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urbanmamma

Moving to TN....suburb or urban?

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Hey! Just found this forum this morning and thought it would be the perfect place to post! This site is terrific!!

We are planning a move to the Nashville area (from Seattle) and we have gotten "advice" on places that would be good to move to. Funny though since the tips we have gotten are all over the place! Franklin is mentioned CONSTANTLY to us, however, we also want to check out areas closer into the city as well. We love older homes and being able to walk everywhere - parks, coffee (a must!), library, etc. We also would love somewhat of a yard. From up here, things are stacked like crazy and finding any kind of urban yard is tough unless you have some serious $$. A lot of this depends on where DH gets a job, but I am trying to gather info now while we are still in the waiting game. We are coming from an area that is urban and with parks, walking, diversity,and a college atmosphere - very fun area. But, also an area that surburbanites would NOT choose! We just love the location and the atmosphere :D

From what I have seen, the Vaderbilt area seems pretty great - any other downtown areas that you would recommend that are SAFE and family/neighborhood oriented (have a baby and a dog) - I would love ratings or any tips you guys have to offer. We have heard of areas called South 12 (??), Edgefield, Green Hills/Oak Hills, Sylvan Park.... How are those areas?

So far, most people reccommend, like I said, Franklin, but from what I hear that is very subarbinish and although that can be nice...we aren't sure we want that?? (would love to hear good/bad of that area too though) We aren't opposed to the suburban life at all, just a little iffy about it since we didn't care for it as much up here. The typical advice though is that if we "go" for a suburb, Franklin is the best choice - cute town, good schools, etc...Hendersonville and Goodlettsville have been mentioned as well...but are those "way out" in the boonies? We have heard traffic is bad out that way and that school aren't as good?? How bad would a commute to downtown be from there? Any thoughts??

Schools are big for us too - we have heard a lot about Williamson county, but haven't heard much about the other districts (exept that Downtown doesn't offer the best schools right now...?? ;) We are just very torn since we live so far away and are getting tips on some VERY different areas.

We have been told to avoid Rutherford county so we shall :thumbsup: but ANY other tips would be terrific!! Thanks SO SO much!

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Hey! Just found this forum this morning and thought it would be the perfect place to post! This site is terrific!!

We are planning a move to the Nashville area (from Seattle) and we have gotten "advice" on places that would be good to move to. Funny though since the tips we have gotten are all over the place! Franklin is mentioned CONSTANTLY to us, however, we also want to check out areas closer into the city as well. We love older homes and being able to walk everywhere - parks, coffee (a must!), library, etc. We also would love somewhat of a yard. From up here, things are stacked like crazy and finding any kind of urban yard is tough unless you have some serious $$. A lot of this depends on where DH gets a job, but I am trying to gather info now while we are still in the waiting game. We are coming from an area that is urban and with parks, walking, diversity,and a college atmosphere  - very fun area. But, also an area that surburbanites would NOT choose! We just love the location and the atmosphere  :D

From what I have seen, the Vaderbilt area seems pretty great - any other downtown areas that you would recommend that are SAFE and family/neighborhood oriented (have a baby and a dog) - I would love ratings or any tips you guys have to offer. We have heard of areas called South 12 (??), Edgefield, Green Hills/Oak Hills, Sylvan Park.... How are those areas?

So far, most people reccommend, like I said, Franklin, but from what I hear that is very subarbinish and although that can be nice...we aren't sure we want that?? (would love to hear good/bad of that area too though) We aren't opposed to the suburban life at all, just a little iffy about it since we didn't care for it as much up here. The typical advice though is that if we "go" for a suburb, Franklin is the best choice - cute town, good schools, etc...Hendersonville and Goodlettsville have been mentioned as well...but are those "way out" in the boonies? We have heard traffic is bad out that way and that school aren't as good?? How bad would a commute to downtown be from there? Any thoughts??

Schools are big for us too - we have heard a lot about Williamson county, but haven't heard much about the other districts (exept that Downtown doesn't offer the best schools right now...??  ;)  We are just very torn since we live so far away and are getting tips on some VERY different areas.

We have been told to avoid Rutherford county so we shall  :thumbsup:  but ANY other tips would be terrific!! Thanks SO SO much!

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Hendersonville is only 15minutes from downtown Nashville by interstate and Goodlettsville is about 10. They are actually closer to downtown than Brentwood or Franklin and when I-65 is complete there won't even be much of a traffic concern. The Vietnam Veterans By-Pass makes all areas of Hendersonville, Goodlettsville, and soon Gallatin extremely accessible to the interstate. Sumner County is also on schedule to have Commuter rail access to Nashville long before Williamson County.

The reason some people perceive the cities as "way out" is because they are a considerable distance from Cool Springs but with Rivergate and Hendersonville boosting their retail options the need to go to Cool Springs will soon become a thing of the past.

The Traffic is bad right now and probably will be for the next year until I-65 is completed. Once this is done the traffic shouldn't be more of an issue than it is anywhere else in the metro. The Schools as a county system are among the best in the state but are below Williamson County. However, the Hendersonville system itself ranks right up there with anything in Williamson County and Indian Lake Elementary, in particular, is considered to be the model elementary school for the state.

Soon, Hendersonville will offer everything that Franklin does and more because of the location by Old Hickory Lake and the city's amazing public park system. Something to think about...for years the Middle Tennessee Parade of Homes took place in Williamson county but the past 2 years saw it move to Hendersonville locations and again this year, it has selected Fairvue, between Hendersonville and Gallatin, for the tour. If you must move to a suburban location, Hendersonville and Sumner County are definitely what suburban Nashville is coming to now.

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Hendersonville is only 15minutes from downtown Nashville by interstate and Goodlettsville is about 10.  They are actually closer to downtown than Brentwood or Franklin and when I-65 is complete there won't even be much of a traffic concern. The Vietnam Veterans By-Pass makes all areas of Hendersonville, Goodlettsville, and soon Gallatin extremely accessible to the interstate.  Sumner County is also on schedule to have Commuter rail access to Nashville long before Williamson County. 

The reason some people perceive the cities as "way out" is because they are a considerable distance from Cool Springs but with Rivergate and Hendersonville boosting their retail options the need to go to Cool Springs will soon become a thing of the past. 

The Traffic is bad right now and probably will be for the next year until I-65 is completed.  Once this is done the traffic shouldn't be more of an issue than it is anywhere else in the metro.  The Schools as a county system are among the best in the state but are below Williamson County. However, the Hendersonville system itself ranks right up there with anything in Williamson County and Indian Lake Elementary, in particular, is considered to be the model elementary school for the state. 

Soon, Hendersonville will offer everything that Franklin does and more because of the location by Old Hickory Lake and the city's amazing public park system.  Something to think about...for years the Middle Tennessee Parade of Homes took place in Williamson county but the past 2 years saw it move to Hendersonville locations and again this year, it has selected Fairvue, between Hendersonville and Gallatin, for the tour.  If you must move to a suburban location, Hendersonville and Sumner County are definitely what suburban Nashville is coming to now.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I also recommend Hendersonville. It a more expensive suburb, but nice. Most of the people who live here have money, good education, and send there kids to private school. Not much upscale shopping around here though, but i dont mind the drive to Green Hills or Cool Springs. But we are moving up, we have Glenbrook shopping area, with lots of construction on new retail spots, banks and eateries. So, I hope you like it when you get here.

<edit> Oh yeah, I forgot, who int he world did you hear from that H-Ville was way out in the boonies? It takes me 15-20 minutes to get to downtown everday for work. We are not out in the boonies. We have quick easy access to most every ammenity Nashville has to offer.

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I would recommend living downtown or in the West End area. Although Nashville isn't quite on par (as far as urban living goes) with Seattle yet, it is moving in that direction rapidly. There are great homes that can be found close to downtown that are nearly a hundred years old or more and have great character. The West End area is nice for its young college atmosphere; both Vanderbilt and Belmont are located there.

As far as schools go Williamson definitely has the superior school system, however I think if you get your child/children into the magnet system in Davidson county you are much better off. The magnet school system in Nashville is truly one of the premier systems in the state and has much to offer. In addition to its superiority most of the magnet schools are located near or in downtown Nashville. Hume-Fogg and Martin Luther King high schools are consistently ranked as the top high schools in the state. I personally graduated from Hume-Fogg which is right downtown on Broadway and nationally known/ranked.

As far as parks go the downtown area has the wonderful Centennial Park and Bicentennial Mall along with River Front park. However, I'd point out that no matter where you live in the Nashville area you aren't far from a great park.

Franklin is a great area but I think its a bit far if you are going to be commuting to work in Nashville daily. I'd also agree that Hendersonville is a good area to look at for suburban living but I might contest that "15 minutes from downtown" statement. During Rush hour that 15 minutes can turn into 30-45. All of that of course depends on where in Hendersonville you live.

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I live on the southern border of Davidson county (area called Brentwood, but it's actually in Nashville). I would recomend this area as far as convenience goes. I'm less than 5 minutes from Brentwood, 10 minutes to Cool Springs, 10 minutes to 100 Oaks, 15 minutes to Franklin, 15-17 minutes from Green Hills, 15-17 minutes from downtown, 15-20 minutes from the airport, 25 minutes to Bellevue, 15 minutes from Hickory Hollow...etc.

Very accessable location, very decent schools, more affordable than Williamson county homes, Davidson county services...the only drawback right now is congested rush hour traffic...but it's not as bad as north or east of town.

As far as closer locations go...the best Davidson county schools are on the south/southwest side of town. Anywhere near Oak Hill (very nice, close to town, low crime, but pricey), Forest Hills (more expensive than Oak Hill, same area of town...ditto), or Green Hills/Belmont (nice area, closer in than Oak Hill or Forest Hills, less expensive, lots of shopping/retail/other conveniences) are nice. You might check out the area around 21st Ave/Hillsboro road...there is bad traffic, but you are fairly close to town. The only problem is that it is some distance to any of the major interstates.

Other areas that are pretty good are in Donelson (a nicer, somewhat older area, but relatively inexpensive and without a lot of crime...a lot of elderly people live out that way), but it is near the airport, so there are some noise issues.

East Nashville has a lot to offer as far as neat older houses...but you really want to investigate the area before you do anything. Some areas are pretty nice, others...well, are near the projects. The same goes for the Germantown area north of town.

As far as school clusters go (ranked by highschool), the best choices in Nashville would be:

1) Hillsboro

2) Hillwood

3) Hunters Lane

4) Overton

5) McGavock

I would avoid:

Whites Creek

Maplewood (actually not a bad school, but bad bad area)

Stratford

Pearl Cohn

Antioch (not a bad area...necessarily)

There are also some very good private and magnet schools in the area if you are interested.

My suggestion would be Green Hills. Family oriented, very good schools, medium house prices...(you are coming from Seattle, right? Probably a bit less expensive here). Area has a nice mall, post office, public library (largest branch library), YMCA, Banks, High School is nearby, I see a lot of people who walk their dogs...also low crime. Lots of restaurants and retail.

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Yeah, GaTechGuy, we have some great magnet schools. Hume Fogg is not only the best in the city, or best in the state. It's ranked in the top 20 in America, and usually has 98-100% of students go to a 4 year college. MLK is not far behind. Hillsboro is the best "other" school in the Metro Nashville system.

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Franklin is a great area but I think its a bit far if you are going to be commuting to work in Nashville daily. I'd also agree that Hendersonville is a good area to look at for suburban living but I might contest that "15 minutes from downtown" statement. During Rush hour that 15 minutes can turn into 30-45. All of that of course depends on where in Hendersonville you live.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

15 minutes is light traffic. Rush Hour will take at least a half an hour no matter what county you are commuting from but hopefully this will be better when the construction is complete.

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I live on the southern border of Davidson county (area called Brentwood, but it's actually in Nashville).  I would recomend this area as far as convenience goes.  I'm less than 5 minutes from Brentwood, 10 minutes to Cool Springs, 10 minutes to 100 Oaks, 15 minutes to Franklin, 15-17 minutes from Green Hills, 15-17 minutes from downtown, 15-20 minutes from the airport, 25 minutes to Bellevue, 15 minutes from Hickory Hollow...etc.

Very accessable location, very decent schools, more affordable than Williamson county homes, Davidson county services...the only drawback right now is congested rush hour traffic...but it's not as bad as north or east of town.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

i agree. i live in this area (around nipper's corner) and don't have any trouble getting around nashville. everything is close by it seems. plenty of houses to choose from too. this is probably the most central area in the city.

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15 minutes is light traffic.  Rush Hour will take at least a half an hour no matter what county you are commuting from.  Hopefully, this will be better when the construction is complete.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Yeah, 15 minutes...maybe at midnight doing 90mph! :rofl:

I live on the Williamson county line...during rush hour it still only takes about 20 minutes to get downtown. Everything clears up past I-440.

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WOW!! you guys are amazing! SO much info! I LOVE this....taking tons and tons of notes at this moment!!

Okay - so need to look more into Hendersonville, (up and coming if have to do a suburb ;) ), Green Hills area, for some "good" areas of downtown, and that more central area of Brentwood/Nashville....what area is that exactly (Nippers corner??)...how would I look up houses in that area or info about that area - that is one I haven't really looked into at all. That sounds great to be close and central to SO many different things. It is a possibility that DH would be either working downtown or in Brentwood...so at that point we would take Hendersonville out of the picture since commute is a big one for us :thumbsup:

Keep 'em coming! I love this info!! Any good sites you recommend for looking up pics/info on Green Hills or this Nippers corner area? That is pretty exciting about the new stuff going in and around downtown Nashville - Seattle truly is a great city, but we love so much about the South and really would love to raise our family there. and 30min sounds heavenly compared to so many of traffic days up here :wacko: !! $$ is also a big one for us...it is RIDICULOUS to buy a house up here unlesss you go WAY out! In the urban area we were in near the UW, a FIXER in a safe location with barely a yard was pushing to find something at $350,00...closer to $400,000 is typical. Seeing the cost of living less is a nice change for us. Of course, all depends upon new job etc. too.

Well! I will do some surfing now B)

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You guys are doing great! The advice you are giving our new found friend Ms. Mama, is remarkably right on. I can't add anything except that if I were to move again, I'd have to put Hillsboro Village (good coffee), West End (good coffee), Belmont (good coffee), Germantown (Cafe has good coffee), Green Hills (thinks they have good coffee) and yes, downtown (Just Java and Kijii for coffee) at the top of my lists.

Suburb wise, Franklin/Brentwood for its hills, Hendersonville for its lake. That would be a tough call.

You know, when you really get down to it, this is a tough one. Good luck Mom.

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Nippers Corner isn't really an "area" its more of a point of reference that several of us apparently live(d) near. Its located on the north eastern boarder of the brentwood area and is near I-65 which is one of the least congested interstates into Nashville during rush hour in my opinion (at least the southern portion). Obviously its easy to get to brentwood from there because its right next door to it.

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Hi Ms. Mama...

My family and I are also looking into homes in the area, and I would recommend this site: www.nashvillehs.com You register for free, and the cool thing about them is they usually have about 10 pictures for each home. You can also search by county, city, subdivision, zipcode and street addresss. You can search for residential, condo, residential with acres, etc.., etc....

Give them a try. With all the pictures it gives you a really good idea of the lay of the land in the different parts of town, different cities, etc....

Paula

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That sounds great to be close and central to SO many different things. It is a possibility that DH would be either working downtown or in Brentwood

$$ is also a big one for us...it is RIDICULOUS to buy a house up here unlesss you go WAY out! In the urban area we were in near the UW, a FIXER in a safe location with barely a yard was pushing to find something at $350,00...closer to $400,000 is typical. Seeing the cost of living less is a nice change for us. Of course, all depends upon new job etc. too.

Ok...Oak Hill is right between Brentwood and downtown. It's not an urban area...rather hilly and spread out, and no commercial areas in the city, but its just a matter of minutes to Melrose (Berry Hill), Green Hills, or Brentwood. It is a very safe location...and is probably the shortest commuting suburb to downtown.

http://maps.google.com/maps?q=oak+hill,tennessee&hl=en

Also, a major plus is that Radnor Lake is very very close by (a good place for a nice hike).

photo_big_0355.jpg

photo_big_0356.jpg

photo_big_0377.jpg

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I'm from Franklin, so I know the pros and cons pretty well. Just to let you know, my parents both commute to Nashville, and they haven't had many problems since our 6-inch blizzard of 2003. Then it took them about 4-5 hours to get home. Otherwise it's about 25 minutes.

Pros:

Livable community

nice areas

good hills

convenient(though busy) Cool Springs

very good school system-city school district

good park system on the way

not much highway construction down this way

Cons:

mainly expensive areas, but you can find affordable housing

losing green space

inner city traffic

VERY suburban-it doesn't get much more suburby than this

By the way, that construction they've been talking about has been going on for over a decade. Chances are IT WILL NOT END IN YOUR LIFETIME. :lol:

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Nippers Corner isn't really an "area" its more of a point of reference that several of us apparently live(d) near. Its located on the north eastern boarder of the brentwood area and is near I-65 which is one of the least congested interstates into Nashville during rush hour in my opinion (at least the southern portion). Obviously its easy to get to brentwood from there because its right next door to it.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

kinda off subject, but does anyone remember when nipper's corner was the nipper's family nursery? it was all woods and that plant store. this was back when cool springs was just trees also. man i feel old now. not as old as dave, but old none the less. :lol: has anyone mentioned germantown yet? it has older type houses and it just on the northern edge of downtown. awesome area. great pics of radnor nashvol85!!!! i've practically grown up there and i never get tired of seeing it.

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okay....those pictures are good sellers! For someone from the glorious NW...I still am captivated by how much beauty TN has!! It is GORGEOUS!! This makes me too excited :w00t:

Wow...I don't know what to say!? Sounds like there are SO many options!! I love, love, hills and....I love water! That lake is gorgeous.! I will be doing some more checking into those areas you suggested too around brentwood - cherry hill, oak hill etc. There truly are so many options which is overwhelming but makes me excited! You guys live in a terrific city!!

I am guessing that the other side of the city -more Hendersonville/Goodlettsville (whats the difference between those by the way??) are a little less "hilly" than the Williamson county side?

Linclink - Thanks for that site too! I am going to check it out now! Have you narrowed your own search down?? I would love to hear your opinions as well from someone moving in from out of state :whistling:

Thanks guys! really digging this site!

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Hey satalac, do you remember the old movie theatre in Brentwood place back where Office Depot is now?? I miss being close to the movies. :(

That's another convenience with Green Hills, urbanmomma. There is a good sized movie theatre right there by the mall, plus the Belcourt theatre (usually has indie movies--hosts Nashville film festival) is right up the road in Hillsboro Village. Definatelly drive down Hillsboro Rd. before you decide to buy.

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Hey satalac, do you remember the old movie theatre in Brentwood place back where Office Depot is now?? I miss being close to the movies. :(

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

oh wow, i totally forgot about that! that left, then the theater at nippers closed down. now it's a choice between which massive multiplex do you wanna go to. i like green hills the best. it at least shows a fair amount of indie films and is never crowded when i go. the south nashville area has exploded in the past 15 years and i don't see it stopping anytime soon.

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okay....those pictures are good sellers! For someone from the glorious NW...I still am captivated by how much beauty TN has!! It is GORGEOUS!! This makes me too excited  :w00t:

I've been to Seattle/Olympic Peninsula 3 times...I never get tired of it. I love that place!

I am guessing that the other side of the city -more Hendersonville/Goodlettsville (whats the difference between those by the way??) are a little less "hilly" than the Williamson county side?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Actually, that isn't totally right. Williamson county has some pretty good sized hills, but a lot of it is valley/flat land. The northern side of Nashville is the most hilly. There is a very steep ridge up around Goodlettsville and Springfield.

Nashville has some interesting geographic/geologic features.

It is located in the northwest corner of the Nashville (or central) Basin. The land in the heart of the basin ranges from about 400-650 feet...the highland rim ranges from about 750-1,300 feet. In Nashville, it appears as if you are surrounded by hills no matter which direction you go...and you are.

Here's a link to a satallite map centered on Nashville (not great, but you'll get the picture). You can see how Nashville is kind of lodged in the corner of this great basin/valley. There are hills everywhere, but the big ones are around the edge. This is why all of the Nashville developement seems to be happening to the south, southeast, and east. The city grows in the "path of least resistance". ;)

Here is an interesting geological map of Tennessee...the area where Nashville is has eroded away, revealing older rocks (this was caused by a great uplift...imagine it as a big blister or pimple being "popped")

geolog_l.jpg

(Davidson = Nashville/Goodlettsville/Green Hills/Oak Hill, Williamson = Brentwood/Franklin, Sumner = Hendersonville)

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Nashvol, you're your own library. I'm just lovin' your facts and pics.

Ms. Mama, and this is an extra perk of living in this area. The people are very friendly, very helpful...with some notable exceptions, of course. But what you're finding here is what you'll find to be the norm, at least in my experience.

Btw, my trips to the NW were among my best. Absolutely stunning. Seattle is definatley da bomb.

Hold on, satalac, I haven't forgotten that little "old" comment, but I'm just at a loss for a retort (a rare event). I'll get ya....

Oh, you guys are just sooooo helpful. Anybody into pulling weeds? j/k

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Oh, you guys are just sooooo helpful. Anybody into pulling weeds? j/k

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I hate garden work. My mom doesn't even pay minimum wage. :(

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