Best Places to Live: Pelham Heights, aka The Heights, Pelham
Pelham is a peaceful yet eclectic gateway to family life in the ’burbs.
Blueprint: Established in 1654, Pelham is the oldest town in Westchester County. It’s also the closest to New York City, bordering Pelham Bay Park, the city’s largest.
Façade: Just 30 minutes from Grand Central, Pelham Heights offers a peaceful oasis and a small-town feel, making The Heights a favorite among Brooklyn and Manhattan transplants seeking architectural variety and great schools.
Foundation: With an art-house cinema and art center, a library, gazebo, park, and playground, The Heights combines all of Pelham’s diverse offerings in a single neighborhood. “It’s eclectic to the core,” says Owen Berkowitz, a real estate agent with Douglas Elliman Real Estate. The Heights offers great dining, as well as a host of Colonials and Victorians sure to make Brooklyn transplants feel at home. “Residents can stroll into town for dining, shopping, the park, and the movie theater,” says resident Susan Reische. “Plus, they can drop off their kids at school and head straight to the train in one quick trip.”
Recent Reno: Inspired by Manhattan’s High Line Park, Pelham’s own such park is showing progress: A historic, iconic railway track, the Highbrook Railway Bridge, will be transformed into a park and walking path.
Trending: The price per square foot for home sales in the first half 2017 was $370 vs. $355 for the same period in 2016. “The word is out,” says Berkowitz. “Pelham is hot.”
Selling Points: proximity to New York City, great schools, and a diverse and interesting selection of housing
Trade-off: School busing is not provided.
Starting Point: $475,000 for an 1,100 sq ft, 2-bedroom cottage with a clay-tiled roof
Topping Out: $2,988,000 for a 7,000 sq ft shingle-and-stone Victorian
Best For: urban (as well as urbane) suburbanites
Need to Know: Taxes are high, but there are ample services, like 24/7 paid professional firefighters, a robust police force, and backyard garbage collection.
Fast Fact: Pelham is the home of the classic Archie Comics publications.
Assessment: a peaceful yet eclectic gateway to family life in the ’burbs
Best Thing About Living Here: “A peaceful oasis in downtown Pelham boasts a wide architectural variety of beautiful homes built primarily from the late 1800s through the mid-20th century. A sought-after location for those wanting quick access to the city but with a suburban setting.” —Susan Reische, longtime resident