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Old 05-27-2012, 08:29 AM
 
Location: Fairfield County, CT
12,059 posts, read 12,876,896 times
Reputation: 3362

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Quote:
Originally Posted by eagles89 View Post
Sorry--was offline most of the afternoon. I'll clarify what I meant by those towns. In most of the towns I mentioned, there is no commercial/civic hub. In just about any town today, there are parts of town that you might need to drive from to get to downtown, but the drive would likely be short, and once it was over, you'd be somewhere where you could stick around for awhile, window shop, pick up a cup of coffee, etc. Those kinds of towns breed a certain civic pride--I've lived in enough of them to have a sense for what it feels like and when it's present. In the towns I mentioned, it's very fair that some are much more rural, more distance between homes, etc. But they share the same trait with the more densely populated towns like Orange or Trumbull in that if you want a town center, you're driving all the way to another town to find it. Poor choice of words on my part--they're all "suburban" in one way or another, and true that some are even more rural. But by suburban, I ultimately meant, "no center of gravity"--the kind of town I grew up in, where there was nothing but houses, highways nearby, open land, and the occassional strip mall thrown in to break up the monotony. I've been blessed since leaving home for college that I've never had to live in that kind of environment again. I don't mean for it to come off like those towns are nuclear waste sites. They can be fine, and I like to think I'm pretty well adjusted. Just not ideally what I'm looking for in a place to live and raise my kid(s), yet all that will be open to us if we end up going this route.
You make it sound like any town without a town center is the ghetto. Give me a break.
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Old 05-27-2012, 08:43 AM
 
4,784 posts, read 8,053,836 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eagles89 View Post
In just about any town today, there are parts of town that you might need to drive from to get to downtown, but the drive would likely be short, and once it was over, you'd be somewhere where you could stick around for awhile, window shop, pick up a cup of coffee, etc. Those kinds of towns breed a certain civic pride--

But by suburban, I ultimately meant, "no center of gravity"--the kind of town I grew up in, where there was nothing but houses, highways nearby, open land, and the occassional strip mall thrown in to break up the monotony.I've been blessed since leaving home for college that I've never had to live in that kind of environment again. I don't mean for it to come off like those towns are nuclear waste sites. They can be fine, and I like to think I'm pretty well adjusted. Just not ideally what I'm looking for in a place to live and raise my kid(s),
That's awfully harsh. I live in a town without a "downtown", and my town has plenty of civic pride. Today is our town parade, and we have numerous activities/celebrations etc. throughout the year in our community. I don't need to walk to a downtown coffee shop to feel civic pride.

Editing to say that in the above post you complain of highways nearby, but in another you complained there weren't enough in Ct.---which is it?

Last edited by andthentherewere3; 05-27-2012 at 08:54 AM..
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Old 05-27-2012, 08:54 AM
 
Location: Fairfield County, CT
12,059 posts, read 12,876,896 times
Reputation: 3362
Quote:
Originally Posted by andthentherewere3 View Post
That's awfully harsh. I live in a town without a "downtown", and my town has plenty of civic pride. Today is our town parade, and we have numerous activities/celebrations etc. throughout the year in our community. I don't need to walk to a downtown coffee shop to feel civic pride.
Exactly! I live in a town with a downtown and it's hard to consider it the hub of the town when everyone using it is from surrounding towns. And guess what? Most people who live in Branford have to get in their car and DRIVE downtown!!!! *GASP!*

Quote:
Originally Posted by andthentherewere3 View Post
Editing to say that in the above post you complain of highways nearby, but in another you complained there weren't enough in Ct.---which is it?
Yeah - with every post, I'm becoming more and more skeptical of the OP.
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Old 05-27-2012, 10:50 AM
 
8 posts, read 3,958 times
Reputation: 15
What's to be "skeptical" about? Look, I'm not saying anything without a town center is a ghetto, and that without a town center a town can't have pride. I'm also not saying that having a town center automatically makes a town great. But on balance I like town centers. Is that hard to believe or understand? I like when a town has a bit of a destination to it. I like the architecture. And I also happen to like the economic benefits that brings to a town. Sure it can lead to traffic and overcrowding on busy days, but I happen to believe the benefits outweigh the drawbacks.

And having grown up in a place in which I never saw nice little downtowns except in movies or on TV, it has been kind of a blessing to have lived in places that have walkable spaces, public parks, etc. I've had the chance to learn what I really want. I want charming, and quaint, and picturesque, and cute; I want public playgrounds, and interaction with other families, and places to stroll after dinner on a nice evening, and places to go for a run that aren't boring to run around. And I'd love that for my kids. If I can get it, why not?

So, I'm not trying to be "harsh", and sorry if these posts are breeding skepticism. But I also think I've learned what I needed to learn. This could work--we just need to figure out if we want what it will take to make it work.

Thanks for all the replies.
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Old 05-27-2012, 11:01 AM
 
Location: Fairfield County, CT
12,059 posts, read 12,876,896 times
Reputation: 3362
Quote:
Originally Posted by eagles89 View Post
What's to be "skeptical" about? Look, I'm not saying anything without a town center is a ghetto, and that without a town center a town can't have pride. I'm also not saying that having a town center automatically makes a town great. But on balance I like town centers. Is that hard to believe or understand? I like when a town has a bit of a destination to it. I like the architecture. And I also happen to like the economic benefits that brings to a town. Sure it can lead to traffic and overcrowding on busy days, but I happen to believe the benefits outweigh the drawbacks.

And having grown up in a place in which I never saw nice little downtowns except in movies or on TV, it has been kind of a blessing to have lived in places that have walkable spaces, public parks, etc. I've had the chance to learn what I really want. I want charming, and quaint, and picturesque, and cute; I want public playgrounds, and interaction with other families, and places to stroll after dinner on a nice evening, and places to go for a run that aren't boring to run around. And I'd love that for my kids. If I can get it, why not?

So, I'm not trying to be "harsh", and sorry if these posts are breeding skepticism. But I also think I've learned what I needed to learn. This could work--we just need to figure out if we want what it will take to make it work.

Thanks for all the replies.
The skepticism stems from you complaining about towns being too "suburban", yet want more highways. Then in another post, you complain about suburbs having highways. It's very contradictory, which makes it difficult to pinpoint what you truly desire.

I understand you want a downtown - I love living in Branford and enjoying the downtown on the weekends. But you made it sound like living in one of the towns like Monroe would be horrific - and even though I don't live in Monroe, what I took as snobbery came off as a little offensive.

Honestly I think you would be happiest in a town like Ridgefield, but I wouldn't want to commute from northern Ridgefield to New Haven on a daily basis.
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Old 05-27-2012, 11:03 AM
 
8,487 posts, read 9,886,911 times
Reputation: 4914
I'm surprised that nobody has mentioned Fairfield. It would seem to be a slam dunk for the OP. Or Westport, if budget permits.
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Old 05-27-2012, 11:04 AM
 
Location: Fairfield County, CT
12,059 posts, read 12,876,896 times
Reputation: 3362
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stratford, Ct. Resident View Post
I'm surprised that nobody has mentioned Fairfield. It would seem to be a slam dunk for the OP. Or Westport, if budget permits.
+1.

Funny - In my post above yours I had originally typed Fairfield, but changed it to Ridgefield because it seems they desire a small town.

But I agree - Fairfield is spot on. Not sure if they'd enjoy the commute to northern Ridgefield, but it's a sacrifice they'd have to be willing to make.
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Old 05-27-2012, 11:45 AM
 
Location: Coastal Connecticut
10,702 posts, read 8,115,146 times
Reputation: 2008
I don't know why you guys are blasting the OP for having an opinion. I'm totally with them. Came from a town with no downtown, just nondescript strip shopping malls and various developments. I hated it and had very little pride in the town. Would never go back to that again. It's all very subjective.
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Old 05-27-2012, 11:53 AM
 
Location: Fairfield County, CT
12,059 posts, read 12,876,896 times
Reputation: 3362
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stylo View Post
I don't know why you guys are blasting the OP for having an opinion.
Because their opinions are contradictory as I explained above.
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Old 05-27-2012, 12:29 PM
 
4,784 posts, read 8,053,836 times
Reputation: 3122
Quote:
Originally Posted by eagles89 View Post
What's to be "skeptical" about? Look, I'm not saying anything without a town center is a ghetto, and that without a town center a town can't have pride. I'm also not saying that having a town center automatically makes a town great. But on balance I like town centers. Is that hard to believe or understand? I like when a town has a bit of a destination to it. I like the architecture. And I also happen to like the economic benefits that brings to a town. Sure it can lead to traffic and overcrowding on busy days, but I happen to believe the benefits outweigh the drawbacks.

And having grown up in a place in which I never saw nice little downtowns except in movies or on TV, it has been kind of a blessing to have lived in places that have walkable spaces, public parks, etc. I've had the chance to learn what I really want. I want charming, and quaint, and picturesque, and cute; I want public playgrounds, and interaction with other families, and places to stroll after dinner on a nice evening, and places to go for a run that aren't boring to run around. And I'd love that for my kids. If I can get it, why not?

So, I'm not trying to be "harsh", and sorry if these posts are breeding skepticism. But I also think I've learned what I needed to learn. This could work--we just need to figure out if we want what it will take to make it work.

Thanks for all the replies.
There is nothing wrong with wanting a downtown, or town center. It is the way you described towns without them that sounds offensive. Also, don't automatically assume that because a town lacks a downtown, they also lack a town center; many have a town green without the downtown. A lot of public events and festivals take place at town greens. And many towns without downtowns do have public playgrounds and parks, and they don't lack places to run. Just because you don't see them "downtown" does not mean they don't exist.

I also agree you might look into Fairfield, it does have a walkable downtown, although you'd have to move near the downtown or drive to it. Fairfield is a pretty big town.
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