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Choosing the Pine Hills

April 29, 2010

by Tenny Snyder

ALBANY –  The Pine Hills neighborhood is home to many families, pets and couples who have lived in the area for years.  As time has gone by, the community demographic has changed and now includes college students, and young working adults.  Jenny Minahan, a senior at UAlbany, is one of the many younger residents living in the Pine Hills borders.  She and her six female roommates live on South Main Avenue.

“Living with six girls can get crazy at times, but the more we have in the house the safer we feel because normally two girls are always at the house at the same time,” Minahan said.

Minahan, an employee at the local coffee shop on Madison Avenue, The Muddy Cup, is from Chatham, about 30 minutes away. She is comfortable with city living.

Her father is a New York State Police Officer stationed in Albany.  Minahan said it’s nice knowing her dad is always updated on what’s going on, and lets the girls know what to look out for around the Pine Hills neighborhood.

“He had to make sure the apartment was in a decent part of the neighborhood before we would sign any sort of lease,” Minahan said.

Although at times the Pine Hills area might seem unsafe for a young woman to live, Minahan said that she enjoys living where she does.  She uses the Price Chopper and all the places to eat that are close to her apartment.  She loves the convenient atmosphere of the Pine Hills, including the grocery stores, a movie theater and restaurants. Since she is without a car while she is at school, so she rides her bike everywhere she needs to go, and sometimes uses the CDTA to get from place to place.

“I find myself sprinting from the bus stop to my apartment when I come home from class late,” she said. “It just makes me nervous walking from the stop to my place by myself.”

Minahan is pleased with the apartment she shares with her roommates. She said that many of her neighbors are nice elderly people who come over and introduce themselves or say hi.

“I would never live anywhere else at the time.  I feel as safe as I think I can around this area,” Minahan said of South Main.

Although she does not plan on staying in the area for graduate school, she is satisfied with her decision to choose a college in Albany.

“I’m glad I came here.  It really is a great college experience and living in the Pine Hills neighborhood forces you to become independent and make smart choices.  It was a positive decision to start my college career here,” she said.



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