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Old 10-05-2009, 05:11 PM
Location: Southwest Washington
2,315 posts, read 6,376,128 times
Reputation: 1659


Seattle's suburbia is more attractive than Portland's, in my opinion.
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Old 10-08-2009, 05:45 PM
Location: Seattle
59 posts, read 77,147 times
Reputation: 56
I have lived in downtown Seattle and the surrounding neighborhoods for the past 6 years and I have decided to move to Portland. I will try to list the pro's and con's of living in the Seattle area and what I have have been told and have read about the pro's and con's of Portland.

Seattle Pros:

Gorgeous city! I have traveled all over the North America and Western Europe and very few places can rival the geography and lay out of Seattle. Surrounded my saltwater, freshwater, and two mountain ranges.

Washington Ferry System, the largest passenger ferry system in the world, so says wiki.

Cultural/Social/Ethnic diversity, Arts, Music, Food, Wine, Micros!!! A bit of everything. Has more to offer than anywhere else in the northwest, well, except Vancouver BC.

Seattle is a 2.5 hour drive to Vancouver BC!!! Which is awesome.

Gateway City: You live in Seattle long enough it starts to seem pretty small, but its large enough to where you are exposed to alot of international flavor.

Tech jobs are here. However, be aware that the market is extremely saturated!

Great coffee bars. I am not referring to Starbucks or Seattle's Worst!

Its Seattle! World renowned get your novelty on!

Seattle Cons:

Cost of living is forever increasing. Alot of older neighborhoods and undeveloped areas are all becoming gentrified. Within 10 ten years I wouldn't be shocked to see cost of living in Seattle come close or equal San Fran.

Traffic. Its bad, but I don't think its as bad as what people say. Especially in comparison to places that are deserving of the title: LA, San Fran, NY etc. Plus, I live Uptown/Lower Queen Anne so having a car is more of a luxury.

Public Transportation. You can catch a bus all over, but lets face it, they suck. Seattle is a west coast city and the burbs still love there SUV's. Light Rail is coming but from downtown to the airport!?! Great if your a tourist or live somewhere in that void. It won't be a practicle form of mass transit for city dwellers for at least another 10-15 years.

Portland, Oregon = Its about quality not quantity

Alot of the pros and cons go with the fact that Seattle is a larger city and that it went through a tech/realestate boom. Portland has had more time grow slower and has spent more developing their infrastructure.


Beautiful city, maybe not as iconic as Seattle, but its still very charming. Still has the rivers and Mt. Hood.

Better Beaches!! And closer too!!!

Way less expensive to live, and from what I hear, a much better quality of life.

Public Transportation. This is really big for me especially traveling on the east coast and europe. The Max Light rail is fantastic and its only gonna get better!


More like a big town, than a city.

Less diversity, culture, etc. that comes with the size thing.

Im sure I will find out more when I live there but I'm willing to give it a shot!
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Old 10-08-2009, 06:14 PM
Location: Seattle
807 posts, read 1,886,320 times
Reputation: 462
I gotta give respect to Portland on one thing. They are much less conservative n uptight about nightlife/drinking.
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Old 10-11-2009, 09:25 PM
64 posts, read 176,998 times
Reputation: 63
I lived in Portland for 5 yrs & am moving to Seattle next week. Can't tell you much about Seattle but I can tell you one thing about Portland.... they do whatever they can to keep business out. This is a positive aspect in the sense that it keeps the feel of a big town rather than that of a city. However, this is why I am moving to Seattle.... no jobs in Portland.

Bottom line... if you already have a job in Portland, congrads. If you are a pot smoking hippie who works @ a coffee shop in the morning & tokes all evening, Portland is the place for you. However, if you are a hard working professional who enjoys the granola eating organic garden growing @ home, Portland only works on the latter.

I loved Portland & would live there again if I could. The town feel is great and the mass transit cannot be beat. But I gotta go where I can get a job.
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Old 10-12-2009, 12:46 AM
480 posts, read 2,012,341 times
Reputation: 371
Aaaaah, the age-old question.

Personally, I think you can't lose either way.

However, I will cosign what h8n said. Seattle is decidedly more pro-business than Portland, and it does show in the job market.
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Old 11-11-2009, 09:34 PM
260 posts, read 619,607 times
Reputation: 197
Originally Posted by vivac20 View Post
Thanks janb, for that very informative reply!

I just read that Seattle freeze article and it sounds a lot like southern hospitality!

I've been to Portland once and I found people to be way friendlier than Charlotte. Besides, I am liberal and don't often share viewpoints with people here. I haven't been to Seattle yet.

I think by virtue of being bigger, I think Seattle would be a better choice for me ( More babes!)

I know that traffic is worse in the metro area, but do they have neighborhoods in Seattle that are convenient in that they are in 30 min driving distance to downtown, have gym nearby, shopping, etc.(like they do over here)?
Seattle is very unique in that it truly is a city of neighborhoods. Each one has its distinctive flavor. In reply to your question about 30 minutes driving distance to Downtown Seattle, most neighborhoods are really about 3-5 minutes drive to Downtown. Gyms are all over(we're not called the fittest city in America for nothing), and exceptional coffee is found everywhere you look.
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Old 11-11-2009, 11:39 PM
3,970 posts, read 10,804,628 times
Reputation: 1576
Originally Posted by backdrifter View Post
Seattle's suburbia is more attractive than Portland's, in my opinion.
Indeed. Portland is the center and contains most of the population of the metro area. Seattle is still the center of the metro, but has serious competition from Bellevue (which, IMO has the 2nd best skyline in the NW, including Portland), and the population of the metro is not concentrated totally in Seattle, unlike Portland.
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Old 11-12-2009, 12:54 AM
701 posts, read 1,612,346 times
Reputation: 358
Originally Posted by vivac20 View Post
I think by virtue of being bigger, I think Seattle would be a better choice for me ( More babes!)
How many "babes" does one man need?
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Old 11-12-2009, 10:48 AM
Location: Seattle
807 posts, read 1,886,320 times
Reputation: 462
Originally Posted by vivac20
I think by virtue of being bigger, I think Seattle would be a better choice for me ( More babes!)

Sure, if by babes you mean guys. There's plenty of those.
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Old 02-07-2010, 06:25 AM
Location: Stavanger, Norway
9 posts, read 21,214 times
Reputation: 16
Default need help in deciding - Portland or Seattle


I have the opportunity to move to either Portland or Seattle with a good, full-time job (same pay). I'm at loss as to which one to choose, so I was hoping I could tell you about my family and I, then maybe some of you could make suggestions...??

I'm married w/3 kids, I'm 31 - my wife is 29 and the kids are 5, 7 & 10.
We are all from West Michigan but moved to New Zealand for 2.5 years, then Melbourne, AU for .5 years and I'm currently in Norway, working.
I work in higher-level IT engineering. My wife is a stay at home Mom.
We love the outdoors and like to see mountains, water (lakes, river & sea) without having to drive for a long time - hiking, swimming and camping are well loved by us. We are laid back, left-leaning politically (but not too left). I'm career oriented but only as a second to living a full-filling life.
We would like to be able to drive off on the weekend and find beautiful landscapes without many people around (I do realize that I may have to drive far for this...)
We love live music, mainly rock, indie and heavy types...
Love beer (and not the beer flavored water called bud ;-)
Love pubs and good food (mainly Indian, Thai & Asian)
Needs to be a great place to raise kids, a city that has a lot of parental involvement in the schools (this is more on a neighborhood level, I know..)
We like diversity in: people’s heritage, mindsets of people, food, beer & outdoor activities
We will be renting with a budget at around 2k a month
We like to either live right in the middle of it all or live in a place with not many neighbors but has abundant nature around.
Public transport needs to be solid, doesn't have to be rail - but alas, after living in Melbourne the trams are much nicer than the busses...
We plan to live there a long time, if not for good..

From what I've read we would like either place, but if anyone can point out they one may be more appropriate than the other we would greatly appreciate it!!

Brian & April

mod cut:

Last edited by scirocco22; 02-07-2010 at 12:28 PM.. Reason: (cross posted)
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