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Old 03-08-2009, 09:33 AM
 
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Default Montclair, Glen Ridge, or Ridgewood?

My husband and I are looking to relocate to one of these towns in NJ. I grew up in Bergen County so I'm much more familiar with the Ridgewood area, but having lived in NYC for the past 10 years, we are more drawn to the diversity and urban feel of Montclair. Is there a strong sense of community in Montclair? Not knowing anyone in the area, I'm curious if there's a newcomers club or other social ways to make friends (besides school since we won't be in a school system for a couple of years). Thanks for your help!
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Old 03-08-2009, 12:41 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kmhcbh View Post
My husband and I are looking to relocate to one of these towns in NJ. I grew up in Bergen County so I'm much more familiar with the Ridgewood area, but having lived in NYC for the past 10 years, we are more drawn to the diversity and urban feel of Montclair. Is there a strong sense of community in Montclair? Not knowing anyone in the area, I'm curious if there's a newcomers club or other social ways to make friends (besides school since we won't be in a school system for a couple of years). Thanks for your help!
Ok, I'm very familiar with Glen Ridge and Montclair, but just a little familiar with Ridgewood. Montclair is going downhill fast, similar to Bloomfield. The farther north you go, the better it is, same as Bloomfield. So, it really depends on which part of Montclair you would be moving to. Also, Montclair hs sucks. For the $$$ you'd be spending on a house, you'd expect better schools, but that is just not the case. Glen Ridge is a VERY nice little community and it has good schools. Some parts of it are stuck in between the trashy parts of Bloomfield and Montclair, but even the southern parts of Glen Ridge aren't bad. It is also very close to the train, and close to the GSP and Rt. 3. There are some nice stores in Montclair that are close to Glen Ridge too. Other than the Mcdonalds on Broad, I wouldn't go into Bloomfield for much. Avoid the Pathmark at Lackawana Plaza, which is close to Glen Ridge. It's ghetto and disgusting. There is a Whole Foods store in Montclair which isn't bad. I know that I'm mentioning a lot of places in Montclair, and there are nice parts of it, but they are pretty expensive and I would probably send my kids to a private school if I lived there. Glen Ridge is cheaper than the nicer areas of Montclair, very nice, safe, and quiet and has better schools. If you are "drawn to diversity" then I'm not sure how Montclair would fit into that. Montclair and Bloomfield certainly look diverse by the numbers, but they are extremely segregated communities. Blacks live on the southern parts of this town, whites live in the nothern parts, and they avoid each other like the plague. Bloomfield is more blue collar, while montlair has a lot of elitist, ultra-liberal snobs that talk a good game, but wouldn't live next to a black or hispanic family if their life depended on it. That's just the facts.
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Old 03-08-2009, 01:02 PM
 
Location: "The Sunshine State"
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I am partial to Bergen County since I grew up right next to Ridgewood. That was my hangout town when I was an older teen. Ridgewood has so much to offer and has some nice culture and a great downtown loaded with good restaurants! I miss that town! The park in the center of town is really nice too! Lots to do there and close to all the shopping on 17 and 4. That would be my choice is I could afford to live there.
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Old 03-08-2009, 01:19 PM
 
Location: Montgomery County, PA
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Originally Posted by mattjd View Post
Glen Ridge is a VERY nice little community and it has good schools.
It also has high property taxes.
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Old 03-08-2009, 01:22 PM
 
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Originally Posted by elflord1973 View Post
It also has high property taxes.
Could you tell me a community in Jersey that doesn't?
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Old 03-08-2009, 01:33 PM
 
Location: Montgomery County, PA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mattjd View Post
Could you tell me a community in Jersey that doesn't?
I compiled the numbers some time back. Here's a partial list. I think they vary enough for it to be a consideration.

The numbers were 2007 property taxes.

Millburn: 17116 (I think this includes Short Hills)
Glen Ridge:15427
Montclair: 14279
Maplewood:11337
Livingston: 11115
Nutley: 8796
Verona: 8320
Cedar Grove: 7843
Bloomfield: 7649
Belleville: 6874
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Old 03-08-2009, 01:51 PM
 
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Montclair is not going downhill fast. It's a beautiful diverse town with a lot of civic pride. I know there are several very active online Montclair communities--one is called the water heater (I think) and there is another one that you can join only if you already live in town.

If you like Montclair, you'll also like Maplewood and South Orange. Very similar and also in Essex County.
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Old 03-08-2009, 01:58 PM
 
Location: GA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clevedark View Post
Montclair is not going downhill fast. It's a beautiful diverse town with a lot of civic pride. I know there are several very active online Montclair communities--one is called the water heater (I think) and there is another one that you can join only if you already live in town.

If you like Montclair, you'll also like Maplewood and South Orange. Very similar and also in Essex County.
Agree. Property taxes are also higher than those listed (I lived in Bloomfield and mine were over 11K). Cedar Grove and Verona have nice homes and good schools, but aren't like Ridgewood. Montclair is more unique as was said, it's very diverse. Glen Ridge is very expensive, high taxes, and no real "downtown" at all.
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Old 03-08-2009, 02:04 PM
 
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Glen Ridge and Ridgewood are more typical rich suburbs--I don't think you'll find the same racial and social diversity there.
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Old 03-08-2009, 02:09 PM
 
Location: Montgomery County, PA
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Originally Posted by brookdaleresident View Post
Agree. Property taxes are also higher than those listed (I lived in Bloomfield and mine were over 11K).
That number is an aggregate for all of Bloomfield. I'd be very surprised if taxes in the Brookdale section weren't higher. Not only are houses more expensive, the houses generally look much better constructed.
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