U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Celebrating Memorial Day!
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Maryland
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
 
 
Old 08-12-2009, 12:49 PM
 
332 posts, read 1,162,934 times
Reputation: 108

Advertisements

I recently moved to Columbia and I'm renting an apartment. I'm now looking to buy and have heard people mention Dorsey Search, River HIll and Hickory Ridge as good places to live. I have visited Harpers Choice and I like the parts that I have seen thus far and wanted to know if people have good or bad experiences there. I really like the Hobbits Glen area and I have not seen areas in Columbia that are nicer. Please let me know which areas I should visit that are nicer than Hobbits Glen. I also really like the Dorsey Search area as well.

Thanks.

I'm also looking and Ellicott City but I do not think I'm going to find something that I like as much as the Hobbits Glen area however from rankings and peoples opinions it seems like the schools in Ellicott City are ranked better so I will need to consider that as well.
Quick reply to this message

 
Old 08-13-2009, 07:51 AM
 
Location: In front of a computer, typing...
22 posts, read 46,723 times
Reputation: 31
I grew up in Columbia - Dorseys Search in particular (used to be called Dorsey Hall). My sister lives in River Hill now. Both areas are really nice. Harpers Choice would be lower on my list, and Hobbits Glen is nice, but I would look at the other 2 neighborhoods first.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-17-2009, 10:05 AM
 
37 posts, read 128,658 times
Reputation: 17
Ellicott City and the places you metioned are a good bet. Harper's Choice, yeah, definately bottom of the list the places you mentioned are very nice I wouldn't consider harper's choice.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-18-2009, 10:23 AM
 
49 posts, read 205,155 times
Reputation: 22
I recently moved to Columbia to.. I jsut found a job paying well. It seems like we would have to live in Columbia for about a year or so and then move.. Hopefully we would be able to stay in the Howard County area. Since you're looking at schols I'm assuming you have kids. I have found the after school care with Columbia Association to be soo expensive. I am hoping I can find some nice neightbors who I can trust. Not sure if they moms are stay at home though since it's soo expensive to live there..
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-20-2009, 09:00 PM
 
332 posts, read 1,162,934 times
Reputation: 108
Default NJ08 from where did you move?

Quote:
Originally Posted by nj08 View Post
I recently moved to Columbia to.. I jsut found a job paying well. It seems like we would have to live in Columbia for about a year or so and then move.. Hopefully we would be able to stay in the Howard County area. Since you're looking at schols I'm assuming you have kids. I have found the after school care with Columbia Association to be soo expensive. I am hoping I can find some nice neightbors who I can trust. Not sure if they moms are stay at home though since it's soo expensive to live there..
Yes I have young kids and I'm currently researching day-cares/preschool. Not sure about your kids age(s) but you can usually find good help with college students and sittercity worked for me but I think you have to have an account.

I've only been in Columbia for a little while but so far, I like it and find it to be safe but it could be that I'm living in the safe part of it.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-22-2009, 06:52 PM
 
Location: Monadnock region
3,712 posts, read 9,895,474 times
Reputation: 2455
Hobbits Glen can be nice.. but it's still tied to Harpers Choice which isn't considered very good. Have they cleared up the gang/drug/crime stuff? Joseph Square used to be particularly rough.

Dorsey Search is good, I think Hickory Ridge is good - don't know about River Hill.

Ellicott City is considered better schools - especially the Centennial district.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-22-2009, 07:22 PM
 
5 posts, read 33,507 times
Reputation: 14
OK coming from a person that has actually lived in harpers choice. (In longfellow neighborhood) i will tell you that the village center has gotten a little worse. I went to harpers choice middle and it was a horrible school compared to bonnie branch middle in ellicott city. But Hobbits glen is nice though, you should also check out beaver brook, and some parts of longfellow. I moved to wilde lake village a year ago and i do like it better. It has nice scenery like the lake and is walking distance from the town center (mall, other lake). also there is less traffic in the village center. I now live in bryant woods. And this is comming from a high schoolers perspective at wilde lake high. all in all harpers choice is not to shabby.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-22-2009, 08:25 PM
 
332 posts, read 1,162,934 times
Reputation: 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by jordanhgns View Post
OK coming from a person that has actually lived in harpers choice. (In longfellow neighborhood) i will tell you that the village center has gotten a little worse. I went to harpers choice middle and it was a horrible school compared to bonnie branch middle in ellicott city. But Hobbits glen is nice though, you should also check out beaver brook, and some parts of longfellow. I moved to wilde lake village a year ago and i do like it better. It has nice scenery like the lake and is walking distance from the town center (mall, other lake). also there is less traffic in the village center. I now live in bryant woods. And this is comming from a high schoolers perspective at wilde lake high. all in all harpers choice is not to shabby.
How has the village center gotten worse and why was harpers choice middle worst the Bonnie Branch? Is it the teachers, the students, safety, building. Does Howard County require all people from a particular grade to teach the same materials? I would think that the quality difference was either the teachers, safety or the students. I care about the 1st 2 issues more than the 3rd. I have been to the village center all of the time for shopping and etc and have not had any problems. Other than people hanging out at Rita's, I haven't even notice any loitering or issues. Of course, I really do not go out a night either, which could be when all of the problems happen.

I will look at longfellow and beaverbrook.

I'm curious if people have actually been victims of crime, witnessed crime or just feel uncomfortable in Harper's Choice. Basically, if you read the comments you would not live in Columbia because people say that the schools are bad and all of the neighborhoods are unsafe, except for River Hill (which is really Clarksville), Dorsey Search (which seems like part of it is Ellicott City but I may be wrong about that) and Hickory Ridge.

I'm just looking for some place safe, with good schools and diverse to raise my family. I was hoping and I am hoping that Columbia is the place.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-28-2009, 04:20 PM
 
Location: Dayton
8 posts, read 20,579 times
Reputation: 11
Default River Hill is fabulous!!!

I live in Western Howard County, close to River Hill. I think it's wonderful!! I would prefer River Hill over any other village in Columbia (I was raised in Owen Brown).
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-05-2009, 11:22 PM
 
1 posts, read 5,796 times
Reputation: 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by SmokeyLisa View Post
How has the village center gotten worse and why was harpers choice middle worst the Bonnie Branch? Is it the teachers, the students, safety, building. Does Howard County require all people from a particular grade to teach the same materials? I would think that the quality difference was either the teachers, safety or the students. I care about the 1st 2 issues more than the 3rd. I have been to the village center all of the time for shopping and etc and have not had any problems. Other than people hanging out at Rita's, I haven't even notice any loitering or issues. Of course, I really do not go out a night either, which could be when all of the problems happen.

I will look at longfellow and beaverbrook.

I'm curious if people have actually been victims of crime, witnessed crime or just feel uncomfortable in Harper's Choice. Basically, if you read the comments you would not live in Columbia because people say that the schools are bad and all of the neighborhoods are unsafe, except for River Hill (which is really Clarksville), Dorsey Search (which seems like part of it is Ellicott City but I may be wrong about that) and Hickory Ridge.

I'm just looking for some place safe, with good schools and diverse to raise my family. I was hoping and I am hoping that Columbia is the place.
1.) Harper's Choice Village Center has had it's problems with crime after hours. It's not normally an issue during the day and doesn't prevent me or my family from going there. Most of Columbia's village centers are surrounded by Section 8 housing, the original idea was to have cheap housing near by the areas where they would work.

Over time, it created a somewhat dangerous environment around the village centers, but most of them including Harper's Choice now have a 24/7 police center which has helped to reduce the number of incidents. I don't fear for my safety, but then again I wouldn't recommend walking around there after dark. Compared to a city, the rates are ridiculously low, but compared to other places in Columbia, they are higher. If you want to research, check out this site: Crime Statistics You will need to enter potential addresses to compare their crime rates.

2.) I've found school quality to be pretty consistent, the issue around whether one is better than the other is usually around districting. If you go here: Howard County,Middle School,Howard County, Maryland you can see the scores. The schools with greater average home prices tend to do better.

Why? Better boosters, better parental involvement, better home environments, etc. I went to Harpers Choice Middle and found it excellent; I think you take from the school what you put in. They were able to support me and most of my friends that were taking high school classes in middle school without major issue. As far as I know, the materials and courseware are the same in all Howard County schools.

I lived in Longfellow from 1980 through 1993 and it's a great neighborhood. Lots of paths, friendly people, and a great place to raise kids. It is boring for adults, however; it's not exciting like the city, but rather a low key suburb where things are consistent and predictable.

Beaverbrook is more expensive and not actually part of Columbia. I'm not downing it, the lots are larger and the homes generally nicer, but it does not have the sidewalk and path infrastructure that come with Columbia. For example, you can't bike to the Mall without going through some rough trails to get to Longfellow where it connects to the path system.

I would also recommend giving Clary's Forest a look for homes if you are considering Harper's Choice.

Most people that have lived here this long remember when Columbia was safer, but there were a lot less people here. We grew up playing kickball in the street and biking everywhere all the time. Times have changed, but I still highly recommend Columbia for it's outdoor activities, schools, safety, libraries, and most importantly, community.
Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


 
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Options
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2020 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Maryland
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2020, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Contact Us - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37 - Top