U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Massachusetts > Boston
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 04-12-2009, 03:19 PM
 
4 posts, read 8,190 times
Reputation: 10

Advertisements

Hi. My husband is thinking of taking a job in Cambridge. We are from Texas and we've lived in large cities and small towns. We are looking for a town within 30 minutes of Cambridge that has a laid-back, family-oriented vibe. We have 2 sons: one will start kinder in August and the other will be starting eight grade. I am a school teacher so schools must be excellent! Any ideas?
I am also concerned about safety with small children. I looked at one website that had all of the horrible murder statistics and gang statistics. I would love to hear opinions about growing up in the Boston area. We also have dogs and are having trouble finding apartments or homes that allow dogs (one is a cocker spaniel and one is a boxer/lab mix). Any info about places where pets are welcome would be great.
My oldest son is staying in Texas to go to college at my alma mater, but he's a huge Red Sox fan. Is it easy to get tickets?
Thanks in advance for info that you can provide. We are really wanting to give this move a chance, but just don't have enough info yet.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 04-12-2009, 04:24 PM
 
284 posts, read 1,110,698 times
Reputation: 98
Have you considered Arlington or Belmont?
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-12-2009, 07:29 PM
 
4 posts, read 8,190 times
Reputation: 10
We just started looking so we'll take a look at these tonight. Thanks!
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-12-2009, 07:30 PM
 
3 posts, read 14,655 times
Reputation: 11
In my opinion, you will find the best schools in Winchester, Belmont and Lexington. You can check their MCAS results: Top-scoring schools on the 2008 3rd-grade MCAS exams - The Boston Globe - Boston.com
These are also very nice neighborhoods to live with your family. I currently live in Boston, and I am planning to move to one of these places because of the schools. Good luck!
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-12-2009, 09:27 PM
 
Location: Dallas
4,621 posts, read 9,869,555 times
Reputation: 3888
Are far as gangs go, that kind of stuff does exist in very localized sections of Boston's ghettos, but you have nothing to fear whatsoever. Boston is a gorgeous city that is quite safe. Downtown Boston for example is far more comfortable and far more developed than downtown Dallas. Have a look for yourself:

//www.city-data.com/forum/bosto...-downtown.html


Dog friendly apts? Well, that's is a problem. The other thing you're going to not like is the driving. Boston driving makes rush hour in Dallas look like Sunday afternoon. And you won't like the snow and cold. You will definitely like cuteness of New England. Downtown Boston is cooler than anything in Texas and the little New England towns are cute as a fairy tale. Boston is bursting with culture and thick with history. Once you deal with the day to day rat race BOS will give you some life experiences you can't get in many other places in the western hemisphere.

Cambridge is very doable for schools. You might want to consider that. Harvard and MIT are both in Cambridge. Otherwise you might consider looking at Salem or Marblehead. Salem of course is the famous Witch City and is really cute and fun. Marblehead is gorgeous and has an entire neighborhood of homes dating back to the 1600's. Being right on the ocean is really quite an ammenity everyone should give themselves at least once in a lifetime.

//www.city-data.com/forum/bosto...th-boston.html

Last edited by xS☺B☺s; 04-12-2009 at 09:37 PM..
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-13-2009, 11:04 AM
 
Location: East Boston, MA
10,974 posts, read 19,450,341 times
Reputation: 12674
I would ABSOLUTELY look into the cities that those others have mentioned. All good options. I have always had a particular fondness for Marblehead. While it's going to be a bit of a stretch to commute 30 minutes to Cambridge (what section of Cambridge is your husband working, by the way?) I would look into Milton and maybe Quincy. Milton has the better schools, but Quincy has a larger housing stock and likely more rentals available (though as mentioned, pet friendly isn't easy).

As far as gang issues, others have mentioned that the violent crimes and gangs are heavily isolated to particular areas in and around Boston. The bulk of the city is relatively safe and has very low crime. I wouldn't worry too much about that. No one here would point you in the direction of a bad area.

I would also mention that if you hadn't already guessed, the lifestyle is different up here and a failure to adjust could REALLY affect your ability to enjoy living in the Boston area. The winters are obviously much colder than just about anywhere in TX. It's going to take some getting used to. The spring, summer and fall are wonderful. They often make winter feel like it was worth it. The housing stock here is older and often times not quite as large (for the money) as what you'd find in most areas of Texas. They can be charming, but expecting a new home and everything in it to be pristine can lead to more let down. Finally, cars. Texas is a notably auto-centric state even in the biggest cities. Boston is the polar opposite and it can be tough to adjust but failure to do so can lead to complete resentment for the area. Boston was developed and built before cars. As a result, the streets are a tangled, narrow, weaving mess (often times paved poorly or still exposed cobblestone). It sucks driving here, there's no secret about that. The good news is that mass transit is extensive and very useful. It also doesn't carry the negative stigma that it does in many other areas of the country (where the bus is for "poor people"). In Boston, people from ALL walks of life use subway, train, bus, ferry, water taxi, etc. It would be of great benefit if you used it whenever possible. It would make you a LOT happier and adjusting a lot easier. Using a car to commute in and out of the city is a nightmare (while Cambridge is a separate entity, it is just across the river from Boston and totally part of Boston's urban fabric) and doing so on a daily basis can cause even the most laid back person to HATE the city. Also as a result of those narrow streets and old nature, walking in and around Boston are excellent and safe options. Boston's mayor is also making a push to make Boston as bike friendly as Paris with a cooperative (with Cambridge) Bike-Sharing Program... more info on that: http://www.boston.com/bostonglobe/ma..._a_revolution/ . It's obviously a very liberal area (I'm sure you'll hear horror stories), but that's not to say you can't find enough conservative enclaves. It's more than possible. My father is a conservative war vet from Virginia... he loves it here and so do all of his like-minded friends.

If you can adjust, I bet you will like it here. I hope you find what you're looking for and best of luck!
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-13-2009, 02:05 PM
 
Location: Dallas
4,621 posts, read 9,869,555 times
Reputation: 3888
Irfox is very right about the subway (officialle MBTA, affectionately called the "T"). Cambridge is on the Red Line, and if your school is close enough to the Red Line then that would be very convenient. You can even lose one car (considered a plus in Boston!). A quick change at Park St station also opens many other possibilities too, although that will increase your commute time.

I'm not sure how convenient Milton is to the T (commuter rail maybe) but Quincy is on the Red Line so that's very doable to Cambridge. Q is also on the ocean, a quick skip from some really nice Cape Cod beaches. I love Nantasket and Hull, but if the beach interests you my faves are on the north shore and of course Hampton Beach, NH (right over the MA border. I wish I was there now!

HamptonBeach.com - Hampton Beach, NH Pictures
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-13-2009, 02:10 PM
 
Location: Newton, Mass.
2,954 posts, read 11,826,489 times
Reputation: 1499
You've gotten some good info. I'd check into Arlington and Belmont, which are right next to Cambridge and very nice areas. There are a number of good towns, but commuting to Cambridge can be tough. It's not easy to drive there at rush hour and if you're commuting by mass transit you have to make sure to be near the right train and/or bus line. I would second the idea that a commute from Marblehead or Salem to Cambridge wouldn't be much fun, but people do it (and worse).

You don't give a price range for housing, so it's hard to say. Some people coming from more affordable places (like most of Texas) have sticker shock, so we can direct you better if we know how large a home you want (assume 3BR?) andwhat you're looking to pay in rent (or if you're looking to buy).

You can look on boston.craigslist.org for rentals and there is a box to check off for dogs being welcome. Unfortunately this does eliminate a lot of the available rentals, but there are still some good ones out there. My friend (with a huge dog) looked at some dog-friendly places in Auburndale (a very pretty part of Newton just northeast of the I-90 (Mass Pike)/Route 128 (I-95) junction).

I didn't see anything about politics in your post, so I think my friend lrfox might have jumped the gun a bit. Not everyone coming from Texas is conservative. We've had a bit of a right wing invasion of late on Massachsuetts city data, and I fear people have gotten overly defensive about the state's political climate. If you are conservative, it's true, you'll be fine but might not agree with much of what you hear. If you're not, you'll be even better.

It is not easy to get Red Sox tickets but its possible. This is a baseball-mad region, so it's not like getting Rangers or Astros tickets. Getting Red Sox tickets is more like trying to get Dallas Cowboys tickets (though probably not quite as bad). Fenway Park is small and the fans are rabid. So they sell out quickly and you often have to turn to e-bay or stub hub, or just buy them in the street near the park. Unfortunately, this often results in tickets costing more than face value (and face value is pretty high to begin with). Games against more obscure opponents and early in the work week are easier (say, Kansas City on a Tuesday night), and there are tips for getting tickets without breaking the bank. It's one of my guilty pleasures so I tend to overpay if I have to, but it's a real source of frustration for New England families who'd like to go the park without breaking the bank.

I am biased, but I think Greater Boston is a wonderful place to grow up. Many of the public schools in the area are excellent and there is a lot to do. There is a lot of history and culture, and also access to beaches, mountains, lakes, hiking, etc. Sports fans will find extremely devoted fans around here, particularly of the Red Sox. There are many, many interesting places to spend the day or the weekend in New England, and Boston is pretty close to other great cities like New York, Philadelphia, Montreal.

lrfox has it right. Boston and Texas are very different places. Personally I'm a Boston person, not really a Texas person though I like to visit. If you look at everything through the lens of what it would cost in Texas, or be like there, you might not like the Boston area. But if you look at this as an opportunity to live differently and you embrace all the things to do and see in New England, I think it's a wonderful place to live. Here's a piece about life in Boston from the New York Times in the midst of the great 2004 Sox comeback:

Sports of The Times; The Shadows of Fenway Have Not Enveloped Boston - New York Times
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-13-2009, 02:48 PM
 
Location: East Boston, MA
10,974 posts, read 19,450,341 times
Reputation: 12674
Quote:
Originally Posted by holden125 View Post
I didn't see anything about politics in your post, so I think my friend lrfox might have jumped the gun a bit. Not everyone coming from Texas is conservative. We've had a bit of a right wing invasion of late on Massachsuetts city data, and I fear people have gotten overly defensive about the state's political climate. If you are conservative, it's true, you'll be fine but might not agree with much of what you hear. If you're not, you'll be even better.
I jumped the gun. I should clarify that I wasn't assuming that this Texan would be conservative; but rather putting that on the table in case the OP maybe glanced at some of the rantings in the more recent political threads in the Massachusetts forum... they could scare a number of people off. Holden125 clarified the rest. You can live happily either way.

I also agree about the Red Sox. It's not easy (or cheap) to get tickets. I would only add that the two things I usually do to get tickets are the following: 1) Go to the area around Fenway (namely, Kenmore Square) JUST after the start of the game (so at some point in the first inning) and talk to scalpers... you can usually get a better deal on the day's tickets as the scalper will try to dump them (I got field box seats- 2 rows back, first base side- for about $2 above Face Value for a Sox/Rays game last year). This isn't a sure thing, but the odds are good. Just set a price limit and see what you can do... scalpers will work with you as long as you're reasonable. If that fails, head into the Cask'n Flagon, Bleacher Bar, or Game On! right across from (or attached to the park in the case of Bleacher Bar and Game On!) the ballpark and spend that ticket money on a few cold ones and enjoy the game in that atmosphere- it's a lot of fun. 2) Check RedSox.com about 2-10 days before the day of the game you want to see for tickets. The Sox always release a good number of tickets just before the day of the game. So if you check a month and a half before the day of the game you want to go to and no tickets are available, check back a few days before the game because some more tickets may be available at face value. I saw most of my games last summer this way.

You can ALWAYS (no matter how sold out) get tickets through fan to fan or auction sites. Ebay, stubhub.com, acetickets.com, etc are examples of these sites. The problem is you will ALWAYS pay a premium for these seats... many times close to 10x face value (it's not uncommon to see $2500 tickets for a REGULAR SEASON Sox/Yankees game). This option should be a last resort (or first resort if money is no option).
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-13-2009, 05:42 PM
 
4 posts, read 8,190 times
Reputation: 10
Thanks for all of the info. We are originally from little towns on the Texas/Mexico border. We are more liberal (I went to school in Austin and lived there for 11 years). We are also looking to get rid of at least one of our cars and we are all into biking so that shouldn't be an issue.
The rentals were a little shocking but the hubby's co. will adjust salary for a housing allowance...shouldn't be an issue. The most important thing is providing a safe place where our kids have multiple opportunities. They've both only lived in TX and we'd like to expose them to different parts of the US. Everyone is also excited about the snow....the men in my life have never seen it or been in it. I have been in cold IL winters so I understand about cold. I can't get over the pet thing. My husband suggested finding a new home for our big dog, but she's such a sweetie. Besides, she sleeps on my bed and keeps me warm in TX winters. I hope she can do the same in Boston. If you can think of anything else regarding pets, rentals or schools please let me know. We haven't gotten a confirmation yet but things seem to be heading in that direction. Thanks also for pointing us towards the posted pics. We really enjoyed looking at them.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Settings
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2020 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Massachusetts > Boston

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2022, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Contact Us - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37 - Top