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Old 02-19-2011, 02:15 PM
 
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I'm relocating to my company's Danbury CT office quite soon (4-6 weeks), and am deciding which city to live in: Danbury, Norwalk, or Stamford. Am single, mid-twenties, so the factors I'm considering are:

1) Quality of life (nightlife, attractions, arts & culture, restaurants, etc.) - coming from San Francisco, and would love to find a place with diverse things to see and do

2) Cost of living - I would be renting. Quick glances of apartment hunting sites didn't seem to show a big discrepancy in prices across these cities, but including food/entertainment/etc., any big differences?

3) Location - On one hand, I would love stave off impending road rage in daily commute, but also have friends and family who live in NYC and would love to be able to visit. Traffic as bad as I hear?

Any thoughts? Appreciate your help!
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Old 02-19-2011, 02:25 PM
 
Location: Coastal Northeast
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I think you would like Stamford a lot better than Danbury or Norwalk, but the commute to Danbury can be a pain in the butt. The easiest way is to take 95N to Route 7 N, and Route 7 is a two lane road that snakes through suburbs - it has a lot of businesses, homes and lights, so quite a bit of traffic. I-95 in Connecticut is the east coast's version of an LA freeway, so if commuting during peak times, there will be quite a bit of traffic. What you have working in your favor regarding 95 is, if you were to live in Stamford, you would be going against traffic, as it moves southwest toward NYC in the AM and north toward Connecticut in the PM hours.

Danbury is a nice city but there isn't a ton of nightlife (I lived there for years) - it is more of a very large suburb than a small city in my opinion.

All three cities you're considering have easy access to Manhattan via Metro North Commuter Rail, Stamford being closest and Danbury on the far end. You can hop on the train in Stamford and be in the center of Manhattan in 45 minutes on the express train.
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Old 02-19-2011, 02:54 PM
 
Location: In a house
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If you are going to work in Danbury I think I'd live there rather than Norwalk or Stamford to avoid the daily hassle of going back & forth. Theres no modern connection between Danbury & Norwalk or Stamford & its a frustrating thing to deal with on a daily basis. But if you lived in Danbury its not a big deal, or less of a big deal, to get to Norwalk or Stamford once or twice a week to get out.
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Old 02-19-2011, 04:58 PM
 
Location: Connecticut
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I usually recommend living as close to work as possible. You will be commuting every day so why travel far if you do not have to. I would therefore say Danbury. I am not sure but I think you will be only goign our a couple of nights a week. You can always check out the nightlife in Stamford, Norwalk and even New HAven and New York when you want. Jay
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Old 02-19-2011, 05:04 PM
 
Location: Danbury CT covering all of Fairfield County
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Look for a rental in the Danbury area. It could get frustrating commuting back & forth to Norwalk/Stamford, because of the lack of highway but you would be could in the opposite direction of traffic. You can get an OK 1 bedroom condo to rent for about $1150 a month plus utilities in Danbury. Good luck
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Old 02-19-2011, 08:10 PM
 
Location: Coastal Northeast
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To add, have you thought about living in White Plains, NY? Coming from SF, and seeing what you desire, I can't imagine you'd be content living in Danbury.
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Old 02-20-2011, 10:23 AM
 
Location: Just north of Nashville, TN
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My two cents...if you're going to be working in Danbury, may as well try to find you a residence there. The city itself isn't exactly a mecca of entertainment, but one could do far worse. From the couple times I've been through there, it seems like a pretty well-to-do type of place...lots of families, and pretty well quiet, though I'm sure there's pockets of the city where "things pop off"--I ain't been around any of them, though. I have no clue as to what housing costs are there, but I can tell you that you're almost equidistant from NYC (via I-84 west to I-684 down to either I-95 or to the Hutchinson Pkwy [believe that's the name; its been a while] which will take you to I-87) and New Haven via 84 east to...whichever way you choose from there. (I personally think CT-34 from the interstate is the quickest-but then, I used to travel those roads later in the day, so I don't know how traffic would be during the daytime.) So NYC's there when you want/need to go there. New Haven has a pretty good nightlife scene, or did the last time I was up there (and this is coming from a single midtwentysomething who's also a Florida native, so take that for what it's worth), New England's supposed largest mall is right there in west Danbury, Hartford is about an hour east if you care to explore it, and there's two more pretty big malls out that way, as well as Westfield Malls in Stamford and (I believe) Trumbull.

Oh--and as far as road rage, in all the times that my travels took me through the PA/NJ/NY/CT region, I can't recall experiencing any hint of road rage up in Danbury. Take it further down CT-7 to 95 and you've got a different story.

Best of luck to you in your search.
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Old 02-20-2011, 05:52 PM
 
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I would choose either Danbury (for the convenience) or Stamford (for the quality of life). Neither one can come close to living in San Fran, but they at least qualify as small cities.

Norwalk has more to see/do than Danbury, but not as much as Stamford, and you'll still have a long, traffic-filled drive, so no point in choosing Norwalk.

You should really visit and drive around before making a final decision, if possible. If you have the ability to work from home sometimes, I'd choose Stamford -- suck up the drive part of the week to be in a better location (near NYC, the beach, bars, restaurants, etc). If you have to go to the office every single day, you may be better off sticking to Danbury to save yourself a bad commute, and just get out of there on weekends. Not to say Danbury's a bad place -- it's just kind of boring.
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Old 02-21-2011, 07:57 AM
 
Location: Connecticut
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 850_branded View Post
So NYC's there when you want/need to go there. New Haven has a pretty good nightlife scene, or did the last time I was up there (and this is coming from a single midtwentysomething who's also a Florida native, so take that for what it's worth), New England's supposed largest mall is right there in west Danbury, Hartford is about an hour east if you care to explore it, and there's two more pretty big malls out that way, as well as Westfield Malls in Stamford and (I believe) Trumbull.
The mall is Stamford is not owned by Westfield (thank God). It is owned by Taubman who tends to run more upscale shopping centers while Westfield are kind of more middle of the road. The mall in Trumbull though is a Westfield mall. Jay
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Old 02-22-2011, 10:19 AM
 
Location: Just north of Nashville, TN
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JayCT View Post
The mall is Stamford is not owned by Westfield (thank God). It is owned by Taubman who tends to run more upscale shopping centers while Westfield are kind of more middle of the road. The mall in Trumbull though is a Westfield mall. Jay
Correct you are...and my mistake originally. I was thinking of the Westfield mall right off exit...15 of I-95 I believe it is (whatever exit runs onto CT-7)...I believe it's right before Bridgeport if I'm not mistaken.

Also...in the interest of full disclosure, I also mistakenly mentioned the wrong parkway when referring to an alternate route off 684 to NYC. I said Hutchinson Pkwy...it's actually the Saw Mill River Pkwy I was thinking of. My bad.
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