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Old 03-29-2012, 12:29 AM
 
Location: Tallahassee
305 posts, read 410,340 times
Reputation: 139
Default Which of these cities is it easy to get around without a car?

I dont have a car and probably wont be able to get one for a few years. I am looking at law schools across the country an it would be easier for me if the public transportation was good (or just that the city is compact and easy to get from place to place).

I know about Boston, New York, and Chicago.


So of these cities, which ones are easy to live in without a car?

Portland
Seattle
Los Angeles
San Diego
Houston
Austin
San Francisco
Denver

By the way I will probably be getting a bike, so that may make a difference. Thanks for your help!!
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Old 03-29-2012, 01:16 AM
 
Location: Jefferson City 4 days a week, St. Louis 3 days a week
2,713 posts, read 2,113,629 times
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San Francisco I would say is very easy to live in without a car provided you live in the city. Transportation is fabulous..taxi, electrical buses, regular buses, trolley cars, etc. At least from a tourist perspective anyway. Couldn't tell you about the others. Denver and Austin I would imagine you would need a car.
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Old 03-29-2012, 05:00 AM
 
12,158 posts, read 11,862,163 times
Reputation: 8538
Quote:
Originally Posted by tallahasseehero1 View Post
I dont have a car and probably wont be able to get one for a few years. I am looking at law schools across the country an it would be easier for me if the public transportation was good (or just that the city is compact and easy to get from place to place).

I know about Boston, New York, and Chicago.


So of these cities, which ones are easy to live in without a car?

Portland
Seattle
Los Angeles
San Diego
Houston
Austin
San Francisco
Denver

By the way I will probably be getting a bike, so that may make a difference. Thanks for your help!!
Not sure if you overlooked it or not but I would recommend DC if there's a school on your list there as it's extremely walkable, bike friendly, generally pretty safe and has a world class subway system. There are three very good law schools in the city (Georgetown (#14), George Washington(#28) and American(#45) are in the Top 50), Catholic U is a good second tier, George Mason (#41) is subway accessible in neighboring Arlington, Virginia.

Metro - Rail
Metro - Bus

Last edited by kyle19125; 03-29-2012 at 05:09 AM..
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Old 03-29-2012, 07:41 AM
 
Location: Tallahassee
305 posts, read 410,340 times
Reputation: 139
Quote:
Originally Posted by kyle19125 View Post
Not sure if you overlooked it or not but I would recommend DC if there's a school on your list there as it's extremely walkable, bike friendly, generally pretty safe and has a world class subway system. There are three very good law schools in the city (Georgetown (#14), George Washington(#28) and American(#45) are in the Top 50), Catholic U is a good second tier, George Mason (#41) is subway accessible in neighboring Arlington, Virginia.

Metro - Rail
Metro - Bus
Washington DC has crossed my mind. Obviously Georgetown would be amazing, and George washington and American are very respectable law schools. I had heard about their good subway system, so that is definitely a plus. The cities I named, however, I am not sure exactly how good their transportation systems are.
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Old 03-29-2012, 07:48 AM
 
Location: Midwest
506 posts, read 529,128 times
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I can talk a bit about Seattle and Denver.

Anywhere is livable without a car...however, it is easier to do in some places than in others. I feel that Denver has a better network of bike paths while Seattle has better public transit. I find Seattle quite easy to navigate via foot, bus, and rail. Weather is a mixed bag; Seattle is much wetter - buy good rain gear and an umbrella! - but does not get as hot in summer.

Really, it's very hard to give advice when we don't know your lifestyle. For example, my rock-star lifestyle requires fairly limited transportation; so long as I have access to work, home, Target/Walmart, and trails I am happy. So I can live car-free in most places.
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Old 03-29-2012, 08:04 AM
 
Location: Tallahassee
305 posts, read 410,340 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rock_chalk View Post
I can talk a bit about Seattle and Denver.

Anywhere is livable without a car...however, it is easier to do in some places than in others. I feel that Denver has a better network of bike paths while Seattle has better public transit. I find Seattle quite easy to navigate via foot, bus, and rail. Weather is a mixed bag; Seattle is much wetter - buy good rain gear and an umbrella! - but does not get as hot in summer.

Really, it's very hard to give advice when we don't know your lifestyle. For example, my rock-star lifestyle requires fairly limited transportation; so long as I have access to work, home, Target/Walmart, and trails I am happy. So I can live car-free in most places.
I do like to go out a lot, but being in law school I will probably not have as much time as I want. But it will be nice to live in a city I can get around. I live in Tallahassee now. The city is the state capital but its small, and public transportation is bad. I live about 5 minutes from Miami in the summer. Fun city, terrible public transportation.

I would like to be able to easily get to different parts of the city to go to bars, museums, and generally just other fun places.
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Old 03-29-2012, 12:43 PM
 
Location: Florida
398 posts, read 314,797 times
Reputation: 250
For some reason I don't understand this... You are about to fork out over 100k or so for a law degree, but couldn't pick up a 1k beater car on that law school loan?

If you made it around Tallahassee without a car, any of those cities would be a MAJOR improvement for getting around in.
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Old 03-29-2012, 12:47 PM
 
Location: Pasadena, CA
8,929 posts, read 5,437,722 times
Reputation: 2844
Quote:
Originally Posted by stlouisan View Post
San Francisco I would say is very easy to live in without a car provided you live in the city. Transportation is fabulous..taxi, electrical buses, regular buses, trolley cars, etc. At least from a tourist perspective anyway. Couldn't tell you about the others. Denver and Austin I would imagine you would need a car.
You can definitely live in SF without a car no-sweat... But this is really overrating San Francisco's public transportation. It is pretty good, even very good by American standards, but at the same time severely lacking. I can see why to a tourist it would seem to be excellent as most of the touristy neighborhoods are well served.
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Old 03-29-2012, 12:50 PM
 
Location: Pasadena, CA
8,929 posts, read 5,437,722 times
Reputation: 2844
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lizz0rd View Post
For some reason I don't understand this... You are about to fork out over 100k or so for a law degree, but couldn't pick up a 1k beater car on that law school loan?

If you made it around Tallahassee without a car, any of those cities would be a MAJOR improvement for getting around in.
Most likely he/she is forking out over 100k in loans, not personal money. Trust me from experience, when you (or a spouse) is in law school, you need to make severe cuts into your budget. Especially seeing as most programs don't let you have a job your first year.

I lived in Boston while my wife attended BC law and we lived without a car. I agree that all the cities on the list are major steps up from Tallahassee.
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Old 03-29-2012, 03:28 PM
 
Location: Tallahassee
305 posts, read 410,340 times
Reputation: 139
Quote:
Originally Posted by munchitup View Post
Most likely he/she is forking out over 100k in loans, not personal money. Trust me from experience, when you (or a spouse) is in law school, you need to make severe cuts into your budget. Especially seeing as most programs don't let you have a job your first year.

I lived in Boston while my wife attended BC law and we lived without a car. I agree that all the cities on the list are major steps up from Tallahassee.
Exactly, most of it will be loans (hopefully some grants). I could never afford the car then gas, insurance, repairs, ect...
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