5.8 out of 10


42.8028944365545 -73.9292111479736
Great for
  • Childcare
  • Clean & Green
  • Cost of Living
  • Eating Out
  • Gym & Fitness
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3/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 4/5
  • Safe & Sound 2/5
  • Clean & Green 5/5
  • Pest Free 5/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 5/5
  • Nightlife 5/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 5/5
  • Gym & Fitness 5/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Parking 5/5
  • Cost of Living 5/5
  • Resale or Rental Value 4/5
  • Public Transport 5/5
  • Medical Facilities 5/5
  • Schools 4/5
  • Childcare 5/5

"'The City that Lights and Hauls the World'"

The busy city of Schenectady NY has been called “The City that Lights and Hauls the World”, as it is home to the Edison Electric Company (otherwise called GE, or “General Electric”, and the ALCO (“The American Locomotive Company”, as well as the home of New York Lottery and Price Chopper Supermarkets. Today it is still a bustling metropolis, where most restaurants and stores can be found on State Street. It's also very diverse, as there's 54.38% White, 28.19% African American, 3.62% Asian, and 0.69% Native American. There's also many Puerto Ricans that live here, adding to the colorful population of over 66,135. Here you can find the beautiful historic Proctor's Theater, which was first a vaudeville and movie theater that was built in 1926, and has its own “Goldie” version of the Wurlitzer pipe organ. Today you can visit three theaters in the Proctors: 440 Upstairs, GE Theater, and Mainstage.

In addition to the Proctors Theater, you might find yourself enjoying the colorful variety of flowers at the Garden at Central Park. Or, you can enjoy the fabulous architecture while walking through the historic Stockade District, which is the safest part of Schenectady and perfect for families raising children. (There are 17 schools offered by the Schenectady City School District, including many private schools, and once your children graduate, they can go onto attend Union College or Schenectady Community College in their very own city, and there's lots of other colleges in the immediate area to choose from---such as Skidmore College in the beautiful tourist village of historic Saratoga Springs). During your stay, or as a resident as well, you'll be amazed by the fascinating exhibits at the Schectady History Museum, or enjoy a show at the Schenectady Light Opera Company (the downtown theater group, which is small but no less entertaining than others in the area that you will find). Also, don't forget the Edison Tech Center, where you can learn all about the latest technology. Afterwards, be sure to visit the Upper Union Street Business Improvement District, where you'll find a whole slew of restaurants, shops, and businesses in Schenectady. If you're interested in African American History, you might want to visit the African American burial ground at Vale Cemetery (celebrate the emancipation of slaves on “Freedom Day”, otherwise known as “Juneteenth” here, which is held annually on June 19th.)

Schenectady, as you can see, is a very colorful, artistic city. It unfortunately has had a bad wrap due to violence between races, but schools are very good and the city is trying to take action to reduce the violence here. There's safer places in Schenectady than others, such as the historic Stockton district, and all over Schenectady you'll find affordable housing, which will help with the high taxes prices (ironically, the cost of living is actually 3.40% less than the average of the entire United States). You're also not far from NYC by train (It's only a little more than two hours away), and Schenectady has a wonderful train station, which will be great for commuters. There's beautiful parks like Central and Scotia Collins, both of which have lots of activities (Scotia Collins, for instance, has a playground, tennis courts and a jogging path). You're also right near Saratoga Springs, which is famous for its horse racing and special natural spring spas---which draws in visitors from all over the world!

Overall, Schenectady has a lot to offer, and though it could use some improvement in certain areas, it's a fun place to live. Choose carefully when moving with kids, as well as schools---there's so many to choose from---and there's private schools as well. Schenectady has wonderful amenities and plenty of restaurants to eat at, and all of different kinds. There's places to play outside as well as inside, and you'll learn a great deal about your local American history.

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