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Old 09-24-2010, 12:18 AM
 
4 posts, read 4,784 times
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Hello all,

I applied for a job that is either at Ft Belvoir or in Springfield, still trying to get clarification, who knows with all this BRAC stuff. Either way I want to live in a good area, I am a single 22 yr old guy and want to live in an area with people around my age. This will be my first venture into the city as I have been living in the boondocks (country) for quite a few years. My rent max is around 1600 or 1700. I am looking for suggestions as I dont know the traffic or the good or bad areas. I have heard of looking around Clarendon, Ballston, areas around the metro lines, any suggestions, I am more looking for specific complexes that you would reccomend.

Thanks!
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Old 09-24-2010, 06:04 AM
 
Location: among the clustered spires
2,380 posts, read 3,860,633 times
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If you can find a 1BR place in your budget, Ballston/Clarendon will work just fine. Lots of single 20-somethings, and folks get along as well as can be expected with such population density.

Don't move until you have a job offer w/ start date in hand. If you want to move here w/o a job offer and start date, I'd recommend renting a place in Front Royal, Winchester, Fredericksburg, or Leesburg and doing office temp work.

Good luck.
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Old 09-24-2010, 11:25 AM
 
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Yes, Courthouse/Clarendon/Virginia Square/Ballston (aka "Orange Line" Arlington for the Metro route that runs through them) is the 20-something mecca in NOVA. As you won't be taking Metro to work, consider properties that would be a healthy walk from the Metro - sorry that I don't know any specifics - to give you more choices in your budget range.

Also, be aware that as BRAC kicks in at Fort Belvoir, traffic will become a nightmare. You may decide that a shorter commute will be worth it in the long run. Consider Kingstowne, a newish community with your typical suburban conveniences about five miles NW of Fort Belvoir.
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Old 09-24-2010, 06:06 PM
 
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Thanks for the replies, and I am definitely not moving there without a job offer as I already have a job where im living. I will look around the Orange line as you have stated. I do realize that traffic will become a nightmare but I dont plan on working there forever, this is just a stepping stone to push my experience into the next career level. Also I have been in the Ft Belvoir area a few times and was not really impressed with the quality of the area. I can justify a commute to live in a nice area. I currently live outside town and drive 30+ miles to work. Thanks again for the replies
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Old 09-24-2010, 07:16 PM
 
Location: Arlington, VA and Washington, DC
23,566 posts, read 33,292,659 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tone509 View Post
Yes, Courthouse/Clarendon/Virginia Square/Ballston (aka "Orange Line" Arlington for the Metro route that runs through them) is the 20-something mecca in NOVA. As you won't be taking Metro to work, consider properties that would be a healthy walk from the Metro - sorry that I don't know any specifics - to give you more choices in your budget range.

Also, be aware that as BRAC kicks in at Fort Belvoir, traffic will become a nightmare. You may decide that a shorter commute will be worth it in the long run. Consider Kingstowne, a newish community with your typical suburban conveniences about five miles NW of Fort Belvoir.
West End Alexandria may be a nice compromise for you. Closer to Ft. Belvoir than the Orange line but has a notable amount of young professionals. Also cheaper than the Orange Line area.
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Old 09-24-2010, 07:37 PM
 
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Originally Posted by dunham pup View Post
Also I have been in the Ft Belvoir area a few times and was not really impressed with the quality of the area. I can justify a commute to live in a nice area. I currently live outside town and drive 30+ miles to work. Thanks again for the replies
If you were looking up and down Route 1 during your Fort Belvoir tour, it's understandable that you wouldn't find it so attractive. Kingstowne is different; it's not a young professional mecca but probably a mix of people with a lean towards young familes.

And when you say you live 30 miles out of town, is it in this area? Regular rush hour traffic can be a crawl in some spots. An Arlington to Fort Belvoir commute may not be too unbearable now but as BRAC sets in, you may grow to regret your commute - most likely up and down Route 1 - even before you reach the Alexandria city line.
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Old 09-24-2010, 07:38 PM
 
7,966 posts, read 18,041,228 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alanboy395 View Post
West End Alexandria may be a nice compromise for you. Closer to Ft. Belvoir than the Orange line but has a notable amount of young professionals. Also cheaper than the Orange Line area.
Fair enough. Thanks for the reminder about that.
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Old 09-24-2010, 09:24 PM
 
4 posts, read 4,784 times
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Well I want to be near a metro line to make traveling into dc easier. Guess im going to have to make a compromise. And I live 30 mi away from work in Central Virginia ( aka I live in the country and drive into the city)
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Old 09-25-2010, 08:21 AM
 
7,966 posts, read 18,041,228 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dunham pup View Post
Well I want to be near a metro line to make traveling into dc easier. Guess im going to have to make a compromise. And I live 30 mi away from work in Central Virginia ( aka I live in the country and drive into the city)
Thanks for sharing your location. As a reference, a 30 mile commute here can take up to an hour or more at rush hour.

Kingstowne is in between two Metro stations - Franconia/Springfield and Van Dorn - so it wouldn't be too inconvenient to get into DC.
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Old 09-25-2010, 09:18 PM
 
Location: Northern Virginia
4,489 posts, read 9,554,769 times
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It sounds like Arlington would be a good fit for you. That's where all the social activities for recent college grads are.

Kingstowne will bore you to death if you want social outlets and night life. It's a nice enough, family friendly slice of suburbia, but it's definitely not a 20-something's ideal place to be. My office is a stone's throw away from Kingstowne Blvd, and as a 24 year old I chose to live a hefty commute away for the past few years in order to live in more interesting (to me) areas. This year I finally succumbed to Springfield--and I am ready to move back to Arlington or Alexandria when my lease is up. It's nice and quiet, but I find myself driving back north to get to any kind of activities.

A cheaper option compared to Ballston/Clarendon might be Pentagon/Crystal City. It's a straight shot down Rt. 1 (with timed lights in old town!) to 495, which spits you off at Telegraph that goes down to Belvoir. CC to my work at the intersection of Van Dorn/Telegraph was consistently 20-25 minutes. To belvoir would be another 10ish.

Just as an FYI, the vast majority of 22 year olds in the area have a roommate(s). Your $1700 won't get you a 1 bedroom in a prime walkable-to-the-metro location, but $2200 will get you a 2 bedroom place. If you pick up a roommate, you'll save quite a bit of money.

Check out craigslist for what's in your price range, and see what areas interest you.
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