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Rachel, Home Buyer in Jacksonville, FL

I am trying to compare Mandarin and ICW in Jacksonville. Schools, crime, traffic, etc. Any input?

Asked by Rachel, Jacksonville, FL Mon Apr 14, 2008

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Rachel

Be sure to look at the high schools as well. There is no guarantee that your childern will go to Fletcher Middle. 90% of the students at Fletcher Middle live in the Beach area. Not all ICW students go to Fletcher middle or Fletcher high The majority of homes in your price range in ICW go to Landmark and Kernan and then Sandlewood. Just be sure to verify before you purchase.

I live in Mandarin and find that traffic is not a problem for me. Bewteen 4:30 & 5:30 PM I--295 traffic in the 5 mile section of I-295 through Mandairn gets intense. If you time it though it is about a 10 min delay through that area at that time. Most of the time you can be anywhere in the city within 30 minutes. I can actually be at the Airport in 35 minutes.

For me it is easier to navigate alternate routes in Mandarin and save time. Seems all the Norh south roadways in ICW get just as congested and take lots more time to get around.
Atlantic Blvd between 4:00 & 5:30 is no pick nick either. Nor is JTB at that time of day.

The majority of homes in your price range in ICW will not require flood insurance.

I just worked with someone from Atlanta who thought our traffic was great compared to Atlanta
Web Reference: http://www.cathysloan.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Apr 17, 2008
Rachel:
I live in Mandarin and my sons went to Mandarin High and Mandarin Middle. They were very good students and took honors or AP courses. They were not deemed "gifted", but during their school years, they ended up very small classes because students that couldn't keep up where moved to other classes. This made it nice as the ended up having smaller class sizes then many of the private schools. (This may have just been luck at the time: ) )

Being a Realtor and driving at different times to different areas, I really don't think that the Mandarin traffic is that bad. Yes, at 4:00 - 5:30 trying to get onto 295 can be stop and go for 5 minutes, but all areas of town are going through the same experiences at that same time. The nice thing about Mandarin is when you get to know the area........there are great roads to divert to when the traffic does get bad. Once 9B is completed, it will divert the St. Johns County drivers into their area instead of having to drive through Mandarin to get home.

Check out http://www.CoraHunt.com, as I have a several GREAT homes under the $250 price range. There you can look at multiple photo's and a virtual tour.
Web Reference: http://www.CoraHunt.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Apr 17, 2008
Here is a link to the Department of Education site for Duval County. I find this report easy to read below are the schools in the area.

http://schoolgrades.fldoe.org/default.asp

The Intracoastal West schools are: Brookview, Alimaconi, Chets Creek, Abess park, Landmark, Kernan and Sandlewood

The Mandarin Schools are: Greenland Pines, Loretto, Crown Point, Mandarin Middle, Mandarin High

Someonw mentioned Ponte Vedra. The schools are excellent but the average home prices in that area is much higher than Intracoastal West and Mandarin.

Another good school district is St. Johns County. Housing prices slightly higher than Intracoastal West & Mandarin. Schools to in North West St. Johns County are: Julington Creek, Durbin, Cunningham Creek, Fruit Cove, Switzerland point, Bartram & Nease There are some others but these are for the area Around Julington Creek, Fruit Cove and the Roberts Road area.

I hope this info helps you with school research
Web Reference: http://www.cathysloan.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Apr 16, 2008
Hello Rachel -

Absolutely, I have lots of input. I grew up in Mandarin and still live nearby in St. Johns County. I attended schools in Mandarin as well as both of my sons. I would love to provide you with great information about the area. Traffic depends on the time of day and destination. Crime statistics are easy to research, just go on http://www.coj.net and click over to the sheriff's office link - you will find the crime statistics there. Let me know how else I can help you - You can reach me at 742-8451.

My Priorities Are Simple ... They're Yours!
Patti Namey, GRI
Broker Associate
Watson Realty Corp.
Web Reference: http://www.PattiNamey.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 14, 2008
I have a home for sale ICW in established secure neighborhood off San Pablo. Not bad commute. Sandalwood Highschool. Lots of good private schools also. Call if interested 588-3750.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed May 7, 2008
Wow-thanks for all the responses! Ok, I am now looking at the differences between ICW and Mandarin homes as far as kid friendly neighborhoods. I am looking at homes under $250K and also wondering if ICW homes require flood insurance and if so about how much is that a year? It seems that the schools in both areas (Mandarin Middle compared to Fletcher Middle) are pretty much both exactly what my son needs (gifted/accelerated) and the crime is too. Anyone have any specific advice or input regarding Mandarin compared to ICW? I have heard the traffic in Mandarin is terrible?? Is it any worse than the ICW area during rush hour?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Apr 17, 2008
Rachel:
I really believe that it is important to look at the student and then match them up with the school. Some students need to have a high pace learning structure and others can't keep up. So look deep into the needs of your children. Also keep in mind that you can have a great school and a horrible teacher or a great teacher that ended up having a very unruly class that makes it difficult for your child to learn. There are just so many variables.

For crime you could visit these websites:
http://www.fdle.state.fl.us
http://www.coj.net
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Apr 17, 2008
I used to live in Ponte Vedra Beach a few years ago, it's in St. John's county bordering Duval. The schools in PV beach were probably the best around, and very little crime. Very nice area! I've always heard bad things about Duval county schools, at least compared to St. John's county anyway. Easy commute to Jacksonville too.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 14, 2008
Hi Rachel,

Mandarin schools are pretty ok. I would prefer you looked in Northern St Johns County if schools are a big concern. St Johns schools are rated very good almost across the board while in Duval it can be hit or miss.

Good Luck to you
JD “Dan” Weisenburger, GRI
Broker-Associate REALTOR®
Vanguard Realty, Inc. GMAC Real Estate
Web Reference: http://www.neflahomes.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 14, 2008
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