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Old 01-09-2010, 11:03 AM
 
Location: Rochester, NY
1,293 posts, read 4,322,184 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HowardRoarke View Post
You're right about Browncroft. Not many rentals, however along N. Winton, north of Browncroft, and down some of the side streets, I recall there were some nice single-family homes for rent. Pretty quiet, over there.

cheese, yeah, Grand east of Culver is stable. A friend lived over that way until recently, and reported only one bad incident by his house in 5+ years of living there. Far as the history, I don't know a whole lot about that part of the city, except that a lot of folks over that way worked at Stromberg-Carlson (now Harris), Gleason, some food processing plants, and other formerly big employers on the east side, years ago (Gleason alone employed over 4000 people, 30 years ago). French's (mustard) used to be over off of E. Main. There was a major defense plant that closed in the early 80's over on Goodman (can't remember who owned it), where a lot of folks worked, and, of course, B&L over on Goodman, after they moved from St. Paul.

I know several people who grew up on Garson, Parsells, and Hazelwood Terrace, and they all went to East HS. That was a harmonious, mixed area, for years. One family I know grew up on Parsells, after leaving S. Plymouth(!). Most of their families have since moved out of the city. West of Culver was still nice, 20 years ago.
I gotta ask too, you really seem to have a good knowledge of the city. What made you leave? Most anyone I talk too, knows nothing about the city, but you seem to know a tidbit about every livable neighborhood. It is a good knowledge to have.
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Old 01-09-2010, 11:22 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HowardRoarke View Post
You're right about Browncroft. Not many rentals, however along N. Winton, north of Browncroft, and down some of the side streets, I recall there were some nice single-family homes for rent. Pretty quiet, over there.

cheese, yeah, Grand east of Culver is stable. A friend lived over that way until recently, and reported only one bad incident by his house in 5+ years of living there. Far as the history, I don't know a whole lot about that part of the city, except that a lot of folks over that way worked at Stromberg-Carlson (now Harris), Gleason, some food processing plants, and other formerly big employers on the east side, years ago (Gleason alone employed over 4000 people, 30 years ago). French's (mustard) used to be over off of E. Main. There was a major defense plant that closed in the early 80's over on Goodman (can't remember who owned it), where a lot of folks worked, and, of course, B&L over on Goodman, after they moved from St. Paul.

I know several people who grew up on Garson, Parsells, and Hazelwood Terrace, and they all went to East HS. That was a harmonious, mixed area, for years. One family I know grew up on Parsells, after leaving S. Plymouth(!). Most of their families have since moved out of the city. West of Culver was still nice, 20 years ago.
Rochester's East Side reminds me of Syracuse's East Side, as far as being a side of the city that seems to be more stable and with a mix of people in terms of race/ethnicity and economics. It does seem to be more blue collar middle class, but still nice in many parts.

Also, I think the area that is close to Irondequoit that is still stable is the Northland-Lyceum neighborhood. I would notice that Goodman gets better the further you get away from East Main starting at around Northland Ave. or so. Maybe even Clifford east of Goodman.
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Old 01-09-2010, 11:41 AM
 
Location: Greenville, SC
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Originally Posted by skbs View Post
The houses are beautiful inside..... all gumwood trim, pocket doors, porches, leaded glass built in cabinets, pretty staircases....fun features like root cellars and attics too! wouldn't think twice about walking around outside at night back then.... Now, I don't even want to drive past my old house after dark. We left early on through the change.... in the 80s... but my grandparents all held out until the mid 90s... They knew they had to get out when the prostitutes started working thier way up Lake Ave.... When they didn't feel safe sitting on thier front porch at night..... When there was a rapist out and about over near Driving Park.....No, life is not what it used to be in the 10th Ward...... it is only getting worse with murderers and drug dealers....and it IS a shame....
The place I rented in the 700 block of Flower City was beautiful. A couple a few houses down restored their place, and put a nice pool in the back yard, but they moved out in like '00 or '01. They were the exception to the rule, there. I noticed some houses even that far up on Flower City were not maintained well, even if they were owner-occupied.

All of the hardwoods and gumwood trim in the place I rented had been maintained, and the front windows were original, with their gumwood. A house like that would go for $250K-$400K, here, in the right area. 2 car detached garage with a separate wood shop at the back, 2300 sq. ft. of living space (3 levels total) which could easily be converted back to single family; it was huge. Landlord was begging me to buy the place, but I didn't have quite the income, yet, plus he was asking too much ($95K, the same amount he'd paid 10 years earlier when he'd bought it from his parents). Year after I'd moved out, a couple who'd rented next door bought it for $63K. I'd bet that same house would go for <$50K, today, which is a shame.

Oh, and there was a "secret room" in the basement that was under an addition that had been built shortly after the house was in the 20's, where I found growlers of alcohol. There were recipes for alcohol written in pencil on the floor joists, so this must have been during Prohibition. There was a cement bench around the perimeter, with a cement table in the middle where they must have had a small alcohol still.

One couple two houses up from me on Flower City had what I call a "two-flat" (Buffalo-speak), upper and lower. He was from Buffalo, and their family lived upstairs and rented out the 1st floor. He had good tenants up until about '96, then he had a tough time getting good folks to move in, so he called the county to see if they had anybody on the Sec. 8 list who might be suitable. Long story short, they had some problems at their place, but they're stuck, in a way, 'cause your average renter in the 10th Ward is Sec. 8 these days. Not saying all Sec. 8 is bad, but it's kind of a crap shoot.

Food for thought, I guess. One interesting fact about rentals in Rochester is investors from the NYC metro area and NJ were snapping up multi-family houses in Rochester going back about 4-6 years. I don't know if this is still happening. Folks I knew who owned decent to nice rental properties in the city were selling, although these properties were not in what I'd call "prime" areas.
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Old 01-09-2010, 01:53 PM
 
Location: Greenville, SC
1,283 posts, read 2,651,100 times
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Originally Posted by cheese9988 View Post
I gotta ask too, you really seem to have a good knowledge of the city. What made you leave? Most anyone I talk too, knows nothing about the city, but you seem to know a tidbit about every livable neighborhood. It is a good knowledge to have.
We left due to a variety of factors. My wife isn't from there, she grew up mostly in the South. I guess my perceptions of the local economy, there, are partly what drove me out of Rochester. I'd been laid off in '04, shortly after earning my bachelor's, we'd just started a family, and I took into consideration how well friends of mine had done in places like Raleigh, Houston, Phoenix, SC, etc. Yes, I've bashed various things about Rochester in this forum, and the town definitely has its quirks and whatnot, but if people are willing to put up with the taxes and negative news, it's an OK place to live (which is more than I can say about most metros).

Part of it is we were anxious to leave and start anew somewhere else, so we decided on SC, which is where my wife spent part of her growing up years. Considering all that's happened here in the last 2 years, plus our own work issues, we're thinking about moving, again, perhaps westward. Friends in Rochester keep asking me if we'll move back to there, which is tough 'cause I know some really great people there, and most of my extended family are there. Several of them grew up in your neighborhood, and over on the other side in the 10th Ward (I'm 35).

Older folks I know grew up in the old ethnic neighborhoods (Italians, Polish, Germans, Ukrainians, Irish, Jews, etc.), so they shared cool stories at work about what it was like back in the 60's and whatnot. I know most of the city like the back of my hand, and most of that knowledge I gained after leaving active duty in late '98, plus I dabbled in real estate, there. It was cool to explore the city, as I knew close to nothing about it, except a little about the 10th ward, Norton St., and Charlotte. I didn't have a clue where Park Ave. was, even, which is typical for people who grew up in the 'burbs, there.

Working in manufacturing in Rochester was interesting, to say the least. Upside to that was I got to meet a good cross-section of folks, and they live in the city, the 'burbs, and out in the country. I worked at Gleason, Davenport (on Ames, by Maple), and at a couple of contract shops on the west side (Emerson St. and Gates). I'd go visit my friend Jim over on Hoeltzer St.(!), Tom and his wife over in Charlotte, friends over off of Grand Ave. and Merchants, etc. We'd hang out at Johnny's and Merchants Grill, Captain's Cove (now Noonan's), Rab's Woodshed, and lots of other saloons across the city not associated with the "hip" areas, although there are some cool ones over by Park, Winton, Monroe, etc.

The downside of working in manufacturing was working around folks whom had been laid off from well-paying jobs, there. You have to feel bad for the good people that happens to, but some of these folks were especially bitter about being let go by the likes of Kodak and whatnot. With an over-abundance of people looking for decent to good work, there was a glut in several industries, going back to about '90-'91, and right up to about '04. So, you roll with the punches, which is one thing I'll say is good about many, there. Rochester was prosperous for over the better part of 100 years, then fell on some hard times. I got sick of wondering if someone had to die or retire before anybody got promoted, at a few of the places where I've worked. I understand this has changed, some, in fact some newer contract places have sprung up around town, out in Gates, over at Kodak Park, and on the east side (Fishers and Farmington). Yes, I keep tabs on jobs, there.

The upside is many started small businesses, some going back as far as the 40's and 50's, which filled a certain niche (mostly contract manufacturing and various technical support).That's my background, and I'm grateful, to some extent, that I got that experience in Rochester. That town still has a tremendous amount of expertise in contract manufacturing, with a lot of talent, and a legacy. This technical expertise spilled over into the computer-related industries, as time went on, so there's been a lot of tech work in Rochester for a very long time.

Reasons why I wanted to leave were part psychological, part realistic, although I do miss the place, and have had a few folks offer me jobs, there(!).
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Old 01-10-2010, 12:33 PM
 
Location: Rochester, NY
1,293 posts, read 4,322,184 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HowardRoarke View Post
We left due to a variety of factors. My wife isn't from there, she grew up mostly in the South. I guess my perceptions of the local economy, there, are partly what drove me out of Rochester. I'd been laid off in '04, shortly after earning my bachelor's, we'd just started a family, and I took into consideration how well friends of mine had done in places like Raleigh, Houston, Phoenix, SC, etc. Yes, I've bashed various things about Rochester in this forum, and the town definitely has its quirks and whatnot, but if people are willing to put up with the taxes and negative news, it's an OK place to live (which is more than I can say about most metros).

Part of it is we were anxious to leave and start anew somewhere else, so we decided on SC, which is where my wife spent part of her growing up years. Considering all that's happened here in the last 2 years, plus our own work issues, we're thinking about moving, again, perhaps westward. Friends in Rochester keep asking me if we'll move back to there, which is tough 'cause I know some really great people there, and most of my extended family are there. Several of them grew up in your neighborhood, and over on the other side in the 10th Ward (I'm 35).

Older folks I know grew up in the old ethnic neighborhoods (Italians, Polish, Germans, Ukrainians, Irish, Jews, etc.), so they shared cool stories at work about what it was like back in the 60's and whatnot. I know most of the city like the back of my hand, and most of that knowledge I gained after leaving active duty in late '98, plus I dabbled in real estate, there. It was cool to explore the city, as I knew close to nothing about it, except a little about the 10th ward, Norton St., and Charlotte. I didn't have a clue where Park Ave. was, even, which is typical for people who grew up in the 'burbs, there.

Working in manufacturing in Rochester was interesting, to say the least. Upside to that was I got to meet a good cross-section of folks, and they live in the city, the 'burbs, and out in the country. I worked at Gleason, Davenport (on Ames, by Maple), and at a couple of contract shops on the west side (Emerson St. and Gates). I'd go visit my friend Jim over on Hoeltzer St.(!), Tom and his wife over in Charlotte, friends over off of Grand Ave. and Merchants, etc. We'd hang out at Johnny's and Merchants Grill, Captain's Cove (now Noonan's), Rab's Woodshed, and lots of other saloons across the city not associated with the "hip" areas, although there are some cool ones over by Park, Winton, Monroe, etc.

The downside of working in manufacturing was working around folks whom had been laid off from well-paying jobs, there. You have to feel bad for the good people that happens to, but some of these folks were especially bitter about being let go by the likes of Kodak and whatnot. With an over-abundance of people looking for decent to good work, there was a glut in several industries, going back to about '90-'91, and right up to about '04. So, you roll with the punches, which is one thing I'll say is good about many, there. Rochester was prosperous for over the better part of 100 years, then fell on some hard times. I got sick of wondering if someone had to die or retire before anybody got promoted, at a few of the places where I've worked. I understand this has changed, some, in fact some newer contract places have sprung up around town, out in Gates, over at Kodak Park, and on the east side (Fishers and Farmington). Yes, I keep tabs on jobs, there.

The upside is many started small businesses, some going back as far as the 40's and 50's, which filled a certain niche (mostly contract manufacturing and various technical support).That's my background, and I'm grateful, to some extent, that I got that experience in Rochester. That town still has a tremendous amount of expertise in contract manufacturing, with a lot of talent, and a legacy. This technical expertise spilled over into the computer-related industries, as time went on, so there's been a lot of tech work in Rochester for a very long time.

Reasons why I wanted to leave were part psychological, part realistic, although I do miss the place, and have had a few folks offer me jobs, there(!).
I'll say this. Even if your bashing the city, it can still be constructive. Your posts and replies are well thought out, and give much more detail than the average person. There is nothing wrong with negativity as long as it can be backed up with facts.

I have only been in the city a few years and am starting to feel the city out. I have lived in Buffalo and Raleigh, and have traveled to a great deal of cities, mostly on the east coast. Coming from Buffalo, Rochester looks grand. There are businesses everywhere, corporate headquarters, newer buildings and towers. The abandoned buildings are more difficult to find (or point out).

A company I worked for near Buffalo had gotten a mammoth account with Kodak, and became my first experience with Rochester. Just coming out from Buffalo to see a plant the size of a small city had been incredible. There were shops and businesses all around it, nice parks and everyone seemed more upbeat. We later moved to Raleigh before coming to Rochester.

After a few years in Rochester, seeing the city scale back, feeling people out and getting comments from various groups and message boards, I have come to some conclusions. People are still on the high horse, I hear people still competing for wages and moving around from job to job. Alot more in Buffalo feel lucky just to be employed. People in Rochester still have some breathing room, the number of small businesses are astounding. In some cases there are too many, machine shops are a dime a dozen. A number of guys I talk with, have a hard time competing because the prices are kept so low. Small optic businesses, like QED, or branches of Melles Griot, these small scale, but numerous companies are keeping people employed.

As has been discussed, unfortunately, I have come to accept that there are a good deal of racist people in Rochester. I don't know why, but people are afraid of the city, but yet know nothing about it. Buffalonians seem to be a little more accepting this way.

Downtown is abandoned, but it looks newer and has plenty going for it. Most cities do not have waterfalls downtown. Furthermore we have most of the amenities of a major city already.

My wife and I are here because of the good jobs. Not because of taxes or housing prices. My company has its' corporate headquarters here in Rochester, and has a good reputation. If it were not for business reasons, and nearby family. We would probably be in Boston or Chicago. But hey, Rochester is not all bad, overall it is cheap, plenty to do, with a good quality of life. People in this city forget that.
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Old 01-10-2010, 09:11 PM
 
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Regarding the racism in Rochester, there is one thing I've noticed. It is definitely strongest in the boomer and older populations; most of whom grew up in the city when almost all of it was still lilly white. As the northeast and southwestern quadrants of the city transitioned into mostly black/hispanic neighborhoods; white people who grew up there (only to flee to the suburbs as adults) directly correlated "crime/decline" with "black". Neighborhoods were too scary to go to after dark if the majority its residents were dark. Any bad thing that happened in the city was because "they" ruined it. I have a feeling that as these old folks pass on, and as more minorities move to the suburbs, this stigma will fade. Obviously it won't disappear completely, but it won't be nearly as contentious as it is now.
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Old 01-10-2010, 10:12 PM
 
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Wow!!! ,Info given makes me wonder if I really want to move back there, as I said earlier I loved the city when I lived there but quite a lot has changed. Howad R. your post was full of information, as well as cheese9988 and Iminformed2, for some reason I was thinking that Arnett Blvd in the areas which I mentioned were not very safe, I worked with Cablevision so I got a chance to see much of the city at the monthly disconnect time...I am not one of the "Guys", I was an in-house technician, but went out on occasion, I do not have school age young children, my youngest son is in college at Genesee Community but I would still like a safe area. I also love Victorian houses, gum wood trim and all the old character and charm of older homes. I am trying to take advantage of the homeowner tax credit, so renting is not an option ..I really want to own a nice older home. I have experience racism in Rochester but for the most part I met very nice people so that has not deterred me from returning. I though that I could find a decent double for @ 125K..IN A DECENT NEIGHBORHOOD, Am I dreaming!!!! let me know?
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Old 01-10-2010, 10:51 PM
 
Location: Greenville, SC
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Originally Posted by I'minformed2 View Post
Regarding the racism in Rochester, there is one thing I've noticed. It is definitely strongest in the boomer and older populations; most of whom grew up in the city when almost all of it was still lilly white. As the northeast and southwestern quadrants of the city transitioned into mostly black/hispanic neighborhoods; white people who grew up there (only to flee to the suburbs as adults) directly correlated "crime/decline" with "black". Neighborhoods were too scary to go to after dark if the majority its residents were dark. Any bad thing that happened in the city was because "they" ruined it. I have a feeling that as these old folks pass on, and as more minorities move to the suburbs, this stigma will fade. Obviously it won't disappear completely, but it won't be nearly as contentious as it is now.
Some of that can cut both ways, though I've experienced that sort of thing first hand, there. Exploring the city by car several years ago was a cool way to get acquainted with some of the neighborhoods and history of that old city. I drove the streets where the old canal bed is, and it was apparent I wasn't welcome on some of those side streets. Maybe it's because I have that "cop look" (people have told me this, and some have told me I look kinda "tough"), but it boils down to the fact I didn't look like the people in that neighborhood. The old canal bed cuts through some pretty rough parts of town, north of the soccer stadium and just west of Dewey Ave. No doubt blacks would get that same look in a predominantly white part of Rochester, so I can't pass judgment.

Far as "white on black" racism, my experience with that started at a fairly young age. We had 3 black families in my neighborhood growing up, 'til one moved over to the east side. The blacks next door were from Gary, IN, and were nice people, but the neighbors had a ____ fit when they moved in. I mean it was awful. I was picked on for living next door to them, even. Having grown up in a fairly "tolerant" household (outwardly, at the very least), I didn't understand what the big deal was as a 7 year old. My parents kinda practiced what they preached to my sister and I, so the folks next door were treated like anybody else. The dentist (from Boston) down the street, the weirdo school counselor(!) across the street who worked at Marshall, the accountant next door, and many other people freaked out when they moved in. They were private people who didn't associate with any of the neighbors, save for us, and they wanted for their daughters what any other thinking person does. After he retired from Kodak they built a small house in a retirement community in N. Greece (pioneers!).

My dad moved to Rochester in '69, and he still talks about how different it was from Buffalo re: race. Nobody's perfect, and no town is perfect, but his observations jive with mine. It's more blatant, in Rochester than in other towns. Heck, I've met people on the east side who have serious hang-ups about "westsiders" (as in they go out of their way to not associate with anyone from or anything to do with that side of town), so there's a definite territorial and "you're not like us" attitude and arrogance in parts of Rochester. I discovered this both in house rental situations and within the dating scene, there. "Oh, you grew up in Greece...". Yeah, hide the china. I've met folks who claim entire office settings in Rochester are full of people like this. I wouldn't know, as I worked my way up from the shop floor in factories.

As others here have noted, there are people in the 'burbs there who never venture into the city, in fact they rarely venture far outside their little world. Some are proud of this. Hate to say it, but, there's a certain "sheltered" mentality to a lot of people in that town, and I don't miss that one bit. To think people are afraid of venturing anywhere within the city limits smacks of a certain lack of maturity and a healthy attitude towards life, but that's par for the course for many around town, there. I've known folks from the east and west sides who are like this, too. Some of the best restaurants, eclectic and diverse shopping, etc., is within the city limits. Heck, the Public Market is in or near a bad part of town, but I never had any problems over there.

After my parents split my dad moved into the city. In almost 20 years of living in the 19th Ward he's never had a problem there, save for a junky car of his which was stolen on a cold night in '94 (the kids who stole it did him a favor).
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Old 01-11-2010, 04:43 AM
 
Location: Buffalo
200 posts, read 529,864 times
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Originally Posted by hanoka View Post
Wow!!! ,Info given makes me wonder if I really want to move back there, as I said earlier I loved the city when I lived there but quite a lot has changed. Howad R. your post was full of information, as well as cheese9988 and Iminformed2, for some reason I was thinking that Arnett Blvd in the areas which I mentioned were not very safe, I worked with Cablevision so I got a chance to see much of the city at the monthly disconnect time...I am not one of the "Guys", I was an in-house technician, but went out on occasion, I do not have school age young children, my youngest son is in college at Genesee Community but I would still like a safe area. I also love Victorian houses, gum wood trim and all the old character and charm of older homes. I am trying to take advantage of the homeowner tax credit, so renting is not an option ..I really want to own a nice older home. I have experience racism in Rochester but for the most part I met very nice people so that has not deterred me from returning. I though that I could find a decent double for @ 125K..IN A DECENT NEIGHBORHOOD, Am I dreaming!!!! let me know?
No, don't panic. You're not dreaming. Just a couple examples from Zillow.com near upper Monroe - a decent (and inexpensive) neighborhood, where you'll have no problem getting someone to rent.
Rochester, NY Real Estate & Rochester Homes for Sale - Zillow
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Old 01-11-2010, 09:40 AM
 
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hanoka what you are looking for definitely exists here. Racism exists in Rochester but its not the dominant mindset...especially in the city itself. And you can definitely find a decent house in your price range in many of the neighborhoods mentioned so far.

Howard you are also right. As a white suburbanite, when I drive through certain areas of the city I definitely get some unwelcoming stares. I've always believed that racism exists both ways; but as there are far more white people than blacks in this region as a whole; I'm assuming that it was the white on black racism being discussed.
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