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Old 07-10-2007, 06:46 PM
nnp nnp started this thread
 
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Hi,

Our family is relocating to the Hartford area from the Boston area. We're specifically looking in Avon, Simsbury, and Glastonbury. I'm originally from a different part of CT, so I'm broadly familiar with the area. But we would love to get some more insider information on the differences among these towns-- the overall culture/feel, the people, other considerations, etc.

We're already familiar with commuting differences and we know that all of these towns have great schools, so we're really just trying to focus on which town is likely to be the best fit.

Thanks in advance!
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Old 07-10-2007, 10:01 PM
 
Location: Connecticut
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These three towns are very similar. They are all upscale suburbs with great schools and lot of family oriented activities. Avon is considered to be the top with a lot of very upscale homes and neighborhoods. Simsbury and Glastonbury offer a little more diversity.

Avon and Simsbury are located in the Farmington River Valley and are not as accessible to major highways as Glastonbury. To get to these towns there are limited roads which can be good and bad. Good if you do not leave the valley regularly, bad if you do. Route 44 is the main road that connects Avon and Simsbury to West Hartford and Hartford. It goes up and over Avon Mountain and is steep and dangerous. a few years ago there was a horrible accident where a truck lost its brakes coming down th mountain and slammed into cars stopped at the traffic singal at the base of it. Several people were killed. years ago my wife was rear ended at that same light and she knew some day somethig bad would happen. That is why we choose Glastonbury. she hated going over the mountain.

I am not sure what other things would interest you. All three are great towns and you could be happy in any of them. Jay
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Old 07-11-2007, 06:14 AM
 
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I agree with everything Jay said, although I like Glastonbury the best out of the three, mainly for highway access and general feel of the town (but that is totally subjective). I find Avon to be a bit more in your face about the affluence of the town, while Simsbury anf Glastonbury are a bit more laid back about it. That is just the general vibe I get from Avon though so I am sure many will disagree.

The bottom line is you really can't go wrong with any of those towns.
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Old 07-11-2007, 07:02 AM
 
Location: Connecticut
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I would like to add to my original response. The Farmington Valley (basically Avon, Simsbury and Farmington) is isolated from the rest of the world by Avon Mountain. That isolation give those towns a sort of "Shangri La" feeling. You get there and you feel that you have arrived. But for many things you might want, you need to leave that area and it can not be easy. You want to go to Home Depot or Lowes, you have to go over the mountain. You want to go to the mall, over the mountain. You want to go to a dinner and/or show in Hartford, over the mountain.

What I like about Glastonbury is that you are near so much. Downtown and the Buckland Hills shopping area are short easy drives up Route 2 from town.

Glastonbury watches new developments very closely and requires new buildings to have a nice architectural quality. Strangely though, Glastonbury is the home of the largest Home Depot in New England. But it is a nice brick version of a HD with a lot of details so it really doesn't look bad. If you need more information or have particular concerns, let me know and I will try to answer them. Jay
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Old 07-11-2007, 07:42 AM
 
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Having lived in Simsbury and Glastonbury I agree with JayCT. I found Simsbury to be very inconvenient to get around. Don't get me wrong, it's beautiful, but was a pain getting places. I am a little biased because I actually prefer East of the River.
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Old 07-11-2007, 07:46 AM
 
Location: Cheshire, Conn.
2,102 posts, read 7,281,463 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JayCT View Post
I would like to add to my original response. The Farmington Valley (basically Avon, Simsbury and Farmington) is isolated from the rest of the world by Avon Mountain. That isolation give those towns a sort of "Shangri La" feeling. You get there and you feel that you have arrived. But for many things you might want, you need to leave that area and it can not be easy. You want to go to Home Depot or Lowes, you have to go over the mountain. You want to go to the mall, over the mountain. You want to go to a dinner and/or show in Hartford, over the mountain.

What I like about Glastonbury is that you are near so much. Downtown and the Buckland Hills shopping area are short easy drives up Route 2 from town.

Glastonbury watches new developments very closely and requires new buildings to have a nice architectural quality. Strangely though, Glastonbury is the home of the largest Home Depot in New England. But it is a nice brick version of a HD with a lot of details so it really doesn't look bad. If you need more information or have particular concerns, let me know and I will try to answer them. Jay
Mountains are a psychological barrier even with the best roads. Ask anyone from Cheshire how far away Middletown is. Most people's estimates are 30 miles or 45 minutes. (From Cheshire, it's about 14 miles or 25 minutes.) The mountain (big hill) through which Route 66 cuts makes it seem longer/farther away.
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Old 07-11-2007, 07:50 AM
 
Location: CT
84 posts, read 341,071 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JayCT View Post
These three towns are very similar. They are all upscale suburbs with great schools and lot of family oriented activities. Avon is considered to be the top with a lot of very upscale homes and neighborhoods. Simsbury and Glastonbury offer a little more diversity.

Avon and Simsbury are located in the Farmington River Valley and are not as accessible to major highways as Glastonbury. To get to these towns there are limited roads which can be good and bad. Good if you do not leave the valley regularly, bad if you do. Route 44 is the main road that connects Avon and Simsbury to West Hartford and Hartford. It goes up and over Avon Mountain and is steep and dangerous. a few years ago there was a horrible accident where a truck lost its brakes coming down th mountain and slammed into cars stopped at the traffic singal at the base of it. Several people were killed. years ago my wife was rear ended at that same light and she knew some day somethig bad would happen. That is why we choose Glastonbury. she hated going over the mountain.

I am not sure what other things would interest you. All three are great towns and you could be happy in any of them. Jay

JayCT,

What season or seasons did the accidents happen? How dangerous is this area in the winter?
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Old 07-11-2007, 07:54 AM
 
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That's true. Trying to get to I-84 or I-91 from Simsbury seems to take forever. I remember my wife picking up my son and his friend to spend the night at our house in Simsbury, she was coming from Glastonbury. By the time they got through Bloomfield to Talcottville, my son's friend asked her if they were still in Connecticut
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Old 07-11-2007, 07:58 AM
 
Location: Cheshire, Conn.
2,102 posts, read 7,281,463 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BogieOrangeman View Post
JayCT,

What season or seasons did the accidents happen? How dangerous is this area in the winter?
It was 07/29/2005:

Dump truck owner arrested on manslaughter charges after crash killed four people on CourtTV.com

West Hartford News - 2005 ends with second fatal crash on Avon Mountain

A note about drivers and Connecticut winter weather. Many drivers seem to forget how to drive in snow. (This can be seen along the Interstates more so than the back roads.) Avon Mountain is no exception. I have a friend who lives in Winsted. She used to take Avon Mountain to Bishops Corner in West Hartford. If there was any amount of snow on the roads, her commute time would double.

Dangerous? Not from the snow or condition of the roads, probably dangerous as a result of other drivers.
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Old 07-11-2007, 08:50 AM
nnp nnp started this thread
 
5 posts, read 33,949 times
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Thanks so much for all of your replies. This is the kind of information we were looking for!

It's interesting that some of you noted that Avon is more overt about its affluence. We're both professionals and live an upper middle class lifestyle, but we hate over the top snobbishness. Plus, we have a toddler and don't want to raise kids in an environment where that's what it's all about.

Would you say that Avon is more socially competitive than Simsbury and Glastonbury?

Also, which town do you think has the most community-oriented feel? Being new in town, that is also a factor for us.
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