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Old 08-20-2013, 01:48 PM
 
11 posts, read 36,056 times
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We are a young family looking to move from NYC to westchester. We have been focusing on Armonk and Chappaqua, but have recently widened our search to include Harrison (particularly the Park Lane Reserve area of West Harrison). It looks like we can get more for our money in this area than in armonk / chappaqua and it saves my husband about 10 minutes each way on his commute. While we like that West Harrison is closer to White Plains and less isolated than Armonk, we have concerns about the demographics and the schools. We are Jewish and plan to use the public schools (would be Purchase elementary). we would like to be among a diverse group of people but it is important to us that there be a good amount of other jewish families in the area and school. Would a young jewish family would feel like "outcasts" or an extreme extreme minority in the west harrison area? We also know that the harrison schools do not rank as highly as some of the surrounding areas, but any information from those with direct experience would be extremely appreciated. School is important to us but we don't particularly want a pressure cooker environment or a place where all the kids have exactly the same backgrounds. Also, anyone know if there is a problem with airport noise in the west harrison area? Thanks in advance!
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Old 08-21-2013, 10:14 AM
 
Location: Westchester, NY
192 posts, read 329,454 times
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If I had to chose. Then I would pick Chappaqua hands down. If you could afford it, then shoot for Chappaqua. I would stay away from West Harrison/Harrison completely.
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Old 08-21-2013, 01:28 PM
 
11 posts, read 36,056 times
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Thanks so much. Could you elaborate a little on why you would stay away from harrison/west harrison? Thanks again - much appreciated!
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Old 08-21-2013, 02:28 PM
 
Location: Armonk NY
425 posts, read 1,093,297 times
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You seem to have your heart set on West Harrison. Its the worst choice of the areas your considering. West Harrison is very Italian, as is Harrison in general, except that West Harrison is not as affluent -- thus you get a blue collar Bronxish Italian feel. Based on your post, not sure if would want to live in that environment.

I agree - Chap then Armonk. once your kids are out of the Purchase School you would probably regret it.
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Old 08-21-2013, 06:28 PM
 
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Thanks again john70. We aren't set on anything - really just looking to gather info. Your advice is much appreciated!
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Old 08-21-2013, 07:27 PM
 
Location: Westchester, NY
192 posts, read 329,454 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lovejhf View Post
Thanks so much. Could you elaborate a little on why you would stay away from harrison/west harrison? Thanks again - much appreciated!
john70 pretty much hit the nail on the head. I personally would not want my kids going to those schools or growing up in that environment.

I lived in Westchester all my life. Harrison overall has always had a bad reputation. Do yourself a favor and head to Chappaqua. You'll live in the same town as the Clintons.

Last edited by ld75; 08-21-2013 at 08:27 PM..
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Old 08-21-2013, 07:37 PM
 
Location: Harrison
835 posts, read 2,214,076 times
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Honestly, Harrison gets such a bad rap for no good reason. There are some beautiful neighborhoods there, but yeah, the downtown is nothing fancy. There is diversity and it isn't a lily white town. Oooooh. The schools are great by any standards - kind of like Mamaroneck's district but without the Larchmont white/super-wealthy-and-privileged part to bring the test scores up. Having said that, at Purchase Elementary you are going to get some very wealthy and privileged families. Harrison does seem to be less Jewish than other towns, if I can say that, but it's still Westchester so I wouldn't worry too much.

West Harrison is completely different IMO. Smaller homes, less wealth there, completely removed from Harrison and more like a part of White Plains.
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Old 08-21-2013, 11:37 PM
 
Location: Seoul
11,584 posts, read 7,810,518 times
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Avoid Harrison. Inactive downtown area and a very low Jewish population (I'm Jewish myself and would love a Jewish neighborhood too). There's a reason why Harrison is cheaper...

I'd look into Armonk. There's a fairly good Jewish population there
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Old 08-22-2013, 08:33 PM
 
Location: Armonk NY
425 posts, read 1,093,297 times
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I would not say Harrison doesn't have a Jewish population, I have lots of Jewish friends who grew up in Harrison and there are some super nice areas near the Westchester Country Club. Its really Jewish and Italian. However, the Town of Harrison is a huge area (which includes Purchase) - and the area you are considering is West Harrison. The Park Lane area of West Harrison is kinda like the Tony Soprano neighborhood of whatever fictional NJ town he lived in.... Its the nicest area among the much more middle class area of West Harrison/Silver Lake, which sort of reminds me of
Valhalla.

At the same time its right next to Purchase, which is also part of Harrison, but is very very afluent. This is where Joe Girardi, Isiah Thomas, Andy Petitte, Mo Rivera and a bunch if Knicks and Rangers live. However, you are still in the Harrison School District and most of those folks send their kids to private school. Joe's daughter went/goes to Sacred Heart on the Greenwich/Ryebrook border. The Purchase School is great but once the kids are older and blend into the rest of the Harrison School District they will be going to schools very far away and the quality is watered down. Not terribel by any means but we are dealing with Westchester standards here.

I am not Jewish..I am Catholic/Italian....I live in Armonk and would not trade it for Harrison if you paid me. Well maybe if you paid me : Notably, before all the construction in Armonk started about 20+ years ago it was allot like West Harrison.
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Old 08-23-2013, 04:54 PM
 
395 posts, read 1,501,948 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by john70 View Post
The Park Lane area of West Harrison is kinda like the Tony Soprano neighborhood of whatever fictional NJ town he lived in....
It wasn't fictional, actually, it was North Caldwell.
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