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View Poll Results: If you could choose to live the Indy area again, would you?
Yes 14 73.68%
No 5 26.32%
Voters: 19. You may not vote on this poll

 
 
Old 10-23-2017, 10:42 AM
 
7 posts, read 6,213 times
Reputation: 14

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Ok so we've had enough. My family lives in the DC area, and it's time to move. We don't know our neighbors, our yard is tiny, there is no community feel, everything is so expensive, and the traffic is unbelievable. I've been doing some job hunting and I think I'll be okay to make the move, so the only issue is where to live. I don't know anything about Indianapolis or the suburbs, but Indy has a reasonable cost of living and decent job market.

Two young children so ideally we would live in a quiet suburban neighborhood with a close knit feel. My wife and I dream of knowing our town and having neighbors and friends over for dinner. It'd be nice to have a big yard and a big house with lots of youth sports and a downtown with some stores and local restaurants, but not too big where there are tons of people. I guess we are looking for a real "community" feel where parents are friendly to other parents and everyone gets along. Decent schools would be a plus, but the biggest part is the community feel we want: lots of kids outside playing sports, green space, and a decent sized but not big town. Small businesses are good but we don't want corporate headquarters or anything like that so any advice on some Indianapolis suburbs that fit this description?

Money is not an issue. We were shocked at the housing prices in Indy compared to DC, so with the move we are saving a lot of money anyway. I know I'm being a little idealistic in terms of the place, but basically we want a very active community with lots of kids and sports and a good place to raise two young children.

Briefly scanning this forum it seems people are high on Carmel. I googled it and it seemed very nice, but it did seem fairly big for a suburb. Anyone from Carmel, is there still a community feel with a local soccer team, friendly people and all that stuff even if it is big?

Can anyone recommend some places to look?

Thanks for the help!
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Old 10-23-2017, 11:52 AM
 
Location: Fishers, IN
4,316 posts, read 4,814,048 times
Reputation: 4359
You really can't go wrong as far as schools in any of the suburbs. So if you're just looking at suburbs, schools shouldn't be much of a concern.

As far as neighbor friendliness, I think it can be hit or miss. We know some of our neighbors but there are also several that just keep to themselves. Our neighborhood also has its share of rental homes and those people seem to rarely be seen. My parents, on the other hand, know several of their neighbors and have had them over to dinner, gone out with them, etc.

Carmel and Fishers are the biggest suburbs, both poised to be pushing 100,000 people in the next 5-10 years and at this rate the 3rd and 4th largest cities in the state within the next 15-20 years. Maybe that is too large for you. If so, maybe look at Noblesville. It and Zionsville, I think, have the two best downtowns of the suburbs. Noblesville is a traditional town square built around the courthouse with lots of shops and restaurants. They do festivals and car cruise-ins. And it's linked across the river by pedestrian bridge with the new Federal Hill Commons park which will have outdoor concerts and farmers market in the summer. There's also a paved greenway to the vast Forest Park as well.

Downtown Zionsville is old fashioned with it's cobblestone main street lined with shops, antique stores, art galleries, and restaurants. Both Zionsville and Noblesville downtowns are surrounded by older homes. But as you get away from those the towns are very spread out with lots of subdivisions, Noblesville especially which is more than 12 miles across from Gray Rd in the west to Hamilton Town Center mall in the southeast.

Depending how close you want to be, you could look to Greenfield about 15 minutes east of Indy or Pendleton about 20 minutes northeast (of I-69/I-465 interchange). Pendleton would be a long drive if you worked downtown, easily pushing an hour during rush hour, but if you worked on the northeast side, it would be easily doable. Greenfield is an easy 30 minute drive into downtown Indy right down I-70. Both are very nice small Indiana towns.

Sports I can't help you much with, though. Sorry.
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Old 10-23-2017, 01:33 PM
 
Location: Seattle, WA
905 posts, read 1,420,077 times
Reputation: 945
I would not live in Indy area again, but based on your values described in the OP, I think it'd be a good fit for you and your family.
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Old 10-23-2017, 03:05 PM
 
7 posts, read 6,213 times
Reputation: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by ischyros View Post
You really can't go wrong as far as schools in any of the suburbs. So if you're just looking at suburbs, schools shouldn't be much of a concern.

As far as neighbor friendliness, I think it can be hit or miss. We know some of our neighbors but there are also several that just keep to themselves. Our neighborhood also has its share of rental homes and those people seem to rarely be seen. My parents, on the other hand, know several of their neighbors and have had them over to dinner, gone out with them, etc.

Carmel and Fishers are the biggest suburbs, both poised to be pushing 100,000 people in the next 5-10 years and at this rate the 3rd and 4th largest cities in the state within the next 15-20 years. Maybe that is too large for you. If so, maybe look at Noblesville. It and Zionsville, I think, have the two best downtowns of the suburbs. Noblesville is a traditional town square built around the courthouse with lots of shops and restaurants. They do festivals and car cruise-ins. And it's linked across the river by pedestrian bridge with the new Federal Hill Commons park which will have outdoor concerts and farmers market in the summer. There's also a paved greenway to the vast Forest Park as well.

Downtown Zionsville is old fashioned with it's cobblestone main street lined with shops, antique stores, art galleries, and restaurants. Both Zionsville and Noblesville downtowns are surrounded by older homes. But as you get away from those the towns are very spread out with lots of subdivisions, Noblesville especially which is more than 12 miles across from Gray Rd in the west to Hamilton Town Center mall in the southeast.

Depending how close you want to be, you could look to Greenfield about 15 minutes east of Indy or Pendleton about 20 minutes northeast (of I-69/I-465 interchange). Pendleton would be a long drive if you worked downtown, easily pushing an hour during rush hour, but if you worked on the northeast side, it would be easily doable. Greenfield is an easy 30 minute drive into downtown Indy right down I-70. Both are very nice small Indiana towns.

Sports I can't help you much with, though. Sorry.
Thank you for the advice. Do you or anyone you know who lives in Carmel like it? It is very nice obviously, but it is rapidly expanding it seems. Does it still have that small town feel and charm?
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Old 10-23-2017, 03:06 PM
 
7 posts, read 6,213 times
Reputation: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by W & C View Post
I would not live in Indy area again, but based on your values described in the OP, I think it'd be a good fit for you and your family.
Do you mind explaining why my values would align well with the Indy area? I'm sorry to hear you wouldn't like to live in the Indy area again. I would be interested in hearing your opinion as I might be missing something with regard to Indy.
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Old 10-23-2017, 03:38 PM
 
Location: Fishers, IN
4,316 posts, read 4,814,048 times
Reputation: 4359
Quote:
Originally Posted by curious289 View Post
Thank you for the advice. Do you or anyone you know who lives in Carmel like it? It is very nice obviously, but it is rapidly expanding it seems. Does it still have that small town feel and charm?

I work in Carmel but do not know anyone personally that well that lives in Carmel. It is (along with Zionsville) the most expensive area of the metro to live in. The downtown is nice with lots of restaurants and bars and a few shops and art galleries. But much of it is new, not original. Carmel has the second highest concentration of offices in Indiana behind just downtown Indianapolis. So Carmel has its own mini rush hour with a lot of traffic coming into the city from northside Indy and east from Fishers in the morning and out of the city toward nothside Indy and west toward Fishers in the afternoon. And outside of the central area, most roads are just 2 lanes. The central area between US 31 and Keystone Pkwy (both limited access highways) is more dense with luxary apartments, condos, and office parks. This area certainly does not have a small town feel. Outside the two highways, it's a bit more like that but it's mostly just a lot of subdivisions. On the west side is the Village of West Clay. A more exclusive planned community that tried (tries?) to emulate the small town village. Expensive houses on very small lots. Not sure how much of the shops or restaurants they wanted to move in there have actually happened. They wanted it to be somewhere you could live and walk to everything you need. I think in that regard it has failed.

There are a LOT of roundabouts. They just opened the 113th roundabout with 3 more currently under construction and more expected next year. Personally, I like them and find myself sitting at stoplights thinking how much quicker I could have gotten through had it been a roundabout. But you have to get used to them and pay attention to lane markings as most are multi-lane roundabouts.

There are some very nice neighborhoods, though. Some of my favorites are east between Keystone Pkwy and Gray Rd. None of them I can afford but they typically seem to be $300-$400k, larger lots, and mature trees. Some people say Carmel is snooty. I haven't found that but then I don't actually live here. Others have concern over the size of the high school. It is the largest high school in Indiana, just one high school serving a city of almost 90,000. I believe it has between 4,500 and 5,000 students. Still, it is consistently ranked as one of the best in the state as well.
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Old 10-23-2017, 04:05 PM
 
Location: Seattle, WA
905 posts, read 1,420,077 times
Reputation: 945
Quote:
Originally Posted by curious289 View Post
Do you mind explaining why my values would align well with the Indy area? I'm sorry to hear you wouldn't like to live in the Indy area again. I would be interested in hearing your opinion as I might be missing something with regard to Indy.

I think it's a fit for you because it sounds like you're looking for an affordable place to raise your family and you value suburban living. Carmel would be a good fit - safe suburb with good schools, pricier than elsewhere in Indy area but I'm sure still very affordable compared to where you live now.

The reason why it's not a fit for me is because my values are the opposite of yours. I don't have a family yet and I prefer living in a dense urban environment with many city amenities that Indy lacks, even if it costs me more of my income to do so.
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Old 10-23-2017, 07:59 PM
 
Location: Indianapolis, East Side
1,361 posts, read 693,517 times
Reputation: 3439
You might really like Irvington also. People are friendly, it has a small-town feel, big yards/houses, etc. I live close to Irvington, and the residents are really engaged in the community. It's common for them to live there for decades. I don't know how the schools are, but Indiana does have vouchers (I think) for people within a certain income level.
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Old 10-24-2017, 10:17 AM
 
2,114 posts, read 4,546,476 times
Reputation: 1464
Quote:
Originally Posted by curious289 View Post
Ok so we've had enough. My family lives in the DC area, and it's time to move. We don't know our neighbors, our yard is tiny, there is no community feel, everything is so expensive, and the traffic is unbelievable. I've been doing some job hunting and I think I'll be okay to make the move, so the only issue is where to live. I don't know anything about Indianapolis or the suburbs, but Indy has a reasonable cost of living and decent job market.

Two young children so ideally we would live in a quiet suburban neighborhood with a close knit feel. My wife and I dream of knowing our town and having neighbors and friends over for dinner. It'd be nice to have a big yard and a big house with lots of youth sports and a downtown with some stores and local restaurants, but not too big where there are tons of people. I guess we are looking for a real "community" feel where parents are friendly to other parents and everyone gets along. Decent schools would be a plus, but the biggest part is the community feel we want: lots of kids outside playing sports, green space, and a decent sized but not big town. Small businesses are good but we don't want corporate headquarters or anything like that so any advice on some Indianapolis suburbs that fit this description?

Money is not an issue. We were shocked at the housing prices in Indy compared to DC, so with the move we are saving a lot of money anyway. I know I'm being a little idealistic in terms of the place, but basically we want a very active community with lots of kids and sports and a good place to raise two young children.

Briefly scanning this forum it seems people are high on Carmel. I googled it and it seemed very nice, but it did seem fairly big for a suburb. Anyone from Carmel, is there still a community feel with a local soccer team, friendly people and all that stuff even if it is big?

Can anyone recommend some places to look?

Thanks for the help!
I have some family and friends in the DC area so I am somewhat familiar with each areas suburbs as far as traits go. Obviously, there will be no comparison in price as DC is way more expensive; however, as far as feelings of the community, here are some comparisons:

Carmel = Bethesda/Tysons
Zionsville = Great Falls area OR smaller version of Potomac
Noblesville = Leesburg/Lansdowne
Brownsburg/Avon/Plainfield/Greenwood = Stafford County

What area of DC are you coming from and aside from that area, are there any other areas of DC that you would not want to replicate in Indy? How about any other areas of DC metro that you would desire in Indy? Hopefully this will help provide more sound advice.
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Old 10-24-2017, 12:27 PM
 
891 posts, read 2,194,278 times
Reputation: 657
Quote:
Originally Posted by curious289 View Post
Two young children so ideally we would live in a quiet suburban neighborhood with a close knit feel. My wife and I dream of knowing our town and having neighbors and friends over for dinner. It'd be nice to have a big yard and a big house with lots of youth sports and a downtown with some stores and local restaurants, but not too big where there are tons of people. I guess we are looking for a real "community" feel where parents are friendly to other parents and everyone gets along. Decent schools would be a plus, but the biggest part is the community feel we want: lots of kids outside playing sports, green space, and a decent sized but not big town. Small businesses are good but we don't want corporate headquarters or anything like that so any advice on some Indianapolis suburbs that fit this description?
You should really look at the Village of West Clay portion of Carmel. I live there and it has a great community feel. Parents are friendly - a ton of neighborhood activities, kids always outside playing. Sounds like you could afford one of the larger lots estate lots.

If you would like more details you can PM or just do a search. Some people don't like Village of West Clay for whatever reason, but I do not believe you will find an area that has a better community feel.
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