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Old 04-21-2013, 12:12 PM
1 posts, read 1,239 times
Reputation: 11


Sorry to resurrect this dead horse for the umpteenth time, but I'm absolutely clueless here...

So I've landed an awesome job in Suitland, MD. Hours are Monday-Friday 8-4:30p. When relocating to the area, I was told to avoid the surrounding area. Taking heed, I wound up with an apartment in Columbia, MD. Scouting the neighborhood, it seemed nice. The area is incredibly diverse and peaceful. The school district seems excellent, which is a plus should I decide to adopt two grade-school relatives in the near future. However, I'm a single 30-something female with no children, roommates, family, or friends living nearby. I'd like to get out and meet new people, but there really isn't much to do. Given the traffic in the area, I pretty much live to commute, work, sleep, and repeat. I can't remember the last time I had the energy to do anything enjoyable. Some days, my drive is 1.5 hours long either way. Running errands after work such as doctor visits, grabbing a few groceries, picking up prescriptions, or stopping by the post office adds 45mins - 1 hour to my commute during the week.

I have the option to move to Fairfax, VA. Chantilly, to be exact. It seemed as though the drive there was not as difficult as fighting through 495E in the evenings. It also seems that the area is a bit closer to DC, affording the opportunity to get out and experience more. Also, the ability to make a 'quick run to the store' would not be turn into a 45 minute hassle. Yet, the thought of taking I66 to get to work is terrifying given that it's usually backed up, even during the weekend.

I understand the MARC/METRO options exist at both locations. However, I'd prefer to drive; I'm pretty alone in the region and don't feel safe using public transportation. At least not yet.

Would relocating to Fairfax really improve my commute? Are there any alternatives to I66? Which area has greater 'availability'?
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Old 04-21-2013, 12:26 PM
Location: Sneads Ferry, NC
11,090 posts, read 18,624,496 times
Reputation: 4991
Originally Posted by help_computer View Post
Would relocating to Fairfax really improve my commute? Are there any alternatives to I66?
Personally, I think living in Chantilly would give you a worse commute than you already have. You cannot use I-66 inside the Beltway during rush hour unless you are in an HOV or have a hybrid, clean-fuel car. Details here: http://www.virginiadot.org/travel/hov-rulesfaq.asp

I'd suggest looking for an apartment closer to work in Crofton, Davidsonville or Upper Marlboro. But prioritize Anne Arundel County if you are likely to adopt the school-age kids.
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Old 04-21-2013, 08:46 PM
Location: DMV
10,136 posts, read 11,213,404 times
Reputation: 3176
I used to work in Suitland myself, so I certainly understand your struggle. In my opinion if you move to the city of Fairfax, your commute will be tough, but if you move to Fairfax, as in Fairfax County you can find a nice commute. A place like Alexandria, Springfield and even Kingstowne are great places to check out. The commutes to Suitland are pretty good as I have had a few former co-workers who made those commutes and it wasn't nearly as bad as your current one. As far as the MD side, if you want to be in a place in Anne Arundel County, I've heard the commute to Suitland can be pretty difficult too. I would recommend a place like Bowie or Laurel as they are slightly closer and have some decent schools (despite the school system as a whole).
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Old 04-23-2013, 12:43 PM
Location: among the clustered spires
2,380 posts, read 3,734,586 times
Reputation: 866

No way.

Stay in Columbia, or move to any of Bowie, Laurel, or Upper Marlboro w/o kids, or Bowie w/ kids. (*) The good parts of Anne Arundel are also an option.

BTW, reporting from VA: If you're grandfathered in (like me), they're still good, but new HOV plates aren't being given out anymore.
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