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Old 01-13-2009, 07:40 PM
 
7 posts, read 18,876 times
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I will be working in the heart of DC upon graduation in the spring and have began looking for apartments in Arlington (mainly focusing on Clarendon, Courthouse, and Ballston). I need to be within walking distance to a metro for my job and found that apartments in Arlington that fit this criteria are unbelievably expensive. I also want to live in a young area with college graduates like myself and plenty of bars to have a good time at within a close proximity. I have heard that Crystal City and parts of DC (Adams Morgan, Columbia Heights) might fit the description of what I am looking for and are cheaper than Arlington. Can somone please share their experience or knowledge on the areas? Thanky ou very much.
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Old 01-13-2009, 08:05 PM
 
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Crystal City does have a lot of young professionals, but not a lot of bars. Still, it's on the Metro and the Clarendon bars aren't that far away. I lived in Pentagon City for years and that was similar to Crystal City- lots of young professionals but not bars. That said, I don't think my social life suffered just because I wasn't right next to a bar. I took the Metro and most of my friends did as well.

Adams Morgan is a great place to party, but I don't think I'd want all the hassles of living there (no parking, rowdy drunken crowds every weekend, some parts can be shady), plus it is expensive for what you get. If you find a cheap place in Adams Morgan, it's probably out of the way and inconvenient or run-down.

If I were you, I'd probably look to some of the outskirts of the Orange Line areas. The older buildings there can be cheaper than being right in the heart of Clarendon, Courthouse, or Ballston, but you can still walk to the Metro. Then compare what you find with the apartments in Pentagon City and Crystal City and make the decision from there.

You might also want to look a little further south at the Braddock Road and King St. Metros in Alexandria, as they can sometimes be cheaper than their Arlington counterparts.
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Old 01-13-2009, 08:49 PM
 
Location: Mountain View, CA
1,152 posts, read 2,850,758 times
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Downtown DC I am not familiar with in terms of living options, so I won't comment much on that, other than to say I suspect nice places in the better areas of town would be just as expensive as the Ballston-Rosslyn corridor, if not moreso. I would also expect a lot more hassle for things like parking. Arlington is urban, but the buildings are new and have underground garages and such, so you still have a bit of suburban convenience. Being in downtown DC is in general more urban, without many of those conveniences unless you pony up big bucks.

In terms of the Rosslyn corridor vs. Crystal City. Crystal City I have found is pretty dead after work closes and on weekends. It is super convenient to the city, very attractive in terms of green space and such, and is close to night life in Old Town Alexandria and Rosslyn Corridor and DC, but it has little on its own. It is hopping at lunch during the daytime, but it kinda clears out after dark. Some might consider this a plus, others a minus. I also am not sure whether or not things like grocery stores are in walking distance like they are in the Rosslyn corridor.
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Old 01-13-2009, 08:56 PM
 
3,157 posts, read 8,115,173 times
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Originally Posted by jahutch View Post
I also am not sure whether or not things like grocery stores are in walking distance like they are in the Rosslyn corridor.
This is a negative of Crystal City. No supermarkets since the Safeway closed back in 2004 or 2005. Pentagon City has a Harris Teeter, so if you're at the northwest end of Crystal City, you would probably find that walkable. There's another Harris Teeter at the northern end of Potomac Yard that you could walk to if you're at the southern end of Crystal City, but I'm sure most Crystal City residents just drive to get groceries.
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Old 01-13-2009, 10:54 PM
 
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Most of the stores and supermarkets in Crystal City are in the underground parts, which may or may not be convenient depending on how readily your apartment has direct access to the underground or is near a street level access point.
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Old 01-13-2009, 11:43 PM
 
7 posts, read 18,876 times
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Default Thanks

Thanks for the quick responses! From the info I have gathered previously and your responses it looks like I will regret not moving to the Clarendon/Courthouse area. I'm used to going out frequently and conveniently, and it looks like I will have to pay for that. Do you guys know of any good buildings I should look at or even know private owners looking to rent? I can confidently get 1 other roommate but depending on other people's circumstances I could conceivably get up to 3 total which would bring townhomes into the picture. Thats a whole other topic I am sure you have insight on, which I would love to hear! Thanks again!
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Old 03-10-2009, 05:07 PM
 
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Yes it is expensive. Lots of young folk "house share". Check out ads for people looking to share.
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Old 05-02-2009, 07:24 PM
 
50 posts, read 182,664 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hj2500 View Post
Most of the stores and supermarkets in Crystal City are in the underground parts, which may or may not be convenient depending on how readily your apartment has direct access to the underground or is near a street level access point.
There is a Costco on 15th so that is an option to if you want to pony up the $50/year membership fee.... you can get a footlong hebrew national dog and 20oz soda for $1.50 too :-)

There are a few bars in Crystal City though, I am curious how they are on in the evening/weekends, do they die after happy hour is over?
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