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Old 06-10-2008, 12:47 PM
 
Location: Philadelphia
23 posts, read 88,116 times
Reputation: 22

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Any input would be appreciated. We're trying to decide between the two.

Collingswood: easy to get to center city, nice downtown BUT schools are so-so and borders Camden.

Elkins Park: gorgeous houses, better schools, near Jenkintown BUT not as easy to drive to center city and doesn't have its own downtown area (that I know of!)

We have a 2 year old so schools are important. Looking for 3+ bedroom, 2 bath house in 300 - 350k range.

I'd love some input. Thanks in advance.
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Old 06-10-2008, 02:13 PM
 
Location: DC
3,299 posts, read 10,755,198 times
Reputation: 1346
I grew up near Elkins Park and love it up there. Yes, true, it technically doesn't have a downtown of it's own, but I always thought of it as joining up with Jenkintown or Glenside (we're only talking 5 minutes here). Also, Chestnut Hill is pretty close (15-20 minutes), which is an adorable area.

Yes, driving to Center City sucks a little, especially during rush hour, but it's not really that bad. Outside of rush hour (say, going out to lunch or dinner) I've done it in 30 minutes. The good part is that if one road is backed up, you have other ways to go, which helps the traffic situation (as opposed to being right by a highway, but if it's busy you're stuck using it since it's the only option). Also, there's a lot of train service in the area, which is another option.
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Old 06-11-2008, 08:45 AM
 
Location: Philadelphia
690 posts, read 2,770,010 times
Reputation: 201
I wouldn't worry about Collingswood being too close to Camden. Route 130 acts a great buffer zone and the city is pretty much contained in its own world with little spillover. While Collingswood schools aren't the best - I hear they are getting better every year. Also remember there is a train station in downtown Collingswood which gets u into center city in only 15min.

If you are really dead-set on good schools, there are a few towns close to Collingswood which have better schools, very easy drive to Philly, and homes in ur price range. Research Haddon Heights, Audubon, and Westmont (Haddon Twp). All 3 have downtowns with Westmont have a train station as well.

good luck in ur decision.
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Old 06-11-2008, 10:59 AM
 
Location: Philadelphia
23 posts, read 88,116 times
Reputation: 22
Thanks JerzBoy- I'll check out those 3 suggestions. The schools are biggest concern. We hate leaving Philly but safety and the schools are making us do it. We're both very comfortable with Collingswood - only concern is the middle and high school. Of course- our daughter is only 2 now! But I want to move once and not have to move in 10 years because of the schools.

Anyway- thanks!
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Old 06-11-2008, 11:59 AM
 
Location: West Mount Airy
160 posts, read 740,708 times
Reputation: 47
I went to Cheltenham HS which is in Elkins Park and I loved it. A lot of the homes are really nice, and I commuted to the city for school every day. I think I made it to CC in about 25 min, less without traffic and I usually traveled very very early AM so it wasn't bad at all. In EP you are also 5min from 309 so the turnpike is accessible as well as 15-20min from willow grove mall which is convenient. I live in chestnut hill now but look forward to moving back to Elkins Park in a few years. AS for Collingswood, my husband is from audubon which is one town over with nice homes and good schools. The location to CC is about 10minutes, and access to shops, restaurants,etc is also very easy from Audubon.
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Old 06-11-2008, 08:48 PM
 
40 posts, read 206,362 times
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I would definitely consider Haddon Heights and Haddonfield....both have GREAT schools and an easy drive into Center City. Also, you can just take the PATCO in b/c Haddonfield has a station....it's quicker and easier and cheaper than driving in...and you can drink your coffee and read the paper while doing so!
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Old 06-12-2008, 04:30 AM
 
Location: Philadelphia
23 posts, read 88,116 times
Reputation: 22
Thanks for the feedback!!! We're looking tonight in Haddon Township. I think Haddonfield is out of our price range but will check Haddon Heights.

So glad to have personal input about Cheltenham Schools- did you go to elementary and middle school there as well? If so, where?

I'm leaning towards Elkins Park this morning- I'm a PA girl at heart. Don't know why it's such a big mental hurdle for me to actually move to NJ.
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Old 06-12-2008, 12:56 PM
 
Location: NJ
980 posts, read 2,478,288 times
Reputation: 1860
I've noticed that the property taxes in Elkins Park as high as NJ, so if you are okay with high property taxes, I would definitely suggest Haddon Heights, NJ if you like a charming town with a lot of character and good schools. Very nice, safe, attractive middle/upper middle class area with easy and quick access to Philadelphia via PATCO high speedline. This is especially nice considering what is happening with gasoline. The less you have to drive, the better. I just love Haddon Heights.
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