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Thread summary:

Moving to Austin: great schools, golf course, education, downtown, mortgage.

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Old 07-08-2007, 08:56 AM
 
5 posts, read 12,675 times
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All,

I would greatly appreciate input as we are in a bit of a time crunch. We are going to lease a home in the Leander ISD until we get there and get settled. We have to do this in the school that we intend to stay in as we cannot move schools later. There are two homes we are looking at; one routes to Vista Ridge High School and the other is Cedar Park High School.

I have done a fair amount of research but have not been able to really come up with any solid reasons to sway either way.

Can anyone offer some input on this? I am really starting to panic as our transfer is right around the corner and we have to make a decision very soon.

Thank you.
ntos

PS - although I believe it is too far out, I would also appreciate any comments on the Leander High School. Thanks.
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Old 07-08-2007, 09:15 AM
 
Location: Austin
12 posts, read 39,922 times
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What specifically are you looking for in the high school? Dual credit classes? Strong technology emphasis? High scores? Internship availability?

I'm not trying to harp here, but there are so many threads saying to move to Eanes ISD, Leander ISD, etc. It's time to break the barriers and realize that schools like the Manor New Tech High School http://www.manorisd.net/newtech/ (broken link) are offering a much better education then the others are able to. ShadowGlen is a fantastic master planned out that way and it's frustrating that it doesn't get the attention that it deserves. Kipp Austin College Prep School is another great option for Middle School aged children.
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Old 07-08-2007, 09:40 AM
 
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AustinCharley - thanks for the reply. It's funny because as you were probably posting your reply, I had stumbled on another post of yours with the ShadowGlen information. I decided to check it out and found it interesting. The main reason we are looking at the Cedar Park area is 1) we used to live there (however, it has been a very long time ago) and 2) we want to be fairly close to shopping and other action. Part of us says go ahead and move further away from all the action, but the other part is saying no. It's a difficult choice for sure. I completely agree about breaking the barriers.

As far as the high school is concerned, we are mainly interested in simply a solid education; no/low crime, no major drug issues, a well managed campus, instructors that truly care about their students' success, athletic opportunities, etc. Dual credit classes is something we would be very interested in as well.

On ShadowGlen, I wonder if you could offer some input. I'm not sure if you know much about Cedar Park or not, but what we liked is the fact we could get in the car and get to the mall and other shopping areas within just a few minutes. We also like to have many choices in restaurants close by. Could you tell me a little about ShadowGlen and how it may compare to the conveniences that we liked about Cedar Park?

Again, thanks for the reply and I look forward to any other suggestions/comments you may have.

Regards,
ntos
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Old 07-08-2007, 10:15 AM
 
Location: Austin
12 posts, read 39,922 times
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Sunfield which is similar to Shadowglen in price ($100 - $300K) is something that might interest you as well then. It will be less then 4 miles away from that new strip mall, movie theater, etc. that opened up in Onion Creek and is close to downtown. The outlet malls are about 15-20 miles in the opposite direction as well as all of the tubing places. The schools out that way are currently only Acceptable, but Sunfield is slated to have 3 new schools inside the subdivision which I would expect to be Recognized or Exemp. b/c of the exclusivity. I think I read that Sunfield will have approx. 7200 homes, a million sq. ft of retail in front of the subdivision, 4 softball fields, soccer fields, golf course, etc. You can view a picture of the amenity center online now. Although their schools will most likely become very good, I think Manor is the only area that will have this special "Technology School". Also, you may want to check the Cedar Park & Vista Ridge websites to see if they're offering dual credits with the community colleges or w/Univ. of Texas directly as Manor/Buda are.

Right next to Sunfield, but closer to downtown will be a subdivision called Goodnight Ranch which just built a new school. From the research I've done, Sunfield looked more attractive.

Shadowglen doesn't have as much retail right now, but has the new Technology School which is looking very promising. UT, Dell, Siemons (not positive about this one), AMD, etc. are all donating millions of dollars into these schools and we've heard rumors that scholarships/internships may be available. Villa Muse will be in Manor and will be fairly close to Shadowglen (take a look at villamuse.com). We believe this will help to drive interest out in that direction as Mueller has been able to do in the East. I don't know what the prices will be at Villa Muse, but that may be something else to consider.

There is property around Shadowglen that is being purchased for retail intentions, but they appear to be "holding" onto it until the area picks up. For now, you would have to drive a few minutes. Here are the closest malls:

Highland Mall – 6001 Airport Blvd. in Austin, 512-454-9656, www.highlandmall.com
The Arboretum – 10000 Research Blvd. in Austin, 512-338-4437, Simon Property Group

Cedar Park is a very nice area with a lot of amenities, but a long commute to downtown. (45 min. to an hour) Shadowglen, which is only 9 miles away, is only about a 20 min. commute. From what you've described though, I don't think Shadowglen would be what you're looking for b/c it's still somewhat rural and will be for a couple more years.

If you're in a higher budget range, you might want to check out areas around the Domain. I know Mercedes will be building there, but there may be some other builders who aren't priced quite as high. Please don't misunderstand me though, Cedar Park is a very nice community. There is a nice community pool which is fairly inexpensive and a lot of nice amenities. If the commute isn't an issue, then it may be a great option for you.

I just want others on this board to open up their thoughts to other communities which have great schools, beautiful pools, golf courses, nice/safe walking neighborhoods and a lot more house for your $. I'm so tired of this "Don't move East of Hwy 35 mentality"! The only ones benefiting from that rant are the banks & realtors. Check out the post where I broke down the difference taht will be paid in interest if you chose the SW home compared to the Buda home. It's enlightening.

G'luck w/ your decision and upcoming move. Austin is a wonderful city!

Last edited by AustinCharley; 07-08-2007 at 10:24 AM..
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Old 07-08-2007, 10:20 AM
 
Location: Austin
12 posts, read 39,922 times
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One last thought for you on Cedar Park High. I don't know much about Vista Ridge, but I do know that over on 2222 the bond has been purchased for the new highschool and it will pull a lot of the wealthier students away from Cedar Park High.

This may or may not affect the scores in Cedar Park, but I wanted you to be aware of what the plans were for the next couple of years.
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Old 07-08-2007, 04:20 PM
 
Location: Hutto, Tx
9,247 posts, read 24,744,364 times
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Thank you Austin Charley..Living East of 35 myself, I was starting to get jaded from all of the "stay west at all costs" talk.
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Old 07-08-2007, 05:00 PM
 
5 posts, read 12,675 times
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AustinCharley - thanks very much for all the excellent information; I greatly appreciate it. I will definitely make sure we are not eliminating any areas that we shouldn't be. From what we saw on our trips there, I can't see why everyone would be so against the East of 35 area. I think it's great that you are trying to spread the word and get people to see the value - especially with the school information that you've provided. I certainly did not know the things that you've pointed out about the schools there.

We are really looking forward to this move!

Thanks again.

Regards,
ntos
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Old 07-08-2007, 05:34 PM
 
Location: RR
225 posts, read 795,446 times
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JMO- but I first hand lived E for 3 months and now W and I can see a big difference, not even including the land issue on the E, we were told about. I think there is a place for everyone and I am glad it worked out this way, where I did have a chance to live on both sides and make a descion that worked best for our family, it is all a matter of opinion on these chat boards and as long as everyone gives honest imput, then it gives someone something to work off, I am thankful for all info and take with a grain of salt if I have different ideas and no one really likes to move (I don't think) and getting this advice helped me, so I would of found out I was not happy and have to deal with selling and moving again.....
A friend who lives in Hutto, said her house value went down this year and I am definitely not looking to loose money, even if I hope to stay put, we never know what tomorrow may bring!
GOOD LUCK, hope you find the right place to call home.
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Old 07-08-2007, 06:29 PM
 
Location: Austin TX
1,207 posts, read 5,947,384 times
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A couple of other points - Vista Ridge HS is smaller in terms of student population and is also newer than Cedar Park. Populations may change as they've now opened another HS near Crystal Falls. this year, I believe, only 9th graders will attend, and then they will add students each year.

As a point of clarification on the bond for the HS on 2222 - the bond was issued to purchase the land for a HS on 2222 by the Leander ISD. They currently have no dollars allocated to actually construct the HS there. However, a parents' committee was just formed to consider accelerating the construction of the new HS and issuing the new bond for that construction earlier than anticipated. The previous poster is correct that once the new HS is built the population and demographics of Cedar Park HS will change, as students from Steiner and from River Place and surrounding areas will likely be out of the CPHS attendance boundaries.

I think Cedar Park's a great area. Good luck with your move!
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Old 07-08-2007, 06:31 PM
 
Location: Austin
12 posts, read 39,922 times
Reputation: 11
GIGI,


UPDATE: You are completely correct GIGI. I went back to the article & it's obvious that I misread that comment. I apologize for the inaccuracy.

Last edited by AustinCharley; 07-08-2007 at 07:13 PM..
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