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Borders of the Philadelphia board?

  • CindyJ Jan 28, 2010 04:51 PM

Maybe this question belongs on the "Site Talk" board, but it could easily get lost there. I'm wondering if Chester, Montgomery, Bucks and Delaware Counties are included in this new Philadelphia board, or if it's supposed to be limited to Center City. I see suburban Philly posts in both places.

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  1. Can we please get an answer on this? I am moving posts and this is important.

    Seeing as the Philly board explicitly includes the Jersey burbs, it is only logical that it would include the PA burbs and northern Delaware, too. I have been taking the approach that Montgomery, Bucks, Chester, and Delaware Counties are part of the Phila board, but only moving the close suburbs and keeping the fringe parts in PA for the time being.

    1 Reply
    1. re: barryg

      Barry - the towns and townships of Montgomery, Bucks, Chester and Delaware counties ARE Philly's close suburbs. It wouldn't make any sense at all to include towns in those counties that are closer in to Philly while excluding other towns in the same counties that are a bit further out. Also, considering that northern Delaware borders on Chester and Delaware counties, it's logical to include that region in the Philly board rather than have it get lost in Mid-Atlantic. Lower Delaware (below the canal) is a world removed, so it's appropriate to include that part of the state in Mid-Atlantic.

    2. Now that this question has been answered by the CH Team ("This board covers Philadelphia and its metropolitan area, including Wilmington, as well as Camden and other close-in New Jersey suburbs of the city."), I think future confusion will be avoided if the new Philadelphia board is called "Philadelphia Area" rather than just "Philadelphia." I noticed there are still new posts to the Pennsylvania board that better belong on the Philadelphia board (http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/684480).

      5 Replies
      1. re: CindyJ

        Uh-oh.

        Philadelphia's NJ suburbs are on the Philly board, but NYC's NJ suburbs are on the NJ board? (and NYC's close-in Westchester and Connecticut suburbs are on the NY and Southern NE boards?)

        1. re: meatme

          It makes sense in the case of Philly's 'burbs that spill into NJ; I can't really speak to NYC's 'burbs that spill into NJ, Westchester Co. and CT.

          1. re: meatme

            >> Philadelphia's NJ suburbs are on the Philly board, but NYC's NJ suburbs are on the NJ board? (and NYC's close-in Westchester and Connecticut suburbs are on the NY and Southern NE boards?)

            New York City is a special case, because it is so large. It is the only city in the country in which the city itself is split into more than one forum. Similarly, the suburbs are too big to all get lumped into one forum. It makes sense for NJ to have its own forum, and the people on it really love having it. As for New York City's other suburbs getting lumped in with the rest of the states of New York and Connecticut, that was a travesty that should have been addressed in the last restructuring, but wasn't. I hope the Chowhound Team decides to re-arrange them the way they should be, into a Metro North board containing Westchester and Fairfield Counties, and a Long Island Board for Nassau and Suffolk Counties.

          2. re: CindyJ

            i think it could stay Philadelphia but the subtitle could say that is covers the entire Delaware Valley. That is the most concise way of expressing the entire metro area including northern DE and South Jersey. The subtitle right now is ambiguous.

            1. re: CindyJ

              >> I think future confusion will be avoided if the new Philadelphia board is called "Philadelphia Area" rather than just "Philadelphia."

              I agree. This has been the case for a long time on Chowhound, with boards called Chicago Area, Los Angeles Area, etc. I don't know why they changed this in the last restructuring; it makes perfect sense and avoids any ambiguity regarding whether or not the suburbs are included. And it applies to a bunch of other boards in addition to Philadelphia: Dallas-Fort Worth, San Diego, Atlanta, and a bunch more. They should all have the word Area added to their names.

            2. We're having some disagreement among board members about the boundaries of the Pennsylvania and Philadelphia boards, especially as regards posts about Bucks County, so we've asked hounds on the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and New Jersey boards to weigh in here. Hopefully we we can reach a consensus.

              16 Replies
              1. re: The Chowhound Team

                For my two cents, Bucks county is a suburb of Philly. FIrst of all, there is continuous sprawl from one to the other, no geographic gaps between the two. Secondly, it is within the train system of Philadelphia. Thirdly, many people who live in Bucks work in Philly. So, they frequent restaurants in both areas. It doesn't make sense to me to separate the two. Just call it "Philadelphia and surrounding areas" or something along those lines.

                1. re: The Chowhound Team

                  I don't understand why there is an issue with Bucks County. Current postings on the Philadelphia board include such suburbs as Lansdale, Souderton, even Honey Brook, plus Malvern, Wayne, New Hope (Bucks County), and one for outdoor dining in Montco/Bucks. Why would Bucks County be any different than Lansdale or Souderton or, especially, Honey Brook? While Honey Brook is in the far reaches of Chester County, it really is closer to Morgantown and Lancaster. Things seem to be working well with the division of the Philadelphia and Pennsylvania boards. While occasionally there are postings that could go on either board, CHers seem resilient and the topics get covered.

                  1. re: The Chowhound Team

                    Bucks Co is definitely a Phila suburb.

                    1. re: Bigley9

                      agree include the 5 Philly area counties including Bucks. I dont' see anyone saying differently.

                    2. re: The Chowhound Team

                      Yes please include Bucks. I live in Bucks and I am in Philly often. I rarely look at the Pennsylvania board. Bucks County is no farther from Philly than much of Chester County is.

                      1. re: The Chowhound Team

                        Another vote for including contiguous counties as well as western S Jersey and N delaware.

                        1. re: The Chowhound Team

                          Bucks definitely belongs on the Philly board. It's unquestionably a suburb of Philadelphia.

                          1. re: CindyJ

                            Agree with Cindy and other posters. Doylestown is only a hop skip and a jump from the Lansdale area, and plenty of hounds from the Philly area have stuff to say about Bucks County. No one seems to be having trouble understanding that Philadelphia means Philly and the surrounding areas. Hounds is smart. So no need to change it to Philadelphia and it's many tenacles or something. Though I do like the sound of that.

                            1. re: givemecarbs

                              Okay I was all like why are we even talking about this, there is no problem. Then I decided to check Pennsylvannia and found this:
                              http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/795031
                              Remember I am a smart ass so I couldn't help thinking why would this be moved to Pennsylvannia?? Oh, I guess school kids aren't the only ones who get bored in the summer and start messing with things for no reason. Bad board member! Now go to the pool or something or you're gonna have to clean out your closet today!

                              1. re: givemecarbs

                                That thread was started on Pennsylvania by a poster who feels pretty strongly that it should remain there. That's one of the reasons we restarted this thread.

                                1. re: The Chowhound Team

                                  And I am the person that feels very strongly that NEW HOPE, which was the thread that was moved belongs on the Philadelphia board. In the discussion, there were comparisons to restaurants in Newtown, and Doylestown. It would make no sense to say Upper Bucks is in PA but Central and Lower bucks is in Pennsylvania. Earlier disputes involved Quakertown.. but you could make similar arguments about Coatesville... Kennett Square and the like.

                                  If the board were defined by the counties, it would be abundantly clear where things belonged. THe census bureau defines the Philadelphia MSA as

                                  hiladelphia-Camden-Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD
                                  Camden, NJ Metropolitan Division

                                  Burlington Country, NJ
                                  Camden County, NJ
                                  Gloucester County, NJ

                                  Philadelphia, PA Metropolitan Division

                                  Bucks County, PA
                                  Chester County, PA
                                  Delaware County, PA
                                  Montgomery County, PA
                                  Philadelphia County, PA

                                  Wilmington, DE-MD-NJ

                                  New Castle County,DE
                                  Cecil County, MD
                                  Salem County, NJ

                                  A good argument could be made about keeping Delaware in the Mid Atlantic but I would go either way.

                                  A criteria, whatever it is, should be in my opinion, clear, and concise. Breaking up counties is neither.

                                  If you look at the way NYC is broken up, its Manhattan, the rest of the buroughs, and then the rest of the state. Westchester Rockland Dutchess etc are all lumped together including Ticonderoga, Oneonta and such. It works.. not because one belongs with the other or not.. but because it is clear.

                                  Chowhound, earlier on refused to defined what areas outside of Philadelphia county belong... I personally have had back and forth on this for over a year. I would greatly appreciate concise and clear definitions so we can move on and not allow this to be a distraction.

                                  1. re: The Chowhound Team

                                    That restaurant is in New Hope, PA, which is definitely in the Philly suburbs.

                                    1. re: The Chowhound Team

                                      If you look at the postings from the poster that wants a New Hope posting to remain on the Pennsylvania board, it appears that the poster is from New Jersey. I don't think a New Jersey poster should dictate that all Bucks County questions belong on the Pennsylvania board rather than the Philadelphia board.

                                    2. re: givemecarbs

                                      If I had seen that post on the Pennsylvania board, I would have assumed it had been incorrectly posted and that it belonged on the Philly board. As it was, I didn't see it because I rarely read the Pennsylvania board. Too bad, too, because I enjoy reading about new restaurants in the Philly area, which New Hope definitely is.

                                2. re: The Chowhound Team

                                  +1 that it should be on Philly board

                                  1. re: The Chowhound Team

                                    See how the Northern New England board has a line under its name that lists what states that means? Could you that for the counties we decide are in the Philly Area? The consensus seems to be Bucks and Montgomery.

                                  2. From the perspective of someone on the West side of the state (though I grew up in Philly), I find it a minor annoyance to log onto the PA board and see a post asking about a place in, say, Montgomery county. Bucks as well. I think it makes more sense to group the Philly suburbs in the Philly board than it does to spill em out over the rest of the PA board. Reviews of some hot new place in Doylestown is gonna be a lot more useful to someone in Philly than to someone in Erie or Pittsburgh or State College. And let's face it - most of us on the PA board are from nowhere near Philly.

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: cowboyardee

                                      I, too, support identifying "metropolitan regions" as opposed to "municipal boundaries."

                                      In short, Bucks County should definitely be on the Philadelphia board as it is contiguous to Philadelphia County. On the other hand, many posts here are about establishments in Chester County, which is not. Should discussions about Chesco establishments be reassigned to the Pennsylvania board? Where do you draw the line?

                                      In the spirit of the site, we are all interested in fine dining and fine food purveyors or we wouldn't be here. The greater metropolitan region should be considered as the distance one would drive for a fine dining experience. I live in Skippack. Would I drive to New Hope, Wilmington, Kennett Square or South Jersey? Absolutely. Would a Center City resident drive to any of those places or out here? I hope so.

                                      A metropolitan "region" may not meet a by-the-book definition but, from the posts over the years, I think the Philadelphia area has been fairly well defined and mutually understood by our members. To avoid ambiguity, the Chowhound team might consider additional boards for Pittsburgh region, Central PA region, etc. that speak more to the notion of a culinary community and where people travel for an experience or a product.

                                      Such delineation may not be feasible in the expanses of Wyoming or Montana, but the more highly populated areas may enjoy a closer-to-home board. Just a suggestion.
                                      CP

                                    2. The area covered by a forum is made easier when the stickied topic, "New to the XXX board? Read this first" has a clear definition of the area a forum covers. Some of the boards have geographical boundaries that are clearly defined in that topic. This helps make sure everyone has the same idea of what area a forum covers. For example, it states in the stickied post for the Greater Seattle forum: "This board is focused on discussing chow in the Seattle area. This includes Seattle from Tacoma to Everett, along with Kirkland, Redmond, Bellevue and other cities in between."

                                      Unfortunately, the definition in the stickied post for the Philadelphia board is just poorly written. It says, "This board is focused on discussing chow in the Philadelphia area. This includes the metropolitan area, including Wilmington, as well as Camden and other close-in New Jersey suburbs of the city." Although it mentions the "metropolitan area", it doesn't clearly define the boundaries of the metropolitan area the way Seattle's definition does. It would eliminate the confusion if it listed the counties and/or otherwise noted those boundaries in some way (e.g. "from New Hope to Downingtown to New Castle", or whatever other towns constitute the outer reaches of the area). Once the boundaries are clearly stated, everyone knows what they are, and any posts placed in the wrong forum can be moved where they belong. If locals there wanted to suggest appropriate wording to more clearly indicate its area, I'm sure the Chowhound Team would be happy to edit that portion of the stickied post for the Philadelphia Area board.

                                      25 Replies
                                      1. re: nsxtasy

                                        Going by the NYC region example, we had a "General Tristate" Board a couple of years ago that was discontinued. Now the boards are drawn strictly on political State and NYC lines. It's not the demographics of the area, on NY State we have the NY suburbs of Westchester and LI on the same board as Albany and Buffalo. Northern NJ gets only about 20% of the posts on the NJ board, the rest is from Newark and south. Fairfield County CT really got short shrift when they changed the boards, discussion about that area was virtually eliminated. (And it's a big restaurant & food area) Basically the result has been less interest and participation in the NYC suburbs food scene. But I suppose they don't want "too many boards".

                                        So I guess they will do the Philly situation the same way as NYC, the boards are on political boundaries. If they allow the suburbs in NJ to be discussed on the Philly boards now, I'm surprised, it's not allowed up our way.

                                        1. re: menton1

                                          NJ and Delaware suburbs are part of the Philadelphia board.

                                          1. re: leepinleemur

                                            Unless someone from NJ objects... thats why New Hope is on the PA board rather than Philadelphia where it belongs...

                                            1. re: cwdonald

                                              Well so far, we haven't seen any rationale. I didn't see any posts here supporting that viewpoint either. We seem to pretty much be in agreement that Philadelphia is where it belongs. :)

                                              1. re: leepinleemur

                                                There may be no rationale.. but they havent moved the post back. And the person that complained didnt even have the decency to post his or her viewpoint.

                                                1. re: cwdonald

                                                  I've noticed that cwdonald. In life don't you find that sometimes the complainer is listened to and given way more power than the relatively content majority? Almost makes me want to make snide remarks about people from NJ, but that would hardly be helpful here. Tempting though. :)

                                                  1. re: givemecarbs

                                                    Well the discussion has only been here for a day. Let's give them a little time.

                                                    I almost moved it to Philly myself but then I saw this thread. Now that I posted, I don't want to take action in direct conflict with the mods. I'll let it take it's course...

                                                    1. re: leepinleemur

                                                      Regular hounds can move posts? Or only alpha and beta hounds? I'm trying to get ambrose to answer but you know the post is on the Pennsylvannia boards so ambrose might not check back for awhile. Seeing as how ambrose's posts are all about New Jersey and all. You are right though leepinleemur, it is a summer friday and ambrose may have bounced for the weekend. I gave it a shot anyway. /shrug.
                                                      http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/795031

                                                      1. re: givemecarbs

                                                        There was a thread after the reorganization where people could volunteer to help move threads to the new boards (but not the other way around).
                                                        http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/682192

                                                        1. re: leepinleemur

                                                          There's no rationale. The NYC Metro area makes no sense at all now, and has alienated many posters. Bergen County NJ and Fairfield County Ct get so little play and I know of many folks who gave up with CH.

                                                          How can a board that disallows any reporting of filthy, unsanitary conditions in a restaurant (I certainly want to know about that!) have a rationale?

                                                          1. re: menton1

                                                            I am being transparent here. I was the one that first and multiple times (7x) moved the discussion about New Hope to Philadelphia. I received a blanket statement from the editors that stated that New Hope has been determined to be in teh PA board rather than the Philadelphia board (no further explanation.).

                                                            Full disclosure.. 1. I live seven miles from New Hope in Doylestown.

                                                            2. I replied to the poster.. comparing the restaurants to Newtown and Doylestown.

                                                            3. I was annoyed by the blanked term it was determined... without explanation.

                                                            4. I have previously complained about moving posts that were in Quakertown and other places in Bucks County.

                                                            5. I will accept any policy that will be easy to explain (locale x is in .. x county and therefore belongs in) I do not believe carving up counties is easy to explain unless the guidleines describe IN DETAIL.. UNAMBIGUOUSLY where things belong..

                                                            6. I respect a commercial board with a quasi private/volunteer editorial staff groups findings.. as long as I can understand them. I resent any policy that is apparently capricious.. unexplained.. or otherwise lacking in rationale. Borders should be unambiguous. Editorial deltions etc are more in the judgement area. Borders should not be.

                                                            The NY Board organization is at least clear. (Full disclosure I was born In Brooklyn, grew up in Westchester, summered in Lake George, and went to school in Ithaca.. so I knew NY state like the back of my hand.) It may not be the easiest to navigate.. and I have no idea about how that discourages discussion.. but you cannot argue that it is not clear where something should be posted or searched for. The same cannot be said for Philadelphia. And unfortunately the chowhound editors have yet to exercies what I consider to be reasonable editorial fashion.

                                                            For example, with regard to New Hope.. no thread has been started about a new hope place of business in the pa forum after the creation of the Philadelphia forum. It was collectively understood by the people that posted there that the New Hope locale belonged in PA, a fact never taken into account by the editors of chowhound in response to both the suggestion of moving the discussion to PA, and the response by the OP. That should in and of itself represent the collective norms of the people that post most frequently (and in amy cases live in the area unlike the OP) in the forums. Easy enough to determine with a google search.

                                                            Finally, openess has a very beneficial effect on acceptance and the tenor of the discussion. Chowhound prides itself, deservedly so, on providing an open forum for the discussion or pros and cons of places to eat. They owe the equivalent to their posters, and to individuals as transparently as possible about the reasons for their editorial decisions. They will find that it goes a long way to creating greater good will, and loyalty to the site.

                                                            1. re: cwdonald

                                                              Full disclosure: Where would one post about Marlton, NJ? Moorestown, NJ? Let's be fully transparent; Haddonfield has some very good restaurants!

                                                              BTW, the state lines bear no real meaning when it comes to restaurant-goers habits-- being that you fully disclosed your familiarity with NY State, you of course realize that Rockland County restaurants are frequented as much by NJ residents as NY residents! Basing these boards on state or county lines is not in touch with reality!

                                                              1. re: menton1

                                                                >> Full disclosure: Where would one post about Marlton, NJ? Moorestown, NJ? Let's be fully transparent; Haddonfield has some very good restaurants!

                                                                If the stickied topic in the Philadelphia board were clear enough in delineating its its boundaries, then the answers to those questions would be obvious.

                                                                >> BTW, the state lines bear no real meaning when it comes to restaurant-goers habits--

                                                                Of course, there will ALWAYS be people on the border of one forum who frequently dine in the adjacent area of a different forum, no matter where you draw those boundaries. There are plenty of examples in addition to the ones you gave - such as residents of Queens who dine in Nassau County, and vice versa. The only way you can prevent that from happening is by creating one big forum for an entire metropolitan area without any intervening boundaries - putting, for example, all five NYC boroughs and all nearby counties (23 total in the official MSA defined by the OMB, in four states including one in PA) into one forum covering some 19 million people and all the restaurants there. Good luck with that.

                                                                1. re: menton1

                                                                  I actually think county lines DO define a metropolitan area. Remembering that there is always going to be issues at the borders... if you define by a clearly held criteria, it may not be perfect, but it is clear.

                                                                  I think Marlton is a great question .. Personally I find that in the gray zone,.. but I would defer to the majority. Marlton is regularly reviewed in the Philadelphia Inquirer, and almost never in the NY TImes. Moorestown, I probably would throw in the NJ bucket. But really I would want to hear from people who live there. Do they want to look across two boards, or just 1. Resoundingly we heard in the case of New Hope that folks think of it in the greater Philadelphia area. I value consensus on a board like Chowhound, and I value both consistency and transparency. The former is easier to achieve than the latter.

                                                                  So I do not think that restaurant goers habits matter to constitute the boards, I think its what the majority of the board members want (subject of course also to any economic limits that the number of boards presents to CBS Chowhound and anyone else with an economic interest in the board... ).

                                                                  I did graduate work in the Midwest, have family in the KC area, travel to that area frequently and read and sometimes contribute to Midwest board. That board works even though its across multiple states. THey have created a community there, just like the Philadelphia board and the PA board have created different communities, with frequent contributors, an openness and kind spirit that allows difference of opinion and provides gentle guidance to where to eat for those visiting the area.

                                                                  1. re: cwdonald

                                                                    >> I think Marlton is a great question .. Personally I find that in the gray zone,.. but I would defer to the majority. Marlton is regularly reviewed in the Philadelphia Inquirer, and almost never in the NY TImes. Moorestown, I probably would throw in the NJ bucket. But really I would want to hear from people who live there. Do they want to look across two boards, or just 1.

                                                                    Of course. As long as a consensus can be reached about what everyone would like as the boundaries, just describe those boundaries in the stickied topic, and there's no confusion.

                                                                    >> I did graduate work in the Midwest, have family in the KC area, travel to that area frequently and read and sometimes contribute to Midwest board. That board works even though its across multiple states.

                                                                    There is no Midwest board any more. During the last restructuring, it was split into the Great Lakes board and the Great Plains board. KC is in the latter.

                                                                    1. re: cwdonald

                                                                      I am a resident of Haddonfield. I can be downtown across the BF bridge in about 10 minutes (not in the morning of course!). I really stopped posting on the Philadelphia board because it was not made clear that the Philadelphia board also included the NJ suburbs. It did bother me when I saw people posting from Westchester and Bucks Co, clearly much further from the city than I am. It's like some some PA residents really don't realize that much of the NJ Philly suburbs are far closer to the city than many of the PA burbs. That being said, I do not confine where I eat just to NJ and frequently eat in PA, including Bucks Co. But if you read the NJ board, you routinely see postings about Collingswood, Haddonfield and other close in Philly burbs. People are clearly confused about where to post. Oh, and BTW Moorestown and Marlton are far closer to Philly than Bucks, so why would they be excluded. My point is, the naming of the 'Philadelphia' board is confusing. I agree it should be called the 'Delaware Valley' board which includes PA, NJ burbs as well as Philadelphia proper. In total agreement with 'bucksguy14'.

                                                                      I got a kick out of the Rockland County reference above. I grew up in Rockland, about 2 miles from NJ. We almost entirely did all of out shopping in NJ, except for groceries and ate out in NJ more often than we did in NY.

                                                                      1. re: mschow

                                                                        Um the statement that Moorestown and Marlton are closer to Philadelphia than Bucks county is wrong.. Bucks county BORDERS philadelphia.. so at its minimum it is inches away (Andalusia for example..)

                                                                        I think NJ is a sensitive subject given that NJ has had a history of being subsumed into metropolitan areas be it NYC or Philadelphia. Self identify has its benefits.. But I think the best point that you made was that the lack of clarity lead you to both confusion and the name of Philadelphia board itself is alienating.

                                                                        1. re: cwdonald

                                                                          I wouldn't say that NE Philly is quite the same, but I think you have similar points regardless.

                                                                          Honestly I think there have been very few issues since the switchover, which is good. It may simply create more problems, trying to define it more strictly. As we have seen below, just simply aligning counties is not so simple.

                                                                          There may always be corner cases, but perhaps just a thread to get a consensus on where it should be is enough, and then updating the description to document that decision?

                                                                          1. re: leepinleemur

                                                                            Well Northeast Philadelphia refers to a neighborhood.. all part of Philadelphia county. I think there has been general consensus that the counties of Delaware, Chester, Montgomery, Bucks and Philadelphia definitely belong. There is general consensus that northern Delaware (ie Wilmington) belongs, and then there was the question of which counties in NJ (if any) belong... I think the clear reaction is that Mercer and Hunterdon county do NOT... the question is which if any southern NJ counties might belong.

                                                                            1. re: cwdonald

                                                                              I agree, that those counties should not be in question. Large chunks of Camden/Burlington/Gloucester seem pretty clear as well.

                                                                              1. re: cwdonald

                                                                                It's a funny thing about northern DE. Although the description of the Philly board as described in the "New to the Philadelphia Board? Read this first" post includes Wilmington, I don't expect to read about Wilmington on the Philly board. To add to the confusion, the description of the Mid-Atlantic board says, "This board is focused on discussing chow in Virginia, West Virginia, Delaware and Maryland except Washington, DC and Baltimore."

                                                                                It's been my observation that posts regarding Wilmington and other Delaware towns above the canal (i.e., Hockessin, Newark) are typically found on the Mid-Atlantic board. There are some Hounds who regularly post for DE on Mid-Atlantic and for PA on the Philly board, so there is a distinction being made. I think we'd find consensus that the part of DE that's above the canal is more closely aligned with the Philadelphia region than with the Mid-Atlantic region, BUT it appears that those who post about DE, do so on the Mid-Atlantic board.

                                                                                I live just a couple of miles north of the DE state line, and I spend almost as much time shopping and dining in DE as I do in PA, but I don't find it inconvenient to peruse and/or post on the Mid-Atlantic board for Delaware-related information. And, regardless of where the CH geo-gurus have placed it, it's on the Mid-Atlantic board that you'll find the vast majority of DE posts.

                                                                            2. re: cwdonald

                                                                              Of course you are right about the counties being right next to each other. I was speaking of Center City proper. It's far further from New Hope, Doylestown (eg) to downtown than from the areas I spoke of in NJ. North/NE Philadelphia has mostly neighborhood restaurants. And I have friends in CC who regularly jump the high speed line to dine in Collingswood (a 10 minute ride), And vice versa to avoid the bridge toll and the parking cost in CC,

                                                                      2. re: cwdonald

                                                                        Re: "I received a blanket statement from the editors that stated that New Hope has been determined to be in teh PA board rather than the Philadelphia board (no further explanation.)." -- if the editors made that determination, it was clearly made subjectively, and not from having any familiarity with either New Hope or the Philly suburbs. Why single New Hope out of the rest of Bucks County for inclusion on the PA board? Having New Hope anywhere but on the Philly board would make no sense whatsoever.

                                                                        1. re: CindyJ

                                                                          This is strange CindyJ as the thread had seemed to be moved back to Philadelphia for some time now.

                                                                          1. re: leepinleemur

                                                                            Frankly, I think the whole discussion is strange.

                                                2. The Chowhound Team said, above:

                                                  "We're having some disagreement among board members about the boundaries of the Pennsylvania and Philadelphia boards, especially as regards posts about Bucks County, so we've asked hounds on the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and New Jersey boards to weigh in here. Hopefully we we can reach a consensus."

                                                  Chowhounders have posted comments in this topic, and this is where they have said posts about Bucks County and/or New Hope (a town within Bucks County) belong:

                                                  Philadelphia forum: barryg, CindyJ, truffles2, jfr, Bigley9, rockandroll52, sadiefox, Delucacheesemonger, givemecarbs, cwdonald, leepinleemur, cowboyardee, Chefpaolo,

                                                  Any other forum: nobody

                                                  To me, that sounds like a consensus has been reached, that Bucks County belongs in the Philadelphia forum.

                                                  I still recommend that the stickied topic should be very clear about the boundaries of the forum. It currently says:

                                                  "This board is focused on discussing chow in the Philadelphia area. This includes the metropolitan area, including Wilmington, as well as Camden and other close-in New Jersey suburbs of the city."

                                                  If we changed it to read like this, would everyone be happy?

                                                  "This board is focused on discussing chow in the Philadelphia area. This includes the city of Philadelphia and its surrounding counties including Bucks County to the north, New Castle County (incl Wilmington) in Delaware, and nearby parts of New Jersey extending from Salem to Bordentown."

                                                  I'm not trying to decide on the borders here, but rather, I'm trying to use what others here have said those borders should be, to illustrate how the statement in the stickied topic could be more explicit, so that there is no confusion about what's included and what isn't. Anyone who thinks he/she can provide a better description than this one is welcome to do so. I think what's important is that the description of the boundaries is clear, whether it's this version or someone else's.

                                                  9 Replies
                                                  1. re: nsxtasy

                                                    This should really be a simple thing to resolve. The Philadelphia Board should encompass "The Delaware Valley", which is generally recognized to be: Philadelphia, the four surrounding PA counties: Bucks, Chester, Delaware & Montgomery, northern Delaware, and Atlantic, Burlington, Camden, Hunterdon and Mercer counties in New Jersey. It's really no different than the coverage of TV channels 3, 6 and 10, or the traffic report on KYW radio.

                                                    1. re: bucksguy14

                                                      I like your suggestion because I believe there's a fairly good understanding of the area included within the "Delaware Valley." I think that term, plus the definition you've provided, would clarify the scope of the Philadelphia board. In fact, maybe it should be called "Philadelphia and the Delaware Valley" rather than just "Philadelphia." "Delaware Valley" is a term we locals hear every day in the news, traffic and weather reports, and we know the area they're talking about. For those out-of-towners who may be unsure as to where to post a query, if they end up posting to the wrong board, they can easily be re-directed to the correct one; it happens all the time on many other regional boards.

                                                      1. re: CindyJ

                                                        I wholeheartedly agree with both bucksguy and CindyJ. Personally have been pushing for this for a year. I hope this little hiccup about New Hope can lead to chowhound to clarify things so we can move on to more important topics like where to get good local corn!

                                                      2. re: bucksguy14

                                                        >> The Philadelphia Board should encompass "The Delaware Valley", which is generally recognized to be: Philadelphia, the four surrounding PA counties: Bucks, Chester, Delaware & Montgomery, northern Delaware, and Atlantic, Burlington, Camden, Hunterdon and Mercer counties in New Jersey.

                                                        Gloucester and Salem Counties, New Jersey, which you did not list, as well as Burlington and Camden Counties which you mentioned, are usually considered part of the Delaware Valley and are part of the Philadelphia MSA (Metropolitan Statistical Area). Atlantic and Hunterdon Counties, New Jersey, are virtually never considered part of the Delaware Valley and are not part of the Philadelphia MSA. Mercer County, New Jersey, is only occasionally considered part of the "Delaware Valley" and is not part of the Philadelphia MSA. Chowhounders in those counties not in the MSA (including Princeton in Mercer County, Flemington in Hunterdon County, and Atlantic City in Atlantic County) are very actively posting in the New Jersey forum and will probably not want to be included in the Philadelphia forum. I strongly recommend consulting with residents in those areas to see what they prefer, rather than arbitrarily deciding to move them to the Philadelphia forum.

                                                        Cecil County, Maryland (including Elkton), which you did not mention, is also usually considered part of the Delaware Valley and is part of the Philadelphia MSA.

                                                        1. re: nsxtasy

                                                          You're correct about my exclusion of Salem & Gloucester counties. I simply didn't think of them when I was posting my comments and should have included them as part of the Delaware Valley. However, I don't agree with the MSA inclusion of Cecil County. I can't tell you of a single person I know who has ever considered dining in Cecil County when the question "where do you want to eat tonight (or this weekend)" comes up.

                                                          I frequently go to restaurants in the Princeton area and occasionally in the Flemington area. I never thought of looking for info on the Philadelphia Board, I always have gone to the NJ Board for info in those areas.

                                                          1. re: nsxtasy

                                                            I live in Princeton and actively post about the local dining scene on the NJ board. We eat out frequently and our dining habits are ranked (in geographical order) as NJ, Bucks County, NYC, rest of the world, Philadelphia.

                                                            Here's my 2 cents about where posts should reside: Bucks County posting belong on the Philly board. Princeton, Flemington and AC belong on the NJ board.

                                                            We rarely go to Philly for dinner unless specifically invited by friends. More Princetonians commute to NYC than PA. Princeton and Princeton Junction are stations on NJ transit's NE corridor line going into Newark and NYC. There's no SEPTA stops in Princeton and the only way to get to Philly would be to drive or go to Trenton on NJ Transit and change or take Amtrak. Therefore, there's little connection with Philly other than being the next major city heading south.

                                                            Putting Princeton, Flemington and AC on the Philly board would be geographically odd and not intuitive to visitors looking on CH for dining info - especially when there's a specific NJ board.

                                                          2. re: bucksguy14

                                                            I live in NJ, and I do NOT consider myself any part of Philadelphia!

                                                            I always watched the NYC TV stations instead of the Philadelphia stations when I lived in Mercer County.

                                                            Thank goodness I am back in Middlesex so the idiots won't get to mess with it.

                                                            1. re: ieee488

                                                              Have a nice day!

                                                              1. re: ieee488

                                                                leee488: Like there are no 'idiots' north of the I 195 border?? As a native New Yorker, I beg to differ. EVERY area has their share of idiots. Thank goodness you are back in Middlesex so our idiots don't get to mess with your idiots.

                                                          3. Including half a state (NJ) in a different state's CITY board makes no sense at all. Thinking that Atlantic City which is as EAST in New Jersey as you can get as part of another states' CITY board defies any jumbled addled reasoning.

                                                            Perhaps the Philly people have taken the mind set of New Yorkers as shown in this Famous "New Yorker" cover

                                                            http://www.artsjournal.com/aboutlastn...

                                                            18 Replies
                                                            1. re: Quine

                                                              no one suggested Atlantic City or "half of NJ" be on the Phila board

                                                              1. re: Bigley9

                                                                perhaps you did not see this:
                                                                http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/796471

                                                                1. re: Quine

                                                                  And that was shot down .. keep up with the discussion. The discussion is which if any counties across the Deleware River from Philadelphia should be included.

                                                                  Also Philadelphia is not a CITY board... its is a regional board including five counties in PA.. some part of northern DE and perhaps some small part of NJ.

                                                                2. re: Bigley9

                                                                  >> no one suggested Atlantic City or "half of NJ" be on the Phila board

                                                                  bucksguy14 did. His post above suggested including Atlantic County on the Philadelphia board, and Atlantic City is the largest city in Atlantic County. The same post suggested including Hunterdon and Mercer Counties as well. http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/6839...

                                                                  Along with the four counties that are part of the Philadelphia MSA, that means seven of New Jersey's 21 counties have been mentioned for possible inclusion, so that sounds like one third of NJ, not one half. There's a map of the counties of NJ at www.digital-topo-maps.com/county-map/...

                                                                  1. re: nsxtasy

                                                                    You know what! All of you NJ folks are correct. The Philadelphia (Delaware Valley) Board should not include any non-PA county that's more than 30 minutes from Broad & Market (City Hall) in Philadelphia. I'll be happy to continue going to the NJ board to find info regarding restaurants in areas beyond that distance. I do it now for Princeton and other central/northern NJ areas. I wasn't intending to include anyone who doesn't think they belong. After all, I lived in Camden county for 6 years and found that I didn't want to be there!

                                                                    1. re: bucksguy14

                                                                      You are right bucksguy .. perhaps we should just make this a very simple.. Five counties = the Philadelphia/Delaware Valley board.. Philadelphia County and Bucks, Chester, Delaware and Montgomery counties, and nothing else. Delaware go to the Mid Atlantic Board. NJ go to the NJ board. No ambiguity.

                                                                      Ironic that there is the furor over NJ given that this latest broohaha was started by an NJ resident trying to tell PA folks where New Hope belongs.. not back to your normally scheduled search for the best local corn.

                                                                      1. re: cwdonald

                                                                        Sounds good to me CW. I have absolutely no problem going to the Mid-Atlantic or NJ boards to find what I want in those areas. You might think we were trying to relocate the Mason-Dixon Line!

                                                                        Local corn. I gave up trying to find that years ago. The best I could find was a road-side stand somewhere in MD that also had great crabs by the bushel. Those were the days - bushel of crabs, few dozen ears of corn, cooler full of beer.....

                                                                        1. re: cwdonald

                                                                          >> You are right bucksguy .. perhaps we should just make this a very simple.. Five counties = the Philadelphia/Delaware Valley board.. Philadelphia County and Bucks, Chester, Delaware and Montgomery counties, and nothing else. Delaware go to the Mid Atlantic Board. NJ go to the NJ board. No ambiguity.

                                                                          So based on those boundaries, then would it make sense to change the description of the area covered in the stickied topic so that the entire first paragraph reads like this?

                                                                          "This board is focused on discussing chow in the Philadelphia area. This includes the city of Philadelphia and the four nearby counties in Pennsylvania (Delaware, Chester, Montgomery, and Bucks Counties). If you'd like tips on chow elsewhere in Pennsylvania, please see the Pennsylvania board: http://chowhound.chow.com/boards/15 . For tips on chow in New Jersey, including towns across the river from Philadelphia, see the New Jersey board: http://chowhound.chow.com/boards/81 . For tips on chow in Delaware, see the Mid-Atlantic board: http://chowhound.chow.com/boards/16 . For a complete list of boards available, see the Chowhound menu in the navigation bar."

                                                                          Does that sound okay?

                                                                          Note that, if that's what folks want, then it would also be appropriate to change the description of the area covered in the stickied topic in the New Jersey forum, which currently mentions that towns in South Jersey are discussed on the Philly forum.

                                                                          1. re: nsxtasy

                                                                            This is fine, except that if the board is limited to the five counties in Pennsylvania, I would leave the term "Delaware Valley" out and call it simply the Philadelphia Area board. To me, the Delaware Valley includes counties on both sides of the river.

                                                                            A lot of the arguments made by contributors to this thread are based on what appears to be logical (no more than 30 minutes from Philly, on a direct train line to Philly, etc.), but it's hard to base a board entirely on logic without winding up with an area shaped liked a gerrymandered congressional district. Since this thread started with the question of where to put New Hope, let's use it as an example. New Hope has a twin: Lambertville, NJ, its neighbor directly across the river. It's possible to get from the center of one town to the center of the other on foot in a few minutes by walking across the bridge between them. Both towns are filled with small shops and restaurants. They jointly host a restaurant week. Many tourists visit both on the same day. If logic were to dictate where on CH they are discussed, there's no reason to have New Hope on the Philadelphia Area Board and Lambertville on the New Jersey Board. Given their close relationship, they should be on the same board. But they aren't and never have been. I'm OK with that in order to keep the dividing line between boards simple and understandable. If that line is the Delaware River, so be it.

                                                                            The best way to define what area a board covers would be to have a map that shows the boundaries of the area and what is contained within it. However, I doubt that the current CH software would support that, so we're stuck with verbal descriptions and the need to make them clear and unambiguous.

                                                                            The description on the Pennsylvania Board will also need to be modified: "The Pennsylvania Board is focused on discussing chow anywhere in Pennsylvania, except for the City of Philadelphia and Bucks, Montgomery, Chester and Delaware Counties. For Philadelphia and these four counties, please go to the Philadelphia Area board." It's true that Philadelphia is both a county and a city, but since most people think of Philadelphia as a city, it might be confusing to some to call it a county.

                                                                            1. re: cheesemaestro

                                                                              I think we're getting to the point of redundancy, which probably means that we've exhausted the possibilities and honed in on the 5 PA counties as the Philadelphia Area Board (or whatever the CH monitors think is the appropriate description). How about if we call it fait accompli and ask the monitor to make the change?

                                                                              1. re: bucksguy14

                                                                                >> How about if we call it fait accompli and ask the monitor to make the change?

                                                                                I've sent an e-mail to the Chowhound Team referencing this discussion and asking them to make the corresponding changes. Thanks to you and everyone for their input.

                                                                                1. re: nsxtasy

                                                                                  Merci

                                                                                  1. re: bucksguy14

                                                                                    A couple people don't really represent the board. The status quo is preferable than trying to limit it further. Really issues have been very rare.

                                                                                    1. re: leepinleemur

                                                                                      Comments have been posted here by at least 13 different people, as noted above. Not just two. And what this discussion has illuminated is that the status quo is very unclear, with respect to Bucks County as well as southern New Jersey, both of which have had posts in more than one forum due to the lack of explicit definition.

                                                                                      1. re: nsxtasy

                                                                                        Well it seems like about 3.5 people are on board with the "5 PA counties" proposal.
                                                                                        It seems pretty inconvenient to limit it in this way. Posts in more than one forum or in a questionable forum seem like a pretty small minority in my experience. I don't see a lot of confusion about what belongs on the Philadelphia area board. Most people know it when they see it. Those outliers can be moved per the existing process.

                                                                                        1. re: leepinleemur

                                                                                          >> Well it seems like about 3.5 people are on board with the "5 PA counties" proposal.

                                                                                          Sounds like you need to count them again. As I posted above:

                                                                                          >> Chowhounders have posted comments in this topic, and this is where they have said posts about Bucks County and/or New Hope (a town within Bucks County) belong:
                                                                                          >> Philadelphia forum: barryg, CindyJ, truffles2, jfr, Bigley9, rockandroll52, sadiefox, Delucacheesemonger, givemecarbs, cwdonald, leepinleemur, cowboyardee, Chefpaolo

                                                                                          Sure looks like 13 people to me.

                                                                                          And if it weren't confusing or a problem, this topic never would have been created, and people wouldn't have replied to it 82 times.

                                                                                          1. re: nsxtasy

                                                                                            As you mentioned, no one here is confused where New Hope/Bucks County should be.
                                                                                            The issue in this part of the thread was whether additional clarification and/or limitation is required. In my mind, the fact that one person from NJ allegedly got confused doesn't warrant any drastic changes.

                                                                                            This topic was created with the split in 2010 and wasn't in question until the confused poster from NJ seemed to want something in a different board, for unclear reasons.
                                                                                            It is clear that Bucks and the other PA counties should be in Philly. I think it would cause more harm than good to try to keep Delaware/NJ out. For posts such as "recommend sushi 30 minutes outside of philly" (hypothetical example), NJ restaurants will and should fit into those threads.

                                                                                            1. re: leepinleemur

                                                                                              The people who actually live in NJ have said that they prefer posting on the New Jersey forum. Which they are mostly doing already for places in the NJ suburbs of Philly. They ought to be able to decide for themselves.

                                                                3. Borders are usually based on natural borders like rivers or mountain ranges, and sometimes they are based on political / administrative divisions. People sometimes talk about something being "north of 202" but in the case of restaurants, you wouldn't exclude something because it is on the left side of the road.

                                                                  For the purposes of these discussions, a better border is to reference a large neutral zone like Valley Forge for example, where everything to the south is a philly suburb and everything north.is rural.

                                                                  10 Replies
                                                                  1. re: GraydonCarter

                                                                    Too confusing - using the surrounding counties of the city makes the most sense.

                                                                    1. re: GraydonCarter

                                                                      Everything north of Valley Forge is rural? Evidently you have never tried to park in Phoenixville on a Friday night!

                                                                      The problem is if you do not know the area, your description is not easy to interpret. I was the most vocal proponent for the county solution because it is unambiguous. Metropolitan areas as defined by census bureau and the like are defined by counties. DMAs which are the basis for advertising rates are defined by counties. Every locale can be associated with a county ..

                                                                      The real goal was to eliviate the ambiguity that lead to someone, in good conscience posting about New Hope on the PA board, firmly believing that it belonged there whereas others including myself disagreed. Likewise with the current description people have wondered whether Quakertown, Coopersburg and the like should be on the PA board or not. Things around border will lead to people disagreeing. Using a county border and you alleviate the prob

                                                                      1. re: cwdonald

                                                                        FYI the continuing ambiguity in the NJ and Philadelphia descriptions has lead to one person feeling that they are being moved around .. where people have suggested Philadelphia, NJ and MidAtlantic for Atlantic City ...

                                                                        see
                                                                        http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/797673

                                                                        It would be nice if the description on the Philadelphia and NJ boards could be clarified.

                                                                        1. re: cwdonald

                                                                          "This board is focused on discussing chow in New Jersey, other than towns in Southern New Jersey which are suburbs of Philadelphia and discussed here"

                                                                          seems pretty clear to me.

                                                                          1. re: leepinleemur

                                                                            Well it clearly wasnt to the poster who posted about AC in Philadelphia forum, had his/her post moved, had osmeone suggest posting in the Mid Atlantic forum and mixed reaction in the NJ forum.

                                                                            1. re: cwdonald

                                                                              How much more can be done? It ended up in the right place. The system works.

                                                                              1. re: leepinleemur

                                                                                Make it simple. All NJ post on NJ. All five counties listed in the Philadelphia description. All DE posts to the Midatlantic board. Unambiguous.

                                                                                1. re: cwdonald

                                                                                  As I mentioned above, threads will naturally cross those borders, so it doesn't make sense to have that kind of artificial separation. It was also one of the things being improved with the new board structure.

                                                                                  And it has been working pretty well for 18 months or this discussion may have happened sooner.

                                                                                  Perhaps some descriptions can be improved, but I don't think any major changes are needed in general.

                                                                                  1. re: leepinleemur

                                                                                    Seems like there is no movement on this........ Perkasie thread stuck on Pennsylvania board... no change to the Philadelphia description. Would almost think that this is Congress where nothing gets done rather than Chowhound where things are changed!

                                                                                    1. re: cwdonald

                                                                                      What is the perkasie thread?

                                                                                      What change should be made in Philadelphia description?