Matt Hughes on 31 Jul 2007 13:34:58 -0000

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Re: [PhillyOnRails] OT: Living in Philly

  • From: "Matt Hughes" <>
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  • Subject: Re: [PhillyOnRails] OT: Living in Philly
  • Date: Tue, 31 Jul 2007 09:34:47 -0400
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I've been living in University City for the past two years and have
really enjoyed it.  University City/West Philly takes a little getting
used to if you've never lived in the city before.  It is a little
grungier than Center City and Fairmount but it has lots of green areas
and is definitely safe (UPenn makes sure of that).  As far as schools
go, Penn Alexander is probably one of the best public schools in the
city (; it is
financially supported by UPenn so it has more resources than other
public schools.

However, I recently bought a house in Fairmount and am really excited
about that.  The neighbours are a bit more outgoing as there isn't as
much of a transient (read: student) population.  I don't really know
much about the schools there though I would think they are good as
every other person I see is pushing a stroller.

Of the two I would say University City has better access to Septa
Regional Rail (just take a trolley to 30th Street) but I haven't
really tried with Fairmount.  If you want to ask more questions or
just lurk around, I really recommend PhillyBlogs
( as a great resource for learning about
different neighbourhoods and finding the answer to just about any
question about living in the city.

On 7/30/07, Eric <> wrote:
> I should mention that the R1 R2 R3 and R5 are all part of the
> SEPTA (South-Eastern Penna Transportation Authority) "Regional Rail"
> system.  I use it all the time (R3 from Swarthmore) and recommend
> it.  Just wanted to make sure you knew what it was!
> Oh, and welcome.
> Eric
> Walter Lee Davis wrote:
> > Melrose/Elkins Park, PA is 15 minutes north of Center City by rail. It's
> > a good walkable suburb with a tiny but functional town center and a
> > great and diverse community. My kids have all gone to Myers Elementary,
> > which is currently being re-built (so the entire school has moved into a
> > surprisingly livable portable school on the grounds of Elkins Park
> > middle school) but you cannot beat the parent involvement and the
> > "mainstream + 1 on 1 help" approach to special needs kids.
> >
> > I recommend it wholeheartedly. Property tax is the only bad thing about
> > it, but I have lived here for 15 years and don't want to move anywhere
> > else until the kids are grown!
> >
> > There are housing opportunities from rental to multi-million mansions,
> > with a good spread of sizes and values in between.
> >
> > Take an R1,2,3, or 5 north and get off at Elkins Park or Melrose Park
> > and just walk around. Or take Broad Street north until it stops being
> > 611 and veer right to follow 611. Once it stops looking like [insert
> > name of recently demolished middle eastern country here] and you cross
> > Cheltenham Avenue, you're there.
> >
> > Walter
> >
> > On Jul 30, 2007, at 4:25 PM, Flinn Mueller wrote:
> >
> >> Does anyone have some advice on where to live in Philly?  I figure
> >> this is a good place to ask people who might have similar income and
> >> issues to share their experience.  I'm looking at relocating to the
> >> area so I'm trying to get a good idea of where to look (and were _not_
> >> to look).  I have a wife and a son who's elementary school age so
> >> schooling is a big factor for choosing a location.  A school with a
> >> separate gifted program would be preferred but I don't know if they do
> >> that in every school district.  Crime is a factor also (obviously),
> >> we're from a NEPA and crime here is pretty low.  I know this subject
> >> came up a few months ago but I think that was addressing a single
> >> person looking for an apartment.  Any advice shared is appreciated.
> >> Thanks ---flinn
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> --
> #  Eric Lucas
> #
> #                "Oh, I have slipped the surly bond of earth
> #                 And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings...
> #                                        -- John Gillespie Magee Jr
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