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Old 09-30-2013, 11:36 AM
 
145 posts, read 307,668 times
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Hi all,

I was wondering if you all could help me figure out which city I should live in (again). I've spent some time in a region drastically different from my home and I'm starting to realize that things I thought were great aren't always perfect, so I want to change my preferences.

Weather: I used to think I wanted just sun, but living in a "sunnier" city, I've realized some of the problems of hot, humid weather (insects, dehydration when outdoors, etc.). I think my ideal climate now would be 4 seasons (ideally) and the less humidity and severe snow, the better. I like snow, but I'd hate to be caught in blizzards and be snowed in or (even worse) have icy conditions where my car can go crazy or I can slip and fall. I like changing seasons, but as far as snow goes, I'd prefer powder and a dusting of it rather than piles of it or ice if that makes sense.

Culture: My ideal spot is well-educated but non-materialistic/pretentious. I like people who are intelligent and down to earth (i.e. enjoy learning for the sake of learning rather than just to get a high-paying job) and dislike people who are overly concerned about whether or not you went to Harvard or who need to flaunt their status. I know this is a generalization, but there are some regions where these types of people are more prevalent due to the culture, and I wish to avoid those. Also, even though this may seem contrary to what I just wrote, I like people who dress well (i.e. preppy) rather than my home in the NW where people think a North Face + Jeans is dressing properly and ties are never used.

Education: My family is very big on education and as a result, I'd want my kids to be educated as well as possible someday. So good schools, both K-12 and even higher education, would be strongly preferred. For my more immediate situation, good schools will likely correlate to a generally more intelligent neighborhood/peers, so that's also why this is important.

Jobs: This is probably the most important factor for me. I want to eventually work in either the energy industry (O&G or renewables) or biotech/pharmaceutical industry within the finance departments. My degree will allow me to work in any major city, but my ideal city would have a large number of jobs in these 2 industries. I also have some interest in computer hardware or manufacturing, but that's less so than the 2 I mentioned. I like hardware because I like working with things I can see and I also think software is becoming less interesting nowadays given that the newest "revolutions" these days are garbage like instagram and snapchat.

Access to Outdoors/Scenery: I'm from the NW so I have always grown up enjoying being outdoors and having dramatic scenery. This is very important to me. I love to go skiing in the winters and also hiking/camping, so I love having good outdoor spots to do things like this. I'm also big on water, so I like having lakes, etc. around for the outdoor rec. Ideally, I'd want to be near a beach, but I can live without it if it means lower cost of living.

Cost of Living: I definitely don't want to be in a place as expensive as NYC/LA/SF. The most I can tolerate is Seattle/Boston but ideally, I'd want my city to be closer to Portland or Charlotte COL (that might be asking for too much though given my other requirements though).

Access to Public Transit/Density: Ideally, I want my city to have good public transit. Eventually, I know that I will move to a suburb and do sort of a "park and ride" type of thing to commute to and from work, but even for that, public transit has to be decent to make it work. I also like high skylines, which typically come with more dense cities. Again, I'll eventually move to a suburb, but when I do go to a city, it'd be nice to have a cool skyline to look at.

There may be more stuff, but for right now, the only other thing I can think of is having at least an NBA, NFL, and MLB team in or near the city. If anyone has any suggestions, I'd greatly appreciate it.

Thanks!
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Old 09-30-2013, 11:48 AM
 
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The cities you are describing are Charlotte or Denver
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Old 09-30-2013, 01:19 PM
 
Location: New York NY
4,269 posts, read 6,353,279 times
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Consider Metro DC. Many of the Virgina and Maryland suburbs will have what you're looking for, and the city itself will be fine -- less than NYC/SF/LA housing prices, cultural activities, mass transit, moderate weather, big parks in the city and easy access to the outdoors away from it. There are tons of drug/pharmaceutical and IT jobs in the area. (Though, probably less of an energy secitor, I'd guess.)

But when you start looking for (public) schools, it would almost always mean a move to the 'burbs, unless you're willing to shell out private school tuition.
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Old 09-30-2013, 01:51 PM
 
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Actually, the Philadelphia area may work due to its proximity to the strong pharmaceutical industry in Central NJ and it fits most of what you are looking for, if not all of it.
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Old 10-01-2013, 06:18 AM
 
21,198 posts, read 30,396,116 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by citylove101 View Post
Consider Metro DC. Many of the Virgina and Maryland suburbs will have what you're looking for, and the city itself will be fine -- less than NYC/SF/LA housing prices, cultural activities, mass transit, moderate weather, big parks in the city and easy access to the outdoors away from it. There are tons of drug/pharmaceutical and IT jobs in the area. (Though, probably less of an energy secitor, I'd guess.)

But when you start looking for (public) schools, it would almost always mean a move to the 'burbs, unless you're willing to shell out private school tuition.
I agree with DC however a move to the 'burbs doesn't mean loss of easy access to the city or giving up transit. Inner ring cluster suburbs like Bethesda/Rockville, MD or Arlington/Falls Church/Vienna VA offer urban amenities with their own "downtown" areas, close proximity to DC, easy access to the subway system and good schools. Check out the Northern Virginia neighborhoods of Courthouse, Clarendon, Virginia Square, East Falls Church and Vienna as well as the Maryland neighborhoods of Friendship Heights, Downtown Bethesda, Medical Center, Grosvenor, White Flint, Twinbrook and Downtown Rockville. The areas in bold are my recommended choices.
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Old 10-02-2013, 07:17 AM
 
145 posts, read 307,668 times
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Thanks for the suggestions so far. Are there any Northeast cities that might also fit this criteria? I'm getting more interested in that part of the country but don't know a whole lot about it.
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Old 10-02-2013, 11:21 AM
 
21,198 posts, read 30,396,116 times
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Originally Posted by west_2_east View Post
Thanks for the suggestions so far. Are there any Northeast cities that might also fit this criteria? I'm getting more interested in that part of the country but don't know a whole lot about it.
Boston fits your criteria to a tee. Before getting all worked up about the cost of living though, bear in mind salaries in the Boston Metro are among the highest in the country.
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Old 10-02-2013, 11:36 AM
 
Location: East Coast of the United States
17,266 posts, read 19,560,434 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by west_2_east View Post
Thanks for the suggestions so far. Are there any Northeast cities that might also fit this criteria? I'm getting more interested in that part of the country but don't know a whole lot about it.
I don't think you'll find a northeast city that fits all your criteria, especially when it comes to weather.

You can definitely expect snow and the occasional blizzard during the winter everywhere in the northeast - whether it's Boston, New York City, Philadelphia or even Washington, D.C. Plus, they have hot and humid weather during much of the summer.

Also, although the northeast has beautiful scenery, you should realize there are no dramatic 14,000 ft mountains like you'll find in the PNW.
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Old 10-02-2013, 03:41 PM
 
145 posts, read 307,668 times
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Originally Posted by kyle19125 View Post
Boston fits your criteria to a tee. Before getting all worked up about the cost of living though, bear in mind salaries in the Boston Metro are among the highest in the country.
Quote:
Originally Posted by BigCityDreamer View Post
I don't think you'll find a northeast city that fits all your criteria, especially when it comes to weather.

You can definitely expect snow and the occasional blizzard during the winter everywhere in the northeast - whether it's Boston, New York City, Philadelphia or even Washington, D.C. Plus, they have hot and humid weather during much of the summer.

Also, although the northeast has beautiful scenery, you should realize there are no dramatic 14,000 ft mountains like you'll find in the PNW.
This thread is so confusing because it seems to be all over the place. I've heard everything from South (Charlotte), West (Denver), and North (Philly/Boston). As far as dramatic landscapes, I know that I won't get the mountains I do out west and I'm prepared for that, even though it's disappointing. The east coast fits me a lot more from a cultural/personality standpoint (enterprising, better dressed, faster paced, very educated, etc.) and I know that no place is perfect weather wise. I just prefer strongly to have 4 distinct seasons at the very least. Except for the NW, every place has some kind of awful weather to deal with (twisters, hurricanes, earthquakes aren't any more fun than blizzards), so I'm not looking for the "ideal" spot, but just something that fits my personality and generally matches my preferences. The job industry thing is my only "strict" stipulation but that's about it.
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Old 10-02-2013, 07:06 PM
 
56,668 posts, read 80,973,859 times
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I'd still say to look in the Philadelphia area, given the criteria.
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