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Old 03-05-2018, 06:15 PM
 
2,146 posts, read 1,191,548 times
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It seems some people think DeKalb County has a bad reputation, and that Lithonia and Stone Mountain aren't good areas. But just driving around in those areas they seem decent. Lots of well educated people, nice houses that are well kept. There's the occasional foreclosure that's run down, but they aren't as common as in South Futlon and Clayton county. Overall this county as a whole seems like a nice place to live.
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Old 03-05-2018, 07:32 PM
 
Location: East Side of ATL
4,188 posts, read 5,817,346 times
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I think, the biggest issue is the housing stock just hasn't aged as well. It helps make the area looks worst imho.
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Old 03-05-2018, 08:45 PM
 
13,070 posts, read 21,264,117 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Turnerbro View Post
It seems some people think DeKalb County has a bad reputation, and that Lithonia and Stone Mountain aren't good areas. But just driving around in those areas they seem decent. Lots of well educated people, nice houses that are well kept. There's the occasional foreclosure that's run down, but they aren't as common as in South Futlon and Clayton county. Overall this county as a whole seems like a nice place to live.

I have always thought that were are beautiful areas and neighborhoods all over DeKalb County. And they continue to be beautiful.
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Old 03-05-2018, 11:44 PM
 
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Originally Posted by PKCorey View Post
I think, the biggest issue is the housing stock just hasn't aged as well. It helps make the area looks worst imho.
Most of the housing in Dekalb (like the Clarkeston-Stone Mountain stuff) I actually appreciate more as I get older. The first home we bought in the early 2000s was a 1960s 2 story Dutch-Colonial in Stone Mountain-Clarkeston. Thought of it as a cheap starter home at the time, but now I realize how nice it was. Beautiful large yard, and as much lving space as anyone would ever need—with a floor-plan that made more sense than my last two homes. People freak out over the cookie-cutterness of it. Sort of silly. The life you live in a home is what makes it unique. Our retired neighbor planted every foot of his front yard with flowers and shrubs. He was an original owner of the home. Believe it or not there were a quite a few of them still there, but they had begun to leave for retirement communities, or old-age homes or just dying. After 40 years they loved where they lived, and would die in those homes if their bodies would let them (going through that with my parents right now), so, t’s sort of weird to me when folks talk about white flight—but, there was less and less there to appeal to young white famlies, so they stopped moving in. So, the racial makeup of the neighborhoods changed of course. But, for the most part, the new residents lived similar lives to the old ones—it was a bit more Balkanized, I guess—blacks, older whites, Vietnamese, and Pakistanis—-there wasn’t enough cohesion or money to keep the swim-tennis open. I am guessing the biggest changes happened at the over-built apartment complexes off Memorial.


No more crime than my Lake Claire Neighborhood. The schools were not so great, and that stretch of Memorial was more sad and irritating than dangerous. Sort of “water, water, and not a drop to drink”—-all of these storefronts and no place to shop. I drive through occasionally, talked to an old neighbor once. It hadn’t changed much.
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Old 03-06-2018, 12:43 AM
 
Location: Historic West End
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Atlanta is a metro of 6 million plus. There will be bad or good people everywhere, it is not exclusive to one community or particular part of the metro area.
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Old 03-06-2018, 02:26 AM
 
Location: Atlanta
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Dekalb County, overall, is a very awkward county with many different types of areas. It is actually situated on some very prime land, but the most prime land is also some of the lowest density housing areas in the metro. Go further out of town it is just normal close-in suburbs and further away suburbs going through all the same growth trends many other places have.

An interesting history is that Central Fulton Co use to be a part of Dekalb County with Decatur as the county seat.

The old system Georgia had is to situate county borders equi-distant around any decent sized city. Partly, why Georgia has so many counties. It also meant as towns grew many counties got subdivided again and again.

When they brought the original rail terminus to the area Decatur did not want the attention it would bring, but the rail engineers were interested in the area from the proximity of the Eastern Continental Divide. They build Atlanta around that terminus very close by.

The state followed suit and divided the county with a border half way between Atlanta and Decatur, a fairly short distance.

On the in-town portions of Dekalb, there are two types of areas: 1) in the the City of Atlanta where the roads were planned out and 2) outside the city where county leaders let that early suburban growth happen uncontrolled without much infrastructure support. In this latter area you get really large lot estates that are fairly affluent and a perpetual low-supply of homes mixed with high demand. The political difference, yet proximity to Atlanta created this unique area of affluence and odd low-density in an area so close to a major city.

Now Southwest Dekalb probably got hit with the most classic form of white-flight that ever existed. It changed the county in many different ways. The northern parts of the county always had more affluence, but Southwest Dekalb originally had some pockets of middle and upper middle income wealth.

It seems like the line between Atlanta-Decatur-Stone Mountain was almost the defacto border of this. Largely, I think it was the concentration of apartments near Ponce and Memorial Drive outside of I-285 that helped firm that.

I think originally the GA supreme court early on had a very broad vision of land owner's rights. So developers could build apartments almost anywhere there was a 4 lane road and sewer. Apartments were also originally seen as nicer areas mainly for singles and young families and had a more positive image. Ironically, it is kind of like the myriads of zero lot line 6 story apartments being built all over town. As long as it stays more affluent singles and couples people maintain a positive image of the area.

However, the moment apartments age, the rent premium decreases as newer apartments are built elsewhere, the demographic shift to families unable to save up for a home happens. For areas with large concentrations it has a large impact on schools and the overall desirability of families buying into the area.

I believe this played a large part of why Clarkston became immigrant and refugee central. It just so happened there was a large block of older suburban style apartment good for families when they were at their cheapest rent during a political time refugee relocations to our areas were at their highest.


It is worth noting that Dekalb, overall, has higher incomes and property values over most of Clayton Co. and S. Fulton Co., but it is a very divided not so homogeneous county.
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Old 03-06-2018, 04:27 AM
 
2,338 posts, read 1,136,619 times
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From my experience, I would never live in Stone Mountain again. I wouldn't live in Lithonia either. I know about these areas...not so much other areas of Dekalb. I wouldn't say the entire county is bad though because that's a huge generalization and would be false.
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Old 03-06-2018, 06:51 AM
 
Location: St Simons Island, GA
21,616 posts, read 33,519,530 times
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Most of your problems in DeKalb tend to be associated with areas with a high concentration of neglected 60's and 70's era apartment complexes: Buford Highway, Memorial Drive, Pleasantdale Road etc. Cheap rent tends to draw a cheap element.
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Old 03-06-2018, 08:15 PM
 
Location: Lake Spivey, Georgia
1,852 posts, read 1,303,217 times
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Yes, Dekalb's (and really Clayton County's and close-in South Fulton's) problems center around scores of aging and declining multi family apartment complexes. If you look around any of these areas at the single family neighborhoods, particularly the older ones, you will find mostly well kept vintage homes from the 1950's-1960's eras on largish tree-shaded lots. Perhaps this is why people in Metro Atlanta are not as "density friendly" as some posters on this board would like. Apartment complexes (unless they are in a super affluent and sought after communities like Buckhead or Midtown) ALWAYS decline and often take the commercial strips that are often built on major thoroughfares around down with them often stigmatizing nearby MUCH more stable single family communities. (I would point toward toward Memorial Drive corridor in Dekalb, Old Dixie/ 19/41 Corridor in Clayton County, or the Campbellton Road corridor in Southwest Atlanta/ East Point as examples. Even well regarded and sought after close in suburbs have this problem (Sandy Springs, Dunwoody, Brookhaven, and just east of Druid Hills) have more than their fair share of aging and declining apartment communities. I really don't have an answer to this quandary. I KNOW that people of modest means HAVE to have a place to live to.
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Old 03-06-2018, 08:57 PM
 
1,290 posts, read 666,738 times
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Atlanta in Dekalb includes some of the most expensive and desirable neighborhoods in the metro, including Candler Park, Lake Claire, and Druid Hills. It also includes the desirable and affluent cities of Brookhaven, Decatur, North Druid Hills, and Dunwoody. I can't see Dekalb having an overall bad rap. I will admit some of the unincorporated areas in the southern part of the county aren't great but overall I think it's a fairly nice county.
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