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Old 12-14-2010, 08:33 PM
 
Location: A circle of Hell so insidious, infernal and odious, Dante dared not map it
623 posts, read 1,010,282 times
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Hi all,
I received good news from a promising job lead yesterday and decided to get a plan together if/when they hire me so I'm not stressed at the last minute trying to move. I'd be moving from Phoenix and found some extended stay hotels near the office I could use until I qualify for an apartment. I will be getting rid of my car if I go (mistake?) but I've had difficulty finding transportation options. The office is off the Haverhill Line, and two hotels are on River Road/I-93 (just south of Lawrence) and the other is on Lowell St/495 in Tewksbury. Am I missing something, or are there no bus routes linking those hotels to the commuter rail? If not, can anyone recommend an affordable car rental option? I expect to stay at the hotel for 6-8 weeks until I qualify for an apartment. Thanks in advance.
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Old 12-15-2010, 09:57 AM
 
Location: North of Boston
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If you are living and working in the Andover area, you need to have a car. Is there some reason you would not just drive your car from AZ to MA when you move?
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Old 12-15-2010, 11:53 AM
 
Location: A circle of Hell so insidious, infernal and odious, Dante dared not map it
623 posts, read 1,010,282 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gf2020 View Post
If you are living and working in the Andover area, you need to have a car. Is there some reason you would not just drive your car from AZ to MA when you move?
I might... but the plan now is to drive to my parents' house in Oklahoma City, leave the car and fly to Boston from there. My car is okay in Phoenix, but it's old and I'm not sure if it can handle Boston's climate. Once I qualify for an apartment I'll look for a place close to the rail so I don't need a car... but I'm also trying to see if it's better to have one in Boston in general. After living in Phoenix for so long, cars to me feel like a curse and I feel like a slave to mine with all the expenses that go into it, the fact that you can't go anywhere or do anything without a car here, the time you have to put into them, etc.
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Old 12-15-2010, 11:52 PM
 
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Although the city of Boston is more densely built than Phoenix, as are many of Boston's inner suburbs, that does not mean that the entire Boston metropolitan area is a place where you could live conveniently without a car. Many middle-distance and outer suburbs would be tough to live in without wheels.

I'm not highly familiar with the local transportation options in the area where you're considering living, so I don't know whether there are bus lines that would connect you to the commuter rail. I will say that Lawrence and Lowell are two places up well to the northwest of Boston that are more urban, more like small cities, than many other towns up in that area. For the most part that area is out in the suburbs. Even if you could commute by rail, you'd very likely have to do some diligent searching for just the right neighborhood in order to be within walking distance of everyday needs, like grocery stores, in the local area where you'd be living.

What city or town is your workplace located in? What's your housing budget? How urban (or not) a neighborhood do you want to live in? With the answers to these questions people might be able to suggest some areas you might consider living where it would be easier to go car-free.
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Old 12-16-2010, 12:53 AM
 
Location: A circle of Hell so insidious, infernal and odious, Dante dared not map it
623 posts, read 1,010,282 times
Reputation: 472
Quote:
Originally Posted by ogre View Post
Although the city of Boston is more densely built than Phoenix, as are many of Boston's inner suburbs, that does not mean that the entire Boston metropolitan area is a place where you could live conveniently without a car. Many middle-distance and outer suburbs would be tough to live in without wheels.

I'm not highly familiar with the local transportation options in the area where you're considering living, so I don't know whether there are bus lines that would connect you to the commuter rail. I will say that Lawrence and Lowell are two places up well to the northwest of Boston that are more urban, more like small cities, than many other towns up in that area. For the most part that area is out in the suburbs. Even if you could commute by rail, you'd very likely have to do some diligent searching for just the right neighborhood in order to be within walking distance of everyday needs, like grocery stores, in the local area where you'd be living.

What city or town is your workplace located in? What's your housing budget? How urban (or not) a neighborhood do you want to live in? With the answers to these questions people might be able to suggest some areas you might consider living where it would be easier to go car-free.
Well, I posted something awhile ago and got some good recommendations for areas to look into when it's time to get an apartment (near North Station in Boston, or Medford, Malden, Melrose.) I don't want to get too much into the lengthy list of reasons I want out of Phoenix, but one is the lack of public transit/walkability here, plus Phoenix is a gigantic suburb and even Downtown and Midtown are flanked immediately by single-story houses. In sum: I'm sick of suburban life and will eventually look into a more urban part of town when the time comes. Those hotels would only be temporary... so if I need a car just for two months, I'm open to ideas. Renting a car for that long would just be too expensive though

If I do get the job, it's in Andover. I'm not entirely sure what the pay is, but the market rate in Boston is about $40K from what I've been able to find. But as far as neighborhood preferences... the more urban the better. A nearby bus stop or subway/rail station, grocer and doctor are necessary, and ideally (but not mandatory) a park/open space (to walk the dog,) restaurants, post office, barber, psychiatrist, etc. I should add something about the budget... I'm actually envious of you guys right now, seeing your weather. Another reason I hate it here is the constant heat. I set my A/C at 80, but it's still coming on... as recently as today in fact. Anyway, I don't know if I'd even turn on the heater in the apartment during the winter unless it was just unbearable inside. I lived in a really cold climate for a couple years and didn't turn on the heat once during the winter. Anyway, I could probably save money on heating.
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Old 12-16-2010, 06:44 AM
 
Location: Newton, MA
409 posts, read 1,149,289 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phxgreenfire View Post
Well, I posted something awhile ago and got some good recommendations for areas to look into when it's time to get an apartment (near North Station in Boston, or Medford, Malden, Melrose.) I don't want to get too much into the lengthy list of reasons I want out of Phoenix, but one is the lack of public transit/walkability here, plus Phoenix is a gigantic suburb and even Downtown and Midtown are flanked immediately by single-story houses. In sum: I'm sick of suburban life and will eventually look into a more urban part of town when the time comes. Those hotels would only be temporary... so if I need a car just for two months, I'm open to ideas. Renting a car for that long would just be too expensive though

If I do get the job, it's in Andover. I'm not entirely sure what the pay is, but the market rate in Boston is about $40K from what I've been able to find. But as far as neighborhood preferences... the more urban the better. A nearby bus stop or subway/rail station, grocer and doctor are necessary, and ideally (but not mandatory) a park/open space (to walk the dog,) restaurants, post office, barber, psychiatrist, etc. I should add something about the budget... I'm actually envious of you guys right now, seeing your weather. Another reason I hate it here is the constant heat. I set my A/C at 80, but it's still coming on... as recently as today in fact. Anyway, I don't know if I'd even turn on the heater in the apartment during the winter unless it was just unbearable inside. I lived in a really cold climate for a couple years and didn't turn on the heat once during the winter. Anyway, I could probably save money on heating.
ha moving from phoenix to boston an not planning on using the heat... Good luck! It felt like 1 out yesterday... yeah 1.

Yes, living without a car in downtown is great, and honestly easier. But, working in andover may be tough... First off, make sure the office is walkable from the train... and by walkable, anything over a mile will be brutal in the winter. Also, Keep in mind, andover is Zone 5 (zones are used for pricing scales with the boston commuter rail) so the monthly pass will be 210. Make sure you factor that into your livnig expenses.

Honestly, if I were you, I'd try living in malden or medford, or even somerville, and keep my car. Just use it to commute to and from work, and outside of that feel free to walk everywhere. You'd have a reverse commute, so it shouldn't be too horrible.


Anyway, if the job is close to the train, try going without a car, but factor in the train expenses, if it isnt walkable from the train, bring your car.

Boston is a very walkable city, but if you arent working inside the city, it will be tough to live without a car. Doable in certain situations, yeah, but not all

Last edited by Highwyre237; 12-16-2010 at 07:05 AM..
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Old 12-16-2010, 07:56 AM
 
5,680 posts, read 5,019,855 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phxgreenfire View Post
Hi all,
I expect to stay at the hotel for 6-8 weeks until I qualify for an apartment. Thanks in advance.

What do you mean by "qualify for an apartment"? Why would it take you two months to find an apartment? Honestly, you could come out here for one week and most likely find something...
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Old 12-16-2010, 08:06 AM
 
Location: Dallas
4,625 posts, read 8,539,045 times
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OK, first of all, Lawrence is not nice. It's one of the worst places in Metro-Boston. Lowell is way off your route. If you are going to work in Andover and want to take a train, you need to take the Haverhill Line. There are 13 trains on weekdays and you need to check the schedule to see how doable it is. There are only 6 trains daily on weekends if that is an issue. Of course exactly where you will work in relation to the Andover T stop is also another major issue. If you can make this work, then your plan is doable.

Good news is that you can live mega-urban in downtown and get the train from North Station. That means you have plenty of options anywhere in downtown for living choices but your best bet is somewhere walkable to North station. Look in the North End, West End, Beacon Hill for your closest options.

http://www.mbta.com/schedules_and_maps/rail/
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Old 12-16-2010, 03:56 PM
 
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Check the train timetables before making a decision on whether to ditch the car. It appears that if absolutely necessary a reverse commute to Andover on the train could be managed for a 9-5 job located a very short walk from the train station in Andover. However, the options for trains in the directions you'd be traveling are limited, and you'd have to wait some time after finishing work in the afternoon before the next train back inbound. When it comes time to find a place for the long term, looking at the train schedule, Highwyre's suggestion, that you live in an inner suburb where you could walk to local businesses but keep the car for commuting, is looking like a very good idea.
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Old 12-16-2010, 03:57 PM
 
Location: A circle of Hell so insidious, infernal and odious, Dante dared not map it
623 posts, read 1,010,282 times
Reputation: 472
The office is near the train station, and the interviewer told me a lot of people live in Boston and take the train to work. To me, that's a huge plus. I hated driving to my last job, but public transit wasn't at all feasible because it's so bad here and the city has a pretty Soviet layout. Thank you for the Zone information. I can work that into a budget. I was wondering though... is traffic light during rush hour going away from Boston? I drove away from Central Phoenix and it was still pretty heavy when I worked at my last job. As for winter temps... I'd just have to see how well I handle them. I think I'm pretty sensitive to heat and never turn the heater on, even when I visit a colder climate.

About the apartment, I'm not sure if there are different laws/policies in Boston or not, but here you need to provide three pay stubs to qualify for an apartment. That may be because incomes in Phoenix are very low and they've had to tighten rules because of the housing bubble fallout. That's why I was thinking I would need to stay in a hotel for a couple months.

And thank you for the additional neighborhoods. If I get this job I want to explore areas people have mentioned on the weekend and find the right spot.
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