U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Tennessee > Nashville
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 1.5 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
Jump to a detailed profile or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Business Search - 14 Million verified businesses
Search for:  near: 
View Poll Results: Five Points: A Safe Place to Raise a Family?
Yes 31 56.36%
No 24 43.64%
Voters: 55. You may not vote on this poll

Reply Start New Thread
 
Unread 05-22-2008, 08:56 PM
 
140 posts, read 397,311 times
Reputation: 64
Default East Nashville: A Safe Place to Raise a Family?

We visited Nashville and really like the feel of East Nashville. We like the walkability and the proximity to downtown. But we have heard so many mixed things and feel like we are having a very hard time getting a clear answer. So let me try to clarify the question.

I'm not talking about anywhere in East Nashville--I'm talking about the area immediately surrounding Five Points, the supposed "good" part of East Nashville. I know there are some parts of East Nashville where the consensus answer on safety is definitely "no".

I understand it is an urban area, and not a tranquil small-town community. There's trash and grime and poverty and homelessness. I view that as inevitable in an urban environment and it doesn't bother me. None of that is the question. I'm asking about crime and personal safety. I live in a very urban environment now (Boston) in a neighborhood with very mixed incomes and a very high level of diversity and yet feel very safe.

We want to live somewhere that is safe to raise a family. My wife wants to feel safe when I am not home. And to feel safe for kids to play in the yard, or for her and the kids to take a stroll to the park. Will we find that in East Nashville (again, focusing just on the area around Five Points)?

I read a lot of people saying it's perfectly safe and fears about crime are vastly overblown. When we toured the neighborhood it seemed fine to us. But then a lot of people kind of wrinkle their noses and act like no, we dont really want to live there. Even our realtor acts like it's not really what we want and keeps pushing places like Sylvan Park instead. I can't tell if he's truly got our best interests in mind or if he is just letting his own biases show. Sylvan Park seems very nice, but you really can't walk to much at all. We're very confused. Please help.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Unread 05-22-2008, 10:01 PM
 
Location: Nashville
598 posts, read 1,127,976 times
Reputation: 626
East Nashville is a wonderlful collection of neighborhoods, from 5 Points, Lockeland Springs, Edgefield, Inglewood (North Inglewood, specifically), Riverwood. Often, jb, I've noticed that many comments on the area are based on nothing but what they see on the news and perceptions that are long outdated. Sure, years ago, things were somewhat different. Now, the difference in their 400k house and one in East (many can be had for MUCH less to be sure) is that they have to drive to do anything. Within east, especially around 5 Points, you can walk to any number of restaurants (non-chain, chef driven, I might add), parks, interesting owner-operated retail, the community center. It is a liberal community for the most part inhabited by transplants from all over the country (and world), long time residents, young and old, and a few questionable characters and with that you and the kids can experience diversity in its truest sense. Sure, there are areas to avoid. But a lick of horse sense would tell you where those are. One only needs to drive through once and lessons learned.

You can live in Sylvan, but in my Eastie opionion, too much snobbery going on over there. No true offense to the west side, but turnabout is fair play, right? We hear it from the Westies way too often how "bad" it is over here. So poo on them.

You can live in Mt. Juliet at Providence, the styrofoam Disneyland. Your choice. Generic suburbia is for some, not for others.

To live and enjoy the east side, you would be able to carry over your Boston experience by not insulating yourself from those different from us who definitely enrich our lives.

I grew up in Inglewood. Moved to the trendy west side for years and now have been back in Inglewood (Riverwood, near the Cumberland) for 10 years. The renaissance of this close in suburb (5 miles from downtown, 3 to 5 Points) sees nice coffee shops, bookstores, restaurants, art galleries, plus the advantage of nice housing with ample land. My North Inglewood area is convenient to any parts of the city via Briley Parkway and the interstates, I wouldn't live anywhere else. If you live closer in, downtown is a mere minutes away. The East Side is also home of Shelby Bottoms, one of the most extensive wildlife refuge/greenway systems in the county. It's a very popular place. Dogs on leash and kids (preferably on leash, lol) are welcome.

From one long-time Eastie to your question. Come, spend some time with us, walk where you want. Use common sense, smile and greet people you see and you'll be surprised about our little secret over here. But don't tell the world, we don't want it messed up. Hopefully, we can welcome you and your family some day soon. And maybe you should visit an East Nashville-based realtor, yours sounds a bit Eastophobic.

Last edited by IngleDave; 05-22-2008 at 10:13 PM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Unread 05-23-2008, 08:44 AM
 
Location: East Nashville/Inglewood
830 posts, read 1,408,867 times
Reputation: 564
I live in East Nashville in the supposedly "ghetto area", love it and plan on starting a family of my own here. Like IngleDave said, we do feel like it's a little secret over here. I grew up as a military brat moving every two years and for the first time in my life I feel like part of a community over here. I've had my fill of cookie cutter suburbs. My first house was in Bellevue with the typical two car garage that jutted to the street (no interaction with neighbors needed). Admitedly it was better than where I was coming from, Antioch, but bored me to death. I can ride my bike to downtown, Shelby Park, or Mitchel's Deli in Riverside Village for lunch. Sure beats jaunts on the bike to happy hour at Applebees in Bellevue. There's a bumper sticker people have over here for a reason, "37206, Way Better than Smyrna". If everything goes right, I plan on never going to another Applebees again. hah
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Unread 05-23-2008, 08:57 AM
 
Location: East Nashville/Inglewood
830 posts, read 1,408,867 times
Reputation: 564
Oh yeah, dump your real estate agent (they don't seem to have a clue) and call these people. BTW, I am not affiliated at all...

Historic and Distinctive Homes in Nashville TN (http://www.historictn.com/historictn/ - broken link)
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Unread 05-23-2008, 09:42 AM
 
140 posts, read 397,311 times
Reputation: 64
Thanks for the replies. IngleDave, I'm a little surprised to hear you say that Inglewood is considered a walkable area, with "nice coffee shops, bookstores, restaurants, art galleries", etc. I have never been there so am speaking in total ignorance, but as best I can tell from online information most of the area seems purely residential, except for the stores up and down Gallatin (mostly chains, most of which aren't geared as pedestrian destinations). Is that wrong? If so, could you help identify for me the more mixed-use, walkable areas?

More broadly--even outside of Inglewood, what other walkable areas are there around greater East Nashville, other than Five Points? I know there is a small pocket of restaurants along Eastland--I ate at Rosepepper, which was great. Are there any other enclaves of commercial activity?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Unread 05-23-2008, 10:07 AM
 
140 posts, read 397,311 times
Reputation: 64
Let me also add one other element to this question, and that's another facet of the "good place to raise a family" question: schools. By all accounts, the public schools in E. Nashville aren't good. (Although I've heard one of the elementary schools is okay.) Does anyone disagree?

But as far as I can tell from online listings, there are no private schools in East Nashville, either. They're all around the rest of the city, but not in the East. So if the public schools are bad and there are no private schools, what do you do? Drive all the way across town to drop you kids off at school every morning (and again to pick them up in the afternoon)? That seems problematic.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Unread 05-23-2008, 08:00 PM
 
62 posts, read 158,066 times
Reputation: 36
Default schools in east nashville

no one drives to the west side to drop their kids off at private school. they DON'T LIVE OVER THERE. if they care enough about their kids to pay for private school, they care enough to choose someplace that does not have crack houses and sex offenders all over. it would be nice to walk to a restaurant, but to ME, i would rather not live near sex offenders and crack houses and have to DRIVE to the restaurant. you can make whatever trade off you want for your family, obviously. but i would recommend you use the tennessean.com feature to look for crimes in different areas and google the sex offenders in different areas in nashville. there are 4 in all of 37215. that's why i live there. we lack sidewalks. i really wish we had more and it were more walkable. i love the idea of walkable. but low crime and fewer sex offenders is more important to me.

also, i love the IDEA of shelby bottoms, but i went a couple of times and had negative experiences on the playground. it was a diverse crowd, which i liked, but the behavior was not acceptable-- and it was the PARENT!

my husband also got pulled over (he's never been pulled over anywhere else) and the cop clearly was worried about drugs. apparently, there are a lot of deals there. he was driving a mini-van and is very suburban soccer dad looking, so it wasn't profiling based on his car or looks. we think it was profiling based on the AREA where he was driving.

i was uncomfortable going to visit my friends that lived over there (they have both since moved) but then, i am from west nashville, so maybe i am a snob.

you have to make the choices for your family. there actually is a very good magnet high school over that way, though. in fact, it's really good. of course, you have to get IN, which is by no means a given, but if you get lucky enough to get in, the grads do as well as the grads from the most expensive top private school in Nashville. there are magnet schools that are supposed to be good for elementary and middle as well, but again, you have to get in and it's by lottery.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Unread 05-23-2008, 11:30 PM
 
Location: Akron, OH
142 posts, read 378,046 times
Reputation: 63
Default Another one of my long posts on East Nashville

Quote:
Originally Posted by jbmill3 View Post
Let me also add one other element to this question, and that's another facet of the "good place to raise a family" question: schools. By all accounts, the public schools in E. Nashville aren't good. (Although I've heard one of the elementary schools is okay.) Does anyone disagree?

But as far as I can tell from online listings, there are no private schools in East Nashville, either. They're all around the rest of the city, but not in the East. So if the public schools are bad and there are no private schools, what do you do? Drive all the way across town to drop you kids off at school every morning (and again to pick them up in the afternoon)? That seems problematic.
East Academy is where I anticipate sending my son when he is school age. It is a private school in East Nashville. I have heard good things about it from parents of students and I got a very good feeling about the place when I toured it. The tuition is quite reasonable: East Academy - A school For All Kinds of Great Kids (http://www.eastacademy.org/main.html - broken link)

On the subject of the poll, I would question how many of those who vote "no" actually live in East Nashville (or ever have). If they don't and if they have never lived here with a family, I would question their knowledge on the subject (and no, Pimpy, I don't count that you have friends here--that is not knowledge on the subject. That is a passing acquaintance with the subject--get your friends to post themselves).

Check out this article on the whole attitude about East Nashville (one that your Realtor appears to have): Nashville Scene - East Side Story (broken link)

As the article suggests, many of the people who live here are passionate about it. Part of the reason for that passion is the continual red-headed stepchild box so many who don't live here seem to want to put the neighborhood in. But there are many reasons that we celebrate, not just defend, our neighborhood. It is diverse, eclectic, fun, home to many great restaurants, full of interesting and well-educated people, not to mention some fabulous housing stock. Here is another brief article that gives you a sense of that pride: Nashville Scene - Best of Nashville — The Near East (broken link)

At the same time, none of us is ever going to say it is perfectly safe. No place is perfectly safe. East Nashville has crime. No lie. In fact, for most of us who live here, it is a focus--we work to eradicate it and have made dramatic improvements in the area as a result. See this article to get a sense of the neighborhood involvement in impacting crime (I apologize that I had to link to the cached version as the original has been archived): Living with crime: Two Neighborhood Stories - Nashville, Tennessee - Sunday, 03/16/08 - <b style="color:black;background-color:#ff9999">Tennessean</b>.com (http://209.85.165.104/search?q=cache:7Bfh1nFo0t8Jreps.tennessean.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article%3FAID%3D/20080316/NEWS03/803160429+east+south+crime+tennessean&hl=en&ct=cln k&cd=3&gl=us - broken link)

If there is a specific house you like, go knock on nearby neighbors' doors and ask about the place. Really. There is no better way to know what that block is like and most neighbors will welcome the interest. That neighborliness is one of the things that I cherish.

Want a real experienced opinion? Call the East Precinct Police Station at 862-7600 (M-F, 7-4) and talk with the Community Affairs Coordinator, Sgt. Dan Ogren, or even the Precinct Commander Bob Nash and tell them to share their opinions. They will give you the unvarnished truth and they see the crime that happens here up close and personal. Or, if you are in town, head over to Beyond the Edge on S 11th near the Five Points intersection on Thursdays at noon. Neighbors from all over East Nashville (and the police) gather there weekly to talk about crime issues.

Do I think it is safe to raise a family here? Yes. Do I think everyone would feel comfortable living here? No. Based on what you have said with regard to an understanding of urban life, I think it is quite possible that you and your family would feel comfortable here. Obviously, however, I don't know you, and so your best bet is to chat with people who DO live here (or have lived here RECENTLY) and see what they say.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Unread 05-24-2008, 09:45 PM
 
140 posts, read 397,311 times
Reputation: 64
Thanks very much Carol and 2martins for your thoughts. I don't know why I couldn't find East Academy in any of my searches, but it's good to know about.

In an effort to make this all a little more concrete, I'd like to ask a general question for people who live in East Nashville: what are your personal experiences with crime in the neighborhood?

How often, if ever, do you hear gunshots outside? How often are you made aware of a robbery or break-in on your street? (Have you ever been a victim?) Are cars on your street vandalized? Do you witness drug deals (or are you otherwise aware of them in your neighborhood)? What else have you experienced?

Obviously "never", "no" and "nothing" would be the best answers, but I'm genuinely curious.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Unread 05-24-2008, 10:54 PM
 
Location: Nashville
598 posts, read 1,127,976 times
Reputation: 626
I don't recall representing Inglewood as a walkable area, (5 Points, yes, Ingle, not so much) except for recreation, but if I misled you, jb, I apologize. It's 11:40 p.m. now. I just got back from a quick trip to Kroger (1 mile). Of course, I drove, but it was fast. I'm not averse to walking a mile to Riverside Village, also a mile away, but I do drive generally. That's Inglewood, a suburb, but an urban-ish suburb.

I have a house (1500 sq. feet, 2000 with the attached garage) in a quiet area called Riverwood. I love my neighborhood, I love my neighbors. Just today, I helped one neighbor pick up a heavy lawn sculpture, another neighbor went to help. I laid out a landscape plan for another, even loaning my truck for them to pick up plants and shrubs and helped them outline the beds. They will follow my instruction as I am the undisputed king of the street when it comes to planted landscapes. I played in the front yard with the 5-year old across the street. At one time or another 7 of my neighbors were interacting as a family. We all know each other, watch out for each other, help each other. We have a diverse group: retirees, young couples, young, trendy 20-something singles, gay men and women, black men and women, artists and railroad workers. None of that really matters. It's that we're always here for each other if it means offering advice, or mowing a lawn if they're out of town (or just because we need the exercise). My chain saw makes the rounds and we haul away the brush to avoid the tacky piles of street brush that must wait on the city. No way, here. Won't happen in my enclave.

It's a beautiful existence here. It's remarkably quiet. I could not be happier. Neighborhoods like this are not rare in many parts of Nashville. I'm just saying that my Inglewood is exactly as I want it. It also doesn't hurt that the house I bought (which is very nice by the way) has tripled in value in the 10 years I've owned it. But my soul is here, so the value is even greater.

The market in this area is really good. My friends bought a house adjacent to mine, a smallish, very attractive house 7 years ago for $72,000. They put it on the market in March (yes, in the bursting bubble called 2008) on a Thursday, had an offer on Monday. Closed on it that month for $180,000, their asking price.

I don't know what that really has to do with anything right now, but a bit of tolerance for "those not quite like you" is something one can definitely put in the plus column.

I leave my doors open when I go to the store. I have no worries. Besides, I have two guard cats.

To answer your question above, jb. In my neighorhood, "never, no, and nothing." Maybe I'm just lucky. And I'm not trading that for anything, anywhere.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Options
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2011 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram


Over $74,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Tennessee > Nashville

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2014, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25 - Top