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We've done this before, but there may be some new members wanting to share and heck I can't remember what you guys said last time.

So here goes.

Tell us about your area, population, attractions, industry, car culture etc and do you like living there, do you want to move, where?

Maybe even a bit of history of your neck of the woods.

Did you grow up there?

I'd enjoy photos of the villages and hamlets in which you live.

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Central NJ township (no real 'town center'). Suburban with urban (to my eye) overtones. Most densely populated state in the U.S.. Unfortunately close to everything. Suprisingly, loads of money in NJ (once heard that if it was it's own country, it'd be the richest in the world). Taxes are crushing. Would love to leave except my family's all here, and so is lots of work. I don't hate it, tho. Tons of cars/car people, shows all over. Great area for finding stuff- estate sales, deceased mechanics' garages, etc. Always something new coming along. Real estate values have pushed the junkyard to near extinction here, I report with great sadness and lingering fond memories.

Grew up in a very rural area, tho, which I still miss and still feel at home in. At some point the taxes are going to push me out of the state... but I do not relish the thought of moving all I have accumulated over the years. Industry is continually on the wane, as it is all over the country. One good thing about NJ is, there's a good percentage of decent people / interesting characters; lots of surrounding states (ahem: NYPA) have a.... different... level.... of folk by & large. One might call some of them yahoos. Seems to be a higher percentage than in NJ, but then again- we have more snobs and self-centered know-nothings. Fair trade-off? - you make the call. Just my opinion.

Edited by balthazar
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Central NJ township (no real 'town center'). Suburban with urban (to my eye) overtones. Most densely populated state in the U.S.. Unfortunately close to everything. Suprisingly, loads of money in NJ (once heard that if it was it's own country, it'd be the richest in the world). Taxes are crushing. Would love to leave except my family's all here, and so is lots of work. I don't hate it, tho. Tons of cars/car people, shows all over. Great area for finding stuff- estate sales, deceased mechanics' garages, etc. Always something new coming along. Real estate values have pushed the junkyard to near extinction here, I report with great sadness and lingering fond memories.

Grew up in a very rural area, tho, which I still miss and still feel at home in. At some point the taxes are going to push me out of the state... but I do not relish the thought of moving all I have accumulated over the years. Industry is continually on the wane, as it is all over the country. One good thing about NJ is, there's a good percentage of decent people / interesting characters; lots of surrounding states (ahem: NYPA) have a.... different... level.... of folk by & large. One might call some of them yahoos. Seems to be a higher percentage than in NJ, but then again- we have more snobs and self-centered know-nothings. Fair trade-off? - you make the call. Just my opinion.

Facinating. It must be my curious nature, I luv stuff like this. Of course, at the risk of flattering you, you are always an interesting read.

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Plainview-Old Bethpage... two hamlets, but i consider them one ads we share our school systems, water districts, fire department etc...

we have just under 30,000 people, a somewhat well-to-do area, as much as i make fun of the area, i couldnt imagine leaving it....

theres some cool random cars around here, though alot are the snobby rich type that must have the newest most expensive car, brag about paying over sticker, and looking down on my old GMs as trash...

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Cedar Rapids, IA...about 250,000 in the metro area, but the city is only about a 125,000. For the Midwest, it's a decent sized city. Of course, everybody has probably heard about the flooding; we're slowly recovering. Downtown will be completely back in business by October, but some of the surrounding residential areas will probably never recover. Dozens of old homes will be met by the bulldozer.

Attractions-wise, there's nothing too major. Plenty of bike trails and places to hang out along the river and downtown has (had?) a decent nightlife scene (by Iowa standards), but most of the city has a suburban feel. Wide streets, big box stores, strip malls, chain restaurants...the usual. Nearby are the Amana colonies, an Amish settlement dating back to the 1840s. About 20 minutes south is Iowa City, a big college town. The bar scene there is definitely more my type right now since I'm in my 20s. Cedar Rapids has plenty of events and festivals going on, so it livens things up. They also have a farmer's market every Saturday downtown where you can pick up all kinds of good food, taste wine, etc.

We have a pretty decent industrial base. Compared to Des Moines where I used to live, CR is geared toward industry rather than the service/financial sector. The Quaker Oats plant downtown is the largest cereal plant in the world. Cargill and General Mills have major factories in CR, and the military and commercial communications / aviation giant Rockwell Collins is headquartered here. Also, we have a large ethanol manufacturer, ADM. Driving by that place on a hot August day smells like a combination of vomit and sulfer...glad I don't live on that side of town.

Car culture is basically like any other Midwestern city...domestic cars are still the majority, but imports have been gaining a foothold the last 5-10 years. It's pretty common to see old hot rods and muscle cars prowling around the streets at night.

I sorta like living here, but I want to eventually move on to bigger places. Chicago is practically my second home and it's a great city with a lot going for it, so that's where I want to wind up within the next 10 years. The benefits to living in a city like Cedar Rapids is that the cost of living is so cheap that you can really save up money. Crime is almost non-existent and the schools are pretty decent, so it's a great place to raise a family. But for a 24 year old, there's something left to be desired.

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Wild hog, south carolina (actually anderson sc) name for the community though in 26 yrs i have never seen any wild hogs here. lots of good old iron tooling around these parts, middle of the REAL nascar country... just a decent all around area to live halfway between charlotte NC and atlanta GA

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Very interesting stuff.

I haven't been to many smaller American towns and cities, but I've always had this image of them having a town square, like in many movies I've seen. I find that image very comforting somehow. I think Back to the Future had that feel.

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I live in Lawrence MA, 25 miles or so northwest of Boston. It is, quite honestly, a $h!hole, and I hate it with a passion. I do hope when I move there is a disaste which wipes it off the face of the Earth.

There are a few nice areas near the borders of neighboring Methuen and Andover, but for the most part it is a filthy, nasty, overpopulated place. Most building are triple-deckers with like 30 people per floor, most of them are falling apart, there is litter and filth everywhere, we've got crime, oh yes. Car insurance is the highest in New England. It's only gotten worse over the years...I'm glad I'll be moving soon. Burn in hell I say! That does happen fairly regularly actually, as places around here tend to catch or be set on fire.

To give you an idea just how bad it is...

Lawrence is 7.4 square miles. As of the census[18]of 2000, there were 72,043 people, 24,463 households, and 16,903 families residing in the city. The population density was 10,351.4 people per square mile (3,996.5/km²). There were 25,601 housing units at an average density of 3,678.4/sq mi (1,420.2/km²).
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I've lived in West Laurel, MD for all of my 17.9/almost 18 years. It's home to 4,000 people, is rather green and leafy, and not actually that bad of a place to live, by the region's standards. It's by-and-large a bedroom community, with the exception being that the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission (our water company, the 8th largest in the US) is headquartered here. To our east is I-95 and the city of Laurel, home to about 20,000 people. Laurel isn't anything special, just an average small city with much higher-than-should-be crime rates, underperforming schools, spectacularly overpriced real estate, and a really polluted 6 foot deep man-made lake. Laurel is somewhat known for being the place where George Wallace was shot in 1972, at the Laurel Shopping Center. A Bank of America stands today where this happened. And West Laurel has the distinction of having it's main road mentioned on the season finale of The X-Files' 3rd season.

We're almost squarely in the middle of Baltimore and Washington. Baltimore is ok, I would never live there, but I like visiting, especially the Inner Harbor. And it actually looks like a proper city, since there are no silly building height restrictions. Washington, OTOH, is the cruelest joke of a national capital I can think of. It has consistently ranked as one of the worst places in the country in terms of crime, traffic, and education. One part of Northeast DC has gotten so bad that they've had to close it down to general traffic. If you can't provide a good reason for being in the neighborhood, you're turned away and a description of your car and tag number is kept with city police. I avoid DC at all costs.

Talking about car culture, it's typical of the coasts. The import brands dominate the passenger car market, while the domestics rule the roost when it comes to large trucks and SUVs. The Tacoma outnumbers the GMT-355 twins on what seems like a 3:1 ratio, though the S-10 and Sonoma fare much better. Our market seems to be a pretty intense battleground between the Odyssey and Chrysler vans. They outsell every other minivan here, but it's difficult to tell which is actually the best seller. Chrysler seems determined not to concede this segment without a good fight.

Speaking of moving, I'd love to. I'm moving 74 miles to the north to attend college in York, PA, which is bound to be a nice change from the congested horrors of the Baltimore-DC area. I'm pretty much certain that when the time comes, I'll be relocating to somewhere in the Delaware Valley, but there's no doubt that I will move. The Delaware Valley is close enough that I can visit friends and family, but far enough away that I will only have to be bothered with Washington during election season. Delaware has also pretty much been my second home (granted, southern DE, not the New Castle County area), I have family in PA, and the area looks to be really nice, so it's not a difficult sell to me.

Edited by DetroitNut90
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Lotsa small town boys on this site.

Downtown Toronto is my current home: thinks of itself as the Center of the Known Universe. I don't agree. Maybe just the Milky Way pivots with Toronto as its axis. Currently, Toronto has not met a 50 or even 70 story condo it doesn't like. Look for the automobile to be banned or taxed out of existence in the next 4 or 5 years. Or maybe the traffic will get so bad that only bicycles and skateboards will be able to get around. There are current plans to turn Toronto's only downtown expressway (the Gardiner) into a bicycle path or tomato garden: council is debating the merits of both. The Iroquis Nation also has a claim on Toronto, so it is entirely possible that the entire city is going to be merely wished away in the ultimate form of prostration. Currently, our Prime Minister is issuing an apology and 50 Hail Mary's with the hopes of saving the city.

Although I was born here (I am in the Guiness Book of World Records as the Last Living Torontonian who was actually born in this city), I grew up in Vancouver, which is The Center of the Known Universe.

My parents moved us back to Ontario in '71. I am currently suing them for mental hardship.

I have moved around a lot since; I've lived in many small towns in southern Ontario. I moved to Toronto in '96 when my parole was up. As Toronto's Last Born, I will have a booth at the 2010 Aboriginal Olympics in Vancouver.

Domestic cars are nearly extinct in this city. They are thinking of building a museum. Rosedale (the richest neighborhood in Canada) has recently declared that only Lexi or BMWs in black or dark grey are permissable within their borders. Servants, butlers and nannies will be transported within Rosedale by hybrid buses only. The Toronto Star has built a summer home for Katsuaki Watanabe, President of Toyota Motors Corporation, in nearby Halton Hills so that he can be closer to the newspaper so it can kiss his ass.

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Lotsa small town boys on this site.

Downtown Toronto is my current home: thinks of itself as the Center of the Known Universe. I don't agree. Maybe just the Milky Way pivots with Toronto as its axis. Currently, Toronto has not met a 50 or even 70 story condo it doesn't like. Look for the automobile to be banned or taxed out of existence in the next 4 or 5 years. Or maybe the traffic will get so bad that only bicycles and skateboards will be able to get around. There are current plans to turn Toronto's only downtown expressway (the Gardiner) into a bicycle path or tomato garden: council is debating the merits of both. The Iroquis Nation also has a claim on Toronto, so it is entirely possible that the entire city is going to be merely wished away in the ultimate form of prostration. Currently, our Prime Minister is issuing an apology and 50 Hail Mary's with the hopes of saving the city.

Although I was born here (I am in the Guiness Book of World Records as the Last Living Torontonian who was actually born in this city), I grew up in Vancouver, which is The Center of the Known Universe.

My parents moved us back to Ontario in '71. I am currently suing them for mental hardship.

I have moved around a lot since; I've lived in many small towns in southern Ontario. I moved to Toronto in '96 when my parole was up. As Toronto's Last Born, I will have a booth at the 2010 Aboriginal Olympics in Vancouver.

Domestic cars are nearly extinct in this city. They are thinking of building a museum. Rosedale (the richest neighborhood in Canada) has recently declared that only Lexi or BMWs in black or dark grey are permissable within their borders. Servants, butlers and nannies will be transported within Rosedale by hybrid buses only. The Toronto Star has built a summer home for Katsuaki Watanabe, President of Toyota Motors Corporation, in nearby Halton Hills so that he can be closer to the newspaper so it can kiss his ass.

GM has an EMD locomotive plant in Toronto, right? So it can't all be bad...

Seriously, my wife and I were going to visit Toronto on our honeymoon and didn't, kind of glad we skipped it.

If you want a liveable gay friendly city with lots of Domestic cars, bring your partner and move to Columbus Ohio. Low real estate prices, LOTS of domestic cars, very laid back place to live.

Chris

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Where I live...just outside of Columbus Ohio between Grove City and Commercial Point, in an area called Southern Point.

It's nice, kind of semi rural, the city is not growing much in my direction. Lots of houses in my area are on 5 or ten acres, and there are horse farms and log cabins around where I live.

My only claim to fame in where I live is actually my 12 year old daughter Joanna's 7th Grade Computer technology teacher. She is Mrs. Fisher, mother of Indy car racer Sarah Fisher.

Chris

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GM has an EMD locomotive plant in Toronto, right? So it can't all be bad...

Seriously, my wife and I were going to visit Toronto on our honeymoon and didn't, kind of glad we skipped it.

If you want a liveable gay friendly city with lots of Domestic cars, bring your partner and move to Columbus Ohio. Low real estate prices, LOTS of domestic cars, very laid back place to live.

Chris

I think the locomotive plant is near London, Ontario, which is about a 2 hour drive from here.

I've been to Columbus before. You don't want to bend over to pick up the soap in the showers at the Y downtown there - trust me! :AH-HA_wink:

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I think the locomotive plant is near London, Ontario, which is about a 2 hour drive from here.

I've been to Columbus before. You don't want to bend over to pick up the soap in the showers at the Y downtown there - trust me! :AH-HA_wink:

Actually I was the foreman for the electrical work in the downtown Y, I can tell you some stories....

Chris

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I've just been doing some chronicling of pictures from around town (Spotswood, NJ). "Spotteswoode" has been around since 1685 named after the Scottish town the original settler had been from. There is some history here from the Revolutionary War period (see some pics in my Flikr stream - http://www.flickr.com/photos/avant1963/) and I started doing some work on the very old grave stones located at one of the oldest churches in NJ.

Spotswood is a small town (only about a square mile or so). It used to be a summer vacation spot when people would swim in the DeVoe lake and "get healthy" at the Physical Culture City - one of those turn of the century "wellness" centers (wellness = colonics... watch "The Road to Wellville" and you'll know what kind of place this was).

There are still some very classic old buildings in the town, and as I gather more pics, I'll add them to Flikr.

There are some classic cars in the area. There seems to be some car guys around.

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Where I currently live: Randallstown, Maryland, a western suburb of Baltimore. My wife and I moved there upon getting married.

It's a decent enough place, with enough to do and see in and around the county and city. Probably the best quality of the area to me is its proximity to major sports venues (Baltimore itself, Washington, and Philadelphia).

Traffic sucks, especially in the closer suburbs around the city. People around MD always say DC has the worst drivers, but I beg to differ. DC has the worst traffic (sheer volume), but Baltimore has some of the rudest drivers I've ever encountered in my 9 years of driving.

Although I live there, the only other important thing I do in Baltimore County is go to church. I attend school in DC, and I work there as well. My wife teaches in the city, and although she enjoys it (now), she laments the fact that the school system is horrible and doesn't necessarily care about the kids' best interests even if the teachers do. Case in point: the schools are grossly underfunded, but the board just got pay raises and the school board building just completed an expensive renovation.

Amy and I are looking to move to the Raleigh-Durham area pretty soon (by this time next year).

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GM has an EMD locomotive plant in Toronto, right? So it can't all be bad...

Seriously, my wife and I were going to visit Toronto on our honeymoon and didn't, kind of glad we skipped it.

If you want a liveable gay friendly city with lots of Domestic cars, bring your partner and move to Columbus Ohio. Low real estate prices, LOTS of domestic cars, very laid back place to live.

Chris

I saw a real estate show on TV and they had great things to say about Columbus. Made me want to live there.

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Hey Walt, been working in Spotswood this month (Spotswood Ave)- I always look at that big ol' house in your flicker pics when I motor by- my buddy says he knows the guy who owns it- that guy wanted to make it a car-service business but the town turned him down. Striking, looks structurally sound. If it weren't for the traffic, it'd probably be worth restoring. I'd love to get inside it.....

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Here's a little about Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

It's located in the southwest part of the province of Alberta. Semi-arrid, weather can be extremely hot like today, or bone aching cold in winter which is relieved by warm chinook winds.

We are a 1,000,000 people and counting. Hyper economy(it's slowing somewhat as of late), growth in the last few years has been insane. There are countless construction cranes everywhere, traffic is nuts...I'm growing sick of it.

Oil and gas is the big thing here because Alberta has much of it. People migrate here from all over Canada and other parts of the world. Some areas of the city are quite diverse.

It's become a very wealthy city. Increasingly younger professional in makeup. People work hard here and play hard.

Calgary was designed around the car, it's sprawling in nature. So car culture here is alive and well.

A mix of every car maker you can imagine. Porsches, Mercedes and BMWs are just so everyday now. Exotics are the thing.

I see Ferraris, Lambos, Maseratis, Bentleys, Rolls, Aston Martins, Audi R8s and others frequently.

About 475,000 is the average selling price for a house right now. Million dollar plus houses are common.

While many are living a Beverly Hills life here, many common people are getting pushed out of their city because of high costs.

I like Calgary alot inspite of it's growing pains. It's close to the mountains and the National Parks in Banff etc.

The Calgary Stampede is famous with many people in other countries. It's 10 days of booze, women, men and dancin and my

favorite, pancake breakfasts, it's like Christmas in July.

It's an exciting place to be, never a dull moment. Calgary is on the move and in transition to become one of Canada's great cities. For now, I plan to stay. One day, perhaps Canmore and Banff, just down the road in the mountains. I grew up in a very rural area in the mountains, so they often tug at me.

cityofcalgaryyp1.gif

Edited by HarleyEarl
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I live in a hood-I really large Hood'- I call it Michigan. :confused0071:

I'm in the western burbs of the Metro detriot area....lots to do, but getting very crowded. :mellow:

Hopefully things will improve here job wise.....it should help improve all the craziness........

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Central NJ township (no real 'town center'). Taxes are crushing.

Real estate values have pushed the junkyard to near extinction here

One good thing about NJ is, there's a good percentage of decent people / interesting characters; lots of surrounding states (ahem: NYPA) have a.... different... level.... of folk by & large.

Taxes all over the heavily populated NE population corridor are absurd, by and large, since I love to look at R.E. on the web. When the house/townhouse/condo ads tack on the property taxes, for example, it makes what was on the cusp of being tenable seem ridiculous. And this isn't just Bergen County NJ or LI, it's the Hudson River Valley, PA, Mass and that whole swath of the country.

Indeed...people in your general area ARE interesting. A lady who sits down the hall from me struck up a friendship, largely based on me asking "is that a tri-state area accent?" Turns out she was born in Queens and Italian, need I say more. She's a hoot and said people out West are too "homogenized," even in the large West Coast metro areas she's lived in.

Edited by trinacriabob
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North Central Calif, about 110 miles N.E. of the Bay Area.

Los Angeles, in my heart, will always be my home. However, all coastal California metro areas are too pricey. Even though SF is more scenic than LA, if I could afford to live WELL in either, I'd take LA in a heartbeat. SF is too politically correct and LA is more free-wheeling and whacked, so I fit in better. In fact, look how many colorful Southern Californians are on this site while there are NO Bay Area members that come to mind....they are too busy driving around their overrated foreign garbage while dating some intelligent granola or Asian chick who went to Berkeley or Stanford with her flawless SAT and works in tech or as a web designer.

Re. my general area....

Pros: more affordable, at the foot of the Sierra Nevadas, proximity to Tahoe and San Francisco, cools down at night even when it's real hot during the day

Cons: hotter than being within 25 or so miles from the coast, people are not as interesting as I'm accustomed to, people can be stupid...

...did I mention that people can be stupid?

Edited by trinacriabob
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North Central Calif, about 110 miles N.E. of the Bay Area.

Los Angeles, in my heart, will always be my home. However, all coastal California metro areas are too pricey. Even though SF is more scenic than LA, if I could afford to live WELL in either, I'd take LA in a heartbeat. SF is too politically correct and LA is more free-wheeling and whacked, so I fit in better. In fact, look how many colorful Southern Californians are on this site while there are NO Bay Area members that come to mind....they are too busy driving around their overrated foreign garbage while dating some intelligent granola or Asian chick who went to Berkeley or Stanford with her flawless SAT and works in tech or as a web designer.

Re. my general area....

Pros: more affordable, at the foot of the Sierra Nevadas, proximity to Tahoe and San Francisco, cools down at night even when it's real hot during the day

Cons: hotter than being within 25 or so miles from the coast, people are not as interesting as I'm accustomed to, people can be stupid...

...did I mention that people can be stupid?

Well i am from the bay area. i have to agree with your remarks, though i am not driving an overated foriegn garbage ( but my wife does). I prefer to drive what the locals call my white trash Trans Ams.

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Live in Mississauga, Ontario. Large suburb (pop ~700,000) of Toronto that has developed over the last 35 years. With much of its population not being here for more than 20 years, you don't here people whining looking back and pining for "the good old days". Very multicultural, about 50% white and shrinking, with Indian and Chinese heritage making up the largest other groups in that order. Roughly half of the population was not born in Canada. Its a very safe city with very low violent crime for its size, one of the lowest in Canada, though it has had a lot of grow op busts over the years (recreational marijuana use is no big deal here if not flaunted :CanadaEmoticon: ). Median family income is almost $100K. This weekend Muslim fest is happening across the street from where I live, as well as a GM ride and drive event kitty corner from that. No religion dominates, no culture or traditions dominate, not a conservative city socially or politically. Go further west of Mississauga to Oakville and Burlington and you end up in Ontario's bible belt which I try to avoid.

Though it is a suburb of Toronto, its actually a net importer of employees. More people commute in to Mississauga to work than commute out of it to work.

I live across the street from city hall. The webcams are overlooking Muslim fest this weekend (Aug 9/10). Looking forward to checking that out along with ride and drive today (I hope the G8 is there!)

http://www.mississauga.ca/portal/discover/webcam1

Edited by frogger
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This is a GREAT picture, HE. Gives me an idea for another place to visit in the future.

Thank you and we'll welcome you with open arms.

A fun time is in early July during Stampede...everyone gets into it.

Also, we're a nice stepping off point to Banff. Stunning scenery. It's only about 1.5 hrs away. For me an hour. :)

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I live in a suburb so to speak of Appleton Wisconsin. It is a pretty nice deal if you can deal with the winters we sometimes get. Crime does exist but isnt overly a huge problem. The imports scene is bocoming more widespread every day. I am a holdout though as you all can see of the old domestic ways. Housing prices here are low compared to a lot of parts of the country. Old cars are prized because the winterr road salt is hard on vehicles. here. A reason why I dont drive the old ones in the winter. Appleton by the way has about 70,000 people.

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Well i am from the bay area. i have to agree with your remarks, though i am not driving an overated foriegn garbage ( but my wife does). I prefer to drive what the locals call my white trash Trans Ams.

Cool! You're the only one that I know of on C&G. East Bay, Marin, Peninsula, Pleasanton/Livermore? It's all good.

I drove down to the Walnut Creek area to go to dinner with someone who drove eastward from the city. She is constantly in a state of disbelief as to what comes out of my mouth. People I knew in LA just laughed.

White trash is not good. Trans Am is good. White trash Trans Am tilts toward being good. LOL.

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Hey PCS (and anyone else in the area) my fiancee has been in Baltimore the last few days tending to a family issue, and is speaking very glowingly about her birthplace, as if she's trying to gauge my feelings about the area to see if I would be interested in moving there. I've spent a week in D.C. and a few days in Norfolk, but never been to Baltimore. So what I need are some good (negative) talking points about the area, so I can squish her dreams, at least for the moment.

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Hey PCS (and anyone else in the area) my fiancee has been in Baltimore the last few days tending to a family issue, and is speaking very glowingly about her birthplace, as if she's trying to gauge my feelings about the area to see if I would be interested in moving there. I've spent a week in D.C. and a few days in Norfolk, but never been to Baltimore. So what I need are some good (negative) talking points about the area, so I can squish her dreams, at least for the moment.

Check out Towson, MD, it's a favorite of mine in the Baltimore area, especially in the spring. College town, with a high tech work force.

What I don't like about Baltimore is the traffic, I-695 grinds to a halt from 7 AM - 10 AM and again from 4 PM - 7 PM.

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Phoenix, Arizona currently..house sitting for my sister who is working in Ohio..but this is temporary. I'll probably be back in Denver within the next year (I still own a condo there). I'm also thinking about moving back to the Midwest---Columbus, Ohio or Pittsburgh, PA.

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Fredericksburg VA. Its being overdeveloped, like its trying to be a suburb of D.C. even though we are 50 mile south.

We do have a GM powertrain plant here, and thats about it.

That intersection where 1 and 17 Business split off, just north of the Rappahannock River? Needs fixed ASAP. The light phases back up traffic for MILES when I'm avoiding taking 95.

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Hey PCS (and anyone else in the area) my fiancee has been in Baltimore the last few days tending to a family issue, and is speaking very glowingly about her birthplace, as if she's trying to gauge my feelings about the area to see if I would be interested in moving there. I've spent a week in D.C. and a few days in Norfolk, but never been to Baltimore. So what I need are some good (negative) talking points about the area, so I can squish her dreams, at least for the moment.

Baltimore has a high crime rate, somewhere in the top 10-worst in the nation when I last checked. It's also got some pretty bad traffic as well, PCS isn't exaggerating about the Baltimore Beltway (I-695) becoming a parking lot during rush hour. There are also toll plazas after the I-95 and I-895 tunnels, which have the potential to back up traffic in the vicinity as well. Real estate in this area (not just limited to Baltimore, the whole Baltimore/DC metro area) is very much overpriced. The state just increased the sales tax from 5% to 6%. The proximity to DC means that you get to hear about their crime and problems in addition to those of Baltimore. The roads suck, and the drivers suck more. People in Central Maryland just fail at driving, and since the city is located along I-95, you get the worst drivers from the right coast states on the roads (the worst offenders are from New Jersey, but Pennsylvania drivers tend to wait until the very last minute to go from the far left lane to take a right exit 3 lanes over). And Baltimore City Public Schools are rated very low in terms of educational quality.

That's most of the bad aspects of Baltimore that I can think of.

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Phoenix, Arizona currently..house sitting for my sister who is working in Ohio..but this is temporary. I'll probably be back in Denver within the next year (I still own a condo there). I'm also thinking about moving back to the Midwest---Columbus, Ohio or Pittsburgh, PA.

Phoenix in August and my palms are sweating just reading this. LOL.

I know you like Denver a lot. I have been, as you know, and like its western suburbs such as Ken Caryl Ranch, Evergreen and Conifer (but NOT Boulder because I don't like to be hit over the head with granolas). I heard that when you position yourself in the western suburbs, you will face an intense sun, which reportedly shines brightly in Denver, for both your morning and afternoon commute.

Pittsburgh has always been rated high for numerous years in Q.O.L. surveys. The housing possibilities there seem to be very nice, per those housing magazines, and the hilly setting is likewise. However, I found it odd that a city which is always highly ranked in the surveys experiences a decline, albeit small, in both its city limit and metro area census counts as time marches on.

If I ever moved east, it would be to the metro Atlanta area which is really the only eastern city I've lived in as an adult. I thought "the ATL" kicked some serious ass.

Edited by trinacriabob
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I live in a suburb so to speak of Appleton Wisconsin. It is a pretty nice deal if you can deal with the winters we sometimes get. Crime does exist but isnt overly a huge problem. The imports scene is bocoming more widespread every day. I am a holdout though as you all can see of the old domestic ways. Housing prices here are low compared to a lot of parts of the country. Old cars are prized because the winterr road salt is hard on vehicles. here. A reason why I dont drive the old ones in the winter. Appleton by the way has about 70,000 people.

I was born in Appleton and haven't been back since 1965. I plan to visit someday.

Chris

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Phoenix, Arizona currently..house sitting for my sister who is working in Ohio..but this is temporary. I'll probably be back in Denver within the next year (I still own a condo there). I'm also thinking about moving back to the Midwest---Columbus, Ohio or Pittsburgh, PA.

Economy here is not super strong but Columbus is a great place to live. Overgrown college town, actually.

Chris

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This is a GREAT picture, HE. Gives me an idea for another place to visit in the future.

Kieth Tanner, who is into Miatas and has written several Miata books actually has a blog somewhere about driving his Miata across Canada with his girlfriend. I want to do the same with mine...given the pic I know a stop I want to make!

Chris

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So, I don't have any pictures or anything, but I live in Laramie Wyoming. It's a little college town of about 27000 people nestled in the mountains of southern Wyoming. Besides being home to the University of Wyoming and one of the LCCC campuses, it's also home to WyoTech and a ton of outdoor activities. It's also got the original Wyoming Territorial Prison. It's sometimes referred to as the Gem City of the rocky mountains, and I think it's a very fitting title. It's also been growing a TON recently thanks mostly to the university. There's actually alot of cool info on Wikipedia that is pretty accurate...you guys should check it out... I personally love it here and if I were to stay in Wyoming after college, I would definitely consider Laramie as a permanent home...Cheyenne would probably be the only other option for me in that type of situation...

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That intersection where 1 and 17 Business split off, just north of the Rappahannock River? Needs fixed ASAP. The light phases back up traffic for MILES when I'm avoiding taking 95.

Ahh, yes the Falmouth bridge. You are right something really needs to be done, it has been bad there for years.

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Good Ole Deadwood SD

Population - 1,000

History - 1,000 Pages

Casino/Hotel Rooms - 1000+

Theres an HBO series about Deadwood South Dakota http://www.hbo.com/deadwood/ (filmed in socal of course)

Deadwood is located in the beautiful mountain hills of South Dakota. Deadwood is where Wild Bill Hickok died. Deadwood is located 3 miles from the largest gold mine in the western hemisphere as well as 10 miles away from the annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally.

ph_250.jpg

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Well, about three months ago, I moved from southern California to Las Vegas to run the internet department at a Cadillac store here that is being run by a long-time CA friend of mine.

Surprisingly, I'm really enjoying living here. Vegas certainly isn't for everyone, but in recent years, due to the tourism boom that this city has been experiencing, it's changed dramatically. With so many top-rated restaurant owners from New York and Los Angeles setting up shop here, you can experience just about any level of dining experience you are looking for. And, the sheer number of shows available to go see always gives you something to do.

Also the sheer number of high-rises being built is mind-boggling. Some of these are new casinos and hotels, but a vast number of them are high-rise residential condos. Finally, with the boom in building on the strip and downtown over the last 15 years or so, Las Vegas is finally beginning to resemble a "real" city.....with a now-impressive skyline.

What most casual visitors don't realize (and I didn't fully realize either) is that there is a whole 'nuther Las Vegas outside of downtown and the strip. I live about 15-20 minutes west-northwest of the strip in an area called Summerlin. Summerlin isn't an incorporated city (like the Las Vegas suburb of Henderson) but is a master-planned community with an actual Las Vegas city address. The current population of Las Vegas is around 550,000 people, with about 2 million living in the greater Las Vegas/Clark County metro area. Summerlin currently has a population of around 80,000.

Summerlin reminds me alot of south Orange County where I lived.....lots of new developments, stucco/tile roof houses, wide tree-lined (yes...in the desert) boulevards and subdivisions, and lots of great restaurant and shopping choices. Located on the western edge of the Las Vegas metro area, Summerlin also enjoys great natural beauty with the Red Rock Mountains national recreation area just 5 minutes outside of the city. What's nice is that you could live here and never have to go down to the strip with some nice higher-end (chain) restaurants such as Fleming's steakhouse, Kona Grill, etc., and good shopping with all the Williams Sonoma/Banana Republic type shops located here in Summerlin locally.

Consider it a smaller version of Irvine (CA), Scottsdale (AZ), Bellevue (WA), or other similar city suburban areas. Outside of the Lake Las Vegas area, it's probably the most upscale suburban area of Las Vegas. And, compared to areas in California, it's relatively affordable too.

One other benefit of Las Vegas' "boomtown" status is roads and freeways that are in great shape, relatively new, and widened freeways.

As far as living here in Las Vegas, even if you never venture to the strip, it's an outdoor person's paradise. From my house, I can be up at Mount Charleston (8,500 feet elevation) in 45 minutes.....where there is skiing in the winter. Red Rock is 5-10 mins from my house. And Lake Mead is about 30-40 mins away and offers all kinds of lake/boating things to do.

Of course if you DO venture to the strip, you can take advantage of more shopping than you could ever imagine. Every conceivable high-end retailer has a store (or multiple stores) here. And, as said before, some of them have already begun to venture out to the more suburban areas (I even have a Bang n Olufson store just down the street from my house.)

The heat really doesn't bother me that much. Yes, it gets hot....but when we get around 110-degrees or better, it tends to be extremely dry. So while it is hot, once you step into the shade or inside the A/C, you cool off very quickly. I'd rather have 110 degrees here than be at my parents house in Florida where it might be 90-95 degrees and incredibly humid. The nights are heavenly here.....warm, very sultry, very nice to sit outside on the patio, etc.

Downsides? Traffic is approaching southern California levels. The winter, I hear, can be cold and windy....colder than what would be found in SoCal. Finally, car insurance and registration costs are VERY expensive (of course there is no state income tax...so that helps offset.)

Overall, it's fun here. I think my stint here will be anywhere from 2-5 years, then I'll probably be back in SoCal at a larger store with my friend. So, I'm going to try to at least enjoy it while I'm here.

Edited by The O.C.
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So, I don't have any pictures or anything, but I live in Laramie Wyoming. It's a little college town of about 27000 people nestled in the mountains of southern Wyoming. Besides being home to the University of Wyoming and one of the LCCC campuses, it's also home to WyoTech and a ton of outdoor activities. It's also got the original Wyoming Territorial Prison. It's sometimes referred to as the Gem City of the rocky mountains, and I think it's a very fitting title. It's also been growing a TON recently thanks mostly to the university. There's actually alot of cool info on Wikipedia that is pretty accurate...you guys should check it out... I personally love it here and if I were to stay in Wyoming after college, I would definitely consider Laramie as a permanent home...Cheyenne would probably be the only other option for me in that type of situation...

I'm jealous, I'd love to live where you do.

Chris

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Well, about three months ago, I moved from southern California to Las Vegas to run the internet department at a Cadillac store

I live about 15-20 minutes west-northwest of the strip in an area called Summerlin. Summerlin isn't an incorporated city (like the Las Vegas suburb of Henderson) but is a master-planned community with an actual Las Vegas city address.

Summerlin reminds me alot of south Orange County where I lived

Outside of the Lake Las Vegas area, it's probably the most upscale suburban area of Las Vegas. And, compared to areas in California, it's relatively affordable too.

As far as living here in Las Vegas, even if you never venture to the strip, it's an outdoor person's paradise. From my house, I can be up at Mount Charleston (8,500 feet elevation) in 45 minutes.....where there is skiing in the winter. Red Rock is 5-10 mins from my house. And Lake Mead is about 30-40 mins away and offers all kinds of lake/boating things to do.

I'd rather have 110 degrees here than be at my parents house in Florida where it might be 90-95 degrees and incredibly humid.

Downsides?

I knew you'd probably like Summerlin, given that you were coming from a nice part of south Orange Co. That residential high-rise just as 93/95 forks off to go toward Northern Nevada from Summerlin Parkway just kind of stands out...you know the one I'm talking about, right? Yes, the prices aren't too bad. Don't far-out Henderson and the newer developments around Boulder City have some nice housing options, too?

Yeah, thank God you guys have Mt. Charleston in your backyard. On a real hot summer day, you might as well head up there and spend the whole DAY. (About the road up to Mt. Charleston, bad for your AC and coolant temp as you go up, and horrible on your brakes on the way down...my rental was showing some brake fade by the time I got down to the highway that takes back to LV).

As for the 110 vs. 90-95 and humid, I'll take 90-95 and humid. At 105+, going outside feels like opening an oven and putting your head in.

Downsides? For me, the downside is that there are a lot of skanky people that have migrated there. You don't see many of them where you live, but try sitting in some of the chain coffee shops "off-Strip" (near Trop. and Decatur, or Trop. and Buffalo) on a Saturday morning so you get some of the locals who live there. Not anyone I'd want to do coffee with.

Very detailed and accurate report.

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I knew you'd probably like Summerlin, given that you were coming from a nice part of south Orange Co. That residential high-rise just as 93/95 forks off to go toward Northern Nevada from Summerlin Parkway just kind of stands out...you know the one I'm talking about, right? Yes, the prices aren't too bad. Don't far-out Henderson and the newer developments around Boulder City have some nice housing options, too?

Yeah, thank God you guys have Mt. Charleston in your backyard. On a real hot summer day, you might as well head up there and spend the whole DAY. (About the road up to Mt. Charleston, bad for your AC and coolant temp as you go up, and horrible on your brakes on the way down...my rental was showing some brake fade by the time I got down to the highway that takes back to LV).

As for the 110 vs. 90-95 and humid, I'll take 90-95 and humid. At 105+, going outside feels like opening an oven and putting your head in.

Downsides? For me, the downside is that there are a lot of skanky people that have migrated there. You don't see many of them where you live, but try sitting in some of the chain coffee shops "off-Strip" (near Trop. and Decatur, or Trop. and Buffalo) on a Saturday morning so you get some of the locals who live there. Not anyone I'd want to do coffee with.

Very detailed and accurate report.

Those highrises in Summerlin, right at Rampart and the Summerlin Parkway, are called Queensridge. Those condos start at about $1MM apparently. I live just a few blocks from there (but not in anything that expensive....LOL)

I'll still take the heat over the humidity....

As far as the people here, well yeah, you go to the older areas in Las Vegas, and there's a ton of white trash. But then again, same holds true for any city you go to I guess. Every city has it's different classes of people, etc. Therefore, I keep to my little, clean, master-planned community....where there are more pretty people....LOL.

I will say this.....regardless of who they are, or what class of people they are.....people here are by-and-far quite a friendly bunch. Even something as little as the attitude of the cashier at the gas station, etc.....they are always friendly.

There are nice housing areas in and around Henderson......but Summerlin is just that little bit nicer and more upscale. Henderson is too close to the white-trash areas....so alot of that spills over......but that's just the (usually hidden) elitist in me. Henderson is kinda like the "Inland Empire" of the Las Vegas valley. Lots of new homes, new strip malls, yadda, yadda.....but not nearly as desirable as other areas (like the I.E. versus coastal O.C.)

Edited by The O.C.
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I'm jealous, I'd love to live where you do.

Chris

The older I get, the more I appreciate it, and I'm definitely thinking twice about leaving the area...There are very few places that seem as perfect to me...unfortunately, there aren't alot of job opportunities for mechancial engineers in the Laramie area of the state.

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The older I get, the more I appreciate it, and I'm definitely thinking twice about leaving the area...There are very few places that seem as perfect to me...unfortunately, there aren't alot of job opportunities for mechancial engineers in the Laramie area of the state.

No, but quality of life would make up for it. I used to live in Atlanta, Georgia. It was a great place but just a bigger citthan I wanted to live in so I moved back to Ohio.

Chris

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Live in Mississauga, Ontario. Large suburb (pop ~700,000) of Toronto that has developed over the last 35 years. With much of its population not being here for more than 20 years, you don't here people whining looking back and pining for "the good old days". Very multicultural, about 50% white and shrinking, with Indian and Chinese heritage making up the largest other groups in that order. Roughly half of the population was not born in Canada.

I got bumped off a flight from Toronto to Rome and had to spend the night in Mississauga. It was night time, so I didn't see anything.

I like the Woodbridge suburb. It's where all the Italians that decided to get larger and newer houses and left the 2 "Little Italys" (on College Street and on St. Clair West) moved to.

Edited by trinacriabob
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