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Old 01-10-2007, 10:28 AM
 
12 posts, read 58,576 times
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My husband and I are thinking about relocating to Western NY. We currently live in Northern VA, about 15 minutes from Washington DC. I love the diversity here, the shopping, the low unemployement and the numerous things to do. I however hate the weather, high cost of living, traffic, and Crime.

We visited the finger Lakes a few years ago and I was thrilled about the prices of houses there and the beautiful scenery. I am still trying to decide if that is the area for us.

I am married, and my children are older, so I am not that concerned about
schools.

What I am concerned about is the diversity of the area. Being so close to DC I like the fact that we have many cultures here mixing. African americans, asian, muslims, hispanic, etc. While I was visitng last year, I noticed a predomintely whilte cultire there, dosen't look like there are a mixture of different people.
I was also concerned because I saw many small shops in various areas of the finger Lakes closing. I got the feeling that the area was a little depressedand economically challenged.

We will be making another trip up there in the next few months to see if this is the place we want to relocate to. However, where is the best city in the Finger Lakes area? We have looked at Fairport, and like it there, but I am looking for a city that has availability. Shopping, good medical facilities, and
growth. Is there such a place up there?
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Old 01-10-2007, 01:10 PM
 
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Fairport is no where near the fingerlakes (maybe 45 minutes depending on how you drive and which lake you are going to..Canandaigua would be the closest) Do you want to live in Rochester or the Fingerlakes? They are 2 very different areas (my husband and his family own a cottage on Keuka lake and my father in law lives in Branchport)


To get a mix of cultures you would have to live in Rochester..not the suburbs and definetly not the fingerlakes..Cornhill probably has the greatest mix (well in an area I would live in anyways)

If you currently work you should definetly find a job before you would move.

I don't know much about DC weather but it is probably better than Rochester's

I'm sure more people could be of help if you can let us know where you want to live
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Old 01-10-2007, 01:11 PM
 
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While the region as a whole, the Rochester/Fingerlakes region, is overwhelmingly white.... the city of Rochester itself is actually the most diverse city upstate. It has good mix of Whites, Blacks, Hispanics and Asians (most asians actually live in the suburb of Brighton though). It must be said that the different culutres tend to live in their own areas of the city though. The NW and SE quadrants of he city are both perdominantly white.... while the Southwest is perdominantly black..... the NE area of the city is probably the most diverse, but there are some crime-ridden neighborhoods in that part of the city. You won't find the diversity of Washington (or any major east coast city for that matter) in Rochester or anywhere upstate really....but Rochester and to a lesser degree Buffalo would be the most diverse Upstate.
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Old 01-10-2007, 04:48 PM
 
Location: Happy wherever I am - Florida now
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Diversity here is not as you define it. It falls more along the lines of Irish, Italian, German, French, Russian...

There is plenty of shopping. You might not get all of the stores that you're use to as I've noticed several that are staying along the Boston, NYC, DC corridor. Most have websites to order from.

Housing costs are lower than the rest of the nation, taxes are higher. Crime is mostly confined to inner cities. Traffic is good, summer is good, winter is bad. The scenery is beautiful, access to major cities is easy. Medical facilities are good, the economy is not so hot.
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Old 01-10-2007, 07:04 PM
 
Location: Rochester, NY
134 posts, read 474,402 times
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Sgoldie summed it up well. And previous posts about diversity here are also right on. That's not to say this area is all white and segregated. Just keep in mind this metro area is not as big as the DC region. And our job market is not centered directly or indirectly on the federal government... which seems to me would have a much greater oppotunity for diversity. Get outside of the city area,,, like into the Finger Lakes area, and you'll notice it does become very white. Fairport is a suburb of the city, and cannot be described as diverse.

If your hatred of the weather in NoVA is related to hot & humid in the summer... we get that here too. Add to that the (normally) cold winters with weeks of gray skies and lake effect snow... I'm not sure of the appeal there! OK... there is skiing at some local hills (in the Finger Lakes).
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Old 01-10-2007, 07:39 PM
 
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Hot and humid summers in Rochester? You haven't venutred south of PA for summer for an extended period of time have you? Uncomfotable summer heat and humidity in Rochester is NOTHING compared to what it is in VA and NC (where I currently live). Winter is gonna be a shocker to you (unless of course winters in the future are more like this year), but it's not so bad. I prefered staying cooped up for a few months in Rochester for the winter WAY more than being cooped up in the AC all summer in Raleigh.
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Old 01-10-2007, 08:08 PM
 
Location: Rochester, NY
134 posts, read 474,402 times
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Yeah... I forgot that the eastern part of VA is humid. I've been looking at the SW region and it's not as bad by my research. Your right about sitting the AC... just as boring as sitting inside over the winter. Still.... it's damn muggy here in July/August.
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Old 01-10-2007, 10:58 PM
 
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Melkat: Not to be petty, but upstate NY-ers' sense of distances is very different than it is for many people from many other parts of the country. You have SO MANY interesting and varied towns and places in upstate NY so close by, that a "long" drive for you is maybe 30, 40 minutes. I remember telling someone in Homer that we were headed to Gilbertsville. "Oh," he and his wife said, "that's a long drive." I took his word rather than the map's and stocked up on car-time supplies--only to GET there before I had even unwrapped my sandwich. Another time I had to get a car part. Outside of Oneonta someone told us, "Oh, you'll have to go all the way into Oneonta for that." Oneonta was 15 minutes away! This seems to me almost a New England-ish sense of distances.

In many less densely interesting & varied parts of the country, a "long" drive to an interesting place (or a car part) is maybe 2 or 3 HOURS. Fairport, for example, is only 22.75 miles from Canandaigua (according to mapquest)--and Canandaigua is, of course, on the northern edge of the Finger Lakes area. That's nothing for those of us stranded in the monotonous stretches of southwestern Virginia, where towns are sometimes hours apart and often not worth even going to. I'd love to have a Canandaigua within 2 hours of where I'm stuck now! And for someone like Candylkeme who's used to Washington, DC/northern Virginia (dense, dense suburbs!) traffic, where you might move 5 miles in 25 minutes sometimes, a smooth, unclogged, scenic 22.75 mile drive from Fairport to Canandaigua would be sweet cake. After being stuck in Appalachia or crushed in urban/suburban sprawl, driving around most of upstate New York is SERENE.

Candylkeme, in terms of diversity, I'd strongly recommend Ithaca. Its university & college attrach people from all over the world, and it has a great sense of appreciation for this. Very vibrant place, right on the lake.

A little town just north of it, Trumansburg, seems to have an unusual amount of diversity, too, if you want to be near but also outside of the college town atmosphere.

Geneva also has some pretty good diversity.

And as Sgoldie says, the white population is itself quite diverse, with a lot of 2nd and 3rd generation Americans of Italian, Polish, etc., descent. You can get a real calzone or gyro AND have the classic American Small Town experience all at once up there! Greek Festivals, Italian Festivals, etc., are common, even in the small towns.

Nor are the winters so bad. People do keep busy, and making a ritual of taking a long walk in fresh snow will hasten your love of it--and make the post-walk stew or curry all the tastier.

And summers around the Great Lakes are the best we've experienced anywhere in the country. The Falls are vivid too, with all the maples. And you can't beat living around so much fresh water and history. (And I may be wrong in this, but I swear, the flora & fauna in NY state are much more varied than it is in most of Virginia. I saw a far greater variety of birds, trees, and wildflowers there than I've seen in my 22 years in Virginia. Certainly upstate NY's farming is more varied, and the fresh fruit and vegetables at the farmers' stands reflects this. Even the state's most beautiful areas--the Piedmont and Coastal regions--seem more monotonous in what grows and flies there. Anybody know about this for sure?)

Some other Finger Lakes places to consider are
*Skaneateles (pricey but lovely)
*Cooperstown (probably our #1 choice and ASAP destination) *Hammondsport (very cozy, peaceful place; not too far, by non-upstate-NY-standards!, from Buffalo, Pittsburgh, & Toronto; lower taxes than most of the other places I list here, too)
*Seneca Falls (economy not great but a very interesting town with a lot of gorgeous homes & deep history)
*Hamilton & Clinton (college towns but very stately, civilized ones--also, not right on lakes/water, but not far from nice water)
*Aurora (small but lovely)
*Honeyeo Falls (like Canandaigua, near Rochester)
*Cazenovia (very pretty, fairly pricey).

I'm sure I'm forgetting many worth recommending--you DO have a lot of great choices up there. I wish I had ten lifetimes so I could do the whole area the explore-around-and-savor justice it deserves.

Good luck!
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Old 01-11-2007, 06:22 AM
 
254 posts, read 964,173 times
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Homewardbound...the OP said they were looking for cities in the Finger Lakes..everyone from Rochester area knows that Fairport is not a city nor is it in the Fingerlakes. Yes it will take you almost an hour to get to Canandaigua lake and no it is not scenic. I was pointing out to him/her that it is not considered the fingerlakes because I wasn't sure if he/she thought it was, like Candaigua, Penn Yan or Branchport is. If the person wants to live in the Fingerlakes then why live an hour outside of it, especially with the winter weather there? (and pay tolls to get there and back on the highway) I lived in CT for many years so I do know about traveling distances...your new englandish comment doesn't make sense because many people from CT (and MA) commute 1-2 hours each way to work.
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Old 01-11-2007, 12:27 PM
 
12 posts, read 58,576 times
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Red face Rochester Info

Thanks to all of you who answered my post on Relocating to THe Finger Lakes. The information you provided was extremely helpful.

I have read many posts where people have relocated from NY city or Long Island. I was wondering if it was a culture shock for you moving to a smaller area, like one of the suburbs of Rochester? I worry about that since I am now living in a rather large city outside DC and grew up in Westchester NY.

I also was wondering if you had any Organic food markets there? We have "Whole Foods" here but I don't think there is one up there.

Last edited by candylkeme; 01-11-2007 at 12:29 PM.. Reason: spelling
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