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Old 05-05-2017, 01:29 PM
 
101 posts, read 91,226 times
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I have now lived in Metro Detroit for two months, and I came from Buffalo, NY. I have visited many times, and I have always liked visiting the region, but living in an area is always a different story, so I wanted to share my likes and dislikes.

Likes:

The People: I have found the people in Southeastern Michigan to be very warm, welcoming, and friendly.

Location close to proximity to the lakes and rivers.

Lots of diversity One of the things I never realized about the Detroit area is how culturally diverse it is. It might be one of the most culturally diverse places in the US. You think of Metro Detroit like that, but it seems like there are a lot of people who migrated here from other countries, especially the middle east.

A lively downtown Detroit, and might I say, the progress Downtown Detroit has made is astonishing, and it is by far one of my favorite places in the area. Downtown Buffalo basically looks like it's closed unless there is a Sabres game, or a summertime event going on downtown.

Lower state taxes than New York......I pay half across the board.

Lots of nice, walkable communities across the metro area, and nice suburbs like Royal Oak, Birmingham, Berkley, Northville etc...I guess you can include Ann Arbor as well, eventhough it's too far to really be apart of metro Detroit.

A bonus: Uber......you have it In Michigan....we didn't have it in Western NY, although it's finally coming this summer.

Closeness to Western and Northern parts of Michigan: Saugatuk and Mackinac, along with the beaches on the Western part of the state are great assets worth seeing.

It's a four sports town with a major college sports scene with MSU, and U of M......and I will also say, since 1990, you have witnessed, 4 Stanley Cups, and 6 Finals appearances, 1 world series appearance, 3 NBA Championships, a national championship in 1997 from U of M, and a national championship and numerous final four appearences from state. I haven't seen the Buffalo Bills in the playoffs since 1999 when I was 12, and the Sabres have never won the Stanley Cup. I have lived 30 years, and I don't remember our superbowl teams, and have never seen championship from a team...and never will.... Cleveland was in the same boat until recently. Don't take those titles for granted because when you win so much, you forget how tough it is to actually win them

The fishbowl effect does not exist here..... Now some people like the feeling of closeness and community, but others don't.....one thing about Buffalo is that is its generations and generations of the same people, and everyone knows everyone or is connected in someway. In a region of over 5 million people like metro Detroit, ....this is definetly not the case. And unfortunately, that's the way business is done in WNY.....mainly by who you know....and developing relationships with people. Local business loyalties are deep in WNY.

Dislikes

The roads.....jesus Christ, what the hell man? and The Michigan Left......I hate having to make left hand turns onto major roads by making a U turn, and then turning right. But I would love to knw the story behind the Michigan roads, and why it's so different once I get to the Ohio state line by Toledo. The motor city, the birthplace of the car should not have roads that eat tires.

The traffic.....I have driven through many major metros during rush hour, and Detroit is by far one of the most congested cities in the US during rush hour.

There seems to also be a strong influence from chain and franchised restaurants in terms of dining. This is not the case in Western NY where you are free from franchised food, and it seems for me to be able to get a good slice a pizza at a local pizza place, I have to travel 3-4 hours west to Chicago, or 3-4 hours the other way to Western NY. Want a chicken finger sub? Probably wont find that here.

It also feels like we have more amenities on our waterfront with the river and lakes. We built up Canalside and, offer a lot to do in Downtown in the summer. We also have Niagara Falls, and are close to Canadian side where the entertainment is. We also have Devils hole state park, and numerous beaches across lake Erie and Ontario.

I miss Wegmans.....if you are from anywhere in NY or the northeast where this asset of a grocery store is available, you know what I am talking about. Although Kroger is not too bad.

Lots of the cookie cutter effect in the suburbs I don't know if it's just me but it seems like when you get out into the Detroit Suburbs, a lot of the houses and neighborhoods look the same in a lot of places, the architecture in many places doesn't really stand out.

A bonus Gas Prices......generally Metro Detroit is cheaper than Buffalo-Niagara....however, and x-factor is that we have native American reservations where we do not pay a gas tax, so we pay around $2.05-2.15 as of today.


Overall, Buffalo and Detroit both can share a bond in terms of being rust belt cities that get kicked in the teeth by the national media.
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Old 05-05-2017, 01:43 PM
 
Location: Southeast Michigan
1,427 posts, read 1,159,135 times
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I miss Wegman's but enjoy the lower taxes! Yes, there are a lot of newer homes that look exactly the same. The roads are a mess right now. You'll get used to the Michigan left! ;D I don't know where you lived, but I never felt like I was living in a fishbowl. Lived in university area and northern suburbs. Welcome to Michigan! There are so many beautiful places to see! (I still miss Buffalo pizza).

Last edited by mgkeith; 05-05-2017 at 03:02 PM..
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Old 05-05-2017, 01:47 PM
 
101 posts, read 91,226 times
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I actually forgot one: the Car Insurance: the car insurance in Michigan is significantly more expensive in Michigan than NY. That was also very surprising, I'd love to know why that is
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Old 05-05-2017, 02:05 PM
 
5,114 posts, read 4,943,032 times
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Regarding the Michigan Left - it was adopted for two reasons: it reduces traffic jams and it reduces traffic fatalities.
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Old 05-05-2017, 02:08 PM
 
5,114 posts, read 4,943,032 times
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Regarding car insurance rates - Michigan requires that everyone who licenses a car or truck have auto insurance, part of of the cost of that insurance goes into a state fund for catastrophic injuries.
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Old 05-05-2017, 05:49 PM
 
Location: Grosse Ile Michigan
28,402 posts, read 67,486,704 times
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The People: Certainly more friendly than the East Coast. A bit more reserved and suspicious than the West coast, but also less shallow in relationships. That is because people here tend to stay put a bit more. Joe next door would give you his coat if you needed it, but will he come to your barbecue? Probably not because his lifelong buddy two doors down is also having a barbecue. Many of the people here grew up together. They do not need any new friends. Why would they want to make an effort to befriend some possible freak form California or New York? They will be warm in friendly, but also reserved. Will you get invited to the 20 year old poker game night? Not at first, not until you have been here long enough to be "in" and even then only if one of the long termers leaves. However the poker club will can their game and get up and come help cut up the tree that fell on your house in an instant.


Lots of diversity Yes. Although it tends to be segregated diversity. One of the most segregated places I have been. Still the different cultures abound and you can go experience them in their individual enclaves.


Lots of nice, walkable communities across the metro area You will find more and more of them as you explore. They are all over the state.


Closeness to Western and Northern parts of Michigan: Just wait and keep exploring. There are so many awesome places UP and LP. Also the beaches here are much prettier than the beaches in California. (I cannot speak to Florida as I have never been there, but I have heard people say the same there).


The fishbowl effect does not exist here Depends on where you are. It can be found here. One thing I love about SE MI is pretty much everything can be found here.

Dislikes

The roads.....jesus Christ, what the hell man? and The Michigan Left...... Michigan roads are not the worst in the country. We are in the middle or slightly above the middle. Our roads are bad because for 40 plus years our politicians have been too cowardly to do what needs to be done to actually fix them. So they just kick the can down the road and do band aid repairs that do not last. They just did it again. They waited too long to act and did not arrange for sufficient funding even for conditions five years ago. So now we are angry about a gas tax increase and it will not be enough to fix the roads. They will either have to fix some and let others go, or stick with short term band aids. Michigan left is actually much safer and makes for better traffic flow. Many states with enough room are copying this. Meanwhile we are copying awful round abouts.

Wait a bit. What you cannot see is worse than what you can. Roads and bridges are decaying in ways you cannot see but will be able to eventually. Then there is the water and sewer system, some of which is over 100 years old.


The traffic Ha. I laugh at your concept of traffic. Compared to LA and Orange County CA, we only have cute little mini traffic jams that last about an hour at most and cover no more than ten miles, typically only one or two miles. And they are short. No jams at 3 am. or 8 p.m. I live downriver anyway, we have almost no traffic to speak of. North is worse, but rarely actually bad. There are occaisions, but they can usually be avoided.

There seems to also be a strong influence from chain and franchised restaurants in terms of dining. One of the first tings we noticed/missed upon moving back here. There are good independent places, but they are far apart. The good thing is you cna drive 60 miles in 50 minutes. (Instead of three hours).

It also feels like we have more amenities on our waterfront with the river and lakes.The waterfront here was badly utilized. It was all factories lined up to make polluting the water easier. However they are mostly gone now and our waterfront improves every year. What other place can say that? Bufallo may have better waterfront facilities, but it does not improve its waterfront anywhere near as much each year as we do.


Lots of the cookie cutter effect in the suburbs Everything new is this way, pretty much everywhere. Assembly line production of homes has eradicated architecture and craftsmanship. When you get out to the areas that were not built out, everything is newish, so it is one giant sea of conformity.

A bonus Gas Prices. $1.04 in Canada, just cross the bridge - - - - - (OK that is for a litre, but it sounds nice).
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Old 05-05-2017, 06:04 PM
 
Location: Michigan
4,640 posts, read 7,442,873 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mttzakr87 View Post
The roads.....jesus Christ, what the hell man? and The Michigan Left......I hate having to make left hand turns onto major roads by making a U turn, and then turning right. But I would love to knw the story behind the Michigan roads, and why it's so different once I get to the Ohio state line by Toledo. The motor city, the birthplace of the car should not have roads that eat tires.
Charlie LeDuff Examines the Michigan Left - Video Dailymotion


Basically, a high traffic divided highway with regular left turns (like 8 Mile or Woodward pre-1960s) caused many accidents and many backups.



A Michigan left reduces the probability of collisions with better sight distances of oncoming traffic (assuming a berm or tree doesn't block the view), and also has the added benefit of moving turning traffic away from the main intersection allowing longer greens for either direction and reducing the idle time that cars have to sit at the light.



It's interesting that double left turn lanes never caught on in Metro Detroit probably because of the Michigan lefts. I see them all the time over in Grand Rapids, but very rarely in Metro Detroit.
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Old 05-07-2017, 12:55 AM
 
Location: Detroit
3,671 posts, read 4,927,305 times
Reputation: 2634
Likes:

The people: Already explained.

Diversity: Even though it is segregated (but much better) it's great to be around so many different cultures. It gives the region alot of edge and flavor. Also being African American, being in a region of over a million blacks gives Detroit a huge edge over most places for me. And although the media would never tell you, most blacks in the area are not poor. Another fun fact, Detroit is full of black entrepreneurs, black professionals, and has one of the largest black middle class populations in the country.

Diversity in places to live: There are so many places that are dramatically different from one another it's hard not to find a place that will suit you.

Sports: Never a dull moment in the sports world in Michigan.

Food: I love the food scene here. And in the city and inner ring suburbs there are mom and pop restaurants on almost every corner. Even in the ghetto you will find fantastic food spots. Of course there is almost every chain in Detroit too (as well as every other metro of 5 million people) I don't have anything against them though so it's a best of both worlds thing for me. To the OP if you want pizza you should check out pizza papalis for Chicago style. For Detroit style pizza check out buddy's, loui's, green lantern, shield's, cloverleaf, Niki's, Detroit pizza factory, Z's villa.

Cost of living: There was a study not too long ago that said that Detroit ranked #1 city where pay goes the furthest. They factored in the wages, amenities, school systems, ect and found that the housing cost in the area is actually a steal.

Natural disasters: Tornado's, hurricanes, tsunamis, earthquakes, wildfires, mudslides, it's very rare someone in MI will die or have their home or family destroyed by any of that stuff in their lifetime.

Other things I like. The culture, nightlife, part of the region being in Canada, being in Michigan with all of the proximity to nature, the world class airport, the gun laws, shopping, events and plenty of things to do, I'll probably think of some other things later. In a nutshell I love that it has a little bit of everything.

Dislikes:
The attitude of some of the people in Michigan: Lol I don't even need to explain this. Just look on some of these forums long enough and you will see what I'm talking about. Alot of ungrateful people here who take many of the great things this state has to offer for granted.

Car insurance: we're getting ROBBED, flat out, period.

Corruption in the city government: speaking of politics I'm counting down the days until L Brooks Patterson is replaced by somebody more progressive. Can't stand that clown.

Infrastructure: roads are just a part of it.

Economy needs to be more diversified especially since it is doing so well right now.

Inner cities: Well I guess the problem's here is just more reflective of what's going on in America as a whole.

The negative media attention. Detroit's problems are big enough without the media constantly trying to make it's problems look much worse than they already are.

That's about it. No place is perfect, having all the positives is worth dealing with the negatives.
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Old 05-07-2017, 05:36 AM
 
1,909 posts, read 2,405,610 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mttzakr87 View Post
I have now lived in Metro Detroit for two months, and I came from Buffalo, NY. I have visited many times, and I have always liked visiting the region, but living in an area is always a different story, so I wanted to share my likes and dislikes.

Likes:


It's a four sports town with a major college sports scene with MSU, and U of M......and I will also say, since 1990, you have witnessed, 4 Stanley Cups, and 6 Finals appearances, 1 world series appearance, 3 NBA Championships, a national championship in 1997 from U of M, and a national championship and numerous final four appearences from state. I haven't seen the Buffalo Bills in the playoffs since 1999 when I was 12, and the Sabres have never won the Stanley Cup. I have lived 30 years, and I don't remember our superbowl teams, and have never seen championship from a team...and never will.... Cleveland was in the same boat until recently. Don't take those titles for granted because when you win so much, you forget how tough it is to actually win them.
Actually, 2 World Series (2006 and 2012), and 3 Final Four Appearances by U of M (1992, 1993, 2013) as well, and MSU went to the College Football Playoffs in 2015.


Quote:
Originally Posted by mttzakr87 View Post
Dislikes


There seems to also be a strong influence from chain and franchised restaurants in terms of dining. This is not the case in Western NY where you are free from franchised food, and it seems for me to be able to get a good slice a pizza at a local pizza place, I have to travel 3-4 hours west to Chicago, or 3-4 hours the other way to Western NY. Want a chicken finger sub? Probably wont find that here..
Transplants from other areas keep saying this but I don't see it. I need to get out more I guess.
Independent restaurants abound:
- For Mexican, go to Bagley and Vernor Highway corridors in the city; increasingly downriver as well.
- For Asian, the John R and Dequindre corridors in Madison Heights, as well as Novi and Troy
- For Indian, go to Farmington Hills/Orchard Lake corridor
- For Middle Eastern/Mediterranean - Warren Ave in Dearborn, Ford Rd in Dearborn Heights, Hamtramck, Warren, and Sterling Heights
- For Soul Food/Caribbean/African - Detroit (for example there are 4 Jamaican restaurants in Northwest Detroit)
- For Bangladesh - Conant Ave. in Hamtramck
- For Italian and Polish restaurants and bakeries - many places in Macomb County
- For Jewish Delis/Bakeries - Oak Park, West Bloomfield, Birmingham, Bloomfield Hills
- For Hipster/Gastropub Food - Ferndale, Royal Oak, downtown, midtown, Corktown
- For expensive restaurants - Bloomfield Hills, Birmingham
- For good local pizza, MS313 listed the places that offer Detroit-Style Pizza; also try Supino's (New York Style) in Eastern Market, Bob's Pizza on the northwest side
- For dive bars - Just about everywhere.
- For Coney Islands (metro Detroit's version of the Greasy Spoon/diners) - just about everywhere

Quote:
Originally Posted by mttzakr87 View Post
Dislikes


It also feels like we have more amenities on our waterfront with the river and lakes. We built up Canalside and, offer a lot to do in Downtown in the summer. We also have Niagara Falls, and are close to Canadian side where the entertainment is. We also have Devils hole state park, and numerous beaches across lake Erie and Ontario.
I agree. Particularly the Lake St. Clair shore is monopolized by private residences, private marinas, and in the case of the Grosse Pointes, private beaches open only to residents. The Lake Erie shore is a little better with Lake Erie Metropark and Sterling State Park.

Beach at Sterling State Park

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8jJQNPUQE4E

Quote:
Originally Posted by mttzakr87 View Post
Dislikes

I miss Wegmans.....if you are from anywhere in NY or the northeast where this asset of a grocery store is available, you know what I am talking about. Although Kroger is not too bad.
I have a dream that Wegman's would enter the Detroit area market by opening up a store in downtown or midtown Detroit. Wegman's would be a big hit here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mttzakr87 View Post
Dislikes


Lots of the cookie cutter effect in the suburbs I don't know if it's just me but it seems like when you get out into the Detroit Suburbs, a lot of the houses and neighborhoods look the same in a lot of places, the architecture in many places doesn't really stand out.
-The City of Farmington has some real great Victorian-era houses surrounding its downtown.
-Other older railroad communities with great Victorian/Queen Anne architecture include Northville, Mount Clemens, Wyandotte, and Pontiac.
-Communities with beautiful old colonials and Tudors include Pleasant Ridge, Huntington Woods, the Grosse Pointes, and parts of Lathrup Village and Dearborn.
-Bloomfield Hills and Franklin have big mansions from the 1920's.
-St. Clair Shores has houses with canals to Lake St. Clair, and Harrison Township has houses with docks along the Clinton River
-Keego Harbor, Commerce Township, West Bloomfield, Orchard Lake, Waterford, etc have plentiful lakes with houses surrounding them.

Ultimately, the City of Detroit is the biggest treasure trove of housing. No other neighborhood in Michigan matches the Palmer Park Apartments District. Also, currently "This Old House" is airing a 10-part series about restoring a 1939 Tudor in the Russell Woods neighborhood - The Detroit House

Last edited by usroute10; 05-07-2017 at 05:50 AM..
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Old 05-07-2017, 11:03 AM
 
514 posts, read 639,853 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djmilf View Post
Regarding car insurance rates - Michigan requires that everyone who licenses a car or truck have auto insurance, part of of the cost of that insurance goes into a state fund for catastrophic injuries.
That isn't why car insurance is so expensive. And Michigan used to have an uninsured motorist fund, but they eliminated that years ago.

Car Insurance is expensive because the tort law industry (think Bernstein, Mike Morse, Fieger, etc) have successfully lobbied for unlimited cap on damages for lawsuits involving car accidents. That is why you see them gloating in their advertisements about their multi-million dollar winnings. There also isn't a cap on lifetime medical benefits received by injured claimants, which further drives up the liabilities facing insurance companies in Michigan. All of this is unheard of in most states.
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