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Thread summary:

Couple disappointed in Louisville, renting two bedroom apartment 1500 per month, Louisville not providing urbane atmosphere such as Portland Oregon, no art or music scene

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Old 01-04-2009, 07:58 PM
 
87 posts, read 182,893 times
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My wife moved to Louisville on December first renting a 2 bedroom apartment in the Highlands called the Commodore. It was the only passable place we looked at, and it was ludicrously expensive for a city that claims to have a low cost of living ($1500.00!) I will be joining her at the beginning of February, taking a leave of absence from my current job. We are going to give Louisville "a fighting chance," until July since my wife has a fantastic job which is paying her a great deal of money. We have unfortunately found Louisville not quite what was sold to us during the recruitment period. The restaurants are rather good and the "Actors" theater is an excellent venue. However, the Highlands is not all its cranked up to be , and it is spread out over several miles. Thus, it does not give you that "urbane" feel such as State Street in Madison, Wisconsin or neighborhoods in Portland, Oregon provide. We have found the Frankfort Avenue neighborhood more stimulating, but the housing there is rather depressing. Downtown is at least 5 to 10 years away. If we decide to stay in Louisville, we will probably buy a house rather then a condo in the area East of the city along the river. The best housing seems to be located there. We have checked out the art scene and the music scene, and both are lacking substance and creativity. I do not want to sound so incredibly negative, since this city might become home, but it has not thrilled me. Perhaps I will be able to enact some progressive change once I get there.
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Old 01-04-2009, 08:13 PM
 
Location: Kentucky
6,749 posts, read 19,574,224 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by enofile View Post
My wife moved to Louisville on December first renting a 2 bedroom apartment in the Highlands called the Commodore. It was the only passable place we looked at, and it was ludicrously expensive for a city that claims to have a low cost of living ($1500.00!) I will be joining her at the beginning of February, taking a leave of absence from my current job. We are going to give Louisville "a fighting chance," until July since my wife has a fantastic job which is paying her a great deal of money. We have unfortunately found Louisville not quite what was sold to us during the recruitment period. The restaurants are rather good and the "Actors" theater is an excellent venue. However, the Highlands is not all its cranked up to be , and it is spread out over several miles. Thus, it does not give you that "urbane" feel such as State Street in Madison, Wisconsin or neighborhoods in Portland, Oregon provide. We have found the Frankfort Avenue neighborhood more stimulating, but the housing there is rather depressing. Downtown is at least 5 to 10 years away. If we decide to stay in Louisville, we will probably buy a house rather then a condo in the area East of the city along the river. The best housing seems to be located there. We have checked out the art scene and the music scene, and both are lacking substance and creativity. I do not want to sound so incredibly negative, since this city might become home, but it has not thrilled me. Perhaps I will be able to enact some progressive change once I get there.
I am sorry you don't like it, perhaps you are just "homesick". As far as you "enacting progressive change", some of us like things just as they are It will not feel like Madison, Wisconsin or Portland, Oregan because it's not. I hope you will give it some time, Kentucky is a wonderful place as is Louisville!
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Old 01-04-2009, 08:59 PM
 
5,059 posts, read 8,372,770 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by enofile View Post
My wife moved to Louisville on December first renting a 2 bedroom apartment in the Highlands called the Commodore. It was the only passable place we looked at, and it was ludicrously expensive for a city that claims to have a low cost of living ($1500.00!) I will be joining her at the beginning of February, taking a leave of absence from my current job. We are going to give Louisville "a fighting chance," until July since my wife has a fantastic job which is paying her a great deal of money. We have unfortunately found Louisville not quite what was sold to us during the recruitment period. The restaurants are rather good and the "Actors" theater is an excellent venue. However, the Highlands is not all its cranked up to be , and it is spread out over several miles. Thus, it does not give you that "urbane" feel such as State Street in Madison, Wisconsin or neighborhoods in Portland, Oregon provide. We have found the Frankfort Avenue neighborhood more stimulating, but the housing there is rather depressing. Downtown is at least 5 to 10 years away. If we decide to stay in Louisville, we will probably buy a house rather then a condo in the area East of the city along the river. The best housing seems to be located there. We have checked out the art scene and the music scene, and both are lacking substance and creativity. I do not want to sound so incredibly negative, since this city might become home, but it has not thrilled me. Perhaps I will be able to enact some progressive change once I get there.
I checked out the web site for the Commodore and can't say I'm surprised if you ended up paying a lot of rent to live in a building that markets itself out as the "ne plus ultra" in Louisville luxury.

You seem to have made many judgments based on a relatively short amount of time spent in Louisville; perhaps it's just a natural tendency to second and third-guess one's (or one's spouse's) decisions.

I'm also considering a relocation to the Louisville area. Could you fill me in on what types of progressive changes you plan to enact in February, so I will know what to expect if and when we make the move?
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Old 01-05-2009, 02:00 AM
 
Location: North Side of Chicago, Illinois
92 posts, read 455,705 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by enofile View Post
My wife moved to Louisville on December first renting a 2 bedroom apartment in the Highlands called the Commodore. It was the only passable place we looked at, and it was ludicrously expensive for a city that claims to have a low cost of living ($1500.00!) I will be joining her at the beginning of February, taking a leave of absence from my current job. We are going to give Louisville "a fighting chance," until July since my wife has a fantastic job which is paying her a great deal of money. We have unfortunately found Louisville not quite what was sold to us during the recruitment period. The restaurants are rather good and the "Actors" theater is an excellent venue. However, the Highlands is not all its cranked up to be , and it is spread out over several miles. Thus, it does not give you that "urbane" feel such as State Street in Madison, Wisconsin or neighborhoods in Portland, Oregon provide. We have found the Frankfort Avenue neighborhood more stimulating, but the housing there is rather depressing. Downtown is at least 5 to 10 years away. If we decide to stay in Louisville, we will probably buy a house rather then a condo in the area East of the city along the river. The best housing seems to be located there. We have checked out the art scene and the music scene, and both are lacking substance and creativity. I do not want to sound so incredibly negative, since this city might become home, but it has not thrilled me. Perhaps I will be able to enact some progressive change once I get there.

Jeez. Spare us, really. State St. in Madison is urbane?!? Are you for real or just think that people from Louisville will not have visited Wisconsin? Is it somewhat funky-ish? Sure, but no more than any other college town.

Another thing I have never, ever understood about a great deal of people on here is the need to say things such as "my wife will be making a great deal of money". Really? Why should anyone reading that care? It adds nothing to your comments other than to fill a vain need of yours. Of course, your declaration of coming to Louisville and making "progressive changes" is laughable at best. Not the idea that Louisville could use some pogressive changes, but the idea that Louisville is crying out for you to come and save it from itself.

If you and your wife really already know that you do not like mid-sized American cities, and you want to live in Latin America or New York, then why do you punish yourself, and everyone else by making such a futile move? If you did not like Milwaukee, you will probably not enjoy Louisville. No matter how much money your wife and her "fantastic job" brings in, you will not be pleased here.
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Old 01-05-2009, 07:19 PM
 
Location: Dayton, OH
1,225 posts, read 3,882,105 times
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[quote]Jeez. Spare us, really. State St. in Madison is urbane?!? Are you for real or just think that people from Louisville will not have visited Wisconsin? Is it somewhat funky-ish? Sure, but no more than any other college town.[/quoe]

State Street might be busy when U of Wisconsin was in session but it was somwhat sleepy when I saw it a few summers ago. It's a nice street. But Madison is a bit small.

Quote:
If you did not like Milwaukee, you will probably not enjoy Louisville....
Definetly. Milwaulkee did give me a bit of a Louisville vibe, but it actually seemed to have a bit more going on in terms of cultural diversity. So this was a bad move for our interlocutor.
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Old 01-05-2009, 07:23 PM
 
6,305 posts, read 13,199,774 times
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[quote=JefferyT;6854971]
Quote:
Jeez. Spare us, really. State St. in Madison is urbane?!? Are you for real or just think that people from Louisville will not have visited Wisconsin? Is it somewhat funky-ish? Sure, but no more than any other college town.[/quoe]

State Street might be busy when U of Wisconsin was in session but it was somwhat sleepy when I saw it a few summers ago. It's a nice street. But Madison is a bit small.



Definetly. Milwaulkee did give me a bit of a Louisville vibe, but it actually seemed to have a bit more going on in terms of cultural diversity. So this was a bad move for our interlocutor.
Having lived in Chicago for years and traveling to Milwaukee for concerts and to visit friends, I respectfully disagree. I think Louisville and Milwaukee are very similar, with Louisville being warmer with less crime and less run down areas, and a slightly better economy. I think it is a lateral move for the OP, if not a slight improvement. However, if you come to Louisville looking for big city excitement and your bar is Chicago or the coasts, or somewhere similar, you will be let down....however, Louisville does offer tastes of that big cityt lifestlye, it just doesn't "jump out" at you.
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Old 01-07-2009, 11:46 AM
 
54 posts, read 210,386 times
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Will Oldham and MMJ do not think the music scene lacks creativity.

You've been here one cold and dreary month. A little soon to be making a definitive judgment, in my opinion. When I moved to Nashville, I thought is was the single greatest city I'd been to for the first 6 months. A few years later, I couldn't wait to get out of there. Learn the city, then decide.
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Old 01-09-2009, 10:34 PM
 
Location: Back in Melbourne.....home of road rage and aggression
402 posts, read 968,234 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by emanresu View Post
Will Oldham and MMJ do not think the music scene lacks creativity.

You've been here one cold and dreary month. A little soon to be making a definitive judgment, in my opinion. When I moved to Nashville, I thought is was the single greatest city I'd been to for the first 6 months. A few years later, I couldn't wait to get out of there. Learn the city, then decide.
I agree with Emanrsue. You've been in Louisville for only a couple of months, and in the dreariest time of year. I don't think you make a judgement about a place until you've lived for at least a year--so you know what to expect out of the city in each of the four seasons. You've be surprised at how vibrant Louisville can be in the summer and Autumn. Winter is the dregs, and there is very little spring.

Also, I don't think you can really compare citites with each other, especially if they are in different regions. Cities, like people, are all unique; they have their own personality and quirks. Having lived in various cities in more than one country, I feel somewhat qualified to say that you have to give something a chance to prove it's worthiness. In case like this first impressions are not alway what they are cracked up to be.

Perhaps you have set unrealistic expectations? Maybe you have a touch of Seasonal depression or are homesick? Maybe a combination of things? I'm certainly not judging, and I have been in your boat a time or 2, and know exactly what you're going through: you go to a place expecting it to be great; you get there and find that it's not exactly what it was supposed to be and immediately decide that you hate it. I believe that if you give it more time, you may find down the track that you wake up one day and don't actually mind it--you may even realise all of a sudden that you in fact LIKE it! lol It can happen!

However, if you find yourself increasingly unhappy with living in Louisville then you may both have to start making some hard decissions.

Good luck to you both!
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Old 01-19-2009, 10:13 AM
 
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For any other big city transplants or potential transplants reading, I thought I'd chime in to offer some encouragement.

My wife and I relocated to Louisville from NYC about 6 months ago. To be fair, we have Kentucky connections, but neither of us have any history or family in Louisville. We are both 29, started our careers in NYC and lived there for over 6 years. In many ways, we definitely fit the over-educated over-"cultured" hipster urbanite stereotype.

Suffice to say, we loved living in NYC (Williamsburg, Brooklyn to be exact), and we love Louisville too. It's definitely a slower pace and forces one to be a bit more exploratory and proactive about meeting people, finding favorite bars/restaurants/etc, but if you know what makes you happy and don't need your entertainment spoon-fed to you, there is more than enough here.

The people can be clique-y yes, but they are also genuinely friendly and helpful in my experience. I've found striking up casual friendships with a broad range of types of people (at the level of getting lunch, after-work drinks, etc) very, very easy. A few months isn't enough time to forge close bonds or develop a strong core group of friends. But those casual friendships are fertile ground for harvesting that down the road. This is not unique to Louisville at all. I would imagine it's true when moving anywhere new -- I know it took us a good 12-18 months before we felt settled and happy in NYC, like we belonged.

As far as cost of living goes, I can't disagree more. For the price of a *really crappy* 500sf shoebox studio in Manhattan/Brooklyn, we were able to buy a lovely 3BR/2.5BA brick Colonial Revival in the Highlands that is a 10 minute walk from a park, the local independent cinema, a library branch, and a stretch of great restaurants, bars, and shopping on Bardstown Rd. I won't argue that some of the condos here are overpriced, but come on, did you do any research at all before making the move?

Anyway, Louisville is a gem of a city we've found. There are definitely some adjustments to be made for those coming from a NYC/SF/LA/Chicago-type place, but Louisville truly has a lot to offer people like us. It just takes an open mind, a small amount of effort, and a genuine desire to be happy here.

Some people are just bad at being happy or coping with change. If that's you (nothing wrong with it), be honest with yourself and take a step back. Just make it through the winter and commit yourself to giving Louisville your best shot once spring & summer roll around. You might just be pleasantly surprised.

The only caveat I might mention is that Louisville is not the most diverse city. To call it lily-white would be unfair, but if you are not Black or Latino and finding a community with the same ethnic/cultural background is really important to you, I suggest you do some research before making the jump. Can't speak from experience, just what I've heard from co-workers & other friends who have had some difficulty in that regard.
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Old 01-19-2009, 01:43 PM
 
6,305 posts, read 13,199,774 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mwrenchd View Post
For any other big city transplants or potential transplants reading, I thought I'd chime in to offer some encouragement.

My wife and I relocated to Louisville from NYC about 6 months ago. To be fair, we have Kentucky connections, but neither of us have any history or family in Louisville. We are both 29, started our careers in NYC and lived there for over 6 years. In many ways, we definitely fit the over-educated over-"cultured" hipster urbanite stereotype.

Suffice to say, we loved living in NYC (Williamsburg, Brooklyn to be exact), and we love Louisville too. It's definitely a slower pace and forces one to be a bit more exploratory and proactive about meeting people, finding favorite bars/restaurants/etc, but if you know what makes you happy and don't need your entertainment spoon-fed to you, there is more than enough here.

The people can be clique-y yes, but they are also genuinely friendly and helpful in my experience. I've found striking up casual friendships with a broad range of types of people (at the level of getting lunch, after-work drinks, etc) very, very easy. A few months isn't enough time to forge close bonds or develop a strong core group of friends. But those casual friendships are fertile ground for harvesting that down the road. This is not unique to Louisville at all. I would imagine it's true when moving anywhere new -- I know it took us a good 12-18 months before we felt settled and happy in NYC, like we belonged.

As far as cost of living goes, I can't disagree more. For the price of a *really crappy* 500sf shoebox studio in Manhattan/Brooklyn, we were able to buy a lovely 3BR/2.5BA brick Colonial Revival in the Highlands that is a 10 minute walk from a park, the local independent cinema, a library branch, and a stretch of great restaurants, bars, and shopping on Bardstown Rd. I won't argue that some of the condos here are overpriced, but come on, did you do any research at all before making the move?

Anyway, Louisville is a gem of a city we've found. There are definitely some adjustments to be made for those coming from a NYC/SF/LA/Chicago-type place, but Louisville truly has a lot to offer people like us. It just takes an open mind, a small amount of effort, and a genuine desire to be happy here.

Some people are just bad at being happy or coping with change. If that's you (nothing wrong with it), be honest with yourself and take a step back. Just make it through the winter and commit yourself to giving Louisville your best shot once spring & summer roll around. You might just be pleasantly surprised.

The only caveat I might mention is that Louisville is not the most diverse city. To call it lily-white would be unfair, but if you are not Black or Latino and finding a community with the same ethnic/cultural background is really important to you, I suggest you do some research before making the jump. Can't speak from experience, just what I've heard from co-workers & other friends who have had some difficulty in that regard.
Excellent post...I am a Chicago guy myself. It's no NYC though I agree Louisville offers a taste of nearly everything big city without all the hassle. Also, I appreciate that the city has so many neighborhoods with such strong identity. You will pick up on that soon, but I have never seen a city anywhere close to this size with a Highlands, Butchertown, Old Louisville, Clifton, Crescent Hill, Germantown, even Beechmont, etc.
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