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Columbia, Maryland SperlingViews

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schools - 5/7/2007
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Abhd
Columbia, MD

be sure to do your research some are great some aren't so great.

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Lunatic
Columbia, MD

Great Place to Live - 4/27/2013

Columbia, Maryland is one of the most affluent suburbs in the country located in wealthy Howard County about midway between Washington, DC and Baltimore, Maryland. Columbia is considered to be more of a suburb of Baltimore and it shows in the fact that most folks out here root for the Ravens and the Orioles. Columbia is vastly different from other Maryland suburbs in the Baltimore-Washington corridor in the fact that it is a planned community. Columbia was founded by the late developer mastermind Jim Rouse. Jim Rouse's dream for Columbia was to create a community where people of all races, backgrounds and income levels lived side by side in peace. Columbia was founded as a place that was friendly to interracial couples and families. Columbia definitely lives up to the lofty ideals. Columbia is not segregated by race like most parts of Baltimore City, PG County and even most parts of Montgomery County (although Sliver Spring and Wheaton are just as diverse as Columbia). Older neighborhoods or villages like Harper's Choice, Wilde Lake and Long Reach are where most of Columbia's black population resides. Life in Columbia is quiet and uneventful for the most part. As other posters have stated, neighborhoods in Columbia are very mixed racially and economically. There are many older Section 8 developments particularly in the neighborhoods of Wilde Lake and Harper's Choice. But even people on Section 8 in Columbia are definitely now where near as poor or disenfranchised as their inner city counterparts. These Section 8 areas in Columbia are far from "ghetto" or being truly dangerous by any means. Anybody who thinks anywhere Columbia is truly "ghetto" or dangerous needs to visit East or West Baltimore or any real inner city ghetto in America for a serious reality check. Before my family moved to Columbia, MD, we lived in one of the roughest of the roughest neighborhoods in the Bay Area in California where ten year old kids old sold crack for a living, people were getting gunned down outside every other week and there were drive-by shootings a few feet away from our home on a regular basis. Nowhere in Columbia has this level of criminal activity. Columbia is one of the safer places in the Baltimore-Washington corridor. The biggest gang out here are the Howard County Police who will pull you over for wearing a flat billed cap and playing Rick Ross too loud in your car. Yes, Columbia does have some confused teenage wannabe thugs who watch too many dumb world star hip hop videos who have something to prove by intimidating pedestrians out of their pocket change on the bike paths, but thats the extent of "crime" out here. All in all, Columbia is a great place to raise a family. The schools here are great and rank at the top of state. However, if you are a young adult, Columbia can be a pretty boring place to live. But most people commute to Baltimore or DC to work and play. [read more...]


Beverly
Aiken, SC

Good and Bad - 12/31/2012

I spent the first 18 years of my life in Columbia, MD but have now moved away. Columbia is a very metropolitan suburb 10 minutes outside of Baltimore. As far as suburbs go it is pretty big and not a far drive from surrounding cities. You can probably find almost everything you need inside of Columbia. There are also many public pools, movie theaters, a fantastic mall, and public transportation. However, crime is bad and the way the city is built you cannot really get away from it. The good neighborhoods are placed right next to the bad ones in an effort to keep the bad neighbohoods from not being too bad and to keep from having one very bad area of Columbia. This was a good way for me growing up to know/make friends with people from all walks of life as the schools are mixed with both rich and poor. Again however, as a teenager growing up there I would not raise a teenager there. All I did (and most of the kids I knew) was do drugs, drink til I could have developed a drinking problem, and engage in other things you wouldn't want your children doing. The majority of teenagers I knew were doing the same thing. People who moved there from other places that had never been bad kids quickly became bad kids like everyone else. Many of my peers dropped out of high school and many of those peers are now still there on welfare. Now that I have moved away I realize that people don't have that high school experience everywhere. That is not to say that nobody succeeds there because many people I know did but a sizeable amount did not is all. Or at least not to the standards that most people have for their children. The cost of living is also extremely high. Getting a one bedroom apartment in a nice neighborhood (not the ghetto) anywhere around Columbia will cost you at least $900+/month. I would never move back. [read more...]


John
Delaplane, VA

Columbia Not All It's Cracked Up to Be... Take It - 9/17/2012

Columbia Maryland isnt a bad place to live. It has its fair share of negatives though. But I'll start with the positives first. Columbia offers alot as a child. When I first moved to Columbia in middle school I enjoyed playing at the basketball courts and playgrounds after school. It was fun being able to walk on the paths to the village centers. As I got older though, the facade of perfect paridise began to fade away.I am now 14 and see a very different side to Columbia. First I want to talk about the terms "safe" and "low crime" that are frequently associated with columbia. Columbia is only "safe" to some. The people that Columbia is "safe" for are the middle class adults who own cars and drive every where. The adults who live in the nice houses on cal de sacs with big yards and make 100,000+ a year. But for the people and teens who live in the section 8 portions of Columbia (yes there are ACTUALLY several small low income developments scatterd throughout western columbia), and for even me, as a teenage african american boy in Columbia it certainly isnt "safe", as I have experienced time and time again. I know kids who have been robbed while walking the paths. There our fights and jumpings where again the victims (as well as the perpetrators) are the minority teens who walk every where. I live in Wilde Lake, and once saw a fight between fellow teens where one kid pulled out a knife. No one was hurt, but still. As far as "low crime" that isnt necessarily true either. Columbia isnt ghetto and the crime that does occur isnt seen by the public for the most part and isnt so blatant that it effects citizens quality of life... but there IS crime that occurs on a daily basis. The main crime that I witness is drugs. Im in highschool and honestly I could find weed and pills so easily here its not even funny. Alot of teens here smoke weed, and I know several people who sell it. I know kids who rob people. The kids that I know in my school are mixed. I know good and bad kids alike. One positive that I can say is that the schools are very good compared to others. So yeah, Im not saying Columbia is the hood or anything like that, but if you are a minority teen living here, you are more likely to be a victim of crime, and there is a fair amount of dirt that gets swept under the rug here.[read more...]


David
Elkridge, MD

Great place to live! - 8/2/2010

I've neevr actually lived right in Columbia but I've lived in the general alrea for close to 17 years. I enjoy it very much and am very happy here and doubt I'd ever leave. Columbia is relatively safe and has something for everyone. It's attractive and well developed. My only objections are, it's VERY expensive to live here and forget about buying a decent home and housing options are very limited unless you have tons of money to spend. Likewise, there are too many red light cameras everywhere these days and traffic is pretty congested everywhere. I also strongly believe when they developed Columbia, they made a grave mistake in letting in the section 8 (low income) housing. May not be "p/c" to say but in truth, it let in a very undesirable element in certain areas that Columbia would be far better off without. Otherwise, I enjoy it and am happy to be here. [read more...]


Karol
Columbia, MD

Residential housing in Columbia, MD - 1/12/2010

Columbia is a "new town", having been developed in the mid 1960's. First residents arrived during the summer of 1967. Our family enjoyed being a part of that experience, moving to Columbia in August of 1967. Today, in 2010, we continue to live in Columbia as well as our adult sons and their families. Housing in the Columbia area is varied both in age, style, size. Today one can rent an apartment, a townhouse, a condominium or purchase a condominium apartment or townhouse, townhouses with or without garages, detached homes of many designs, sizes, age. Recently completed active adult communities in Columbia include villas (that's a townhouse with a first floor master suite) and low rise condominium apartment buildings. Housing in the Columbia area is available for the first time homeowner, the move-up resident, the downsizing adult and everything in between. Columbia is the place to check out for the singles, partners, families of all size, residents of all ages. Columbia is located in between Baltimore to the northeast, Washington DC to the south, Fort Meade (NSA, etc.) to the east, Baltimore Washington International Airport, and convenient to trains traveling the north and south routes as well as I-95. Convenience is huge! Check Columbia OUT![read more...]


Karol
Columbia, MD

Columbia is a place we call home! - 10/3/2009

Our family has lived in Columbia since August, 1967; at that time there were approximately one hundred residence. We have raised our family and our adult sons are raising their families in Columbia as well. The Howard County schools continue to be a wonderful asset, especially as we watch our four grandchildren grow and learn. Opportunities abound for being a volunteer and even though employment is down at the moment, this is slowly improving. I have enjoyed being a REALTOR in Columbia and the Howard County area for 33 years, and continue to enjoy assisting buyers and sellers with their goal of selling and/or buying a home. There have been challenges, no doubt, but this too will improve. Both my husband and I are Maryland natives (Frederick and Towson) and find Columbia and Howard County the ideal area to live.[read more...]


Troy
Columbia, MD

Nice area to live - 9/7/2009

I believe Columbia is one of the better places to live in Maryland. Although it in one of the most expensive counties, it is worth the cost of living. They are so much to offer the youth of the area and the schools are rate among the best in the state.[read more...]


tanya
Columbia, MD

Cultural Diversity - 7/27/2009

My husband and I are African American and have 3 children - 6,10 & 11. We really like Columbia for it's family friendly location, cultural diversity and low crime. Our only complaint and the reason we are planning to move is the cost of living is incredible. You must bring home nlt 7-8K per month to live in a nice house and to have money to enjoy the multitude of things to do.[read more...]


John
Moorestown, NJ

Columbia MD - 12/29/2008

Columbia MD is a wonderful community to live in. Howard County was ranked in the top 10 places to live in the US for the past two years. I highly recommend this city[read more...]


Katie
Catonsville, MD

Columbia is a relaxed great suburban place for a f - 8/25/2008

I have lived in the Ellicott City/Columbia area of Maryland for most of my life. I am a young woman now and have loved it for the most part. It is quiet, yet you have access to Balitmore, and at a longer stretch Washington, DC for work and play. If you are looking for exciting city life however though, I would look elsewhere the suburban feel is what makes this city special. Also, for family life Howard County has some amazing education available through public schools.[read more...]


Wendy
Columbia, MD

amazing schools! - 6/10/2008

we moved here for the highly regarded school system and we are not disappointed! We love our schools and can't imagine a better choice for our children.[read more...]


Deborah
Fulton, MD

Outdoor Green Spaces Mid Way between Balto and Was - 4/18/2008

Columbia has wonderful outdoor spaces- biking and walking paths, outdoor concerts, fairs,lakes, Merryweather Post Pavillion, Columbia has great ticketed concerts and events, a terrific public school system and a diverse community. Great place to live.[read more...]


Michael
Dayton, MD

Suburbia - 4/14/2008

Commuting community to Baltimore and DC. Good services and restaurants.[read more...]


Bobie
Columbia, MD

Suburban Life with Metropolitan Feel - 4/3/2008

This self sufficient City consists of several small "village" communities, designed to cater to family life. Local businesses are very unimposing, thus making them a challenge to find, due to regulation of the minimal usage of signs. Great parks and good schools, keeps the kids busy and the parents happy. All cultural aspects of Urban life are available with the casual convenience of the suburbs. (Mom-n-Pop to Four-star restaurants, Discount chains to upscale shopping and family friendly entertainment).[read more...]


Abhd
Laurel, MD

Too High - 1/27/2008

Its Hard to find a reasonably priced house in a good neighborhood.[read more...]


Di
Columbia, MD

A Very Brady Place to Live - 1/10/2008

Columbia is a planned community conceived in the 1960s. Most of the homes are "shed style" modern, with integrated townhouses, apartments, and business parks. SF homes are expensive ($500K) but the area is falling behind - the McMansionized countryside up in Clarksville is much more $$$ - you can get by here affordably (for the area) if you look around - commutes both to DC and Baltimore are not too bad. There is a system of trails all through the area. It is not a true city, but a compliation of "villages" with "village centers" complete with non-denominational spiritual centers. There are plenty of restaurants and lots of shopping in the area (strip malls, big central mall). Note that there are a few areas that are developing city problems. It is a good fit for someone who really likes the suburbs. If you are moving to central MD and want more cultural and visual variety or a more traditional town, check out Ellicott City, or some of the towns in Baltimore County, or try the Westminster area.[read more...]


Marie
Miami Beach, FL

Love it - 12/5/2007

If you can afford it, Columbia is probably the best place to live in the state. There is tons of diversity, great restaurants, great schools, beautiful parks. Plus, it seems like it's close to everything. It is, however, expensive to live here; there are a good number of well-off people. As my mom says - you get what you pay for.[read more...]


Steven
Pasadena, MD

Cost of Living - 8/1/2007

After moving from the Pocono's to Columbia, it was amazing how much everything costs here. Lived there for 10 years before finally moving away after my kids graduated from high school.[read more...]


Matthew
Columbia, MD

Layout of Columbia MD, great for Joggers!!! - 6/12/2007

Columbia is designed to elimate the "ghetto" found in most every decent sized city I have lived in. Columbia has wondefull foliage and an extensive amount of parks and recreation trails ideal for the modern athlete struggling to find a good way to fit a 30 minute run in before trying to beat traffic into Baltimore/DC. Columbia also has a lower crime rate then the surrouning DC metro/Baltmore area as a result of the afor mentioned layout.[read more...]


Abhd
Columbia, MD

schools - 5/7/2007

be sure to do your research some are great some aren't so great.[read more...]


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