Whether you’re laying down roots for the first time or relocating your family, finding a safe city to settle down in isn”t always easy. Researching crime in city after city is frustrating and requires time that most busy moms and dads simply don’t have. The good news is, Safewise has the answers you’re looking for.
We’ve paired data from the FBI’s 2011 Crime in the U.S. Report with our own thorough investigation and created a comprehensive list of the top 50 safest cities in New York, with 15,000 residents or more as of 2011.
If a move to the Empire State is in your future, use the crime statistics and community summaries provided in our all-inclusive report to discover your family’s new hometown.
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1. Floral Park
Safe neighborhoods and strong community programming are just two reasons you’ll want to call Floral Park home. Located on Long Island, Floral Park is honored as the safest city on our list. In fact, no murders, rapes or arsons were reported to law enforcement in 2011. One reason residents of this charming 1.4 square mile village enjoy safe streets is likely due to Floral Park’s commitment to educating and empowering young people through robust community services.
During the summer season, you’ll find families cooling off at the Floral Park recreation pool complex or heading to the library for movie night. This all American small town also offers a number of innovative programs aimed at helping protect kids, including the I-Safe program that teaches kids how to responsibly and productively use information and communications technology.
Floral Park’s Setting Adolescent Values through Education and Deterrence (SAVED) program helps steer children away from destructive behavior. Mom and dad will find that getting involved in their new hometown is easy, thanks to a number of community organizations, like the Floral Park Art League, Beautification Committee and Floral Park Council of Cultural Affairs. Rest assured, if your family is fortunate enough to make the move to Floral Park, they won’t be disappointed.
Bedford enjoys a rich past that dates back to the 17th century. The historical small town is located in affluent Westchester County, which is recognized as the second wealthiest county in the state. It’s also a wonderful place to raise a family. That’s because not only is this town of about 17,000 number two on our safe city list, it also offers an amazing recreation and parks department that takes pride in ensuring every member of your family has plenty of healthy, fun activities to choose from.
Take a peek at Bedford’s recreation brochure and you’ll find a “Teen Get Away” travel camp, kiddy jamborees, kid’s mystery solving series, and every sport you can think of. Moms and dads will want to take advantage of organic cooking classes, tennis tournaments and lunchtime workout classes. In addition to being safe and active, the families that call Bedford home are also environmentally conscious. Citizens have embraced the “Bedford Twenty by 2020” program which strives to reduce carbon emissions by 20 percent by the year 2020.
3. New Castle
The FBI Crime Report proves what New Castle residents have long known; it’s a safe place to live. The data shows that no rapes, murders, arsons or aggravated assaults were reported to law enforcement in 2011. In addition to a safe environment, the Westchester County town of 23.4 square miles offers your family boundless recreation and arts, and schools that are recognized as some of the very finest in the U.S.
A community that can trace its history back to 1791, New Castle is indisputably historic and charming. But it’s surely not stuck in the past. In fact, this small town is praised for using the latest technology to keep its citizens informed. New Castle residents can do a lot of community safety things online, including file a police report, join a discussion group about the town’s master plan, check the police blotter for crime, or sign up to receive community alerts via text message. An online police department survey ensures law enforcement stays in-tune with community concerns and satisfaction. It’s no wonder families who move to New Castle rarely leave.
4. Port Washington
You know what they say about location, and Port Washington has got it! Perfectly situated on the North Shore of Long Island, and just 17 miles east of Manhattan, Port Washington families enjoy an unsurpassed waterfront lifestyle. A highly regarded public school district, vibrant downtown and a diverse citizenship are a few reasons why Port Washington families take pride in their community.
Another is undeniable community cohesiveness. In fact, residents joined together to transform and old school house into one of Port Washington’s greatest treasures: the Landmark on Main Street. This thriving community center offers families a multitude of programs, plus a 425-seat theater that serves up more than 35 performances a year. Port Washington also enjoys a well earned reputation as welcoming and safe. In fact, no violent crimes at all were reported to law enforcement in 2011.
Guided by the mantra “Nobody can do everything, but everyone can do something,” the residents of Carmel, New York have a lot to brag about. In addition to landing fifth place on our safe cities list, Carmel is full of history and enjoys an all-American ambiance. Settled just prior to the Revolutionary War, the quaint town is dotted with centuries old gravestone and exudes charm.
Located just 50 miles north of New York City’s famous Central Park, a trip to the Big Apple makes an ideal weekend outing. If you prefer to stay close to home, you’ll find families gathering at the soon to be completed Imagination Station or Sycamore Park. The 32 acre outdoor space abounds with land and water activities, and there’s no doubt the kids will enjoy Sycamore Park’s 5,700 square foot sandbox. An impressively active county arts council is an organization you’re sure to get familiar with when you make the move to Carmel. Offering an eclectic assortment of events, including concerts, summer arts programs and theater performances, the 40 year old Putnam Arts Council is a staple of the community.
Housing isn”t cheap, but you can’t put a price tag on the benefits of living in Scarsdale, New York. For starters, just two violent crimes were reported to law enforcement in 2011. In addition to being one of New York’s safest cities, Scarsdale has the distinction of offering one of the finest school systems. Moms and dads will be thrilled to hear that SAT scores are consistently more than 100 points above the U.S. average, and high school curriculum is demanding. Typical Advanced Placement classes are replaced by locally developed Advanced Topics, which emphasize critical thinking and over 95 percent of students go on to a four-year college.
Buy a home in Scarsdale and you’ll enjoy walks to downtown shops where store owners call you by name, or head to one of the four pools where you can chat with neighbors and make new friends. On top of the fact your kids will enjoy a superb education, you’ll be thankful for a smooth morning commute. A trip from Scarsdale to Grand Central takes less than 40 minutes.
7. Glen Cove
If you’re a water lover, you’ll fall fast and hard for Glen Cove. Ideally located on the stunning North Shore of Long Island, it’s easy to see why wealthy tycoons like J.P. Morgan and F.W. Woolworth once built palatial estates here. In addition to magnificent beaches, those who enjoy water recreation will appreciate the city’s full-service marinas, yacht clubs and boat launch ramps. And Glen Cove is a sailing mecca. Sailboat races draw thousands of spectators, and make the perfect family outing. Pack a picnic and watch the action from a nearby cliff-top park or join in on the fun yourself.
Thanks to its holistic approach to educating students and pioneering programs that encourage children to become involved in the community, this distinctive waterfront city was honored as one of the “100 Best Communities for Young People” by America’s Promise Alliance. Rounding out the reasons why you’ll want a Glen Cove address: it’s a safe city. Less than 20 violent crimes, no murders and no rapes were reported to law enforcement in 2011.
Settled in 1664, residents of Eastchester take pride in offering newcomers a well-built community that’s remarkably safe. One reason why this family oriented town enjoys minimal crime is its “neighbor helping neighbor” philosophy. The town’s Community Fund is just one example of how Eastchester’s citizens care for one another. The non-profit has helped provide support for organizations that serve Eastchester’s citizens for nearly 100 years.
Lake Isle Country Club, a town-owned facility, ensures every family has an affordable, safe place to golf, swim, play tennis or just sit pool-side enjoying lunch and conversation with friends. Family entertainment nights, teen pool parties and painting classes are just a few of the family fun events you’ll want to take part in. And although this town of nearly 35,000 is a mere 20 miles north of New York City, you’ll find almost everything your family needs right in your own backyard, such as the Vernon Hills Shopping center, which is filled with high-end stores. Head to Eastchester soon, because there’s no doubt residents will plan an unforgettable party to celebrate its 350th anniversary next year.
9. Hyde Park
Hyde Park is famously the home of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, but that’s just one of the many treasures you’ll find in this quaint riverside town. Located along the Hudson River, between the state capital of Albany and bustling New York City, Hyde Park is rich with history and culture that its residents work hard to preserve.
Streets skirted with picturesque stone walls offer shops, distinctive boutiques, art galleries and local eateries which serve as gathering places for visitors and locals alike. When you settle in Hyde Park you’ll also enjoy safe streets. Less than 20 violent crimes were reported to law enforcement in 2011, and the town’s police department offers proactive programs such as security checks on your home when you’re away on vacation. Recognizing that tourism offers the town major revenue, the Hyde Park Chamber of Commerce spearheads a number of programs that help small business owners thrive.
10. Long Beach
Touted as New York’s famous “City by the Sea,” Long Beach is located on a barrier island just south of Long Island. Boarded by the Atlantic Ocean and Reynolds Channel, it is notorious as a place generations of families gather to enjoy picnics, build sandcastles, ride waves and stroll the iconic boardwalk.
Unfortunately, Hurricane Sandy destroyed several Long Beach businesses, homes and its boardwalk, but the power of its citizens helped the community of 33,000 rebuild itself and emerge stronger than ever. The Long Beach Recreation Center reopened and once again offers every family member something special. From toddler Yoga to infant music exploration classes to ice skating instruction and women’s kickball, Long Beach is committed to helping you raise a healthy family. Working parents will appreciate the before and after-school programs, summer camp programs, and top-notch child care center. Moreover, Long Beach is our tenth safest city in New York. That could be in part due to a proactive police department and a robust Auxiliary Police Department.
Noted for its outstanding recreation department and community oriented police department, Lynbrook is a place worth moving to. There’s no doubt that Lynbrook Police Department’s practical, proactive programs are one reason why Lynbrook neighborhoods are safe. In fact, just 20 burglaries were reported to law enforcement in 2011. When you relocate to Lynbrook you can turn to police for burglary prevention tips, and free crime prevention surveys of your home or business.
From toddlers to seniors, the Nassau County village offers your family an array of programming. Flag football, little league, lacrosse and girls softball are just a few of the many athletics leagues your young ones will have to choose from and pre-school ballet, tumbling, and art and crafts serve as a sampling of classes your kids will beg to sign up for. Plus, Lynbrook’s Greis Veterans Memorial Park was recently honored as a third place winner in Coca Cola’s “America’s Favorite Park” contest, which rewarded the park with a $25,000 grant.
It’s our bet that famous Mamaroneck residents like Norman Rockwell and James Fenimore Cooper would be proud of the place they once called home. Largely a commuter town for those working in Manhattan, Mamaroneck is a decidedly welcoming place that easily earns its reputation as “The Friendly Village.”
In addition to greeting newcomers with open arms, you’ll be happy to hear Mamaroneck offers safe streets. In 2011, no murders or arsons were reported to authorities. Dotted with distinct residential neighborhoods, each offering an authentic flare, the pride of the community is Harbor Island Park. With over 50 percent of the village’s 6.7 square miles being water, you can bet Mamaroneck’s new Marine Education Center is full of activity. Helping educate locals and tourists about Long Island Sound, the center also rallies residents for events like beach cleanups.
Home to former New York Governor George Pataki, the safe city of Peekskill has lots to offer families and entrepreneurs. And you’ll want to make your move to Peekskill soon because, after a decade and a half of planning, those lucky enough to call Peekskill home are about to get a dynamic new park. The $3.6 million Scenic Hudson Park at Peekskill Landing will transform a run-down industrial site into a top-notch riverfront park your family is sure to enjoy.
Peekskill understands the value of green space and it also knows the importance of developing local business. If you’re an entrepreneur settling down in Peekskill you’ll want to head right for the Office of Economic Development where you’ll be provided with data on the commercial real estate market, historic and projected economic figures, plus offered help in finding employees, and other business startup assistance.
14. Stony Point
Safe, scenic and full of entertainment, you won’t regret a move to Stony Point. Plus, you’ll be able to brag that your hometown played a pivotal role in the Revolutionary War. Located on the Hudson River, Stony Point is a picturesque small town that attracts tourists and boaters alike and boasts the oldest lighthouse in the Hudson Valley, built in 1826.
Stony Point residents don’t have to worry much about crime. Its police department offers a number of crime prevention programs, and no murders, rapes or arsons were reported to law enforcement in 2011. Free security surveys of homes and businesses is another way the Hudson River town helps keep its citizens and their valuables safe and secure. When you’re looking for first class entertainment, you’ll want to head straight for the Penguin Rep Theatre. The three decade old theatre has received rave reviews from “The New York Times” and serves up an unforgettable Children’s Theatre Festival.
Because of its fantastic location along the Hudson River, those who are lucky enough to make the move to Ossining Village can expect easy access to New York City via the Metro North Railroad, as well as numerous business opportunities, a variety of shopping and an abundance of water activities. From modest homes to lavish estates, newcomers are pleasantly surprised with the variety of housing they discover in Ossining, and its diverse population.
The Office of Downtown and Economic Development goes to great lengths to attract and retain small businesses, and serves as an excellent resource for ambitious entrepreneurs looking to open shop in Ossining’s historic crescent shaped downtown shopping area. In addition to being safe and pro-business, Ossining also offers top-performing schools. In fact, Ossining High School was recognized as one of the country’s top 250 best schools in the year 2000, and offers two high school programs which give students access to college level courses.
Settled in the late 17th century, Orangetown is recognized as the first town formed in Rockland County. And for the last three centuries, generations of families have enjoyed its small town vibe and safe neighborhoods. Less than 50 burglaries were reported to law enforcement in 2011, which is impressive for a town of nearly 40,000.
Bordered by the Hudson River, your family will enjoy unending recreational activities, and a number of community sponsor events that will help you make new friends in no time. Summer concerts, family movie nights under the stars, rail trail fun runs, and special programs for nearly every holiday help you feel right at home. Another way to get to know your neighbors and enrich your new community is by joining the active Orangetown Volunteer Program. If you love the links, you’ll want to tee off at Broadacres Golf Club or Blue Hill Golf Course. Both are affordable, public courses that enjoy long and distinctive histories and impeccable fairways.
Highly rated schools and low crime rates are just two reasons why people who move to Webster feel like they’ve discovered a hidden gem. The suburban community is located in a rural setting, yet is only five miles from Rochester, the state’s third largest city, and a short drive to the Greater Rochester International Airport. Bordered by Lake Ontario and Irondequoit Bay, residents enjoy lakefront living at its finest and housing that fits nearly every budget and family size.
Parents take a proactive approach to education, and the Webster School District ranks among the best in New York State. When the weekend rolls in, join your neighbors and enjoy an unparalleled variety of fun events. From Webster’s famous Village Days Street Festival, to movies in the park, free concerts, storytelling and family arts and crafts, your kids will never be bored. A strong Community Coalition for Economic Development rounds out the reasons why a move to Webster is one you won’t regret.
If you’re looking to relocate, Rye is a place that’s hard to beat. With just one violent crime, and no murders, rapes or arsons reported to law enforcement in 2011, it’s no wonder families feel safe in Rye, New York. Located in Westchester County, this historic and suburban city is undeniably charming and provides residents the ideal blend of old and new.
Tree-lined streets, rolling hills, and meandering brooks serve as the perfect backdrop for tightly-knit neighborhoods, where kids still rides bikes and scooters without fear. Rye also boasts an amazing high school that has been ranked as one of the top ten in the state, with more than 95 percent of students planning to continue their education after graduation. Best yet, if you’re like the one-third of Rye’s residents who commute, you’ll be pleased that New York City is a short train ride away, and heading to Connecticut, New Jersey or Long Island for work is entirely doable.
In the heart of the rich Hudson Valley, surrounded by the foothills of the Catskill Mountains, you’ll discover the welcoming town of Fishkill. Conveniently located just 60 miles north of New York City, and 10 miles from Stewart International Airport, Fishkill offers the advantages of big-city life balanced by hometown ambiance. Your family will enjoy afternoon hikes on stunning mountain trails, and extraordinary programming that helps children develop an appreciation for a healthy lifestyle and encourages creativity.
KidzArt afterschool art classes, music classes for babies and toddlers, fitness classes, baby sitting courses, and puppet shows are just a few of the rich programs Fishkill’s recreation department offers. In the summer you’ll undoubtedly head to Splash Down Beach, or catch a game at Dutchess Stadium, home to Hudson Valley Renegades professional baseball club. As if you needed more reasons to fall in love with Fishkill, it also has some of the state’s best schools, and it’s safe. No murders, rapes or robberies were reported to authorities in 2011.
Love the outdoors but don’t want to sacrifice convenience? Then start packing your bags for Ramapo. The citizens of Ramapo have made preserving green space a town priority for more than a decade, investing more than $35 million dollars and hundreds of planning hours into its open space program. And their dedication to healthy outdoor activity has paid off. Currently, over half of the town is designated parkland.
Three pools, a children’s park, sports complex and more than half a dozen quaint neighborhood parks assure you that your family will have plenty of room to run and play. When it’s time to head out of town, you’ll enjoy Ramapo’s convenient location, just off the New York State Thruway and less than 30 miles northwest of New York City. Plus, this town of nearly 85,000 is one you’ll consider safe. According to the FBI Crime Report, no murders were reported to authorities in 2011.
21. Mount Pleasant
Low unemployment rates, gently rolling hills and a variety of housing are just a few reasons why Mount Pleasant lives up to its idyllic name. Situated in central Westchester County, Mount Pleasant is just 30 miles north of New York City. Although there are several large industry parks in Mount Pleasant, offering jobs at companies like Fuji Photo Film and PepsiCo, many residents commute to New York City. In fact, the average commuter enjoys a trip that takes less than 30 minutes.
While you’re at work, you’ll feel good knowing that your kids are taking part in one of several recreational programs the town offers. Youth cooking, knitting and pottery classes entertain kids with creative flare; tennis lesions, karate, and a robust cheerleading program let the most active kids burn off all their energy. The Mount Pleasant Police Department gets two thumbs up for updating their website daily with sex offender information and offering free gun locks to any resident, thanks to their participation in the national “Project Child Safe” program. A forward thinking police department may be one reason why residents of Mount Pleasant benefit from low crime rates.
Less than 20 north of Syracuse, the fifth most populous city in the state, you’ll discover the town of Cicero. Rich with history and remarkably affordable, this New York safe city town takes a practical, hands-on approach to ensuring its families are well informed and protected. In fact, you’ll find resources and programs in Cicero that surpass those found in much larger towns. The online publication of a semiannual Progress Report is one example. The report covers important topics like economic development, housing development approvals, clean-up initiatives and crime. According to the report, a 45,000 square foot addition to the regional airpark will bring 60 new jobs, and the town will be adding additional police shifts during critical hours.
The Cicero Police Department also maintains an online crime map that highlights recent criminal activity and offers citizens an innovative E-Policing program. Cicero is a prime example of how clear communication and strong partnerships between citizens and their government help keep crime at bay.
Guided by the mantra “Progress with Preservation,” you can bet that the New York City suburb values history and embraces the future with equal vigor. Festivals, street fairs, annual egg hunts, vibrant cultural programs and a popular performing arts center make Yorktown a community that’s perfect for young families. Comprised of five hamlets that exude their own distinctive character, Yorktown is also quite diverse. Plus, it’s perfect for commuters who will enjoy living no more than 40 miles from midtown Manhattan.
Less than 25 violent crimes were reported to law enforcement in 2011, which is remarkable for a town of nearly 40,000 people. If you make the move to Yorktown, you’ll want to sign up for the Yorktown Police Department’s newsletter. Recognized as the birth place of the game lacrosse, it’s also an active place to raise a family. Looking for the best of city and country life? You’ve just discovered it.
A commitment to youth programming and affordable and diverse housing make Camillus an attractive place to live, and a good value. And when you call this western suburb of Syracuse home, your family will also enjoy safe neighborhoods. Less than 10 violent crimes were reported to authorities in 2011.
Camillus’ Town Shop was founded over 40 years ago with the goal of offering youth a place they could count on for guidance and support as well as engaging in cultural and recreational experiences. Town Shop also encourages community service. Kids participate in community events like beautification projects and serving meals to those in need. Guitars, kayaks, tents and cross-country skis are just some of the equipment young people enjoy access to. Trips and adventures like whale watching off Cape Cod round-out the diverse activities Town Shop offers. If you’re looking for a community that’s safe and values its youth, a move to Camillus could be in your future.
Talk to the residents of Ogden, and they’ll tell you that low crime and an affordable cost of living combined with the convenience of city amenities make them feel fortunate to call this rural community home. Located on the historic Erie Canal, Ogden is just west of the state’s third largest city (Rochester).
If you’re considering opening and relocating your business to Ogden, you’ll be glad to hear the town
is ideally located just minutes from major interstates and less than a 20 minute drive to the Rochester International Airport. Surrounded by no less than nine institutes of higher learning, you’ll be impressed with the community’s skilled and ambitious workforce and supported by a government with a pro-business agenda and innovative incentives. If you love quiet country life but want the convenience of the city, Ogden will tempt you.
26. Orchard Park
With no murders and just 11 aggravated assaults reported to authorities in 2011, Orchard Park is a peaceful place to live. The affluent suburb Buffalo is also serious about small business. Its Economic Development Committee helps entrepreneurs get the information they need to launch their business properly and assists veteran business owners that relocate to Orchard Park. The organization’s Strategic Plan offers insights into the town’s commitment to business.
In addition to being safe and dedicated to small business development, Orchard Park offers a superior recreation department that goes above and beyond when it comes to programming. Pack your family for Orchard Park and enjoy access to a dozen aquatics classes and an amazing collection of youth programs that range from fencing to Chinese calligraphy and baton twirling to floor hockey. When it’s time for mom and dad to have fun, they can join hikes, competitive pick-up badminton and basketball leagues. Orchard Park also provides a dynamic assortment of fun activities for preschoolers and more than a dozen unique camps throughout the year.
The safe, tightly-knit community of Rome, New York is both business friendly and distinctively green. Three major organizations provide critical support to business owners. The REACH Microenterprise Center offers technical assistance and services to help Microenterprises create jobs and launch new products, nearby Mohawk Valley Small Business Development Center provides free business advice, and the Rome Entrepreneur Assistance Program lends a hand by offering low-interest financing and grants.
Just as impressive as Rome’s business related programs are its pioneering green initiatives. Electric vehicle charging stations are scattered through downtown and at major parks, and Rome has been honored as a Tree City USA for over a decade. Rome also received the Growth Award from the National Arbor Day Foundation for its remarkable efforts in urban and community forestry. Just last year, the city was given the esteemed Environmental Excellence Award for its commitment to improving water quality while supporting economic development and investment downtown.
Pair an appreciation for diversity and plenty of outdoor activities with a youth focused police department and you’ve created Haverstraw. When your family calls Haverstraw home, they’ll enjoy the benefits of living in a safe environment. Plus, there’s always something to do in Haverstraw. An array of festivals, such as the Annual United Latin Festival, and plenty of healthy outdoor entertainment are at the top of your weekend to-do list.
Camping, hiking and fishing are popular past-times at Cheescote Park, and Mommy and Me Swimming Classes make learning to swim fun at Bowline Point Park. Older kids will enjoy the park’s two water slides and an Olympic size pool. If you like the links, you’ll want to head right for Rotella Golf Course and driving range. The 18 hole, par 72 course is where you’ll meet new friends and gather for special community events. Kids interested in policing will be encouraged to join the Police Explorer program or the North Rockland Youth Academy which helps children learn the basics of law enforcement and also offers exciting hands-on police training.
29. Rockville Centre
The fact that no murders, rapes or arsons were reported to law enforcement in 2011 helps make Rockville Centre a place your family will feel safe in. It’s also the place to move if you’re looking for a community that prioritizes volunteerism. The Mayor’s Youth Task Force is just one example of how Rockville Centre cultivates a sense of serving others. Volunteers in the 6th through 12th grades offer up 36 hours annually and partake in activities that help strengthen and beautify the village, such as coordinating food drives and organizing cleanups.
The Rockville Centre Police Department offers a youth a police explorers program, and understanding that every citizen plays an important role in helping their community stay safe, moms and dads are encouraged to join the auxiliary police or participate in their Neighborhood Watch. Rockville Centre serves as another example of how a strong bond between citizens and government helps create a safe environment where every of the family can flourish.
30. Garden City
Gorgeous homes, a thriving business district and an outstanding school system are just a few reasons why Garden City has no trouble living up to its serene name. Long considered one of the safest and loveliest communities on Long Island, Garden City was one of America’s first planned villages.
Wide streets, an abundance of old trees and dynamic landscaping make Garden City a pretty place to call home, and its variety of clubs and organizations make it notably unique. The Garden City Welcoming Club greets newcomers with dozens of events, such as ladies night out to toddler play groups, movie nights, and couples events. Those with children will be unquestionably impressed with the active Garden City PTA, which helps Garden City consistently rank among the top school districts in the country. Garden City is also home to The Ethical Humanist Society of Long Island. For more than 60 years the society has informed the community about ethical education for children and adults and spearheaded a number of ground-breaking programs.
Situated on the banks of the Hudson River, a mere five miles south of Albany, you’ll find the friendly town of Bethlehem. Known as a highly educated town, half of its residents have a Bachelor”s degree or higher and nearly 30 percent have a Graduate degree. With seven colleges and universities located within a 20 mile radius of Bethlehem, those who want to return to school will find a wealth of opportunities waiting.
Bethlehem is also recognized for its relatively low crime rates and its dedication to developing businesses that infuse the community with valuable resources. The Bethlehem Industrial Development Agency provides financial assistance, help with grant applications, business plans and marketing issues. And the town offers a monthly electronic bulletin that keeps every citizen up to speed on Bethlehem’s economic development. Low poverty rates, an unemployed rate of just 3.5 percent, and an average commute time of only 20 minutes are a few more reasons why those who move to Bethlehem are glad they did so.
Located 15 miles north of Albany, a move to Niskayuna means you’ll enjoy the very best of small-town living with access to every possible convenience. And your family will feel safe knowing that just eight aggravated assaults were reported to authorities in 2011.
A town that’s bursting with organizations dedicated to ensuring its youth enjoy a variety of healthy, stimulating activities, Niskayuna is the kind of place every parent wants to raise their children. Kids who like outdoor activities will want to try their hand at the popular local sport of rowing. The Niskayuna Rowing Club offers rowing instruction for children and adults. If your child prefers land, he or she will want to get familiar with the Niskayuna Lacrosse Club. In addition to these two organizations, the Niskayuna Community Action Program is a busy non-profit organization that’s dedicated to supporting important community programs- especially those that focus on reducing youth substance abuse and constructing a powerful community coalition.
The town of Manlius believes that recreation not only unites citizens in a healthy way, it also increases town pride and boosts community power. It won’t take you long to agree that that Manlius’ variety of recreational opportunities is impressive, especially for a town of just 24,000.
Your youngest children can get their groove on at Toddler Tango class or Baby Boogie, pre-K children will have no trouble making new friends when you enroll them in the town’s popular activity classes, while tweens and teens can join the track club, take snowboarding lessons, or learn to play disc golf. The town’s Lunch Program helps newcomers meet their neighbors and learn about the Manlius’ many programs and services. If you’re searching for a safe town that’s makes community programming a priority, you’ll want to learn more about Manlius.
Situated in the western part of Westchester County, Greenburgh is a safe town where volunteers dedicate themselves to arts and culture and value Mother Nature. It’s been five decades since the community’s volunteer driven Arts and Culture Committee was established, and it’s stronger than ever. With a mission to make the arts available to people of all ages and every economic background, the committee supports annual poetry competitions, takes great pride in displaying children’s art, and even hosts fun filled writing workshops for kids as young as nine.
Another resource you’ll benefit from as a Greenburgh resident is the Greenburgh Nature Center. The family-friendly, 33-acre nature preserve offers trails, a pond and gardens. It’s also provides a slew of programs, including an amazing assortment of adult classes. Need more to do? Greenburgh’s recreation department provides over 150 youth and adult programs, and boasts a 57 page recreation guide. If you’re interested in higher education, you’ll be happy to hear that seven colleges or universities are located within 10 miles of Greenburgh. Best yet, move to Greenburgh and you can brag that you reside in one of state’s safest cities.
Amherst is located in lovely western New York and is recognized as the largest suburb of Buffalo. Through a number of proactive programs, the city of nearly 120,000 boasts an astonishingly low crime rate and deserves credit for implementing a number of crime fighting programs. The Amherst Police Department’s “Ride-a-Long” initiative allows citizens to ride in a patrol car with a police officer during his or her tour and get a first hand understanding of what policing the community involves. The Citizen Police Academy was developed nearly a decade ago to enhance community policing efforts, and is the perfect outlet for those who want to gain a greater understanding of crime and policing.
The police department hasn’t overlooked the youth of Amherst either. They offer a novel Youth Police Academy for high schools students and dozens of safety education programs for kids as young as toddlers. Stranger awareness, bicycle safety, career planning, and new driver safety are just a few of the programs designed to keep Amherst children safe and out of trouble. A strong citizen-police partnership is just one reason Amherst is a superb town to settle down in.
They say location is everything and the town of Tonawanda proves it. This northern suburb of Buffalo is not only safe, its splendid location allows you and your family to enjoy the best of suburban and city life. When you make Tonawanda home, you’ll enjoy a short commute to bustling Buffalo, the largest city in the state after New York City, and nearly endless activities for every member of your family.
Your kids will never get bored of visiting the astonishing assortment of animals at the Buffalo Zoo, or learning about the exotic plants found at the Botanical Gardens. The Buffalo Museum of Science is a short drive away, and offers a hands-on experience for exploring the world of natural and physical sciences. Closer to home, children between the ages of 12 and 18 can join the Town of Tonawanda Youth Engaged in Service Program and develop a sense of pride by helping those in need. Best yet, you’ll find friendly neighbors and a variety of organizations that make meeting new people a cinch.
No murders and only 15 violent crimes were reported to authorities in 2011, honoring Lancaster with a well deserved safe city recognition. Just 11 miles east of Buffalo, you’ll discover that Lancaster offers diverse housing, a range of social and cultural programs and far-reaching services for youth. If you’re a business owner, you’ll be awed by the town’s dynamic business related resources and it’s well organized, useful and highly professional website.
With one of the lowest unemployment rates in the Buffalo Metropolitan area, it’s easy to see that Lancaster takes the job of building strong local companies seriously. One way that’s accomplished is through the Lancaster Industrial Development Agency. With the goal of promoting smart economic growth and development, the agency supports a number of programs that rival those you’d only hope to find in much larger communities. For example, its Adaptive Reuse Program provides incentives for business owners who adapt old structures or sites for new purposes. Adaptive reuse also benefits the Lancaster as a whole by infusing it with new jobs, minimizing the eye-sores of abandon or run-down properties and restoring neighborhood vitality. Safe, rich with culture and history and decidedly progressive, anyone who calls Lancaster home is sure to do so with pride.
A small village of roughly 15,000, Depew is part of the Buffalo–Niagara Falls metropolitan area. Incorporated as a railroad town over 100 years ago, residents enjoy short commutes and affordable housing. In fact, the average travel time to work is less than 20 minutes and the price of a detached single family home is approximately $105,000.
Convenient and affordable, Depew is also safe. In 2011, just 38 burglaries and only one arson were reported in law enforcement. The village website maintains an up-to-date sex offender registry that offers concerned parents critical information on the status of regional offenders. When it’s time to pack up the family for vacation, or head out on a business trip, you’ll appreciate that the Buffalo Niagara International Airport is close by.
39. New Rochelle
Residents of New Rochelle have a lot to brag about. In addition to securing a spot on the Safewise safest cities of New York list, New Rochelle has been showered with kudos from a number of other highly respected organizations. Located just two miles north of the Big Apple, the city’s schools serve as a model for innovative educational programs, and have won the celebrated Blue Ribbon Award from the U.S. Department of Education on seven different occasions.
New Rochelle has also been named one of the 100 Best Walking Cities in America, and the second best in New York State according to the American Podiatric Medical Association. And less than five years ago, “Business Week” ranked New Rochelle the best city in New York, and one of the top cities in the U.S. to raise children. Think New Rochelle might have what it takes to make your family? Learn more about what this community’s energetic downtown has to offer.
Noted as Buffalo’s first suburb, the safe 1.2 square mile village of Kenmore is a small, yet extraordinary community that achieved national recognition. The American Planning Association named Kenmore one of America’s “Top 10 Great Neighborhoods,” and “Business Week” recognized it as one of the finest communities to raise a family in. Moreover, “Business First” honored Kenmore as the “highest rated community in Western New York.”
A thriving business district, historic architecture, walkable streets, and good schools are reasons why the petite community has a major reputation as a fine place to establish family roots. Need one more reason to change your address to Kenmore? Police emergency response time is less than two minutes. That fact may be why Kenmore has earned recognition as one of the Empire state’s safest cities.
41. Spring Valley
Residents of Spring Valley Village come from more than 40 different cultures and enjoy the service of a policing agency that appreciates the importance of community involvement. The Spring Valley Police Department routinely sponsors its residents to attend a nearby Citizens Police Academy, and encourages citizens from all walks of life to experience crime fighting in Spring Valley by riding along with a police officer during his or her patrol shift.
Through the department’s community policing initiatives, Spring Valley police officers unite with community groups to help deter crime and swiftly resolve crime problems when they occur. Recently, the police department applied for a $12,000 grant to further fund their “Youth and Police Initiative Program” and “Safe Streets Program.” If you’re looking for a diverse community with a progressive police department, Spring Valley could be your home sweet home.
Saugerties covers a massive 100 square miles, but it won’t take you long to feel like you’ve become a part of a safe, tightly knit community that values education and young people. Two of Saugerties’ particularly impressive programs are Lifespring, an adult learning outlet that offers a huge assortment of extend learning and personal development classes, and the Saugerties Community Youth Awards Committee which identifies and rewards youth who are “caught” making good decisions and taking part in good deeds.
Conveniently located just off the New York State Thruway, when you make Saugerties home, you’ll enjoy easy access to a number of colleges and universities. In fact, eight institutes of higher learning are located within 30 miles of the town’s center. And here’s more good news: no murders and just 15 incidents of violent crime were reported to authorities in 2011.
Named in honor of Cohoes Falls, a stunning waterfall discovered by the areas very first settlers, Cohoes is an impressive, historic community where residents enjoy safe streets and access to helpful business development organizations. Two of which are the Cohoes Industrial Development Agency and the Cohoes Local Development Corporation.
The city’s Community and Economic Development Office helps ensure Cohoes maintains a positive business climate, and offers a number of resources including a comprehensive overview of residential, business and tourism development in the city. In addition to its business friendly climate and safe neighborhoods, Cohoes offers newcomers over seven miles of waterfront and a short commute to Albany.
Rest assured, the town of Clarkstown lives up to its tag-line “where families and businesses flourish.” It’s Recreation and Parks Department manages roughly 700 acres of parkland that offer four community centers, three pools, five playgrounds and much more. Park programming includes popular after school programs, sensational summer camps, educational preschool classes and a number of sports leagues.
The town’s Economic Development Committee provides businesses with help obtaining government sponsored grants and discovering loan opportunities and works closely with other business resources such as the Rockland Economic Development Corporation and the Hudson Valley Economic Development Corporation. Offering a safe environment, boundless parks and recreation programs and a solid focus on economic development, it won’t take your family long to feel at home Clarkstown.
45. North Tonawanda
Perfectly located between Buffalo and Niagara Falls, and along the famous Niagara River and the Erie Canal, North Tonawanda is the place to call home if you cherish community events. From barbeque festivals to an unending list of concerts in the park, movie nights on the Niagara, and special events like the popular Canal Fest and the delectable Chocolate and Wine Festival, you’ll find an event for every member of your family in the city’s community guide.
When you’re not darting off to a fun-filled gathering, try kayaking or waterbiking the Erie Canal, or head out to discover your new hometown from the seat of a regular bike. You’ll feel comfortable doing so, knowing less than 50 violent crimes, no murders and no arsons were reported to authorities in 2011. Looking for a way to meet new friends? Sign up for a cooking, craft or exercise class through the North Tonawanda Community Education Program, where members of the community share their hobbies or expertise with their neighbors.
With almost 200,000 residents, Yonkers is the fourth most populous city in the state, and is by far the most populated safe city on our list. In addition to being honored as a safe city, Yonkers is quickly developing a reputation as a tech savvy, art infused locale. In fact, Yonkers ambitious business community recently announced the launch of YONY, an initiative that is focused on attracting creative technology companies to the city’s phenomenal waterfront, helping seed startups interested in moving to the district and infusing the area with innovative industries like digital marketing, new media, architecture and filmmaking.
Tech company Mindspark recently opened new headquarters along the Hudson River waterfront and plans are in the works to convert the city’s old jail into an art gallery with exhibition space and studio space. If you’re on the hunt for a safe city that takes building creative enterprises seriously, you’ll want to learn more about Yonkers.
47. New Windsor
Just 55 miles north of New York City, you’ll find New Windsor. The town enjoys a well earned reputation as friendly and active, and offers those who relocate here a diverse assortment of programs to keep them busy.
Your toddler will enjoy getting her groove on when she attends the Little Maestros Music Program, your tweens and teens can take part in a number of athletic programs or sign up for a babysitting safety class and you’ll have the chance to join open gym floor hockey, get creative in a craft class or join a club like the recently formed gardening club. Thanks to a website that provides an extensive collection on online services, you’ll find getting involved and staying in touch with important government and community happenings easy and convenient.
48. West Seneca
Close proximity to a variety of cultural attractions, a state-of-the-art family YMCA, and an affordable lifestyle are just a few reasons why the town of West Seneca has developed into one of Buffalo’s most popular suburbs. Its pro-business climate is another.
Known for offering a progressive approval process, limited regulations, cost-effective services and an educated labor pool, if you’re a small business owner or entrepreneur, you’ll feel good about West Seneca. You’ll want to check out the West Seneca Chamber of Commerce for even more reasons why it’s a smart place to grow your business. Need more reasons to call West Seneca home? It’s less than five miles from the Greater Buffalo-Niagara International Airport and just an hour drive to famous Niagara Falls. All this, plus it’s a New York safe city.
We’re not surprised that when families move to Vestal, then tend to stay. Education is at the top of the list of what Vestal has to offer. This includes the award-winning Vestal Central School District, which serves more than 4,000 students, to the highly regarded Binghamton University and nearby Broome Community College, which has earned an excellent reputation as a top-notch two-year school. Make the move to Vestal and your family will receive a good education and feel safe; no murders, rapes or arsons were reported to law enforcement in 2011.
Commute times average 15 minutes, shopping abounds at the Town Square Shopping Center, and access to some of the state’s very best healthcare are a few more reasons that families are attracted to Vestal. When it’s time to head out on a well deserved vacation, the Finger Lakes, New York City and the Greater Binghamton Airport are within easy reach. If you prefer to stay close to home, your kids will have fun exploring one of the regions six impeccably restored carousels that date back to the early 1900s, or headeding to the 7,000 seat Broome County Veterans Memorial Arena to catch a game of professional AHL hockey or hear their favorite group rock the house. A safe, all-American town where everything you need is in easy reach and education is valued, Vestal is an alluring place to call home.
At just 3.9 square miles, Cortland is a small, charming community where neighbors know each other by name. In fact, the city website offers an innovative “People Finder” service that helps Cortland residents, both new and old, connect with one another. It’s also a place where art, culture, museums and a slew of family-oriented festivals and programs offer you amenities that rival those you’d expect from a much larger city.
Petite but forward thinking, Cortland isn”t shy about investing money into its youth. In addition to an abundance of recreational activities, the city’s One Cortland County Business Idea Competition is designed to encourage entrepreneurial ideas among Cortland County’s up-and-coming generation. A $1,000 award is given to the winning high school student to help them launch their big idea. The Cortland Business Innovation Center is standing by to help you launch a business of your own. Offering low cost incubation space, shared services like printing and Internet plus a staff that’s prepared to help you network and troubleshoot. Best yet, Cortland residents enjoy a low crime rate.
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