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Old 03-14-2010, 10:11 AM
 
1 posts, read 2,406 times
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My partner and I have been considering buying a house in Hope Valley. I grew up in Durham, and Hope Valley is where I always thought I wanted to live. But we have two preschool-age children, and I'm very concerned that Hope Valley will be the opposite of child friendly. There isn't a single playground in the neighborhood, no walking trails, and I can just picture my kids really wanting to play with someone and not having anyone around. In addition, I'm concerned that the few kids who do live in the neighborhood will all be attending Durham Academy. We're not doing the Durham Academy thing. We believe in Durham and its schools, and we see no reason not to do Hope Valley Elementary or one of the excellent charter or magnet schools. But I'm worried that our kids will be the only ones in the neighborhood who don't go to D.A., and that will make it even harder to connect with the few kids that are there.

Does anyone on this board know of families with small kids in Hope Valley? Are any of those kids going to Central Park School, public school, or even Carolina Friends School for gosh sake? I visited Hope Valley Elementary, and asked an employee there if there were any kids at the school who actually lived in Hope Valley, and the response I got was, "Well, we get a lot of kids from out of district."

I'm feeling stuck. I love Durham, and I don't want to leave. But I'm concerned that if we want a higher end house in a neighborhood with lots of kids, we have to move to Chapel Hill. Chapel Hill has its own snootiness that for me is just as bad as the snootiness of Hope Valley.

Any advice?

Last edited by kennync; 03-14-2010 at 10:38 AM..
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Old 03-14-2010, 11:21 AM
 
Location: Durham
840 posts, read 3,004,883 times
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Take my opinion for what its worth, but I lived near the Hope Valley area. I find it to be an older community with middle aged to retired professionals with very few young families. If I really cared about my kids having someone to play with, I doubt it would be in that neighborhood. I tended to see younger children residing in the complexes surrounding the neighborhood. I take it that you've ruled out places like Woodcroft and Parkwood?
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Old 03-15-2010, 06:46 AM
 
635 posts, read 1,373,786 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kennync View Post
I visited Hope Valley Elementary, and asked an employee there if there were any kids at the school who actually lived in Hope Valley, and the response I got was, "Well, we get a lot of kids from out of district."
That statement strikes me as very odd. Hope Valley is a neighborhood school- not a magnet or lottery year round. Who are these "out of district" kids and where are they coming from? Durham's transfer policy has tightened over the last few years so that one cannot just attend any school they wish within DPS.

The attendance zones to seem to cover a pretty wide area, so it's likely that if the Hope Valley neighborhood proper is mostly older folks, the children would be coming to the school from other neighborhoods still assigned to school. So your children's school peers should be somewhat close by if not in your own neighborhood....
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Old 03-15-2010, 07:13 AM
 
Location: Minnesota
37 posts, read 79,823 times
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We looked extensively in Hope Valley when we relocated here last Fall - and came up with the same conclusion...there were just no kids around. We loved some of the homes, but quickly noticed the lack of playgrounds and any children/families out for walks or even in their yards playing on the weekends. We ended up deciding to rent a great house in American Village and are looking now in Hillsborough.
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Old 03-15-2010, 07:30 AM
 
3,155 posts, read 9,578,322 times
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We have friends w/ elementary aged kids that lived in HV and sent their kids to HVE. (They recently moved for a job.) In the summertime the pool at HVCC is loaded with kids. I don't know where they go to school, but there are plenty of kids.

Instead of asking the school, I would email the PTA president of HVE. (I did that before we moved when we were looking at HVE... they were very helpful.)

Keep in mind Hope Valley is pretty large and it's always pretty expensive. Given the fact that many younger people with kids are priced out that might limit the number of kids in HV over all. But there a few edge streets that are HV that have smaller 50s ranch style houses that you might find more young kids. Also, check the HV website... they list community events. I think they have a parade for Easter or St. P's Day. Those sort of things always give you a good idea of if there are kids in the 'hood.


Good luck with the search.
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Old 03-15-2010, 10:22 AM
 
Location: Durham, NC
693 posts, read 2,917,722 times
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North Durham (Easley/Little River) schools have neighborhoods (Ashfield Place, Dover Ridge, Autumn Ridge, etc) with TONS of kids out, all the time. My wife an I live up here, and are expecting our 1st child this summer, and in our neighborhood alone yesterday while we were biking we must have seen 30+ children out playing, and probably another 5 or 6 people with newborns/1-2 year olds being pulled on wagons and what not. Its really so much better up this way, and you get alot more for your $.
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Old 03-15-2010, 11:20 AM
 
Location: NC
331 posts, read 669,327 times
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Woodcroft, just south of HV, is very family-friendly too. Lot of kids of all ages all around us, and plenty of walking trails and outdoorsy things to do, too. I heard that Southwest and Githens, the schools we're assigned to, are very good.
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Old 04-19-2010, 02:02 PM
 
3 posts, read 5,692 times
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I live in Hope Valley - moved here one year ago with 5 year old and 2 year old. I LOVE it - lots of kids, my kids had new "best friends" within a week of being here. Westminster preschool is around the corner and is a great way to meet families in the neighborhood. My daughter was accepted to DA and we are still trying to figure out whether to send her there or Hope Valley. I know more families doing public, charter, parochial, Trinity, etc. than DA in the neighborhood. Country club is very young family friendly but even if you're not into doing that (we're not at the moment) lots of families in the neighborhood belong to Woodcroft pool.
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Old 04-19-2010, 05:45 PM
 
Location: ITB Raleigh, NC
814 posts, read 1,702,341 times
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I do not live anywhere near Hope Valley, but live in a neighborhood that people think of as "old" (ITB Raleigh) where people say no new families live. When we moved on the street, there were 3 kids (one family) and lots of old people (who LOVED our one kid....then now 3 kids). There are now 18 kids on the street. We have the neighorhood Christmas party every year and in the beginning, it was a couple little kids in their parents arms and is now kids flowing through the party at all ages, new babies to 15. Neighborhoods change over. Move in a neighborhood you like, you will find other families, houses will change over and soon you will be the old people!
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Old 04-19-2010, 06:13 PM
 
3,155 posts, read 9,578,322 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Usedtobe VaNC View Post
Move in a neighborhood you like, you will find other families, houses will change over and soon you will be the old people!
That's such great advice!
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