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The only Massachusetts map that matters

Per-capita Dunkin' Donuts in Massachusetts

Ari Ofsevit created a listing of the addresses of all the state's Dunkin' Donuts, then combined that with a database of the populations of the state's 351 cities and towns to create a map showing where people have the most Dunk's options within their borders. In the map, the lower the number, the greater the per-capita density of Dunkin' Donuts per community. Towns in white are, shockingly, Massachusetts communities with no Dunk's at all.

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It's never too late for Dunkin.

Top Dunkin towns:

Avon: 4 Dunks, 4356 people, 1089 people per Dunks
Berlin: 2 Dunks, 2866 people, 1433 people per Dunks
West Bridgewater: 4 Dunks, 6916 people, 1729 people per Dunks
Middleton: 5 Dunks, 8987 people, 1797 people per Dunks
Erving: 1 Dunks, 1800 people, 1800 people per Dunks

Erving is the smallest town in Mass. with a Dunkin Donuts.
Nantucket is the largest town without one, although there are no Dunks on any islands.

At the other end of the spectrum are towns with relatively few Dunkins per capita. Marblehead, Ludlow, Winchester, Hingham and Milton all have just one Dunks, with Milton being the largest town and having the least Dunks access (although there are two in Boston within 500 feet of the Neponset).

However, Brookline and Amherst have only 3 and 2 Dunks, so by population they're in the same category, and there are, per capita, 10 times as many Dunks in Boston as in Brookline. Probably a lot right near the border.

Towns east of Worcester without a Dunks (all towns, since every city in the Commonwealth has a Dunks):

  • Wenham
  • Boxford
  • Groveland
  • West Newbury
  • Newbury
  • Carlisle
  • Lincoln
  • Plympton
  • Rochester
  • Millville
  • Truro
  • P-Town
  • ACK, MVY and Gosnold

And Boston has about the same number of Dunks per capita as the rest of the state: 99 within city limits.

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It is always shocking to me how far away from a Dunk Donuts you are if you are in PTown.

With many of these other towns , like Milton, they just do not really have a lot of places to place them and their residents use the shops available in other cities. An interesting map related to this would be population density versus distance to a Dunkin Donuts. Weighted of course for areas where 10 miles is ten minutes so they are not directly compared to Greater Boston 10 mile portion that could take two hours.

Just like how dry towns tend to have non dry establishments right on their borders so I presume this would play out as well. If you tracked those Milton residents I bet you would find they frequent all the neighboring shops

Ari, in the early aughts, I lived in Dot Lower Mills, across the street from one of the Dunks you mention that's within 500 feet of the Neponset. The traffic & parking problem in the mornings were staggering, with commuters coming from Quincy and Milton and running in for their fix. And, of course, Milton cops parked in the Milton Yacht Club lot & walked the 600 feet or so, no doubt delighted this wasn't their headache.

I live in lower mills now and grew up in East Milton . I always felt there needed to be a good drive through or easy accessible Location between Dorchester and East milton all the way down to Quincy line. Even now living in Lower Mills I will not go to that Dunkins in Lower Mills because of the traffic and ridiculous tight parking lot and then if I go up alittle we have that one on Morton street but service is rough over there. If I insist on a drive thru I go all the way to Blue Hills Mountain location . Lol . But I can say since this pandemic started I’ve only gone to Dunkins twice and both times were sloppy inside and turned me off . I’m not high maintenance but I’ve actually switched to Starbucks because of it.

Extra points for being in the same plaza as a candlepin bowling alley so an extra level of New England-ness is unlocked by that location.

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On hold so have time to kill, did some Googling.

Ron's is within 200' of a Dunks - I'll give them the ultimate New England status.

The lanes in Norwood, Needham, Quincy and Southie are over 200' to the closest Dunks so do not quality for this consideration in my opinion although you could def. walk to one and get back to the lanes before your iced coffee gets too warm in all cases.

Someone really found this to be the most useful to put times towards? There's multiple topics that would be far more beneficial. Like where there's access to local food. Or top places to pick apples. Sometimes it makes sense when things aren't going right when our free time isn't valued for what would truly bring value to us.

You just do things because they're fun.

If you're unfamiliar with Ari, you might want to Google him and see what he normally works on.

When I lived far away, I would often speak of Dunks and how I'd rob a bank right then and there if I could have just one iced coffee.

Then I moved back and realized it may actually be the worst chain coffee franchise on the planet.

Seriously.

Cumbies is better.
McDonald's is better
Hell, I even went to a rundown Chock Full O' Nuts shop once and it blew Dunks outta the water.

There's bound to be some COVID-related churn on the list though. I fear a wave of Dunkin deprivation on the Boston/Brookline border, with the St. Mary's shop closed!

That would be an interesting list to compile. It would include the Dunks in Davis Square, Somerville, which was attached to the bfresh grocery store there. The grocery store has remained continuously open, but the Dunks, which closed in March, is now completely gone -- no signs and no fixtures remaining.

This is the second time DD has closed in Davis Square, in the same building even. The first one closed because the neglectful landlord had let the building deteriorate so far that bricks started falling into Chester Street.

Davis Square is also the only place I know of where McDonald's has closed twice (in two adjoining storefronts at different times).

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I was wondering if the Dunks inside bfresh will would reopen... I guess not.

Thats surprising that it just up and closed like that

And wasn't that building the old Social Security office so wasn't the landlord the fed?

And that always surprised me that McD closed in both locations. You'd think its prox to Tufts it would be a hot spot since its cheap food on the go.

But I am sure rents have dictated that... I've noticed the average renter has changed over the years in Davis. Remember when Family Dollar had a nice store here? Its gone now.. and the store front is still empty.

and not the owner of it.

I wouldn't say the Family Dollar store was nice, per se--they were always in a dreadful state of chaos and disrepair, which probably went back several different stores in that location--but it was helpful. They were a good place to pick up cleaning supplies (I used a broom from there for years and years), plastic containers, stationery, cheap OTC meds, flip-flops, underwear, socks, and lots and lots of Christmas decorations for those who want to do up their property without going broke, not to mention off-brand or oddly-packaged food items. I miss them a lot, and while Dollar Tree helps to a degree, it's nowhere near the same. Family Dollar was, pretty much the Davis Square 5-&-Dime for a number of years, and I do wish something similar would take its place--I'd heard about a possible Ethiopian restaurant, but that didn't happen, and no news that I'm aware of since. At this point, even a Mickey D's would at least be a working business with a built-in client base, and would look better than the papered-over windows in the middle of the square. WTF is the landlord holding out for, anyway? Tiffanys?

Is that DD closed for good? There's paper up on the glass but the signage is still up and looks like it will return.

I bet its temporary. A lot of their business in BU students walking to class from the C Line and students living in South Campus.

I don't know about St. Mary's, but the Washington Square Dunks has the windows covered up and a for lease sign in the window. Both seem to have been removed from the DD store locator on their website.

map is an awful design choice in data visualization terms.

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But there really wasn't any other choice. Here's a version with a slightly wider range of color (albeit slightly less match for the brand).

I think. (I'm still mad that an old boss stole my copy of Tufte.)

Its like a session beer for caffeine, could drink 'em all day long. Sympathies to Slim, there's a special place in H-E-double hockey sticks for weasels who steal Tufte books, I, too had one stolen, they ain't cheap and every time this kind of issue comes up I want to reach for it and...nope, don't have it anymore.

Which Tufte book is the best one to buy?

undisputed classic is "The Visual Display of Quantitative Information". It has gotten a lot cheaper since I bought mine.

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Ari, don't get the wrong impression, I think this is so cool. The first thought in my mind, though, is that this was a COVID-19 inspired project because someone was bored and looking for something to do. I'm just peeved that I didn't think of it.

Thanks again for this thought-provoking chart in a time when we're overwhelmed by charts.

And an exercise in frustration.

I'd biked 65 miles Saturday so wasn't looking for a long run on Sunday and so I had some time. I thought it would be simple to scrape the data but the Dunks location page loads some javascript so you can't do it in BeautifulSoup so it became a Selenium project which took something like 4 hours because it takes several seconds to load each page (I probably could have improved the script to skip faster through overlapping zip codes, but that seemed like a lot of work to save a little time and perhaps miss some data). Most of the time was just down time, though, as that sat running, once I had the list scraped it was pretty easy to join it to the towns shapefile, set the color ramp, and post.

(And then realize that Manchester-by-the-Sea was just Manchester in one of the files and they didn't join, so redo the map once, and then change the color ramp this morning, to be less branded but a better choropleth. Here are several more iterations; I think I've settled on a log scale for the color palette with a wider color range and adding labels to each town showing the total number of Dunks.)

Actually pretty Gross with a capital G.

Because there are no Dunks.

I never noticed before that there is a straight line border running from Plainville/North Attleborough (adjacent to RI) to Cohasset/Scituate, most of which constitutes the southern border of Norfolk County. There doesn't seem to be any comparable straight line border between the various towns and counties in Massachusetts. Why is that?

To answer my own question, it appears that that this straight line is the original border between the Plymouth and Massachusetts Bay Colonies (Plymouth was separate until 1691-92).

It's also the county line between Plymouth and Bristol Counties and Norfolk, with the exception of Hingham, but that's because Norfolk County didn't exist in 1691 and when it was created, Hingham petitioned to stay in Suffolk County, but Cohasset had broken off of Hingham in 1770 and became part of (and still is part of) Norfolk County, but then decided in 1803 that Plymouth County seemed to make more sense.

The line between the colonies, the Patent Line, was laid out in 1656 to settle a disputed boundary, running from "Bound Rock to Accord Pond to an oak tree in Attleboro." More history here.

And, yes, some day, I want to create an animated map of Massachusetts showing towns as they were split off, incorporated as towns, cities, disincorporated for the Quabbin, etc. But that's more of an undertaking than, say, mapping Dunkin Donuts.

I think the Dunkin' site is miscategorizing one at BU (at 1020 Comm Ave) as being in Boston when it's really in Brookline. AFAIK that stretch of Comm Ave is Brookline on the even/south side and Boston on the odd/north side. Seems to confirm with 1020 Comm Ave not showing up on https://www.cityofboston.gov/assessing/search/?streetnumber=1020&streetn... but 1019 Comm Ave (on the other side of the street) does show up in the same records. And 1020 Comm does show up in the Brookline Assessor's database.

Google Maps and DD's website both probably decided it wasn't worth the effort to properly categorize a street with the town border running down the middle.

So Brookline's Dunkin' count should be +33% ! (almost making up for the 2 that were lost in the pandemic)