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Harrisburg area Cumberland, Dauphin, and Perry Counties
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Old 07-04-2009, 11:30 AM
 
2 posts, read 7,212 times
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My husband and I are planning to spend a day driving around the Harrisburg area to "scout out" potential neighborhoods to relocate to. We would really, really benefit from some recommendations on where to look so we don't waste our one chance to do this driving around in circles.

Here are the keys things we are looking for: (1) great school district (and Catholic schools count too) and playgrounds and other things for young children to do (we have three pre-school age kids); (2) within 30 minute door-to-door commuting time from the state capitol in rush hour; (3) can afford a 4BR house for under $300k that is reasonably new; and (4) an area with other young families like ours.

I know, I know. This is a wish list. We can't have everything. But we won't know what we CAN have unless we ask and start looking. Thanks so much for any advice!
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Old 07-04-2009, 11:59 AM
 
Location: Center City Philadelphia
1,099 posts, read 4,358,771 times
Reputation: 445
Quote:
Originally Posted by tntdy View Post
My husband and I are planning to spend a day driving around the Harrisburg area to "scout out" potential neighborhoods to relocate to. We would really, really benefit from some recommendations on where to look so we don't waste our one chance to do this driving around in circles.

Here are the keys things we are looking for: (1) great school district (and Catholic schools count too) and playgrounds and other things for young children to do (we have three pre-school age kids); (2) within 30 minute door-to-door commuting time from the state capitol in rush hour; (3) can afford a 4BR house for under $300k that is reasonably new; and (4) an area with other young families like ours.

I know, I know. This is a wish list. We can't have everything. But we won't know what we CAN have unless we ask and start looking. Thanks so much for any advice!
You can't go wrong in most of Harrisburg's suburbs when it comes to good schools and neighborhoods. We'll start on the "west shore" which is west of the Susquehanna River.

Specific areas to check out include Hampden and Silver Spring township, both part of the Cumberland Valley school district (considered one of the best in the area). Lots of newer housing and young families here. I've always been partial to the Westover and Indian Hills developments, but you should also check out Walden in Silver Spring.

If newer housing isn't that much of a big deal, check out Camp Hill. It's a small borough just minutes from the state capitol. Beautiful, tree-lined streets, a nice main street with shops and restaurants and a great school district.

Also take a look at Mechanicsburg borough. Again, older housing, but good school district and nice, walkable main street.

Maybe somebody else can chime in with the east shore neighborhoods?
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Old 07-06-2009, 10:49 AM
 
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I agree, would look at the previous posters suggestion, can't improve on it. Cumberland Valley and Camp Hill School districts are the best in the area.
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Old 07-06-2009, 11:30 AM
 
4,268 posts, read 10,717,464 times
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On the "east shore" try the Hummelstown or Hershey area. Both Lower Dauphin Lower Dauphin School District (http://ldsd.org/lowerdauphinsd/site/default.asp - broken link) and Derry Township Derry Township... Where It’s Just Sweeter! : Derry Township PA schools are highly rated. L.D. has several very new developments (such as Southern Meadows, New Homes in South Hanover Township, Lower Dauphin - EGStoltzfus (http://www.egstoltzfus.com/neighborhoods/southern_meadows/ - broken link) and nearby area) and Derry has a newer (mostly built out but with some resales) area west of Middletown Road surrounding Gelder Park (http://www.derrytownship.org/index.php/gelder-park-gelder-drive/14-township-parks-/88-gelder-park-gelder-drive - broken link) with Hummelstown 17036 address.
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Old 07-11-2009, 12:17 PM
 
2 posts, read 7,212 times
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Thanks so much for the suggestions! We're making a daytrip the first week of August, so this is really going to help guide us!
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Old 07-13-2009, 09:21 PM
 
Location: Alamogordo, NM
259 posts, read 808,402 times
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I can attest to Cumberland Valley being an excellent school I graduated from there in 2003. Lived in Hampden Township close to the Carlisle Pike. Was just home in May and every time I make a trip home there are a lot more new housing developments and more shopping plazas.
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Old 07-14-2009, 06:31 AM
 
Location: Lancaster County, PA
1,740 posts, read 4,074,403 times
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Maybe take a ride through Middletown as well.
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Old 07-15-2009, 06:32 PM
 
Location: Center of the universe
24,661 posts, read 36,425,053 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tntdy View Post
My husband and I are planning to spend a day driving around the Harrisburg area to "scout out" potential neighborhoods to relocate to. We would really, really benefit from some recommendations on where to look so we don't waste our one chance to do this driving around in circles.

Here are the keys things we are looking for: (1) great school district (and Catholic schools count too) and playgrounds and other things for young children to do (we have three pre-school age kids); (2) within 30 minute door-to-door commuting time from the state capitol in rush hour; (3) can afford a 4BR house for under $300k that is reasonably new; and (4) an area with other young families like ours.

I know, I know. This is a wish list. We can't have everything. But we won't know what we CAN have unless we ask and start looking. Thanks so much for any advice!
I think Hershey fits all of your criteria.
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Old 07-15-2009, 07:16 PM
 
Location: Center City Philadelphia
1,099 posts, read 4,358,771 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunil's Dad View Post
I think Hershey fits all of your criteria.
Going to be tough to find a new 4 bedroom for under 300k in Derry township proper. Maybe in nearby Hummelstown or West Hanover township, however.
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Old 07-15-2009, 09:03 PM
 
149 posts, read 600,797 times
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You can find a 4-bedroom house in Camp Hill borough for under 300k. There is one under contract on my street for about $250k, a 4 bed/3bath with a garage.

The commute to Harrisburg from Camp Hill is about 8 and a half minutes.

The school district is very well regarded. I graduated from high school here a long time ago but my brother went to Trinity H.S (the Catholic H.S. on the West Shore in Lower Allen Township but Camp Hill address). Good Shepherd is the Catholic grade school which strangely was in Camp Hill 2 years ago but they demolished the building and rebuilt on the other side of the tract which is in Hampden Twp.

Camp Hill has no school buses so if you live east of about 26th street then you will have to drive your kids to school. I have to say Camp Hill is, in my opinion, overwhelmingly Episcopalian and Lutheran, very secular, and I don't see the need for Good Shepherd (I'll burn in hell for saying this).

I think this is the most walkable, neighborly neighborhood in the area. We have parades, a fabulous library, lots of parks, and the most awesome recyclycling facility I have ever seen. We also have free mulch and tan bark!
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