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Old 02-24-2009, 10:28 PM
37 posts, read 93,898 times
Reputation: 27


I grew up in GR and left after graduating from Creston High. I lived on the NE side if town (by Riverside). It was always a good area. Very quiet. Very safe. Lived by Kent Hills, it was pretty safe over there too... Now people seem to be recommending far out places to live, ada, cascade, etc. Does anyone think there are OK places in GR??
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Old 02-25-2009, 06:31 AM
Location: Grand Rapids Metro
8,872 posts, read 17,750,098 times
Reputation: 3833
I think it's mainly the schools issue. Like a lot of urban school districts, GRPS is struggling with a bad reputation (although they are doing some pretty interesting things lately).

There are plenty of safe places in the city.
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Old 02-25-2009, 07:28 AM
484 posts, read 1,106,568 times
Reputation: 439
Default Nothing has happened

Since you were born and raised here in GR, please don't believe that everything has changed for the worst. You will likely find the city to be very much the same as when you left. The areas you mentioned (Riverside, Creston) are still very much the same. If you found them decent 10 years ago, you'll find them decent now.

I'm born and raised in the city too (30 years old now). From my perspective, the "bad" areas are still bad and the "decent" areas are still decent. In fact, a few areas (East Hills) have made a dramatic turn for the better. Granted, if your norm is a Forest Hills standard, you are likely to believe almost every part of the city is a ghetto. On the other hand, if your norm is most parts of Chicago, you are likely to find most areas of Grand Rapids incredibly safe. It's all a matter of what you perceive to be normal and what you are used to.

Facts are that the GR area has followed the trend of the nation....crime, in general, is down across the board. The public schools are in a state of distress, compared to even 10-15 years ago. There are, however, bright spots (GR Montessori, City High).
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Old 03-25-2009, 09:50 PM
Location: Grand Rapids, MI
17 posts, read 55,770 times
Reputation: 10
I think its just the natural way that cities grow. I remember growing up in Wyoming when there was nothing in Grandville, but farms and swamps. Now, people are starting to build past Grandville, in the now more trendy, expenisive areas for the the upper middle class, while Wyoming and surrounding areas are more affordable for the lower class. Of course, there are great areas are downtown. I've noticed that North of 96 is becoming a lot trendier while I have a friends in the Belknapp neighbor who loves it up there. Of course, there are places I avoid, but I have never felt I was in a dangerous place anywhere in GR.
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Old 03-27-2009, 01:51 PM
12,540 posts, read 7,606,780 times
Reputation: 4762
GR has changed for the better, in my opinion. I cannot tell you how shocked I was to see black folks on the near NW side of town. I left GR in the early 80’s. I went to Union High. If you got caught being black on the near NW side of town….that was yo azz. I knew a cat named “Squeeky”, who was dating a female who lived in the area (she was white) and he went over there one night and the next day he came to school all lumped up. They had whooped his azz. At the same time, I was equally shocked to see young white males walking down the street I had grown up on in SE Grand Rapids. I remember when a white kid got off the bus one year and was walking down our street and my brother had to take him in our house before the vampires got him. It was tit for tat. You don’t come over here and we don’t go over there. Now…. that BS has seemed to have faded…hopefully for good. However, I think now that blacks are integrating communities outside of their SE side concentration, many people now say that these areas are “getting bad” or “getting worse”. Conversely, the areas that were once mainly black, in SE Grand Rapids (such as the Cherry Area), and are becoming more “white”…..are said to be “getting better”….LOL. The more things change….the more they remain the same.
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