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Old 04-21-2011, 03:19 PM
 
Location: Raleigh, NC
1,652 posts, read 4,833,037 times
Reputation: 885
Default Moving to Durham

Hey everyone!

I'd like to start by saying that I'm very excited about moving to Durham.

We've already bought a house in Hope Valley. We actually closed this past Friday. Unfortunately, I haven't had the time to get familiar with the city. We literally bought the first house we agreed on and flew back to NJ. My partner is a physician and until he starts his new job at Duke, still has patients here.

I will admit that I was kind of nervous about moving back to the South. I'm originally from Birmingham and he is from Atlanta. However, everyone that we've encountered has been very friendly. We have 2 year old twins (we're actually moving 2 days after their 3rd birthday) and we're in the process of adopting a yet to be born boy.

I've done a bit of research, but nothing is like getting information from people that actually live in the area. So, I have a couple of questions.

One thing I've gathered from searching here is that Harris Teeter is one of the prominent supermarkets in the Triangle area. How would that compare to Publix or A&P? Based on what I've been told, HT will be the closest to our house. We also shop at Whole Foods, which I'm sure I will continue to do.

Second question deals with child care. I'm coming from the NYC area so the cost isn't as important. I think I'll be looking at nannies.

Parks close to the Hope Valley area?

Thanks in advance!
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Old 04-22-2011, 09:18 PM
 
Location: Raleigh, NC
1,652 posts, read 4,833,037 times
Reputation: 885
Wanted to also ask about traffic. Should I rely on Google Maps?

Who is the cable provider in the area?

I'd also like recommendations for painters. I would love to get someone in to paint the living areas before we move in.
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Old 04-23-2011, 06:14 AM
 
703 posts, read 845,715 times
Reputation: 746
Welcome to NC. We've just moved into our new home and have found Google maps reliable as we've searched for appliances, etc.

Check out the Weaver Street Market in Chapel Hill and the Raleigh and Durham Farmers Market. The Produce Box delivers a box of farm grown fruit and vegetables to your door every week for $22. Support local farmers and eat great food. What a twofer.

As to nannies, our children are grown and we traded off being the home parent so not much experience here. However, among our friends, the ones where it worked out best are those who hired older/middle aged, stable women that were a good family match. As the children got older, the nannies gradually changed to to grandnannies who attended recitals and graduations as they moved into retirement.

Things did not work out as well for those who relied on a series of college-aged nannies, day care centers, etc. Though this option is definitely less expensive and you don't have to cover health insurance, they were often left in a lurch as priorities changed.

Check out the Durham Public Libraries. The North Regional branch on Milton Road may be a bit of a drive, but the children's librarian there is out-of-this-world wonderful. Parents, grandparents, and nannies come from all over to bring their children for her storytimes and programs.

Wishing you all the best on your move and your new baby.
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Old 04-23-2011, 06:30 AM
 
763 posts, read 1,478,295 times
Reputation: 442
Quote:
Originally Posted by pennquaker09 View Post
Wanted to also ask about traffic. Should I rely on Google Maps?

Who is the cable provider in the area?

I'd also like recommendations for painters. I would love to get someone in to paint the living areas before we move in.
Welcome to the "Big D"! You will love Durham, it's diverse and has a lot to offer .. oh and don't believe some of the stereotypes you will inevitably hear. I moved here from New York just about 3 years ago and really would not trade it for going back to New York anytime soon.

Cable providers include Time Warner, Dish TV, and Direct TV. You will hear a lot or can even find threads on this forums discussing the Pros and Cons about them all, but believe me when I tell you they are all the same in a nutshell. It is like new romance; they will treat you sweet and offer you the world in promotional offers when initially trying to get your business and as soon as they got you locked in to that contract, you become dog meat like every other jilted lover ... but two can play that game

I use to have Time Warner but went to Direct TV. The minute your contract is almost expired you have them by the private parts .. so to speak . For you to stay they will offer you the world because at that point you have leverage and they know that you can go anywhere at that point, so use that to your advantage after choosing one of them.

Welcome to Durham and the Triangle Community of North Carolina!
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Old 04-23-2011, 06:59 AM
 
Location: Durham, NC
121 posts, read 201,660 times
Reputation: 81
Welcome to Durham! We moved here last year & have found that it is a very family friendly place!
There is a Harris Teeter, Food Lion, & Kroger in that area. Ranking them I would say Harris Teeter is best for many people, Kroger is good too and cheaper than Harris Teeter usually, & Food Lion is like the A&P's I knew in NY (not the best I mean). Be sure to check out Trader Joe's too...great store!
Family to-do's suggestions for you:
Museum of Life & Science & Sarah Duke Gardens in Durham. The libraries are great as mentioned...southwest regional is very close to you I believe. Southpoint Mall, also near you, has great fountains my children love to throw pennies in & a nice little indoor play area.
In Raleigh there's Marbles, NCMA, Museum of Natural Sciences, Museum of History.
Parks near you are very numerous: Forest Hills (great little spraypark area for when it's hot), Chapel Hill Community Center & Southern Village are a little drive but great playgrounds, Duke Park in North Durham, downtown playgrounds to check out are Burch Ave & Trinity Ave.
A great blog I found when I moved here with lots of stuff to do with kids or as a family is
Notes from a Mom in Chapel Hill (A Guide)

Good luck & welcome to the area!
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Old 04-23-2011, 07:01 AM
 
Location: Durham, NC
6 posts, read 8,229 times
Reputation: 21
Welcome to Durham! My partner and I moved here from Pennsylvania two years ago and fell in love with it immediately. It's diverse, welcoming, cool, and on the way up. We couldn't imagine living anywhere else right now.

We're in North Durham, and Harris Teeter is our closest store, and we like it a lot. Certainly more than the other options for us - Kroger or Food Lion. I can't speak to Publix or A&P, but I was a Wegman's fan back home, and HT comes close for me. The Whole Foods downtown makes me crazy - it's small and crowded, but I think there are expansion plans.

Coming from the Northeast, you'll probably laugh at what people consider traffic down here. Sure, I-40 backs up daily and can be a hassle, and I'd never consider living/working in places that required me to use it on a daily basis. Other than that, you may see some congestion in spots between 5-6 pm, but there really isn't "traffic" like you'd see around NYC. Getting around can be a little confusing, as there are no grids and streets change names - so for that Google Maps or GPS would be a help.

I'm not a big Time Warner fan but it's our only option up here. We're on a heavily wooded lot, so I had to give up DirecTV when we moved, and it was painful for me. I hated losing NFL Sunday Ticket - but it forced me to connect with the Eagles fan group that gets together to watch the games, and I've met some cool people.

If you're interested in info on the NC Gay & Lesbian Film Festival in Durham in August, let me know. I'm involved in producing it.

Welcome, and best of luck! You're moving to a great town.
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Old 04-23-2011, 09:43 AM
 
Location: Downtown Durham, NC
919 posts, read 1,114,109 times
Reputation: 707
Another site you might like for stuff to do is Stir Crazy Mom's of Durham:

The Stir Crazy Moms' Guide to Durham
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Old 04-23-2011, 10:19 AM
 
Location: Durham, NC
1,623 posts, read 3,319,135 times
Reputation: 2388
Quote:
Originally Posted by pennquaker09 View Post
Hey everyone!

I'd like to start by saying that I'm very excited about moving to Durham.

We've already bought a house in Hope Valley. We actually closed this past Friday. Unfortunately, I haven't had the time to get familiar with the city. We literally bought the first house we agreed on and flew back to NJ. My partner is a physician and until he starts his new job at Duke, still has patients here.

I will admit that I was kind of nervous about moving back to the South. I'm originally from Birmingham and he is from Atlanta. However, everyone that we've encountered has been very friendly. We have 2 year old twins (we're actually moving 2 days after their 3rd birthday) and we're in the process of adopting a yet to be born boy.

I've done a bit of research, but nothing is like getting information from people that actually live in the area. So, I have a couple of questions.

One thing I've gathered from searching here is that Harris Teeter is one of the prominent supermarkets in the Triangle area. How would that compare to Publix or A&P? Based on what I've been told, HT will be the closest to our house. We also shop at Whole Foods, which I'm sure I will continue to do.

Second question deals with child care. I'm coming from the NYC area so the cost isn't as important. I think I'll be looking at nannies.

Parks close to the Hope Valley area?

Thanks in advance!
Welcome to Durham! My wife and I moved here from Boston, though I grew up in Orlando, so I've got some Publix familiarity. :-)

Personally, Publix is still my favorite grocery store anywhere, but Harris Teeter is close behind. In Hope Valley, you'll have a choice between the store on MLK Jr. Pkwy. at 15-501 or one of two HTs on NC 54 -- the one at Garrett/751 is the closest.

Personally, I like the MLK store a bit better but the parking lot is harder to get into/out of.

The Whole Foods downtown is small but serviceable, just overcrowded. They are expanding into a former Italian restaurant and into a bike shop, but long-term plans to build a new WF next door have been on ice, it seems. There is also a very viable movement underway to build Durham Central Market, a cooperatively owned grocery downtown; they've raised about one-third of the $1.5 million needed to get the project started.

Traffic -- compared to Boston, Orlando, DC and other places I've lived, traffic is a breeze in Durham. Some hotpoints:

1) Roxboro Rd/Duke St north of I-85, particularly around the Eno River, gets backed up at rush hour. Not a big deal unless your partner (say) is working for one of the Duke clinics up that way.

2) NC 147, the Durham Freeway, has started to get more congested in the rush hours between I-40 and downtown -- I suspect not surprising given 10,000 or so more employees in the core now than a decade ago.

3) 15-501 south of Garrett Rd. used to be a rough run, either during the rush hour -- Chapel Hillian commuters -- or during game days at Carolina. The six-laning of 15-501 has helped greatly, as has the "superstreet" (think massive jug-handle) at 15-501 and Europa, but it can still be rough. Also, note that the New Hope Commons shopping center is un-affectionately known around here as No Hope Commons... abandon hope trying to drive into/out of the complex.

4) I-40 -- the heavy traffic is eastbound from Raleigh to Durham in the mornings, and westbound in the afternoon rush. Great to live in Durham and work in Raleigh; the alternative is harder. This is a pain, though, if you're trying (say) to catch a Fri. afternoon flight at the airport. Alternatives abound, notably US 70 to Page Rd. to Airport Pkwy. or US 70 to Miami Blvd. to TW Alexander to Page Rd. to Airport Pkwy.

5) Southpoint, esp. Fayetteville Rd. -- near major holidays, weekends, or daylight. From HV, sneak down NC 751 and go east on Renaissance Pkwy. to miss the worst of it.

In the Hope Valley area, you are in an ideal spot for traffic. MLK Jr. Pkwy. is one of the best east-west conduits in town; the 15-501 bypass is one route to Duke and downtown and points north; and NC 751 itself to University Dr. is a great way to get downtown or to popular areas like Rockwood for shopping/dining.

Welcome to Durham! Hope you love it here as much as we have.
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Old 04-23-2011, 01:10 PM
 
Location: Raleigh, NC
7,942 posts, read 10,293,474 times
Reputation: 7455
You're asking a lot of disparate questions (traffic, grocery stores, cable, house painters) that might be better put into separate threads, since most people don't read every single thread. House painters, in particular, is kind of a "narrow topic" that only a small number of folks would have opinions on, but the ones who do could be very useful. So you might consider a thread "House painters in Durham" or whatever In general, there are so many threads with generic titles like "moving to _____", that a lot of folks don't stop to read them.
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Old 04-23-2011, 06:41 PM
 
709 posts, read 674,467 times
Reputation: 1051
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jamerican View Post
Welcome to the "Big D"! You will love Durham, it's diverse and has a lot to offer .. oh and don't believe some of the stereotypes you will inevitably hear. I moved here from New York just about 3 years ago and really would not trade it for going back to New York anytime soon.
THIS IS GREAT ADVICE!!!!!! EVERYBODY LISTEN TO JAMERICAN!

All the other posters have offered great advice, too. I really have nothing extra to add...but WELCOME!
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