"I'm from Riverdale, all I know is get it in (Riverdale)" - "Flame" by Waka Flocka
Riverdale, Georgia is not only a rapper's dream; it's also quite the area to live in. This city was settled before the Civil War and it was built on bribery from the start. The government proposed a railroad to be built from Atlanta passing through Riverdale, and in return for the wood they would borrow (strong handle) from the farmers, the government would give them fertilizer. Not greedy enough, the railroad wanted to take up all of the land. In fact it did take up quite a bit -- so much so that a couple by the name of WS Rivers had to donate their land just to meet the demands of the greedy, land-eating railway. The project started in 1887 and in 1908 the city was officially named Riverdale after Mr. and Mrs. WS Rivers.
Getting into the Hood
If you're looking to move to Riverdale Georgia there a few things you should know. Firstly... well, there is a lot of rental housing, including plenty of apartments to rent, in case you don't want the responsibility of having a home just yet. The apartments in the area give the homes some big competition, not just because they're more affordable but because they have amenities that you just can't walk away from.
Most of the apartments in the area are air conditioned, cable ready and some even have on-site gyms. To match the amenities, the names of the apartment complexes are really posh sounding (Brooks Crossing, Winthrop Forest, Harmony Pines and Camden Stockbridge). Apartments such as Peachtree Landing, Meadow Springs and Landmark at Creekside have huge Olympic-sized swimming pools and exterior features that give houses a run for their money. You'll also find a few that look like houses (they're detached or contain garages; these apartments are locally known as villas). All of the apartments in the area require deposits (unless there's a special going on) and an application fee. Since each apartment management company requires a different fee, you have to call the apartment directly to find out how much it is.
If you're are looking to move into the area, you need: references from your past landlord -- unless you really trashed the place: in this case you might be out of luck, references from your job and personal references, your deposit and any application or key fee.
If you're working in the Atlanta area like most of the locals, you'll also need to purchase a Green Zone or Blue Zone pass to ride the express bus into the city. These zones have limited stops, making your commute much quicker. A 31-day pass will set you back $100 to $125.
There are Actually Neighborhoods within Riverdale!
There are few neighborhoods that are worth mentioning in Riverdale, Georgia (just about), and these neighborhoods include Dover Meadows, Sherwood Park, Oak Village, Steeplechase, Cedar Hill Estates and Timberland Heights. All of these areas are accessible by local transit and by car. The two most populous areas in Riverdale are Sherwood Park and Timberland.
Sherwood Park: Sherwood Park is located near Valley Hill Road SW and Lamar Hutchinson Parkway. This areas is most popular for people who want to live near the outskirts of Riverdale (or as close as possible to neighboring towns, so as to sneak in unsuspectingly). This is mostly a residential area, so there isn't much to do here unless you think of resting as your favorite pastime. There are some very nice two-bedroom apartments for rent, however.
Cedar Hill: Cedar Hill estates is located off of the 85 and consist of Riverdale Plaza shopping center, thrift stores, grocery stores and other retail outlets. This is where many Riverdale residents come to sneakingly use their spouse's credit cards. It is also where they come to return all of the items afterwards.
Timberland: Timberland is a suburban residential area located in downtown Burlington Trail. There are a lot of apartments located in this area, so those who want to live in a place with a lakeside view often move here. It's also just a stone's throw from the shopping center located off of the 138. This is a great place to look for one-bedroom apartments in Riverdale.
Life in Riverdale
There are three parks in Riverdale all within walking distance of each other. This elaborate design was the city's way of saying "we would love for you to be more active, but just in one area." That way you feel like you're in a outdoor gym or hamster wheel (which could be fun, if you like that kind of thing). The local parks are Trayvon D. Wilson Memorial Park, Church Park and Banks park.
Shop 'Til Your Pockets Pop
There's also a notable shopping area in Riverdale, although most residents prefer to travel outside of the area to get their shopping done (namely at Forest Park). However, those who do want to shop in the Riverdale area travel downtown to Main Street or to the Riverdale Plaza Shopping Center. Just south of the shopping center is another called the Shop of Riverdale Shopping Center, just to make it a little more confusing for you. The first shopping center mainly consists of clothing stores whereas the second mainly consists of electronics. While you're shopping for your electronics, skip across Lamar Hutchinson Parkway to the Home Depot to pick up those spare light bulbs and get your grocery shopping done at Krogers all at the same time.
Too Much Water for One Town
This city is known for its convenience and its strategic placement of business. Eerily, everything is within walking distance of each other. There are also a lot of waterways in the area, so there's never a dull view when driving down Church Street or any of the highways that runs through the city. (Unless of course you don't like water; then you're going to have a problem.) Camp Creek pretty much runs east to west through the center like an equator, but not before being accosted by multiple surrounding lakes and creeks all fighting for the best spot. Notable lakes in the area are Lake Tahoe, Dickinson Lake and Joy Lake.
They Get Around
Getting around the town can be a little tricky as there aren't many buses that run through the area. However route 442 (which is an express bus) runs from Riverdale to downtown Atlanta everyday. This is the route that many locals take to get to their jobs in the city.