"South End Revitalization"
My street (AUTUMN CT) is actually off the main street, Autumn St. It is kind of like a glorified driveway, with one house after mine which has ROW to their yard. I DO like being off the street a bit, as the 2nd house in, and we have the biggest land in front & in back of our house compared to the other houses next to us-but the houses are still a tight squeeze-you can cough and they can hear you in the next house, because of the close proximity, front, sides AND back. We have the only tree as well, sits in our front yard, had to cut some big branches to keep neighbors happy, but it provides us with welcome summer shade. The thing that sucks is that when we bought the house a few years ago we didn't know that the city didn't plow the road, so we had to get a snowblower to get ourselves out. Trash also has to be brought to the curb a little ways away on the main road as well. Our area was primarily made up of French Canadian immigrants many years ago, but now has become a pretty rough area due to drugs, people coming in from out of state, and the majority of people that live in the area. Not many single family homes now, most converted to apts. where the landlords don't live themselves, and unfortunately, don't care about the tenants just the $ monthly rent. That being said, there is a bar down the road, The Chez, where I have seen many a drunk walk home from, although they tend to be peaceful and keep to themselves most of the time. Sherwin Park is great, a great hill for sliding in the winter, people from all over the city come there to slide with their kids, and the park is nice to relax in with a good book. The city constructed a skateboard park there too, and it is refreshing to watch the young guys trying to do some risky moves on their boards. Scotts Pizza & variety Store is at the bottom of the hill, a short walk away-the pizzas aren't bad and they are open 365 days a year, which comes in handy if you need bread or milk. Down the road a bit further, on Water St. is the KVCAP buildings, where I work. Childcare is provided there, and it is a good program, one that I took advantage of this past year. IT is a social service agency, so we see people from all over the city. KFC & The South End Cafe, both good eats are local too. There are some nice people in the South End, and the police have been patrolling regularly now, they are also in the process of constantly revamping or revitalizing it, and there is a local group that meets monthly to plan events. I've noticed skunks, racoons & the occasional river rat in the area, along with a few stray feral cats. There, are however, sex offenders who live in the south end, the police let us know by giving us flyers, but it still makes me nervous having so many of them congested in this area where a park is so close for the children to play in. Lucky for me, I have some pretty good neighbors & we tend to watch out for each other. I feel confident that in time the south end area will continue to flourish, we will always have some types of problems in the area though-it is just a matter of adapting to them and not letting crime overcome our neighborhood. Retirees might be nervous living in the area though, and as long as your kids can be trusted to do the right thing I wouldn't worry about the drugs, you find them everyplace now anyways-from million dollar homes right down to one room shacks. Basically I don't mind where I live and feel pretty secure.