I currently live in Speedway. It's a GREAT place to live. I grew up here, and just bought a house here myself 3 years ago. Pros: It's only 15 min. from downtown Indy, there's little traffic (except during the Indy 500/Brickyard 400), crime is low, we have our own police and fire depts, schools are great and we just passed the referendum regarding taxes to keep them great for the next 10 years, there are some really cute houses here at LOW prices. Just make sure you're actually IN Speedway. The areas just outside Speedway, which still have the 46224 zip code, sometimes CALL themselves "Speedway" but aren't actually, and they aren't nearly as nice. For one, it's IPS (Indianapolis Public Schools) district, which is awful (my opinion), crime will be higher, and houses more run down. But IN Speedway, you get a small town feel, but with a short drive to Indy. There are 2 really nice parks that just were redone with new playground equipment. They don't do bussing with the schools, so be aware of that. Kids typically walk to school, which I think is so cool, or ride with an adult if possible. Most people are nice and friendly here too and I don't think you'd have a problem with racism. Also, taxes are the lowest in Speedway compared to surrounding suburbs. AND, it's a small area that isn't going to have more housing developments being built. Home values here are pretty stable and a good investment. Plus, you can walk to places in Speedway safely. From my home I can walk to restaurants, parks, and stores.
West side: Brownsburg. It's about 15 minutes farther west. Taxes are higher here b/c they're still doing a lot of building and adding more schools. But it's a nice area. Crime is pretty low and people are pretty friendly. Schools will be pretty big, and they're still growing.
Avon: Don't live here. Taxes are outrageous and the schools are a mess!! I used to work there for a brief time, and my mom worked there as a teacher for about 30 years! So she would know. And she says to everybody that she would never move to Avon or send her kids to the school there! The AREA is nice...nice homes, nice people, shopping, etc. But the schools are poorly run and overcrowded. Also more traffic here and very high taxes.
Plainfield: Nice. This is just south of Avon....about 20-30 into downtown Indy. A slightly smaller school district that's decent. Prices will be slightly lower here too, and taxes not quite as high as Avon. Crime is low here, and diversity is alright.
North side: A lot of people love the north side. Personally, I don't get it. It's SOO crowded there!!! Traffic is ALWAYS a hassle. Taxes are high. Also, I've personally found people who live there (generally speaking...I know not EVERYONE is like this) to be more snobby and think they're better than everyone else. Why? B/c this area IS more expensive, it draws families who earn more money...and sometimes people like that can have a snobby attitude. Again...not ALL...so please don't take offense!!
Northside areas: Carmel, Westfield, Noblesville, Fishers. To me they're all pretty much the same. Nice schools, low crime, diversity ok. I worked in Fishers for a year and Westfield for 2 years (in their high schools). The schools are nice, and not too crowded, so that's good. But the thing with the north side is you'll have to drive everywhere. They have nice places, but nowhere is within walking distance. And again, the traffic is always hectic. The commute to downtown Indy can be 30 minutes or more. And it's SITTING in traffic. When I worked in Westfield, every morning I saw the commuters who were heading south into Indy literally stopped, or moving very slowly, for miles! Fishers was the same, but worse. If you move here, be sure you don't mind sitting in traffic, and even dealing with traffic on a Saturday out with the family.
South side: Center Grove draws people with higher incomes, the school is nicer (aka, more expensive), taxes are higher, etc.
Greenwood is not bad.
I used to work in Perry Township (south side...Southport HS and Perry Meridian) for a couple of years as a teacher. The schools aren't bad but it depends on your specific neighborhood. Some are more well-to-do, with lower crime. Others are more trashy with more problems. So be careful which part of the south side you live in. Traffic isn't awful. A commute to Indy would be 15-30 minutes, again depending on exactly where you are.
Beech Grove: This is similar to Speedway, but on the south side. They are a small town within the larger city. They also have their own schools, which are pretty good. This would be a nice place to live if you're looking at the south side.
East side: I don't know much about the east side. The stereotype of the east side, however, is crime. It seems over half the crime in Indy come from the east side area.
Answered By: Sarah - 9/10/2011