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Old 10-10-2011, 02:55 PM
 
7 posts, read 28,164 times
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Hi all -- I've found some good advice already, just by lurking the site, but I figured it was worth getting some fresh perspective, especially because of some of the new condos that have gone up in certain towns. My wife is starting a new job in Lawrenceville, while my job is in midtown NYC.

We're 32 years old, have no children, and are planning to rent, so school quality and property taxes are irrelevant. Having lived in NYC for most of our lives, we'd definitely prefer a town with good restaurants and things to do -- but we're not 23 anymore either, so we don't need a thriving nightlife or anything like that.

I would take the train; she would (probably) drive. We're trying to keep the commute reasonable (under an hour, hopefully) for both of us. A nice, modern apartment within walking distance of a NJ Transit station is what would work best, I think.

I've been looking at New Brunswick, Metuchen, Edison, Iselin -- we plan to spend a weekend driving around those towns, but any advice is greatly appreciated. We can definitely afford $2,000+ a month and are hoping that goes a bit farther than it does in Manhattan. I'm not that familiar with Route 1 traffic -- is it that bad? What would her drive look like if she works, say, 9 to 6?
Thanks all!
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Old 10-10-2011, 06:41 PM
 
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Take a look at Canal Pointe in West Windsor. WW is right next to Lawrenceville. Depending on where in Lawrenceville she works, she may be able to take the NJ Transit 605 bus directly fom Canal Pointe B'lvd. to her work. Driving would be minutes.

Canal Pointe is a condo development, but if you look on CraigsList (central NJ) you'll find lots of rentals. You'll easily find a 2 bedroom, 2 bath for 1700 & under. There's tennis courts & in summer there are 2 pools with lifeguards & the pools are beautifully kept. The grounds inside Canal Pointe are perfect for walking or jogging & lots do.

There's plenty of parking in Canal Pointe (all free for residents & guests.)

From Canal Pointe you can take the bus right into Princeton (5 minute ride.) During the week the university runs shuttles called Tiger Transit, which is complimentary for anyone to utilize.

The Princeton Juction train station is a 10 minute drive from Canal Pointe, or the 600 bus goes from Canal Pointe B'lvd. to the station. You can look at NJ Transit train schedules (NorthEast Corridor) to see how long to NY Penn Station.

Note that Canal Pointe has a Princeton mailing address, but it is in the township of West Windosr.
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Old 10-12-2011, 12:26 PM
 
3 posts, read 8,383 times
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Smile NYC and Lawrenceville/Princeton

I think you would enjoy living in South Plainfield, a community of about
22,000 people - safe, friendly, convenient to everything and only a
5 mile commute to the Edison Metroplex train station to NY. I have
lived in this town nearly half of my life. The zip code is 07080, if that
helps you. If you want to purchase a home, I believe the housing is
favorable for the average wage earner. My preference would be
Geary Park Estates off of Plainfield Avenue. I believe South Plainfield
would be easy access to Route 287 and Route 1/9 to Princeton.
Good luck!
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Old 10-12-2011, 12:34 PM
 
Location: Bergen County, NJ
41 posts, read 97,899 times
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Westfield, Cranford, and Summit come to mind. They're all "about" midway and towns with actual centers.

Edit: Somerset would be decent to look into as well.
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Old 10-12-2011, 04:07 PM
 
13,050 posts, read 15,376,272 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by daliowa View Post
Take a look at Canal Pointe in West Windsor. WW is right next to Lawrenceville. Depending on where in Lawrenceville she works, she may be able to take the NJ Transit 605 bus directly fom Canal Pointe B'lvd. to her work. Driving would be minutes.

Canal Pointe is a condo development, but if you look on CraigsList (central NJ) you'll find lots of rentals. You'll easily find a 2 bedroom, 2 bath for 1700 & under. There's tennis courts & in summer there are 2 pools with lifeguards & the pools are beautifully kept. The grounds inside Canal Pointe are perfect for walking or jogging & lots do.

There's plenty of parking in Canal Pointe (all free for residents & guests.)

From Canal Pointe you can take the bus right into Princeton (5 minute ride.) During the week the university runs shuttles called Tiger Transit, which is complimentary for anyone to utilize.

The Princeton Juction train station is a 10 minute drive from Canal Pointe, or the 600 bus goes from Canal Pointe B'lvd. to the station. You can look at NJ Transit train schedules (NorthEast Corridor) to see how long to NY Penn Station.

Note that Canal Pointe has a Princeton mailing address, but it is in the township of West Windosr.

Additionally, Whole Foods, Trader Joe's, Wegman's, a number of good restaurants, Barnes & Noble, The Princeton University Art Museum, and downtown Princeton's shops are in the immediate area. The quality of life in this neck of the woods is very nice.

And then, by contrast, there is South Plainfield.
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Old 10-13-2011, 10:27 AM
 
65 posts, read 141,091 times
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I'd third the Canal Pointe recommendation. It's likely a bit more than an hour door-to-door to anyplace in Manhattan, but it will keep your wife's commute short.

Metuchen is also attractive, and would get you a good 20 minutes closer to the city. The morning drive to Lawrenceville might be close to an hour, but probably much less than that driving back in the evening. Westfield is cute, but the drive to Lawrenceville would be close to 45 minutes without traffic (again, depending on where in Westfield and Lawrenceville you are).

If you have pets you might want to double check the current pet rules in Canal Pointe. I looked at a condo there and, at the time, the complex had a strict (as in, not even a cat that stays inside) no-pets provision .
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Old 10-13-2011, 02:09 PM
 
2,713 posts, read 3,710,185 times
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Canal Pointe still has a no pet rule. Although there are plenty of geese, deer, rabbits, etc. roaming the woods & the paths.

Other nice things about Princeton are the McCarter Theater (directly across from the Dinky) and the Princeton Summer Theater on campus.

We've seen many plays at McCarter for only $20.

The NJ Transit commute to the city varies greatly depending on the time of day. Truthfully, they are running less express trains than they used to when we first moved down here years ago.

You can go to NJ Transit website & view the current NorthEast Corridor schedule to see how long a commute would take at the time of day you would travel.
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Old 10-22-2011, 08:57 AM
 
7 posts, read 28,164 times
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Thanks for all the advice thus far -- we're going to take a drive down this weekend and check out Metuchen, New Brunswick, Princeton and maybe a couple of other places if we have time. Like I said, I'd prefer to live within walking distance of the train station, though a short bus ride isn't the worst, I suppose -- I'd just like to keep the commute as simple and short as possible, given the constraints.
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Old 10-22-2011, 09:52 AM
 
833 posts, read 1,681,332 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaa37 View Post
Thanks for all the advice thus far -- we're going to take a drive down this weekend and check out Metuchen, New Brunswick, Princeton and maybe a couple of other places if we have time. Like I said, I'd prefer to live within walking distance of the train station, though a short bus ride isn't the worst, I suppose -- I'd just like to keep the commute as simple and short as possible, given the constraints.
Metuchen is very nice. The Princeton Junction section of West Windsor has the train also very nice but you'll have to drive to everything else.
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Old 10-24-2011, 11:01 AM
 
7 posts, read 28,164 times
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Update: we found some decent options in Rahway and New Brunswick, both of which feature modern, pet-friendly apt complexes within walking distance of the train station. Princeton is still a possibility, but it seems a bit far to commute day in and day out of NYC, just speaking for myself.
Any thoughts on those communities? Rahway had a surprising number of vacant storefronts, but I appreciate that the town is trying to build up its downtown. New Brunswick certainly had a lot more to offer in terms of restaurants, stores, etc, but the housing there didn't seem quite as nice.
Look like -- because of the way the express trains run -- the trip from Rahway to NYC is about as long as the trip from new Brunswick, despite being quite a bit closer. But my wife's commute would be a lot shorter from NB. Still, there's something to be said for being closer to NYC in case we decide to drive in with the car on weekends, etc.
Thanks!
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