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Harrisburg area Cumberland, Dauphin, and Perry Counties
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Old 07-20-2019, 11:52 AM
2 posts, read 1,409 times
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Hi...I am considering a move to Harrisburg but no nothing about the city or areas to make the right choice as to what part of the city I should be looking to live. I do have family there and will be traveling to Baltimore for work (Baltimore is not an option to live I would be moving to Harrisburg specifically for family)....so I need to live within a 2 hour or less (prefer less) range of Baltimore.

This will be quite the lifestyle change for me so finding the right area and best places to meet others is key.....I am single, in my 40s and very active....so need a great gym and would love to be in an area that I can walk to places....grocery store, bars, restaurants, a great dog park for my pup. I am not opposed to more suburban areas though just not sure which ones would be best fit my lifestyle? I am trying to stay relatively close to Mechanicsburg where my family is located....within a 10 to 15 min drive would be best.

Any recommendations and input are so greatly appreciated!

Thanks so much!
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Old 07-21-2019, 08:01 AM
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That’s quite a commute. Hopefully it would not be a daily thing? To minimize that drive, I’d look for something south of Harrisburg, in northern York county, but that might not give you all the amenities you want. I don’t know these areas terribly well, but off hand, ignoring the commute, I’d say camp hill or mechanicsburg.
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Old 07-29-2019, 10:08 AM
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Thank you so much...i appreciate the input!
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Old 08-01-2019, 12:24 PM
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I, too am looking to move to Harrisburg from North Jersey/NYC area. I like some of the housing stock, in particular Midtown, Greene Street, Hamilton, etc. The problem is that I do not/will not keep a car. Just a personal choice and I have been spoiled by living in a small city in North Jersey that is walkable and also great transportation (bus). I will not take uber, taxis, etc.
In checking the map when doing a house search, I see that when I check "transportation", in Harrisburg do not see any public transportation.

I am a very active "senior" (dumb word) like to go about fine dining, etc. like much retail; however, not much in midtown, HB. I do not want a "senior" living environment. Any feedback would be appreciated. Do not want a "suburb" type situation, My first preference has always been Philly; however, with the "gentrification" going on, Philly is now impossible for me, small row houses (average is 14 x 48) not my choice. and suburbia, is not my choice. Center City Philly is "thru the roof" price wise.

In checking Cleveland area, the housing stock is GREAT ! taxes would be around $4,000, unsure about the mid-west, since I have been living East Coast all my life.
Thanks for the feedback.
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Old 08-03-2019, 09:10 AM
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Smaller cities in Pennsylvania tend not to have extensive public transit systems. The Harrisburg area is served by Capital Area Transit, which utilizes buses. I encourage you to check out their website, which has a route maps plus schedules. Additionally, Harrisburg is served by Amtrak with connections to Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, and New York City.

Based on your criteria, I would also check out Lancaster. The Chestnut Hill and Northwest Corridor neighborhoods would fit some of your preferences. Those areas are adjacent to downtown, which has lots of great restaurants, performing arts centers, art galleries, and stores. Both Lancaster and Harrisburg are fairly walkable thanks to their street grids.

Once again, Lancaster does not have a great public transit system. Red Rose Area Transit provides bus service in the city and around the county. Like Harrisburg, Lancaster is served by Amtrak and has the same connections to Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, and New York City. If a good to great public transit system is a must for you, I would look at larger cities.
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Old 08-04-2019, 05:59 PM
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In Harrisburg the bus schedules focus on commuting. Going shopping by bus after you get home, or on weekends, probably forget it.
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Old 08-17-2019, 08:43 AM
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Harrisburg has struggled to grow for the past 35+ years that I've lived in the area. Fraud, embezzlement and cronyism have plagued administrations as far back as I can remember. Harrisburg schools have also struggled and have been close to being taken over by the state due to mismanagement several times. Crime is up not only in Harrisburg, but also Lancaster and York. Attempts to develop the downtown area, Midtown specifically has been very slow in coming. New townhomes are nice but surrounded by much poorer areas with high section 8 housing and crime, which has given many people pause in buying and moving in. There is no grocery store in downtown Harrisburg which is badly needed. The farmer's market runs during the summer and is an awesome place to buy fresh produce, meats and there are a couple seasonal restaurants that are very good as well. There have been several high rise condo projects with garage parking, restaurants, small shopping areas, etc., that have been planned over the years, but none have ever materialized. The river front is a gem in the rough just waiting to be developed, but environmentalists have fought it every step of the way because of the threat to wildlife on the islands in the Susquehanna River with any rise in the water secondary to a dam that would be needed. Most people I know have questioned why it's not OK for the wildlife (cranes, etc) to just move north on the river but so far, no movement on the water front. City island is a nice spot, the baseball team plays there but remains a farm team for the Philadelphia Phillies mostly and has not really grown over the decades. The medical care is excellent on both sides of the river, and suburbia is where most live. The area at large is fairly populated, but Harrisburg City itself has a small population as cities go. Camp Hill, Mechanicsburg, and Colonial Park are growing hotspots but require driving. Public transportation is difficult to negotiate and not designed for 24/7 reliability to get places to shop, dine, etc. My spouse and I have long wanted to retire in center city and have closely watched for maintenance free, safe, nice condos with a city/river view that are affordable, but so far, nothing has been enticing enough to consider it. Except for graduate school, I have lived in Harrisburg including center city since 1981 and have never understood why the city has never taken off. It's a great location, about 5 major thru-ways pass through Harrisburg, the airport is nice and fairly new and has decent coverage, Harrisburg has a water front that could be beautiful, etc., all the components that could make it a great place to live. An above ground rail system was proposed from Phila to Pittsburgh, running through Harrisburg. That would have been a boom but it never happened. As it is, there's an Amtrak railroad station where you can get to Phila and NYC but with many stops and it takes forever. Commuting to Baltimore will be a nightmare, sorry, but it will. Traffic gets snarled going south on I-83 on a regular basis so I would try and locate somewhere between York and Harrisburg. Typically people who commute to Baltimore live south of York which would make your drive to Mechanicsburg over an hour, so you'll have to weigh your daily commute, vs being close to family. Good luck.
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Old 08-18-2019, 03:47 PM
Location: Midwest transplant
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Route 83 from York to Harrisburg is a commuting nightmare. Baltimore to Harrisburg will age you 10 years in 10 months Frequent accidents and the road is often closed for hours, diverting traffic to single lane country roads. Living in York or Southern York would be your best solution for commuting to work~even that can be hairy at times. There are van pools and share ride groups available, you'll have to check places like Craig's List or meet-up groups.

There are numerous apartment complexes along Route 83, right off the exits at Mt. Rose or Queen Street. There are also some unique opportunities to live in downtown York, with walkable restaurants, coffee shops, city markets and some boutique stores. There's a performing arts theatre that brings in great shows. Many of the homes have been converted into apartments and there are some lofts on No. George Street. There are parts of the city that are not great to live or be in, but you'd be able to tell from driving around during the day which areas would be fine.

This puts you further away from Mechanicsburg, but on a weekend you'd be able to get to where you wanted to be much easier than a weekday with a commute and all of the others that are commuting.
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