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Old 06-11-2010, 09:56 AM
 
Location: Carmel, IN
37 posts, read 24,873 times
Reputation: 20

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Hey all!

I took a drive past the lot on Bakker Court in Hill & Vale and really liked it! It is in the exact location that we want to be! My only issue is that the boundaries of the lot are awkwardly shaped and the current blueprints we have for our home (two separate styles) would require moderate to significant alteration in order to accommodate the lot shape as well as follow zoning ordinances (set-back, yard space, etc.). I would ideally like to build on 8648 Bakker Court, but that lot is owned by Precision Homes right now and I am assuming that I would have to build with them if I were to purchase the lot. As of now, the only available lots that currently suit our needs would be in Park West. If I could work out something with Precision Homes so that I would not necessarily be bound with using them as a builder, I would take the 8648 Bakker Court lot in a heartbeat.

Once again, thanks for all your help! I will stay in communication with everyone through here if there are any updates. Thanks!

P.S. I have a question, if anybody can help answer: I remember that when I left the area, there was no higher end shopping to speak of. I have heard that many people who live in Munster prefer to shop at Orland Square as opposed to Southlake as it has a larger selection of higher-end goods. Is this true? Also, I was reading another thread on here about how something like the "Munster Town Center" was supposed to be built (looked at the Munster comprehensive plan by the way and LOVED it) that including high-end shopping and a train station and then I remember something about "Shops on Main" and "Oak Street Commons"...does anybody know exactly what is going on with these developments? My wife and I would love to have high-end shopping right in town (and with the lower Indiana sales tax)! And I am sure that when my kids are old enough, they would enjoy not having to drive all the way to Orland to shop. Thanks all!

Last edited by MovingToMunster; 06-11-2010 at 10:11 AM..
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Old 06-11-2010, 10:18 AM
 
635 posts, read 1,036,801 times
Reputation: 304
Quote:
Originally Posted by MovingToMunster View Post
Hey all!

I took a drive past the lot on Bakker Court in Hill & Vale and really liked it! It is in the exact location that we want to be! My only issue is that the boundaries of the lot are awkwardly shaped and the current blueprints we have for our home (two separate styles) would require moderate to significant alteration in order to accommodate the lot shape as well as follow zoning ordinances (set-back, yard space, etc.). I would ideally like to build on 8648 Bakker Court, but that lot is owned by Precision Homes right now and I am assuming that I would have to build with them if I were to purchase the lot. As of now, the only available lots that currently suit our needs would be in Park West. If I could work out something with Precision Homes so that I would not necessarily be bound with using them as a builder, I would take the 8648 Bakker Court lot in a heartbeat.

Once again, thanks for all your help! I will stay in communication with everyone through here if there are any updates. Thanks!

P.S. I have a question, if anybody can help answer: I remember that when I left the area, there was no higher end shopping to speak of. I have heard that many people who live in Munster prefer to shop at Orland Square as opposed to Southlake as it has a larger selection of higher-end goods. Is this true? Also, I was reading another thread on here about how something like the "Munster Town Center" was supposed to be built (looked at the Munster comprehensive plan by the way and LOVED it) that including high-end shopping and a train station and then I remember something about "Shops on Main" and "Oak Street Commons"...does anybody know exactly what is going on with these developments? My wife and I would love to have high-end shopping right in town (and with the lower Indiana sales tax)! And I am sure that when my kids are old enough, they would enjoy not having to drive all the way to Orland to shop. Thanks all!
As of right now, Munster does not have high end shopping. I wouldn't even consider Southlake Mall (actually Westlake Mall, but anyone from the area will always refer to it as Southlake) in Merrillville as high-end. Actually, that mall is becoming quite ghetto.

There is relatively high end shopping in Michigan City at the Lighthouse Mall, which is always nice and within an hour's drive. Orland Park's mall is decent, but I figure if you might as well just drive another 10-15 mins and go downtown to Watertower or Michigan Ave.
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Old 06-11-2010, 10:30 AM
 
Location: Carmel, IN
37 posts, read 24,873 times
Reputation: 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by svillechris View Post
As of right now, Munster does not have high end shopping. I wouldn't even consider Southlake Mall (actually Westlake Mall, but anyone from the area will always refer to it as Southlake) in Merrillville as high-end. Actually, that mall is becoming quite ghetto.

There is relatively high end shopping in Michigan City at the Lighthouse Mall, which is always nice and within an hour's drive. Orland Park's mall is decent, but I figure if you might as well just drive another 10-15 mins and go downtown to Watertower or Michigan Ave.
Last time I went to Southlake (which was a while ago) it was nothing to write home about and from your comment it seems like it is still that way (or even worse). And from Munster, I would much rather go to Orland than Southlake. Also, I have been to Lighthouse Outlets before and while it was very nice, some of the brands that I like were not there. Ideally, something along the lines of "Oakbrook Center" in Munster or Schererville would be awesome! I know the new trend is lifestyle centers but as long as it has good shopping, I don't care what it is called.

Lastly, I love going downtown but that crazy high sales tax? No thanks! The only time we would shop downtown is if it is at a very unique boutique that is only in the city and has items that could not be found elsewhere.

Thank you for your quick response!
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Old 06-11-2010, 01:22 PM
 
635 posts, read 1,036,801 times
Reputation: 304
Quote:
Originally Posted by MovingToMunster View Post
Last time I went to Southlake (which was a while ago) it was nothing to write home about and from your comment it seems like it is still that way (or even worse). And from Munster, I would much rather go to Orland than Southlake. Also, I have been to Lighthouse Outlets before and while it was very nice, some of the brands that I like were not there. Ideally, something along the lines of "Oakbrook Center" in Munster or Schererville would be awesome! I know the new trend is lifestyle centers but as long as it has good shopping, I don't care what it is called.

Lastly, I love going downtown but that crazy high sales tax? No thanks! The only time we would shop downtown is if it is at a very unique boutique that is only in the city and has items that could not be found elsewhere.

Thank you for your quick response!

You're right, the 10.25% sales tax in the city is RIDICULOUS. It would be absolutely great to have an upscale shopping center in Dyer/Schererville/Munster/St. John. Any of them would be great and would even attract a lot of people from the Chicago suburbs since it's within an hour's drive for most.

Another area you may want to consider is Chicago Premium Outlets in Aurora. It's also about an hour away, real easy to get to, and they have some upper end stores.
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Old 06-13-2010, 10:14 PM
 
Location: Munster, IN
6 posts, read 17,851 times
Reputation: 19
Welcome to Munster. You're getting a lot of good advice on here, and I don't have much to add. We moved here from Florida six years ago, and find it a very pleasant place to raise a family. Regarding the neighborhoods you're checking out, I prefer Hill & Vale to a newer subdivision. That's just personal preference, though. You'll have a good elementary school in either one. Elliott serves Hill & Vale area, and Frank H Hammond serves the other subdivisions you mentioned. You won't go wrong with either one. Regarding shopping, we head out to Orland for Trader Joe's and occasional trips to that mall. The one in Merrillville/Hobart isn't that great, in my opinion.
I'm not going to tell you how to spend your money or anything, but for that kind of cash I'd get a VERY nice house in Munster for $450-550k and spend the rest on a summer place in Michigan on a lake. That's just me, though.
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Old 06-15-2010, 06:25 PM
 
Location: Carmel, IN
37 posts, read 24,873 times
Reputation: 20
Default Thanks for the welcome!

Quote:
Originally Posted by 219Dave View Post
Welcome to Munster. You're getting a lot of good advice on here, and I don't have much to add. We moved here from Florida six years ago, and find it a very pleasant place to raise a family. Regarding the neighborhoods you're checking out, I prefer Hill & Vale to a newer subdivision. That's just personal preference, though. You'll have a good elementary school in either one. Elliott serves Hill & Vale area, and Frank H Hammond serves the other subdivisions you mentioned. You won't go wrong with either one. Regarding shopping, we head out to Orland for Trader Joe's and occasional trips to that mall. The one in Merrillville/Hobart isn't that great, in my opinion.
I'm not going to tell you how to spend your money or anything, but for that kind of cash I'd get a VERY nice house in Munster for $450-550k and spend the rest on a summer place in Michigan on a lake. That's just me, though.
Thanks for sharing your thoughts and experiences! It is very reassuring to hear from people who have moved to Munster somewhat recently and love it! As for the summer house, my wife's family owns a home on Lake Geneva in Wisconsin so we usually spend some time there. We also have a time share in Cancun so whenever we go on vacation we usually end up there as well! Regarding shopping, I really wish there was a Trader Joe's or Whole Foods Market nearby! I can't believe Munster does not have them! And to add insult to injury, I just found out that Munster has a WFM distribution center, but no store!...When I looked at the comprehensive plans, it seemed to me like they were supposed to have knocked down that Lake Business Center to make way for a Town Center with high-end shopping, luxury living, and a transit center...what is going on with that?!
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Old 06-16-2010, 08:55 PM
 
Location: Northwest Indiana
688 posts, read 1,259,639 times
Reputation: 671
Quote:
Originally Posted by MovingToMunster View Post
Regarding shopping, I really wish there was a Trader Joe's or Whole Foods Market nearby! I can't believe Munster does not have them! And to add insult to injury, I just found out that Munster has a WFM distribution center, but no store!...When I looked at the comprehensive plans, it seemed to me like they were supposed to have knocked down that Lake Business Center to make way for a Town Center with high-end shopping, luxury living, and a transit center...what is going on with that?!
I wish there was a trader joes as well. It's got some interesting stuff. Maybe someday on TJ's. WFM isn't likely anytime soon, they have no plans on NWI locations. The distribution hub is more likely due to tax and business issues in Illinois (its almost on the border) then future Indiana plans.

The town's comprehensive plan does have a "town center" in place of lake business center. However that's what the town would like, its not a proposal by any developer, so nothing is going up soon. There was a proposal a few years ago by a developer to build a shopping center there, but that is dead. It's also one of the proposed locations of a South Shore station if the south branch ever gets built (the other locations proposed for Munster are in Community Estates on the very south end of town, or the older proposal in the place of Munster Steel at 45th St.). Maybe we will see something when the economy improves.
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Old 06-16-2010, 09:01 PM
 
2,113 posts, read 1,846,217 times
Reputation: 2326
@ MovingtoMunster

Any prospective city has to meet certain demographic criteria before Whole Foods will consider it to be a viable locality. For example, I know 200,000 people w/in a 20 mile radius is one of their general requirements. But Munster seems like a potential candidate based on my very limited knowledge of the area. If you are interested in further discussion about a Whole Foods Market in Northwest Indiana, check out this link:

Whole foods mkt needed in northwest Indiana.
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Old 06-16-2010, 09:05 PM
 
2,113 posts, read 1,846,217 times
Reputation: 2326
And I have no idea what Trader Joe's looks for, but it's probably along the same lines, if not less stringent because they are smaller and more numerous.
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Old 06-27-2010, 11:38 AM
 
Location: Carmel, IN
37 posts, read 24,873 times
Reputation: 20
Default Update!

Hello everyone! I just wanted to let everyone know that we are in the process of securing our lot in Park West. We ultimately chose this area of Munster because the price that we will end up paying for the land was more worth it than to locate in Hill & Vale. Also, Park West is gated and I felt that if we were going to pay this much for a lot (since compared to other towns, Munster lots are in low supply and expensive!) we might as well take advantage of the "extra-security" of being in a gated community for the same price as the lot in Hill & Vale. Also, when we toured the Hill & Vale area, it seemed as though most of the residents were either older couples (whose children, if any, I assume have grown and moved out long ago) or those with teenagers about to go to college. Not many younger kids. In the "White Oak area" (as I have been told the area by Park West is called), I consistently saw many children playing who seemed to be around the ages of my children. One of my friends in Munster said that although some families in the White Oak area have had kids grow and leave, there are many younger families that are moving in as well more-so than some of the other areas of Munster. When it comes down to it, this move is really more for the kids than for my wife and I. Their happiness is our happiness. When we played at White Oak Park for a little during our visit, my kids instantly fell in love with it! Park West is directly south of it and since the area as a whole feels more secluded and safe YET still close to the expressway to Chicago, I know this is the right decision for us. I know I may have to deal with the trains, but that is something I am willing to deal with. Thanks to everyone that provided me with advice! I look forward to moving to Munster! Thanks again!
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