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Old 05-22-2012, 09:24 AM
52 posts, read 173,978 times
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I am interested in hearing opinions of people who live in these places or very familiar with the individual places to give me some real insight into what they think of the places for family living? We live in Colorado for now, but not from here, (SoCal and Boston area originally), so we can not get a good feel for the places. We visit Arlington alot, so we have a pretty good understanding of that town, but Scituate and Waltham, we are clueless on!

We are interested in good schools, parks, safe community, nice walkable downtown with restaurants and maybe small shops, and community activities. We would like a culturally, and economically diverse neighborhood as much as possible. We already know driving might be a bear to Boston for work, but curious about Hospitals, Urgent Care facilities because of the kids. We have been looking for awhile now and decided that Scituate or Arlingotn would maybe be the best bet, however lately I have been curious about Waltham. I read various things on Waltham about the school, and different areas are better/safer than others, is this true? Scituate, we like because it is near the water, but I know it is a smaller community so there might not be as much funding for the schools there.

Any extra information or opinions would be great on all these three places. When you have a family of 5, with an almost middle-schooler, we would prefer to make the right decision the first time, without moving around alot. We already made that mistake here in Colorado.

Thanks in advance!
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Old 05-22-2012, 11:11 AM
Location: Massachusetts & Hilton Head, SC
9,154 posts, read 14,201,153 times
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Haven't you asked about these towns before?

Anyone live in Scituate? Facts...

What is the deal with Waltham, MA?
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Old 05-22-2012, 11:21 AM
52 posts, read 173,978 times
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yep,! Except for Arlington and Waltham. I thought we would be in Mass. by now but has not worked out yet. Financially it's pricier, so its taken a bit longer than I thought. The good thing is, we have been able to reevaluate our priorities, research more, and narrow down places where we do not want to live and places we are interested in. Its repetitive, but helpful.
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Old 05-24-2012, 01:08 PM
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I am still bully on Waltham but would have bought in Arlington if we could have afforded enough space at the time we bought. I have no info on Scituate. The downside to Arlington is that they are having money troubles and school troubles (overcrowding, eliminating programs) and the only way to commute is by bus to subway. I cannot abide a daily commute that makes me depend upon the bus (traffic, snow, rain, unpredictability), but that may just be me. Walking from wherever I live to MassAve to catch the bus, to stop every ten feet and then finally be at the redline to ride 30 minutes to downtown. . .I'd rather be on the commuter rail. Although from Arlington you can ride your bike in on the minuteman for part of the way.
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Old 05-25-2012, 08:06 AM
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Choose Arlington.
Send children to St. Agnes School and on to Arlington Catholic High School.
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Old 05-25-2012, 01:28 PM
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Waltham is spotty. I don't think it's unsafe, it's just a mix of nicer/pricier homes and lower SES (which is obvious when you drive by). The east side (towards Watertown) is better, generally. Have you looked into Watertown? It's pretty nice, reasonable schools, safe, family-friendly, lots of parks, walkable. As far as hospitals, theere is a satelite of Children's Hosp in Waltham (On Hope street) although doesn't have urgent care, only specialty clinics and an awesome Headache Clinic. I'm not sure where urgent cares are, but Mt Auburn hospital is close by (by Harvard Square), and you have Children's Hospital 30 min away!
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Old 05-25-2012, 06:02 PM
52 posts, read 173,978 times
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Thank you. Its so hard trying to make a decision not living there. I think we are going to stay in Scituate for a month in the summer with the kids to get a good feel of it. The whole hospital thing I am just going to have to get used to driving more than 10 or 15min. I guess I have been spoiled!
It looks like more and more it is either Arlington or Scituate, both quite different I know. Arlington is starting to move to the top, because I wonder about the activities for the children in Scituate. Not that they do not have them, but things like Dance, Theater, Robotic Classes, Karate, etc... Also I believe it will be a bit more culturally diverse. The only downside is its not next to the water, which we were used to, and away from the city congestion like Scituate. Arlington also seem to have more things accessable. I suppose it is what we desire for our family. It would be ideal to have everything but in our budget, and in reality, just doesnt happen.
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Old 05-26-2012, 08:55 AM
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Arlington and Scituate are both great but so drastically different. My sister lives in Arlington, and we grew up in Scituate.

Scituate lacks pretty much any cultural diversity at all. Period. (minus a small contingent of Cape Verdians that live in teh area). They don't call it hte Irish Riviera for nuthin'! I would be less concerned about schools in scituate, and activities available there. There is plenty of that; it's the diversity that you won't find there. It is by definition a bedroom community, so there are tons of kid activities and so on.

I'm not sure of specifically why you need such easy access to a hospital, but am assuming it may be that your kids have special medical needs. If this is the case, then the distance to South Shore hospital should be a concern with Scituate as well. It is a solid 20 minutes away to Weymouth. In arlington, you wouldn't have to deal with that.

I also wouldn't be concerned about the schools in scituate. Scituate schools are always good. Never great, but also never bad. The town always passes proposed overrides when necessary. I really can't speak to the schools in arlington other than i've heard they are good.

I think it really comes down to what you want most. Diversity, convenience, and mild congestion, or no diversity, peace and quiet, and physical beauty of the ocean.
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Old 05-26-2012, 09:34 AM
Location: San Antonio
4,392 posts, read 5,842,967 times
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Convenience, walkability and culture: Arlington
Slightly less convenience, but some economic diversity: Waltham
Schools and safety: Scituate

Take your pick.
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Old 05-26-2012, 02:28 PM
52 posts, read 173,978 times
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-Chaxey, yes my son has severe asthma at times, and needs medical attention sooner than later. If it got too be a severe emergency we would ofcourse call an ambulance. Thank you also for going into such detail about Scituate. We love living by the water so much, but the lack of cultural diversity 'might' clench it for me, just because we are a inter-racial couple, and desire the children to be raised in atleast somewhat culturally mixed area. However, with that said safety is huge also for the kids, though I do not think that is a problem with any of the two towns. My sister-n-law was born, raised, and raising her kids in Arlington, and ofcourse loves the place. I am probably a bit partial, and from the post both you and TheNewtexan wrote, it sounds like a better fit for us, even without the water. Alot closer to Boston also for date night, and taking the kids to the museums. As I am writing this, I think I have made up my mind. Now, we just need the perfect house, the perfect price, and in the perfect area of Arlington( not on a main street, and we will be set.
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