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Old 05-20-2011, 08:47 AM
10 posts, read 25,166 times
Reputation: 10


My husband and two daughters (ages 9 and 12) are relocating to the Cincinnati area in early August. We have been looking primarily at the northern suburbs, but just wondering why we haven't heard anything about the western suburbs? What are the schools like? Schools will basically rule where we buy/lease a home. Thanks for your help!
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Old 05-20-2011, 09:11 AM
Location: Ohio
400 posts, read 934,752 times
Reputation: 337
Default because i'm the only one here

It's because I'm the only west-sider on this board, and I don't always post that much.
I grew up in Bridgetown and now live in Sayler Park. My information will be a little bit different sometimes because I live in an apartment rather than a house. I don't have children so I can't tell you much about the current details of the public and private schools but I will help you if I can.
The western side of Cincinnati starts, I suppose, west of the Mill Creek. Both the city of Cincinnati and a number of individual municipalities are considered the west side.
In the city are: Fairmount, Mt. Airy, Northside, Price Hill (east, west and lower), Riverside, Sayler Park, Sedamsville and Westwood, and the all-encompassing but somewhat useless title of Western Hills.
In the county are: Addyston, Cheviot, Cleves, Colerain Township (Bevis/Northgate, White Oak), Crosby Township, Delhi Township, Green Township (Bridgetown, Dent, Mack, Monfort Heights), Harrison and Harrison Township, Miami Township (Miami Heights and the almost-forgotten Frogtown/Geiringer/Grandview), Mt. Healthy, North Bend, North College Hill, Springfield Township (Finneytown, Pleasant Run) and Whitewater Township (Elizabethtown, Hooven, Miamitown). To a lesser extent, Forest Park and Greenhills and Dearborn County.
The entire area gets maligned a lot because the city areas are kind of run down and the county is just all suburbs or occasional farmhouses. Despite what everyone else here says, I know of only ONE place in the entire area that has the infamous cookie-cutter houses. I see umpteem houses old and new that have the same floor plans but I have yet to see, except for that one stretch on Rybolt Road, where any two houses look identical. It's a mixture of blue collar and white collar, heavily Republican, heavily Catholic (all dirty words on city-data). The western half of the city is about 50/50 white and black, and the edges of the county that butt up against it are getting more racially mixed, although most people AREN'T upset about it. There are few Asians or people from the Middle East, except for the physicians, of course!
One other situation that has nothing to do with politics, religion or economics is the area's geography. It is very hilly and many of the streets wind around and can even be too narrow. It's easy to get lost. It's a pain when the weather is bad--not just snow but even heavy rain. This isn't meant to scare you. It's actually very pretty around here.
As for the schools, the public districts are Cincinnati Public Schools (the aforementioned neighborhoods of the city plus Cheviot), Finneytown (Springfield), Mt. Healthy, North College Hill, Northwest (Colerain), Oak Hills (Delhi and Green), Southwest (Harrison and Whitewater), Three Rivers (Addyston, Cleves, Miami Township, North Bend) and Winton Woods (Greenhills). Don't ask me to explain Dearborn County--it has three--East Central, Lawrenceburg and South Dearborn--and their boundaries zigzag around and I've NEVER figured them out.
There are a bazillion Catholic grade schools and at least three Protestant grade schools. The Catholic high schools are Elder, LaSalle, McAuley, Mother of Mercy, Seton, St. Xavier and to a lesser extent Oldenburg, Roger Bacon and St. Ursula. Their calendars, bus schedules and snow days usually follow the public school district that the buildings are in. But you don't have to live in the Catholic high schools' vicinity to attend one of them. The Archdiocese discontinued that rule years ago.

Last edited by skippercollector; 05-20-2011 at 09:47 AM.. Reason: added weather and schools
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Old 05-20-2011, 11:34 AM
Location: Oxford, Ohio
901 posts, read 1,950,209 times
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The west side is simply much more conservative than the east and doesn't have the cultural amenities that you find in the north and east...but the people there are very friendly and down-home.

Check out the Oak Hills school district. It's not as highly rated as some others in the area, but it's still a great district. The west side of town, particularly Green Township west of Westbourne Drive, as well as Delhi west of Anderson Ferry, are really nice areas. I think some places there rival what you find in the northern and eastern suburbs. Plus, the homes over there are much cheaper, and still very very nice. Check it out. You won't be disappointed.
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Old 05-20-2011, 06:42 PM
Location: Green Township
329 posts, read 564,032 times
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The Westside is... OK.

People saying its 50/50 black, not necessarily.

Everyone on the Westside is aware of the bad parts, and they are obvious when you drive through them.

To show you what I mean, the ghetto's of the Westside are most HIGHLY CONCENTRATED between Colerain Avenue and Winton Road.

The lower, Southwestern part in the Covedale and Delhi area is starting to go downhill. I used to live on Glenway, I know what I am talking about...

The border from when it goes from good to bad now seem to be starting at Crookshank Road going down towards the city into East Price Hill.

This is not to say ALL of the Westside is bad, that would be a VERY idiotic thing to say, you will commonly hear this from the clueless Eastsider.

The area where I live in, Monfort Heights is located in Green Township, in the more suburban areas of the Westside, which seem to be the only places that are still improving and growing in population. Monfort Heights and White Oak specifically are starting to see an end to their glory days it looks like, so if I were to move to the Westside, like another poster here said, it would be another exit down near Harrison Avenue where it is nicer and has great homes and neighborhoods.
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Old 05-21-2011, 05:31 AM
Location: Cambridge, MA
4,730 posts, read 10,929,204 times
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Default "You Are Not Alone;" subtitle: AND the schools are better

There are quite a few west-siders who post here. Even though only a tiny fraction of folks from this forum have been to meetups thus far, and I'm a tad bit distant to be able to make it to each one, I've personally met people from across the viaducts + Catholics + rightward-leaning political thinkers. There's hardly a lack of disparate opinions, locations, or backgrounds. And that's how it should be.

As for why the western portion of the county doesn't get talked up as much, it all boils down to how so many families with school-aged children are seeking to find out where the best academic settings are. There's been some lively back-and-forth this very week about how the Princeton district should be given its due. Perhaps the same could be said about Oak Hills, Three Rivers, etc. (I happen to think that the Northwest schools - which include Colerain and Northwest HS's - don't necessarily deserve to stay under the radar either.) But be that as it may, though it might be sometimes decided by tenths of a percentage point the highest-ranking districts are all east of I-75 (save for Wyoming, barely a mile to the west.) Then there's the CPS' crown jewel, Walnut Hills High, often THE #1 secondary school in the state. Although admission's open to anyone from the entire city, as well as some inner suburbs tied to the district, who passes the entrance exam folks naturally want to not have their offspring need to commute for over an hour each way to classes. That's what would be faced by most whose home is across the viaducts and up the hills. And on the parochial/private school side of the coin, the "elite" Catholic girls' schools are both on the east side and the boys' St Xavier is near mid-county in Finneytown. Seven Hills, Cincinnati CD, and Summit CD? All on the east side too.

Where housing is concerned, I agree that parts of Westwood get unfairly overlooked because there are some amazing old homes built in a tantalizing variety of styles in them. People do stay focused on the "mansion" enclaves and upscale communities of the city and 'burbs across the expressway too much. There are more "downscale" types of houses from the early 20th Century - such as Arts & Crafts bungalows, and Ranch houses with Palladian windows - that I like a lot and are easily found west of 75 as well. But because so much of that territory's single-family homes are generic brick Cape Cods (albeit very well constructed) that give way to unoriginal Ranches and split-levels and then to Dreesvilles and McMansions the closer to Indiana you get, what's to recommend? Montgomery and Wyoming (to name two places) can deliver just about every common post-WWII type of house, "AND the schools are better."

Cincinnati's unique drawl and expressions ("Go two squares farther;" "Please?" to mean "Repeat what you said") are sadly dying out. But the west side is where they hang on the strongest. This is because its citizens are far more tribal as a rule than those of the more transient eastern communities. Over the course of multiple generations, members of entire families historically stayed within a few "squares" of one another. Even now there's that sense of rootedness despite fairly substantial "White flight," because the old neighborhood is a short drive away and often visited. Church festivals and Cheviot's Harvest Home parade continue to be mob scenes. And Cincy's sorry history of "blockbusting" and radical demographic shifts is hardly repeating itself. Westwood may now be racially 50/50, Price Hill markedly more Hispanic/Black than even twenty years ago, and Covedale etc also "changing." But for every German Catholic household that fled in dismay there's another that's stayed put and been joined by "pioneers," and people who prefer urban living, of all shades. There are hyperactive community organizations working to reclaim or remove "problem properties," stand out on crime-prone street corners, clean up commercial districts, and so on. Meanwhile the townships stay bland, safe, and monochromatic, which needless to say is a draw for many. Here again, though - these same attributes, across the board, can be found (along with lots of friendly neighborly types) on the east side. "AND the schools are better."
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Old 05-23-2011, 06:49 AM
Location: Cincinnati
3,335 posts, read 5,725,886 times
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Housing prices on the west side are low - some of the values are just incredible. Look into Oak Hills SD, perhaps living in Green Twp, Delhi, etc. Do we have a budget?
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Old 05-23-2011, 01:08 PM
Location: Indianapolis and Cincinnati
682 posts, read 1,387,611 times
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The Westside is making progress.

Westwood has agressively pursued slum apartment buildings and they continue to come down. Westwood has some of the finest architecture in the country. Price Hill is rapidly improving thanks to Price Hill Will and a cadre of Preservationists working over there. Knox Hill (my neighorhood) on the border between N&S Fairmount is working on a national historic registry nomination. Sedamsville is a little enclave tucked in valley and is also pursuing national registry status. River Road has some of the finest pre civil war mansions overlooking the ohio. Fairmount is about to get a new multi million dollar green space park. The incline district has some amazing things going on. And dont forget Mt Airy Forest, St Clair Park a 19 acre nature preserve in my neighborhood overlooking the city. and of course the Mill creek project.

The west side has lot to offer and I chose my neighborhood over several I looked at downtown and eastside. Everyone's needs are different. But you should find a realtor familiar with the west side and take a look!
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Old 05-27-2011, 01:13 PM
Location: Cincinnati
350 posts, read 717,259 times
Reputation: 95
As usual goyguy and restorationconsultant nail it.
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