stops, Norwood Depot, Norwood Central, and Windsor Gardens.
In addition, the Forest Hills to Walpole bus traverses Washington Street.
Most Norwood neighborhoods are solidly middle-class with relatively little turnover.
Norwood has one of the highest concentrations of apartment and condominium complexes in the area. Windsor Gardens is noted not only for its train station, but also a large transient population, many of whom are Indian or Pakistani.
South Norwood, aka "The Flats," is a working-class neighborhood centered around the corner of Washington and Dean Streets. Some areas are somewhat seedy; many of the two-decker and three-decker homes look as if they came straight out of Jamaica Plain or Dorchester. I would hardly classify the area as "ghetto," though.
If there is a truly "posh" section of Norwood, it would be the area adjacent to Willett Pond/New Pond near St. Timothy's Church, plus the southern part of Nichols Street (and adjacent side streets). This area abuts the more-affluent town of Westwood.
Norwood is most famous to outsiders for the "Automile," along Route 1/Providence Highway. Although most Automile dealerships are indeed in Norwood, some dealerships are just across the town line in Dedham, Westwood, or Walpole.
The late Ernie Boch, Sr. is famous for spearheading the Automile. His strong accent was a staple in Boston media for years. Example: "Boch Toyota*, Route One Nah-wood, my name is Ernie Boch, come on down!"
* If I recall, he pronounced Toyota as "Tie-oda"
Prices shown in USD.