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June 13, 2007 4:30 PM   Subscribe

What's it like to live in Squantum?

Any MeFites have direct or indirect (though friend or family) experience living in Squantum? Or perhaps North Quincy? We're looking at a house there and the place has charmed our pants off.

What are the downsides of living on the peninsula? Rough weather? Difficulty gettng insurance against wind/water damage? Crappy commutes on 93 or Rte 3?

We work in Boston and have a toddler.
posted by mds35 to Home & Garden (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
I like that whole area, and am down there quite a bit. I find Squantum charming, too. It's a close knit neighborhood between upscale Marina Bay and Wollaston Beach. The houses tend to be small cottage conversions on smaller lots of land.

Wollaston Beach is in the midst of a major reconstruction/cleanup -- redoing the seawall, parking and sidewalks. Quincy Shore Drive is busy on the weekends, especially in the summer, both day and night. The beach sometimes falls under bacteria warnings, however, that restrict swimming. It's been like that for the last few years. Parts of the beach aren't the cleanest, but it is getting better. Marina Bay is beautiful, especially in the summer. Great restaurants, amazing views, cute shops. The biggest thing you'd have to worry about at Marina Bay is the Waterworks crowd on weekends. Will cause some traffic on E. Squantum. It's generally policed pretty well and you should be far enough away to not worry about the crowds and noise otherwise.

Seaside, you generally get the wind off the water you'd expect. I haven't been in Squantum during a major storm, but I know in adjacent Hough's Neck, the sea wall has taken a beaten and the water has topped the wall a couple times, too. The shore generally gets less snow when the inland areas get walloped. Insurance issues may be a factor depending on how close to the actual shore you are. If I were you, I'd just call a couple insurance companies and ask if there are issues in obtaining insurance.

Mr. JG grew up in North Quincy. It's generally a quiet working class neighborhood bordering Milton and Dorcester. You'll find the same sort of cape houses and converted cottages on smaller lots of land mixed in with some larger, older colonial homes. Thickly settled. Lots of great restaurants in the area. (Email is in the profile if you want recommendations.) There's a real nice demographic mix of people in North Quincy.

As a commuter into Boston, 93/The Southeast Expressway will not be your friend. Between parking in Boston and the traffic, you might be better off taking the T from either North Quincy or Wollaston stations. If you and your spouse can commute together, and parking is handled, you can take the HOV lane and that should help with traffic.
posted by jerseygirl at 5:57 PM on June 13, 2007 [1 favorite]


You are probably talking about the worst commute (mile-for-mile) in the Boston area. Luckily, the Red Line is nearby, and hopefully your job situation will be such that the T is an option.
posted by Rock Steady at 6:41 PM on June 13, 2007


My dad lives on Squantum. His house is a small Cape Cod saltbox, which he bought about 10 years ago now, back when Squantum was more long-term quietly established families with a quaint feel. Unfortunately the area is starting to get sprinkled with the wealthier folk and their McMansions (eating up the valuable "view" real estate) and lose the community ties. So it may not remain charming for long, as things are changing fast.

During the winter, it's possible to get stranded out there.

There used to be a ferry commute from Squantum directly into downtown Boston during the summer (not sure if there still is), but otherwise you're reliant on the Red Line and buses for public transportation. There are 2 bus lines which go out to Squantum, IIRC. You will NOT want to commute by car, if you can at all help it, and Neponset Circle is a continual nightmare.

I grew up in Quincy. It's undergoing a bit of a boom as a commuter city, and lots of new real estate (example the giant apartment travesties up by the old granite quarries) and North Quincy in particular. The last time I was home to visit there was *traffic*, which just boggled my mind. Still, over the past 30 years the total population hasn't changed much - it's remained pretty constant at just under 90,000.

Again, things are changing fast - going home for visits every year, I'm constantly amazed at all the new stuff springing up. While I loved growing up there, it bears little resemblance to that now. Some of that is good: there is MUCH more diversity, and overall greater levels of affluence.

Overall, it's still a great place to live and raise a family.
posted by wayward vagabond at 11:57 PM on June 13, 2007


I grew up in one of the towns that neighbors Quincy, and I'd echo what others have said. Quincy seems to be getting somewhat cosmopolitan, which boggles MY mind.
posted by lunasol at 5:19 AM on June 14, 2007


I grew up in North Quincy. Commuting into Boston via car is tough, but Squantum is T Accessible.

Lots of places to take kids in the area - beaches, parks, Marina Bay, easy to get into Boston for museums.

I found Quincy has gotten a lot more diverse over the years, racially, which is nice. Growing up there it was, are you Irish, Italian, or both?

Squantum real estate's been pretty steadily climbing over the years. Basement flooding is a problem for my brother, who lives there now.

Anything specific you want to know?
posted by mazienh at 2:13 PM on June 14, 2007


Thanks for the tips folks!

More information about us:

We both work on Longwood and our son goes to daycare down the street from our jobs, so the HOV lane would be a possibility. Does that make a big difference for this commute?

The house we're looking at has a sump pump in the basement but it is on high enough ground that the basement does not flood with salt sea water, just rainwater.

The wife is Scottish and Irish, I'm mostly Brit, Swede, and German with some Italian and Irish thrown in.
posted by mds35 at 8:11 AM on June 15, 2007


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