Old Towntown/China Town is a part of town that is undergoing a lot of redevelopment currently. I would refer to the site below for all the changes. Right now there have been reports of violence and drug crimes on the news and actually does have a larger traffic of transients as one of the community food pantries is located within Old Town (Ballard House across the street from Flanders). I strongly believe in this area and think that all the things the city is doing such as transportation, store fronts etc... are positive steps to a healthier neighborhood. Also remember, that a transient population isn't equal to crime (most crimes that I've heard of are committed by people who are drinking at local bars). If you are considering moving into the Flanders Street Lofts, I would simply talk to a couple of homeowners that already live there and see what they have to say. Trust me people love to talk.
As a Realtor, I think the building is great and there are some great deals in there right now. If you are familiar with urban settings I would say go for it, you will thank yourself 5 years down the road.
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Best of Luck,
Condos, Lofts and Townhome
Realty Trust Group Inc.