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Old 03-11-2007, 09:56 AM
 
2,189 posts, read 6,852,431 times
Reputation: 840

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Quote:
Originally Posted by WayneNewton View Post
That's ok. I would at least want public transportation for the daily grind to work and for cultural stuff on the weekends. I don't have to have it for shopping. We would keep one of our cars no matter what... at least until we see for ourselves what is doable.

That would be fine. Most (or at least many) people who come into in Center City (or University City) use public transportation. I would still suggest that you start your search for a home along the Benjamin Franklin Parkway (known as the Art Museum area) for the reasons, I stated above.

http://www.ushistory.org/franklin/ph...ia/parkway.htm

Last edited by newmarlig; 03-11-2007 at 10:15 AM..

 
Old 03-11-2007, 02:54 PM
 
8,048 posts, read 18,469,927 times
Reputation: 2738
Quote:
Originally Posted by WayneNewton View Post
By European, I don't necessarily mean that everything looks just like Europe, just general idea of how things are. In Central Florida, you never see people just congregate at a park for no reason. There are very few museums and they are expensive. You have to drive far to get to anything and everything is so artificial. There is really nothing to do except shop at chain stores, which isn't a hobby of ours. Even in the smallest cities in Germany, there is a distinct downtown area that feels alive. We miss that.

It is funny that you associate "progressive" with "gay." My wife and I have no specific interest in the gay community, but the way people respond to that issue is often a microcosm of their entire world perspective. In Central Florida, most people are so closed-minded that they wouldn't care if anyone who is not exactly like them fell off the face of the earth. Teachers at the lunch table refer to Iraq as Muslim Land and have no qualms about treating people of other religions, races, or sexual orientations differntly. So yeah, tolerance, open-mindedness, regard for science and logic, fewer political lemmings, etc.

I would have to think that Philly would have to be more progressive than Central Florida.

As far as transportation goes, can you live up to 30 minutes from downtown and still get by with public transportation?

We do have one son and would like to have a second child, but I would imagine they would go to school in the suburbs.

Do you know the name of that magnet school?

Thanks!
If spontaneous congregating is what you're looking for, then you will enjoy hanging out at Rittenhouse Square, a small park oasis in the middle of Center City. Some parts of Fairmount Park are nice as well, especially along Boathouse Row.

Yeah, I guess because America's views on sexuality are relatively conservative, the presence of an established gay neighborhood is taken as a sign of progressiveness. You may find some people with the views you experienced in central Florida but they will be more the exception than the rule.

Commuter trains travel as far as an hour away from downtown, depending on where you choose to live.

I googled the school district and found the site for the Bodine High School for International Affairs. http://www.bodine.phila.k12.pa.us/
 
Old 03-13-2007, 03:37 PM
 
3,042 posts, read 8,202,159 times
Reputation: 1154
the suburbs are not european, the downtown maybe, but the suburbs arent walkable or anything like that
 
Old 03-16-2007, 07:14 PM
 
2 posts, read 10,102 times
Reputation: 14
Smile Conshohocken is Most European Suburban Community

Dear Wayne,
Conshohocken is clearly your one & only choice.
The Colonial School District is one of the best in the Delaware Valley.
Home prices are rising quickly, but you can still purchase a large townhome or twin with 1500-1800 sq ft at or below $300K.
The town is very pedestrian-friendly.
At only 1.3 square miles, you can easily walk to the post office, library, one of 3 beautiful parks, drugstores, SEPTA R6 train, and numerous bus stops.
In additional, residential waterfront development continues to attract young-single professionals in the I.T., healthcare, and financial industries.
And the Valley Forge-Philadelphia Schuylkill River Bike Trail can direct you to the quite oasis of Valley Forge National Historic Park, or the upscale shops & restaurants of Manayunk, or the beautiful scenic ride along the Schuylkill River via Kelly Drive and the Art Museum area.
Oh, did I fail to mention the vast variety of restaurants and clubs which attract young professionals and upscale grad students to Conshy?
Conshohocken is your only choice.
The most European, diverse, intelligent town in the Philadelphia suburbs.
Great location. Great people. Great community.
cjmelano
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> >>>>>>
Quote:
Originally Posted by WayneNewton View Post
My wife and I are looking to relocate from the Orlando area to a worldlier, more progressive city. My wife is from Germany and I have lived in Munich and Washington, DC. We want the following out of our next destination:

- Public transportation (I would go without a car if possible)
- Museums, festivals, music, European-style culture and city life
- Solid schools
- Safe suburbs
- Affordable housing ($200-$250k)
- Walkable downtown
- Intl airport within 1 hour ride/drive
- Zoo
- Sports for the over 30 and untalented crowd
- More progressive people than Central Florida has to offer

I was originally looking at Boston and the DC area, but the real estate prices are outrageous. It seems that the Philly suburbs are much cheaper. Would Philly be the most cost-effective option for meeting our criteria? We really want a lifestyle that is as close to Germany/Europe at the most affordable rate. The East Coast appeals to us because of the history and proximity to other large cities. My wife and I are both German teachers, but my wife can also teach French, Spanish, and Latin. What are the best public school districts to work for?

Thanks in advance!
 
Old 03-17-2007, 12:51 PM
 
11 posts, read 68,554 times
Reputation: 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by cjmelano View Post
Dear Wayne,
Conshohocken is clearly your one & only choice.
The Colonial School District is one of the best in the Delaware Valley.
Home prices are rising quickly, but you can still purchase a large townhome or twin with 1500-1800 sq ft at or below $300K.
The town is very pedestrian-friendly.
At only 1.3 square miles, you can easily walk to the post office, library, one of 3 beautiful parks, drugstores, SEPTA R6 train, and numerous bus stops.
In additional, residential waterfront development continues to attract young-single professionals in the I.T., healthcare, and financial industries.
And the Valley Forge-Philadelphia Schuylkill River Bike Trail can direct you to the quite oasis of Valley Forge National Historic Park, or the upscale shops & restaurants of Manayunk, or the beautiful scenic ride along the Schuylkill River via Kelly Drive and the Art Museum area.
Oh, did I fail to mention the vast variety of restaurants and clubs which attract young professionals and upscale grad students to Conshy?
Conshohocken is your only choice.
The most European, diverse, intelligent town in the Philadelphia suburbs.
Great location. Great people. Great community.
cjmelano
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> >>>>>>
Looks promising. I saw about a dozen homes in our price range . Thanks for the input.

Last edited by Yac; 03-18-2007 at 06:05 AM.. Reason: Realtor site link removed.
 
Old 03-18-2007, 10:36 AM
 
Location: Villanova Pa.
4,910 posts, read 12,771,485 times
Reputation: 2635
Quote:
Originally Posted by cjmelano View Post
Dear Wayne,
Conshohocken is clearly your one & only choice.
The Colonial School District is one of the best in the Delaware Valley.

The most European, diverse, intelligent town in the Philadelphia suburbs.
Great location. Great people. Great community.
cjmelano
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> >>>>>>
I admire your enthusiasm cj but lets not get carried away.

The school district is middle of the road by region standards. The most intelligent town is Swarthmore, Conshohocken would be way way down on that list. Conshocken is making a nice comeback but it still has a ways to go. Not in the class of say Doylestown,Main Line,West Chester,Wayne,Media,New Hope.
 
Old 03-18-2007, 02:49 PM
 
11 posts, read 68,554 times
Reputation: 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by rainrock View Post
I admire your enthusiasm cj but lets not get carried away.

The school district is middle of the road by region standards. The most intelligent town is Swarthmore, Conshohocken would be way way down on that list. Conshocken is making a nice comeback but it still has a ways to go. Not in the class of say Doylestown,Main Line,West Chester,Wayne,Media,New Hope.
What I do like is that people are pushing their areas. It seems that, on this board at least, the VA/MD people only argue which DC suburb is less dangerous.
 
Old 03-23-2007, 09:25 PM
 
209 posts, read 1,598,108 times
Reputation: 108
As a former Philadelphian, I would strongly suggest Chestnut Hill -- it's not exactly Europe, but I think it's a great neighborhood. Sort of "surburban" in a way, but still techniically in the city of Philadelphia. The one drawback if you have kids is that by being in the city, the schools aren't great.

Aside from that though, it's a great place -- two regional rail lines, really cute houses, a little downtown-type area with shops and restaurants and people walking around, etc.

There are some nice suburban areas that might have some of what you look for, but many of them will be expensive. Ardmore comes to mind--it's relatively close to Center City, and has a small area where people walk more than drive (but it's still a driving-focused suburb aside from the ability to take regional rail into Center City). And because it's on the Main Line, housing will be on the expensive side.

And Center City itself is of course nice but real estate is expensive and you still have the Philly schools to contend with. Oh, and keep in mind that the city wage tax is quite a bit higher than any suburb -- may or may not be a factor, but I think it's about 3% or so of your income you will be paying to the city that you wouldn't be paying in any suburb. if you can afford it, though, Rittenhouse Square and the Parkway/Art Museum area probably offer the most "European" lifestyle in the area.
 
Old 03-27-2007, 08:13 PM
 
393 posts, read 1,379,463 times
Reputation: 179
Have you ever thought about Portland, Oregon? I have been considering a move there for a multitude of reasons and have seen it referred to several times as "the most European-feeling American city." I've never been to Europe so I can't vouch, but I do know Portland has a variety of distinct urban neighborhoods, many parks, beautiful gardens, mountain views, cyclist-friendly, festivals, museums, a ton of non-chain restaurants/pubs/cafes and funky shops.

And it's not exactly New England but the city does have history.
 
Old 03-28-2007, 10:46 PM
 
Location: Pennsylvania
9 posts, read 32,322 times
Reputation: 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by WayneNewton View Post
My wife and I are looking to relocate from the Orlando area to a worldlier, more progressive city. My wife is from Germany and I have lived in Munich and Washington, DC. We want the following out of our next destination:

- Public transportation (I would go without a car if possible)
- Museums, festivals, music, European-style culture and city life
- Solid schools
- Safe suburbs
- Affordable housing ($200-$250k)
- Walkable downtown
- Intl airport within 1 hour ride/drive
- Zoo
- Sports for the over 30 and untalented crowd
- More progressive people than Central Florida has to offer

I was originally looking at Boston and the DC area, but the real estate prices are outrageous. It seems that the Philly suburbs are much cheaper. Would Philly be the most cost-effective option for meeting our criteria? We really want a lifestyle that is as close to Germany/Europe at the most affordable rate. The East Coast appeals to us because of the history and proximity to other large cities. My wife and I are both German teachers, but my wife can also teach French, Spanish, and Latin. What are the best public school districts to work for?

Thanks in advance!
Hello! I am new to board, but thought I'd try to give some helpful information about Philadelphia. I think my vote would be Chestnut Hill also, for several reasons. I've lived in almost every area of Philadelphia from Southwest Philadelphia to Paoli. And Chestnut Hill has a lot of pluses. Those two train stations are invaluable. You can get to and from Center City easily. Philadelphia's City Wage Tax is 5%, I believe. Philadelphia has a very active Alliance Francais de Philadelphie (movies, lectures, brunches, happy hours). The University of Pennsylvania (a quick train ride away) has so many opportunities (and is one of the largest employers in the area). A foreign language proficiency is mandatory for undergrads, so that may present great tutoring and/or teaching opportunities.

Years ago I lived in downtown Philadelphia -- for 9 years -- loved it. But I hated parking and having my friends have to pay for parking -- brutal! I like having the best of both worlds: the vibrant city life of downtown and the peace of the trees and hiking paths of the suburbs.

We're thinking of moving to Portland (that's why I've been reading this forum!). But I do love Philadelphia. It has a lot of positives.
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