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Old 04-28-2012, 11:31 PM
 
58 posts, read 143,890 times
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Default The safest parts of Columbia?

About me mid 30's white, my wife is the same age and Asian. We live in Berkeley but we have also lived in Southeast Asia so we can handle the weather. Not sure if that will be relevant or not. I am considering a job where the office begins on Main St right above University of South Carolina. I have never been to South Carolina. We can afford up to $2000 a month which based on the cost of living in the area should allow us to live pretty much anywhere.

Berkeley is generally safe but even here there are bad parts of town to avoid. As long as you avoid those you can be pretty sure nothing bad will happen. We don't tend to go out at night much either.

Safety is my #1 concern. Second some shopping, people walking around, maybe a few parks.

So simply where are the nice parts of Columbia and where should I avoid?
Can you get around town without a car? Do they have many zipcars?
Is the area where my potential job is considered safe?


If there is another post that already covers this feel free to point me to that, but I couldn't find it.

Thank you

Last edited by DrDipNStein; 04-28-2012 at 11:33 PM.. Reason: added detail
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Old 04-28-2012, 11:54 PM
 
Location: Columbia, SC
4,856 posts, read 8,046,191 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DrDipNStein View Post
About me mid 30's white, my wife is the same age and Asian. We live in Berkeley but we have also lived in Southeast Asia so we can handle the weather. Not sure if that will be relevant or not. I am considering a job where the office begins on Main St right above University of South Carolina. I have never been to South Carolina. We can afford up to $2000 a month which based on the cost of living in the area should allow us to live pretty much anywhere.

Berkeley is generally safe but even here there are bad parts of town to avoid. As long as you avoid those you can be pretty sure nothing bad will happen. We don't tend to go out at night much either.

Safety is my #1 concern. Second some shopping, people walking around, maybe a few parks.

So simply where are the nice parts of Columbia and where should I avoid?
Can you get around town without a car? Do they have many zipcars?
Is the area where my potential job is considered safe?


If there is another post that already covers this feel free to point me to that, but I couldn't find it.

Thank you
There are some zipcars/smart cars around town. I'd look at the Shandon area - close to work, well within your budget, earthy, liberal, very Berkeley-like with nearby ethnic restaurants and health food stores. I'd live in that neighborhood if I could afford it.
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Old 04-29-2012, 06:38 AM
 
58 posts, read 143,890 times
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Ok I will check out Shandon. Paying $2000 would be possible but wouldn't be easy so I'm all for paying much less if possible. Would it be safe to live in the area I mentioned my potential work would be located, near City Hall? If I could walk to work that would be extremely ideal. What parts of Columbia are best to avoid?

Also are you sure they have zipcar? I don't see anything about zipcar in Columbia onzipcar's website.

Last edited by DrDipNStein; 04-29-2012 at 07:12 AM..
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Old 04-29-2012, 02:26 PM
 
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I have never personally used the Hertz service, but I think it is almost identical to zipcar.

Book a car now
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Old 04-29-2012, 08:36 PM
 
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I love the University Hill area right near USC, there are many lovely houses, it is easy walking distance to campus, the statehouse, and restaurants. To my knowledge it is safe -- not 100% (no place is) but as safe as anywhere in Berkeley (been there too) -- and sometimes I walk home through the neighborhood at night.

I would personally be comfortable living and walking after dark anywhere in the USC area (south of Gervais, north of Blossom, west of Harden, east of Assembly), or in the Vista area (Gervais and neighboring streets, west of the state house), or on Main Street (e.g. Capitol Places). Shandon is also quite nice. These are the first places I would look!
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Old 04-29-2012, 08:53 PM
 
Location: Columbia, SC
130 posts, read 80,669 times
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If condos are ok then try out the Adesso. It is well within walking distance of USC and its on main street. Places to avoid: North Main Street, honestly its getting better but crime is quite high.
Places to go downtown: The Vista, 5 points, these areas are just really quaint and vibrant.
Suburbs, for shopping(higher end): Harbison, The Village @ Sandhil.
Grocery stores close by: Publix on Gervais Street(the vista), FoodLion in 5 Points.
The area you are working in is pretty safe, don't worry.
Parking is a hastle @ USC.
USC lately has diffused across most of downtown Columbia, it's not confined to one area.
Places to eat downtown: Many restaurants in the Vista and 5 points you just have to check the areas out. Night life is a huge thing in 5 points and the Vista, 5-10pm is really when those areas become crowded.
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Old 04-29-2012, 09:14 PM
 
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Awesome detailed replies. Just what I was looking for thanks. I've PM'd a couple people and they seem to feel crime is present but can be avoided by not going certain areas and not hanging out too late which is pretty much the case in Berkeley.
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Old 04-29-2012, 09:33 PM
 
Location: Columbia, South Carolina
6,903 posts, read 5,128,788 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stockpoet View Post
Awesome detailed replies. Just what I was looking for thanks. I've PM'd a couple people and they seem to feel crime is present but can be avoided by not going certain areas and not hanging out too late which is pretty much the case in Berkeley.
That's pretty much the case anywhere.
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Old 04-29-2012, 10:15 PM
 
Location: Columbia, SC
4,856 posts, read 8,046,191 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DrDipNStein View Post
Ok I will check out Shandon. Paying $2000 would be possible but wouldn't be easy so I'm all for paying much less if possible. Would it be safe to live in the area I mentioned my potential work would be located, near City Hall? If I could walk to work that would be extremely ideal. What parts of Columbia are best to avoid?

Also are you sure they have zipcar? I don't see anything about zipcar in Columbia onzipcar's website.
Close to city hall would be Elmwood Park or Cottontown, both of which are on the other side of Elmwood Avenue from city hall, but very close. There are also a number of apartments and condos on Main Street, which might be an even better option. You won't need to spend $2000 to get what you want.
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Old 04-29-2012, 10:48 PM
 
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Zipcar isn't in Columbia. I'm not 100% sure where you were coming from with that, Waccamatt, but maybe you were thinking of a type of car? Zipcar is a subscription-based carshare service. As kkjm mentioned, Hertz does have a similar service, but they only have 3 car locations in Columbia, all on the USC campus. I used zipcar and i-go (a zipcar competitor) in Chicago, but frankly it's just much cheaper and easier to own a car here than it is there, so I bought one when I got here. I can bike and walk lots of places, but, as we discussed on another thread, owning a car really opens up your opportunities in Columbia, as there are simply lots of places that are a real pain to get to without one.
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