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Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill, Cary The Triangle Area
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Old 05-03-2010, 11:37 AM
 
11 posts, read 15,107 times
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Just got back from a 5 day stay in the triangle, and it was a real eye opener. At first I thought that it was a exaggeration how friendly the people were, it was not. Everyone we met was so friendly and pleasant that I found myself having 15 minute conversations with complete strangers, it was amazing to me coming from NYC where we usually ignore the people around us. For people coming from the New York area I would say to expect a cleaner, less congested, and more pleasant Long Island. After driving through and viewing the many neighborhoods we have narrowed our search down to two neighborhoods, Wake Forest and Chapel Hill. Now I know what you are thinking, these are two complete opposites, but we are having a hard time deciding between the two. You can only learn so much from a 5 day stay, so if anyone could help make this decision easier it would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 05-03-2010, 12:18 PM
 
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Pick Chapel Hill.

No, pick Wake Forest.

Without knowing anything about you -- who can help you?

Nutshell/stereotypes (probably true):

Chapel Hill has topnotch schools, expensive housing. Lots of students. Probably more older people living there. More liberal thought.

Wake Forest has good schools, sweet little downtown. Lots of reasonable housing. It's a bit of a pain to drive down Capital Blvd to 540 in the morning (tedious). More young families, mix of political thought.

You'd be happy in either one, I'm sure.
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Old 05-03-2010, 01:08 PM
 
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As someone who does a lot of driving in the area, expect long commutes from RTP or downtown Raleigh to Wake Forest during rush hours. I was surprised at how slow Capital/Route 1 was on a Saturday afternoon from downtown Raleigh to Wake Forest. Rush hour traffic around Chapel Hill is also very heavy. I like both towns! Chapel Hill definitely has a lot of students but positives like the pretty campus. Wake Forest has a cute downtown with a great ice cream shop. Both have plenty of pretty scenery and places to experience nature.
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Old 05-03-2010, 02:28 PM
 
9,680 posts, read 25,652,337 times
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You will miss public transit here after living in NYC.

We lived on the Lower East Side of Manhattan 10 years and really appreciated buses, subway, and commuter rail.

It is friendlier here than NYC as you say (we came in 1989 from New Orleans), but greed in development has fostered overcrowding and some rudeness.

The Wake County schools are now having issues but are way above NYC public.

Cultural activities are way more limited than NYC.

Be sure to consider all aspects when making your decision.

We like Raleigh and have liked it for over 20 years.

Good luck.
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Old 05-03-2010, 02:44 PM
 
Location: Raleigh, NC
10,562 posts, read 21,044,858 times
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Quote:
we have narrowed our search down to two neighborhoods, Wake Forest and Chapel Hill.
I'm sure you know this, but neither Wake Forest nor Chapel Hill is a "neighborhood"--they are both towns, with numerous neighborhoods in each
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Old 05-03-2010, 03:16 PM
 
Location: Raleigh, NC
12,451 posts, read 30,250,233 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jman8 View Post
Just got back from a 5 day stay in the triangle, and it was a real eye opener. At first I thought that it was a exaggeration how friendly the people were, it was not. Everyone we met was so friendly and pleasant that I found myself having 15 minute conversations with complete strangers, it was amazing to me coming from NYC where we usually ignore the people around us. For people coming from the New York area I would say to expect a cleaner, less congested, and more pleasant Long Island. After driving through and viewing the many neighborhoods we have narrowed our search down to two neighborhoods, Wake Forest and Chapel Hill. Now I know what you are thinking, these are two complete opposites, but we are having a hard time deciding between the two. You can only learn so much from a 5 day stay, so if anyone could help make this decision easier it would be greatly appreciated.
So glad to hear that you enjoyed your short stay! It is easier to gather your research once you have visited. Now, at least, you know how the area looks and you can proceed from there.

Chapel Hill has very high rated schools (CH city, not Orange Co.) and the homes are very pricey because there aren't tons of them. Very few new homes.

Wake Forest is part of Wake County schools. Due to growth, we are going through some issues but once you check the scores, either by Wake County Public School System's website, you'll figure it out.

Wake Forest is a very friendly small town and there are many n'hoods, both exsisting and new.

Always nice to hear when people compliment the area!

Vicki
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Old 05-03-2010, 05:37 PM
 
47 posts, read 178,981 times
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Thanks for the post Jman8! We are from right outside NYC and are going down to visit next week. Any tips on places to see, etc. to get a good feel of the place? Anything you wish you'd done but didn't? We will be looking at neighborhoods too and it's all a bit overwhelming!
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Old 05-03-2010, 05:49 PM
 
6,246 posts, read 15,080,686 times
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Tip:

This is usually the most effective way to go about it:

Job --> Town (or city) --> Neighborhood

Once you know where you'll be working, find housing in that town or city. Then find a neighborhood.
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Old 05-03-2010, 07:05 PM
 
365 posts, read 1,149,324 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Francois View Post
I'm sure you know this, but neither Wake Forest nor Chapel Hill is a "neighborhood"--they are both towns, with numerous neighborhoods in each
They probably feel like neighborhoods, coming from NYC. You could probably get from Wake Forest to Chapel Hill in the same time as a midday cab ride from Soho to Harlem.
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Old 05-03-2010, 07:25 PM
 
6,246 posts, read 15,080,686 times
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Clarification -- many people work in Research Triangle Park, a giant office park, so of course they don't live there. But once you find a job, you can find the most appropriate town or city.

Quote:
Originally Posted by lovebrentwood View Post
Tip:

This is usually the most effective way to go about it:

Job --> Town (or city) --> Neighborhood

Once you know where you'll be working, find housing in that town or city. Then find a neighborhood.
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