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Old 05-14-2020, 10:46 AM
 
152 posts, read 144,771 times
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Yes , Tiny's is/was packed all the time. I drove by on my way to work and the lot was always stacked with humvee's and state troopers. And downtown is definitely unique for such a small town. If/when the Indian Hill facility opens, I could see restaurant traffic increasing.
Regarding the noise in town: I have lived near trains for a while before coming so I don't mind them much. Sometimes the freight trains will squeal and slam for a while and I can see how it would be annoying.
I also don't hear too much from the base except for reveille, which I think is charming.
The one annoying noise I hear is the State Police training facility and SCCA track at the old airfield. It can sound like a Fast and Furious movie on certain days.
The local facebook page complaints are usually hard/rusty water, 'what's that noise?', and that there is too many trees getting cut down.
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Old 05-14-2020, 11:50 AM
 
15,823 posts, read 28,157,967 times
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I loved Tiny's, so glad to hear it's still doing well. Thank you for your response.
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Old 05-14-2020, 11:56 AM
 
13,450 posts, read 10,219,261 times
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Originally Posted by brightdoglover View Post
I think downtown Ayer is an interesting and real little downtown. Not snazzy, not crummy but urban in its own way. I have always liked a blue-collar feel, without suburban manicure and yoga mats and all.
I'm just thankful a few towns like that are allowed to still exist. Not every place needs to become a homogenized Starbucks infested rat race ville, or otherwise be doomed to ghettofication.
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Old 05-14-2020, 12:50 PM
 
3,199 posts, read 1,880,291 times
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Originally Posted by massnative71 View Post
I'm just thankful a few towns like that are allowed to still exist. Not every place needs to become a homogenized Starbucks infested rat race ville, or otherwise be doomed to ghettofication.
People who merely drive through or occasionally leave Harvard for a meal at Lucia's (because Gibbet is packed) have no appreciation for how odd the transient vagrants/townies are - they just see the veneer of small working class town.

I'm sure some of these types have been priced out and landed in Fitchburg or elsewhere, but the vibe is not, IMO, purely that of a small working class town like Clinton, Gardner, or even Pittsfield. I walked my dog daily through downtown for 3 years, morning and night, and the amount of downtrodden vagrant-looking drunks I stumbled across was staggering considering the tiny population. My assumption is no reasonable person wishes to live on the other side of Main St. along the tracks/industrial area, so the COL remains dirt cheap attracting a very derelict crowd ... it's weird in context being a relatively nice downtown surrounded by desirable leafy 'burbs.

Is Ayer an entirely tolerable place to live, particularly along the Groton border? Yes, it's fine. All I'm saying is there are tangible reasons why Ayer COL remains much cheaper than it's leafy desirable neighbors despite having supposedly "millenial friendly" features like a walkable down town, commuter rail station, and decent housing stock.

If I were still childless, I'd happily buy in the Belvidere or Highland (portions) neighborhoods of Lowell. I'd buy in Hudson. I'd buy the Greely Park or southern neighborhoods of Nashua. I'm not someone who needs gilded 'burbs. I would not, however, buy in Ayer. The place, while having redeeming qualities, is haunted by ghost of Devens past and maintains a palpable weirdness which I have not felt in other working class towns/cities ... most of which were/are lower income.
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Old 05-14-2020, 01:16 PM
 
13,450 posts, read 10,219,261 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shrewsburried View Post
People who merely drive through or occasionally leave Harvard for a meal at Lucia's (because Gibbet is packed) have no appreciation for how odd the transient vagrants/townies are - they just see the veneer of small working class town.

I'm sure some of these types have been priced out and landed in Fitchburg or elsewhere, but the vibe is not, IMO, purely that of a small working class town like Clinton, Gardner, or even Pittsfield. I walked my dog daily through downtown for 3 years, morning and night, and the amount of downtrodden vagrant-looking drunks I stumbled across was staggering considering the tiny population. My assumption is no reasonable person wishes to live on the other side of Main St. along the tracks/industrial area, so the COL remains dirt cheap attracting a very derelict crowd ... it's weird in context being a relatively nice downtown surrounded by desirable leafy 'burbs.

Is Ayer an entirely tolerable place to live, particularly along the Groton border? Yes, it's fine. All I'm saying is there are tangible reasons why Ayer COL remains much cheaper than it's leafy desirable neighbors despite having supposedly "millenial friendly" features like a walkable down town, commuter rail station, and decent housing stock.

If I were still childless, I'd happily buy in the Belvidere or Highland (portions) neighborhoods of Lowell. I'd buy in Hudson. I'd buy the Greely Park or southern neighborhoods of Nashua. I'm not someone who needs gilded 'burbs. I would not, however, buy in Ayer. The place, while having redeeming qualities, is haunted by ghost of Devens past and maintains a palpable weirdness which I have not felt in other working class towns/cities ... most of which were/are lower income.
I used to drive through there once a month and never noticed the amount of transients you describe, just seemed kind of emtyish to me. I happen to like and appreciate the eeriness of old Devens, but I am kind of "off" like that. It would be nice if they did more with that place though, it certainly has a lot of untapped potential still.



Occasionally I would stop at Hannaford for a couple things or a coffee at DD, and never picked up a weird or bad vibe or anything. But if you actually lived there and experienced all this vagrancy or whatnot and truly think it's worse than Clinton or Gardner or Nashua, then I guess we'll go with that. Personally I've seen more of it in those other towns, though.
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Old 05-14-2020, 02:51 PM
 
Location: Baltimore
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Why would a military base like Ft. Devens make a a town LESS desirable? Aren’t those usually safer, moderately more diverse, and more economically stable than surrounding towns?
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Old 05-14-2020, 02:55 PM
 
Location: The Moon
1,422 posts, read 1,149,013 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BostonBornMassMade View Post
Why would a military base like Ft. Devens make a a town LESS desirable? Aren’t those usually safer, moderately more diverse, and more economically stable than surrounding towns?
Devens is more like an abandoned shell of a former military base than a military base.
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Old 05-14-2020, 02:56 PM
 
15,823 posts, read 28,157,967 times
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Originally Posted by BostonBornMassMade View Post
Why would a military base like Ft. Devens make a a town LESS desirable? Aren’t those usually safer, moderately more diverse, and more economically stable than surrounding towns?
No longer a military base except for a small area left for some work by the Reserves, I think. 1300 beautiful acres that needed to be repurposed that actually spread over three towns. There used to be cheesy little motels and more bars and all for when it was fully used.

I never noticed the vagrants that Shrewsburried remembers seeing, but I believe it's true. I've been to the wrong side of the tracks for various reasons and it's scruffy. The downtown isn't the cute millennial(formerly known as "upped up" type place but it seemed okay to me. Anyway, I'd take the word of the poster who lived in the area and drove through there and suggested other areas that might be more appealing to the OP.
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Old 05-14-2020, 05:28 PM
 
152 posts, read 144,771 times
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The Devens Army Garrison is still open - the live range is south of Route 2 in Harvard close to Fruitlands and Still River.
The rest of Devens has become office and industrial park, a couple of hotels and restaurants and some residential development - but still has a while to be fully developed.
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Old 05-14-2020, 08:19 PM
 
Location: RI, MA, VT, WI, IL, CA, IN (that one sucked), KY
38,727 posts, read 29,120,751 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brk330 View Post
The Devens Army Garrison is still open - the live range is south of Route 2 in Harvard close to Fruitlands and Still River.
The rest of Devens has become office and industrial park, a couple of hotels and restaurants and some residential development - but still has a while to be fully developed.
A ladyfriend of mine, pre covid, was consistently working on movie/tv productions there.
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