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Old 09-16-2010, 09:35 AM
 
25 posts, read 50,531 times
Reputation: 56

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Hello there,

I'm looking at attending Lehigh University next year for graduate school and have a few questions about the area.

I have read through the forums, but apologize if I missed something that has already been discussed.

I'm retired from the military and my husband and I currently live in the southeast. We are fairly laid back and we like the simple things...a hike through the woods, visiting historic sites, having meals at local restaurants and a drink at a local hang-out. Hubby works from home, so we don't need to worry about him finding work.

Having moved every few years for most of our lives, we are really looking for a place that we could possibly settle once I'm done with my Ph.D. and the Bethlehem area is appealing to us.

So, my questions are:
If I attend Lehigh, is it conceivable to live in/near the historic area/near the north downtown area and have a short drive to campus? How bad of a commute is it during the winter? We're both very familiar with living and working in areas with massive snow fall, but it's always nice to know how streets are cared for.

I've looked at the houses for sale on the web and they seem affordable. Are there any areas that you could recommend or direct us to? Single family homes, condos...we're open.

I see complaints of muggings..etc. on the south side near campus, and on campus. Now I have attended 2 very large universities where there was plenty of crime on or near campus (muggings, drug related issues, thefts..etc), so I don't scare easily...but as a little female, I do like to know what I'm getting into. Is the safety issue overstated, or is this a real issue that causes problems for both students and residents?

What do the locals do for fun? We're in our 30's, but hang with people of all ages as long as people aren't habitual drunks or being moronic.

We would like to find a smallish non-denominational Christian church to attend. A sense of community/belonging is important to us. Any suggestions to where to start looking?

OK...I think that's enough for now. Any other info you believe someone moving to the area would need to know is appreciated.

Thanks much.
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Old 09-16-2010, 10:16 AM
 
Location: MMU->ABE->ATL->ASH
9,220 posts, read 18,508,291 times
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1. Yes you can live on the north side of Bethlehem, From There to campus will be about 15min drive, The main roads are all plow'ed and in good shape, Secondary/Res street are ok, But are done after Main ones are done. Most snow fall are lite, Bethlehem area get about 3/4 4+" a year and maybe 1/2 12+ a year. The big ones close the whole state, 4+ If you go slow you can get out of your drive way and get to the main roads.
2. When you pick out a house look at the local school dist (if you have kids, or plan 2). Some are better then other, some are just bad.
3. Security at LU is good, but if you can walk to the parking lot with someone, I think LU security runs a escort pgm that has someone walk you to you car. You just need to call them a little in advance of when you will need them.
4. There are 'hangout' kind of bars, but young Prof seem to be at places like applebee's of US22.
5. No reply. - church.
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Old 09-16-2010, 10:39 AM
 
25 posts, read 50,531 times
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Thanks for the info Fly, I appreciate it.

Kids are not part of the equation, so I'm not too concerned about school districts (save for maintaining property values in general).

A 15 min drive sounds like heaven. I currently drive about an hour to school and to where I intern. Looks like if Lehigh works out for grad school, I can sleep in on occasion!
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Old 09-16-2010, 07:56 PM
 
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1: do you know if your program is housed on main campus or mountaintop? that will add another ten to your commute, as well as driving up a (small) mountain in the winter. lehigh does take good care of the roads, city is ok for main roads but alleys and side roads are more problematic.
2: north or west side of bethlehem should do the trick. it is great being within walking distance of downtown! lots of festivals and events on the weekends.
3: i take classes on the southside in the evenings, never had a problem and feel safe. i try to leave class when everyone else does, so i'm not trying to walk a long distance on my own at night.
4: lots of outdoorsy activities: running, biking--i guess the better question is what do you like to do--then we can tell you if that can be found here
5: new covenant is very popular--on broad st. it is non-denominational and is small compared to those super-churches.
6: the morning call is the local paper--take a look at what's going on.
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Old 09-16-2010, 10:36 PM
 
25 posts, read 50,531 times
Reputation: 56
Quote:
Originally Posted by vapama View Post
1: do you know if your program is housed on main campus or mountaintop? that will add another ten to your commute, as well as driving up a (small) mountain in the winter. lehigh does take good care of the roads, city is ok for main roads but alleys and side roads are more problematic.
2: north or west side of bethlehem should do the trick. it is great being within walking distance of downtown! lots of festivals and events on the weekends.
3: i take classes on the southside in the evenings, never had a problem and feel safe. i try to leave class when everyone else does, so i'm not trying to walk a long distance on my own at night.
4: lots of outdoorsy activities: running, biking--i guess the better question is what do you like to do--then we can tell you if that can be found here
5: new covenant is very popular--on broad st. it is non-denominational and is small compared to those super-churches.
6: the morning call is the local paper--take a look at what's going on.
My program would be in the College of Education, which appears to be on the hill in Iacocca Hall. That's an excellent point Vapama, thanks. Thankfully we've a 4x4 vehicle if things get too crazy with the ice and snow

Where we currently live we are in walking distance from several boutiques and restaurants, festivals and the like. We really do enjoy that and having it when we move would really be a treat.

Glad to hear something positive on the safety issue. Reading the crime states and such is great and informative, but I really do appreciate hearing how residents feel...that gives me a better understanding of how daily life is.

Not really an outdoor/sporty kind of couple...a brisk hike through the woods is more our speed...I swore off running when I retired from the Army Love historic sites, festivals, checking out local landmarks, museums, farmer's markets...we're really open and laid back. Both of our schedules are fairly hectic, so anything we did would be pretty close to home (within an hour's drive), and pretty low-key.

We'll check out New Covenant church...thanks. Not a mega-church kinda people, so glad to hear it is smallish.

I've been watching the Morning Call online for a few days and trying to understand the local scene. Even so, I really like to here what people have to say about where they live. As I said in my OP, we're pretty tired of moving every few years and we'd like to find a place where we could settle down and get comfy...put down some roots.

If I'm invited to LU for an interview in Feb, I won't have time to really get to know the city (and chances are hubby won't be able to accompany me) so I really appreciate all of the information offered!
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Old 09-18-2010, 06:48 AM
 
12,916 posts, read 29,821,521 times
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I know someone that is in the masters program for special ed at Lehigh. She loves it. She lives in Emmaus and just drives to Bethlehem every day. Emmaus is a great little town without the safety or traffic issues of Bethlehem.
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Old 09-18-2010, 06:48 PM
 
25 posts, read 50,531 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by toobusytoday View Post
I know someone that is in the masters program for special ed at Lehigh. She loves it. She lives in Emmaus and just drives to Bethlehem every day. Emmaus is a great little town without the safety or traffic issues of Bethlehem.
Thanks Toobusy, we'll check out Emmaus as well.
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