It's tough to beat an orginal.
When the Queen Anne Village townhouse community was built more than 25 years ago, it was the first neighborhood of its kind in the Owings Mills area. It was a haven for first-time homebuyers who were beginning the migration to the northwestern growth area of Baltimore County.
Since then, the stretch of Reisterstown Road that serves as a gateway to Owings Mills has matured and expanded with a cornucopia of developments springing forth-- McDonogh Township, Garrison, Overlook; Grey Rock and Avalon.
But the residents of Queen Anne Village say the 420-unit development, with its multi-colored exteriors, has no need to take a back seat.
Lee Lynch, who has lived in Queen Anne for the past 15 years, says she remembers watching other Owings Mills developments such as Avalon pop up over the years but she has never regretted buying her home in Queen Anne.
"Queen Anne was the beginning of the whole trend of townhouse communities in the area," Lynch said. "We were the first. Now we're surrounded. They're all over the place."
Joan Rosenbloom, a Realtor in the Owings Mills office of O'Conor, Piper and Flynn ERA, says that, Queen Anne really set the stage for other communities its kind.
"In the Owings Mills area, it was really the first neighborhood like it," Rosenbloom said. "Other communities, have sprung up around Queen Anne, but it really was an original at the time and buyers flocked to it."
Demand, for homes in Queen Anne hasn't faltered.
According to Metropolitan Regional Information Systems Inc., the multiple-listing service for the housing industry, homes in Queen Anne are selling for more than 98 percent of the list price and townhouses in the subdivision spend just over four months on the market. Homes In the neighborhood sell for an average of $92,392.
"The original builder built solid homes with hardwood floors and nice-sized rooms, and that's what makes Queen Anne attractive to buyers even to this day," Rosenbloom said.
She also said the value of Queen Anne townhouses keeps the neighborhood competitive with newer communities.
"With the original homes in Queen Anne especially, you get a nice home for your money," Rosenbloom said. "The prices really attract a lot of couples that are starting out."
And for those who moved to Queen Anne as young couples, leaving has rarely entered their minds.
"I love this neighborhood and I'm going to be here for the rest of my life," said Herb Davis, a resident of Queen Anne for more than 20 years. "You're close to everything you need to be close to."
The Queen Anne subdivision is bordered by Cradock Lane to the south, Reisterstown Road to the west and Greenspring Valley Road to the north and east.
"When I moved in, it was actually the prime location in the area," Davis said. "They've built up around here but we're still here in the prime location with easy access to just about everything."
Just minutes from Falls Road, Interstates 695 and 795, residents say they enjoy the location, of Queen Anne almost as much as they enjoy the homes.
"It's close enough to the city so that you can head downtown whenever you want with relative ease, but it's also just far enough away from everything so that crime is relatively low," Lynch said.
And Brian Clevenger wants to keep it that way. Clevenger, coordinator of the Citizens On Patrol (COP) neighborhood watch group for Queen Anne, said the community has a very active organization that keeps crime down in the neighborhood.
"We have 20 or so residents who help out a couple times a month and patrol the neighborhood to be additional eyes and ears for the police," Clevenger said. I wouldn't have lived hare as long as I have if I didn't think it was a good neighborhood."
Bill Schevker, a 20-Year Queen Anne resident who is active with COP, said the neighborhood watch group is just one of many ways the residents have come together to make Queen Anne a better neighborhood.
"It's an old-time neighborhood here in Queen Anne," Schevker said. "You really get to know your neighbors and get a real sense of community."
Every August, the residents of Queen Anne gather at the neighborhood's large community pool and playground for Family Day, an annual celebration for the residents, Davis said more than 300 residents usually attend the event that features carnival rides and prizes.
Queen Anne Village
ZIP code: 21208
Commuting time to downtown Baltimore: 15 minutes
Public schools: Owings Mills Elementary, Pikesville Middle, Owings Mills High School
Shopping: Owings Mills Mall, Valley Village Shopping Center, Valley Center, Festival at Woodholme.
Homes on market: 5
Average listing price: $93,916*
Average sales price: $92,392*
Average days on market: 24
Sales price as percentage of listing price: 99.7%*
* Based on 26 sales in the past 12 months compiled by Metropolitan Regional Information Systems Inc. (www.homesdatabase.com)