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castorvx

Modern Neighborhoods Near the Core

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Figured I'd throw this here since it's not totally development related and maybe more of a matter of personal opinion. How does everyone feel about housing options within 10 minutes of downtown?

After reaching my limits with the 55 West I've started looking at other urban centers. Just kinda burned out on the constant harassment from homeless, worrying about our 13-year old not being able to go outside without constant supervision, etc. Not to mention the cost of having enough space for a family of 3 in downtown.

I took a drive around Baldwin Park, Winter Park and College Park. It seems like of the three, Baldwin Park has an insane amount of development going on.

What does everyone think of these neighborhoods?

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I grew up in Winter Park and love the area. I also love Baldwin Park and almost rented there. However, there was a recent news story about the skyrocketing land values in those two areas. Both areas are excellent for kids with lots of parks and excellent schools. 

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Does your housing option mean that you looking for a house or apt? If I were to sell my Waverly, those 3 neighborhoods too would be my choices. I would love to live near Park Ave, but no way can I afford living near that. College Park seems unpolished for me, unless you have money near Lake Ivanhoe. Baldwin town center is nice with that wow factor, but retail/dining options are still limited. Since cant afford a house within walking distances of those urban centers, I would also look at Delaney Park, Thornton Park, and Colonial Town that are minutes away by car or bike. Good luck!

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I've lived in the downtown core, Winter Park, and Baldwin Park (as well Dr Phillips) over the years, and also have experience working in college park --- here are some of my thoughts.  Can't go wrong with any of them, really, as they are all great places to live.

College Park -- a real neighborhood.  Kinda an old-school, all american neighborhood that reminds me of mature areas that I grew up in the mid-west.  Generally more affordable than WP/Baldwin, depending on the housing option of course, but also a generally older stock of houses, some of which might need work in terms of remodeling.

Baldwin Park -- truly a great neighborhood and my current home.  Excellent automobile access to downtown and Winter Park ,can be in either place in under 10 minutes.  Newer housing options with plenty of rental and owner-options, some of which might be priced a bit higher but probably less than 55 West rents anyways.  Know several people who relocated from College Park to Baldwin and also vice-versa.  It's nice to stay within the neighborhood to frequent the grocery store and drug store and also convenient to Mills/50 and Audubon Park.  Lots of park space and good schools.  The cons might be more a 'cookie-cutter' feel, but I think this is more of a perception of the area.  The neighborhood is now nearly 100% built out, now that the apartments on the lake and senior complex across the lake are under construction.  The only remaining vacant lots are for a small office building in the village center and just a couple (really) custom-lots for homes priced $1million+.  Love living there, don't like the HOA fees which you might not have to pay if living in CP or WP, but they are for the benefit of the neighborhood.

Winter Park -- a city rather than a neighborhood. Really depends on where you will live and a larger geographic area.  In general, the city is more self-contained than the other neighborhoods  I found that when I lived in Winter Park, I stayed more in that area to shop & dine (not a bad thing at all) as there are so many options.  There are parts of Winter Park that are literally adjacent to College Park and Baldwin Park, near a lake, or near the avenue, that's where I would want to live if I lived in WP again.

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I moved from my Condo in the VUE and bought a Craftsman Bungalow in Thornton Park six months ago due to getting married and now being a family of 3.  We love it, still very close to downtown and with all the trees, it's a very park-like setting.  I can bike to work and the neighbors are very nice and I have been able to easily get involved in my new neighborhood.

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I like Delaney Park. Good schools, nice parks, and close to downtown. It lacks a town center but there are lots of options near Michigan. And no HOA's! 

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I like Delaney Park. Good schools, nice parks, and close to downtown. It lacks a town center but there are lots of options near Michigan. And no HOA's! 

Delaney Park is one of my personal favorites. It's out of my price range, but I moved to the Lake Como/Lake Underhill a few years back and love it. It's affordable, close to downtown (I'm a 2-mile run to Lake Eola), Colonial Town, and the Milk District, and the cool part of Curry Ford. Yes, there is a cool part to Curry Ford.

One of the best things about Orlando is that the neighborhoods surrounding downtown are all pretty kick-ass.

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Thanks for the feedback everyone. Very helpful. I am looking for a house, I think. Baldwin Park seems very appealing. Driving around there gave me a safe, tucked away feeling that I really liked. 

Delaney Park is one I hadn't considered. I'll look into that.

Does anyone have any input on crime? I know there's break-ins and theft issues pretty much everywhere. Is it safe to assume that CP/BP/WP are all pretty comparable in that regard (baring in mind that WP is more of a city and the specific neighborhood matters)? A real estate friend of mine basically summed it up as, "Park in your garage and you'll be fine."

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For CP and BP, its probably safer the further you are away from OBT and Semoran Blvd, respectively. I recall that there were alot of reported breakins in CP last year. BP had that thrashy fight in Publix recently. So get a gun in CP and do not insult a pregnant lady in BP and you be safe.

Heres some cool links to infos about neighborhoods based on zipcodes

http://www.esri.com/data/esri_data/ziptapestry

http://spotcrime.com/fl/orlando

 

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Forgot about that Publix fight, haha. 

Good stuff. Thanks everyone.

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One thing I will say is factor in I-4 if you use it regularly.  For me, Baldwin Park is an absolute non-starter because of that.  I have another 10+ minutes on local roads to get to my house AFTER I battle rush hour on I-4?  Hard pass.  Same can also be said for WP depending on where you live.  It's hard to forget that living in 55W and being literally 2 minutes from the on ramp... and that's only because of red lights.

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One thing I will say is factor in I-4 if you use it regularly.  For me, Baldwin Park is an absolute non-starter because of that.  I have another 10+ minutes on local roads to get to my house AFTER I battle rush hour on I-4?  Hard pass.  Same can also be said for WP depending on where you live.  It's hard to forget that living in 55W and being literally 2 minutes from the on ramp... and that's only because of red lights.

That's a good point and something I had definitely considered. We both work from home offices so it's a minor concern for us. With Baldwin Park my feeling was that you could quickly get to 436 and on to 408, which can get you where you need to be.
 

That said, there were a couple of places in Baldwin Park where small two-lane roads had backed up like 20-30 car lengths because they were going through a 4-way stop. I imagine that could add significant travel time if you get stuck with one of those intersections.

 

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After doing a tremendous amount of research, we moved to Wadeview Park and love it.  WP is just south of Delaney Park roughly bordered by Orange Avenue to the west, Mills to the east, Michigan to the south and borders Delaney Park at Kaley to the north.

The schools are in the neighborhood (Blankner K-12, Boone HS).  Wadeview Park itself is nice and also has a community center and city pool.  Our Main Street is Orange Avenue "Downtown South" and there is no shortage of retail within walking distance from our end south of Kaley.  No doubt, the large signs of national fast food brands and banks take away from any charm that other Main Streets may have, but there are several great mom and pop restaurants including Lidos, Numero Uno, Mediterranean Blue.   

A lot of exciting projects on the horizon.  FDOT is going to redo Orange Avenue to narrow lanes, put in more on street parking and slow it down.  It won't be Edgewater, but it will be much better than what we have now.  LYMMO is scoped to come down to the shopping center at Michigan.  The Urban Trail will be extended down Division with off-street bike routes.  

I'd say the biggest question marks are the I-4 project as the Kaley and Michigan exits will be changed and I don't know how that will affect traffic on Orange.  And the other question mark is what the County allows to happen just south of us in terms of development.  Recently it's been very good but I don't have the same confidence I would have if it was City owned.

 

 

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Yeah, I thoroughly enjoy Wadeview, and its absolutely under consideration for purchase one day in the future for me.  The county land just south is what makes me nervous as you say.  I have many friends who bought a few blocks south so that they didn't have to pay city taxes and such.  But when I bike there, it's immediately apparent when you switch from City to County.  (And not just because of the orange on the street signs!)

Also, traffic on Orange shouldn't be affected.  If anything the Kaley/Michigan exits should be nicer.

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I am looking at listings for Baldwin Park, and some of the 300K range townhomes say that the annual taxes are 5K, 6K...just crazy numbers. That can't be right. Are they including the annual CDD in that or something? There seems to be no consistency. One place lists taxes around 3.5K, then another says over 6K.

Edited by Pete C

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I am looking at listings for Baldwin Park, and some of the 300K range townhomes say that the annual taxes are 5K, 6K...just crazy numbers. That can't be right. Are they including the annual CDD in that or something? There seems to be no consistency. One place lists taxes around 3.5K, then another says over 6K.

While Realtors possess the ability to provide the actual taxes for a property, in general this figure is based on the current owner's tax situation.  Yours will vary.  In particular, of the 1,113 single-family residences within Baldwin Park, taxes range from a low of $1,410 to a high of $37,900, or $0.54 to $5.55 per square foot, which on average is $3.35 (median $3.23).  This is based on 2014 amounts including CDD.  For townhouses, of which there are 638, the range is $941 to $8,834, or $0.45 to $3.78 per square foot, on average $2.56 (median $2.65).  For properties with a homestead exemption (359 TH, 862 SFR), the TH average is $2.31 and the SFR average is $2.98.  Without a homestead exemption (279 TH, 251 SFR), the TH average is $2.88 and the SFR average is $3.75.

 

In total the CDD comes out to $2,579,008 on 1,747 properties ($1476 per parcel).  For townhouses, the average CDD is $946 (median $937), and for SFR the average is $1778 (median $1432).

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While Realtors possess the ability to provide the actual taxes for a property, in general this figure is based on the current owner's tax situation.  Yours will vary.  In particular, of the 1,113 single-family residences within Baldwin Park, taxes range from a low of $1,410 to a high of $37,900, or $0.54 to $5.55 per square foot, which on average is $3.35 (median $3.23).  This is based on 2014 amounts including CDD.  For townhouses, of which there are 638, the range is $941 to $8,834, or $0.45 to $3.78 per square foot, on average $2.56 (median $2.65).  For properties with a homestead exemption (359 TH, 862 SFR), the TH average is $2.31 and the SFR average is $2.98.  Without a homestead exemption (279 TH, 251 SFR), the TH average is $2.88 and the SFR average is $3.75.

 

In total the CDD comes out to $2,579,008 on 1,747 properties ($1476 per parcel).  For townhouses, the average CDD is $946 (median $937), and for SFR the average is $1778 (median $1432).

Thanks for the info!

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I know this is COMPLETELY off topic but I just cam e back from Atlanta and I amazed at all the BIGTIME quality projects going on there all at once. I walked the new Buckhead Atlanta development, saw the work on the new Mercedes Benz Dome DT and the new work out at Battery Atlanta.I all I can say is WOW. Those projects just ooze class. Great design and materials.No cut corners. No faux this or Faux that. Just top notch additions to the city. I just wonder if we will ever have something similar here to be proud of on those levels...

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I really like the Coloniantown neighborhood along Ferncreek (north of 50 / south of Corrine) -- lots of interesting housing stock (bungalows, townhomes, etc) and decent infill construction at the moment.  It's also an easy walk / bike ride to Mills/50.

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On October 20, 2015 at 9:08:43 PM, orlandouprise said:

I know this is COMPLETELY off topic but I just cam e back from Atlanta and I amazed at all the BIGTIME quality projects going on there all at once. I walked the new Buckhead Atlanta development, saw the work on the new Mercedes Benz Dome DT and the new work out at Battery Atlanta.I all I can say is WOW. Those projects just ooze class. Great design and materials.No cut corners. No faux this or Faux that. Just top notch additions to the city. I just wonder if we will ever have something similar here to be proud of on those levels...

I spend a great deal of time per month in Charlotte and have the same reaction.  The amount and quality of work being completed in and around the downtown core is absolutely amazing.  They even have a new Whole Foods complex with 2 hotels set atop it that will be coming out of the ground very soon.  Very impressive yet makes me sad we don't see quite the same level here.  

Edited by steve_o
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I've honestly been wondering what the hesitation was. Is it government red tape? A skittish market? 

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