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Old 08-24-2012, 05:42 PM
Location: Inis Fada
16,767 posts, read 28,935,680 times
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Originally Posted by pauldorell View Post
The closest one to us is in Montreal, but if I were driving to Montreal, IKEA would be the last place I'd want to go. I wouldn't mind if there were a closer one, but not too close. We're trying to avoid hot spots with lots of construction and population increases, which is where they build. There's no Interstate around here, and I consider that a big plus.
For my area in VT (Chester/Andover), the closest IKEA is Stoughton, MA (133 miles vs 232 miles to Montreal) while time wise New Haven, CT (158 miles) is a faster ride compared to MA.

Back in NY, the Hicksville area is built out -- there is no open land for projects of any large scale; but there are a lot of young people, recent immigrants from India in the immediate radius. While there aren't significant population increases, there is a steady stream of new clientele.

Looking back at what I had written earlier, I now better realize the IKEA location strategy.
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Old 08-24-2012, 05:51 PM
508 posts, read 665,212 times
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Wow, well thank you one and all for the comments/replies. Out of curiosity, how would you rate the differences between: Bennington, Brattleboro, Rutland, Barre, Montpelier and Burlington? Granted, I know I'm asking to compare apples to oranges to tomatoes to steak and the number 12. But the reason I ask is because I'm very eager and curious to learn. In part because I've noticed the likes of Rutland and Barre have much more affordable housing stock. Ditto Springfield, Vermont and the others are a bit more elevated in price.
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Old 08-24-2012, 07:48 PM
Location: The Woods
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Rutland, Springfield and Barre's best days are long behind them. All three aren't the nicest towns. Rutland has a big problem with crime related to drug dealers from out of state, and a corrupt government and police department (a few years back, it was found by accident a cop responsible for investigations of crimes against children was a pedophile watching child porn in the police station). Springfield is just kind of dumpy and local attitudes seem to make improving things unlikely. If you get a job in any of these three towns, I'd look to live in some of the neighboring towns. There's a reason these three are sort of cheap.

Bennington isn't as cheap but I put it below Rutland as far as being a good place to live. Outside of a few nice parts it's rundown, full of ex-cons from the local prison, etc. (note Rutland, Springfield and Bennington have state prisons and a lot of rather trashy people around as a result).

Brattleboro is full of granola munching ex-hippy sorts. Spend some time there and you'll feel the crunchy vibes. rofl

Burlington is close to Vermont as I say. Heavily developed, surrounded with suburban sprawl, etc. No place I'd want to live near but it does have more jobs (and higher costs) than most of the state.

Montpelier is the capitol but isn't big either. It's flood prone too. Some people really like what it has (various interesting shops, etc.), but if I were in that area I'd look to East Montpelier to have more space or elsewhere.

Keep in mind I'm a person who dislikes cities in general so I'm biased in favor of more rural areas. My favorite towns in VT are: Lewis, Ferdinand, Averill, Avery's Gore, Warren Gore, Warner's Grant, Somerset, Glastenbury, Granby, Canaan, Norton, Brunswick and a few other little developed areas.
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Old 08-24-2012, 08:17 PM
508 posts, read 665,212 times
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This isn't the stereotypical view of Vermont that outsiders have of the State's "big cities." The view from the outside is of landscape dotted with charming New England villages. Are there more affordable versions of Burlington? Is Brattleboro that place? Thanks!
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Old 08-24-2012, 08:42 PM
Location: The Woods
16,927 posts, read 22,162,991 times
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There are some towns that fit that view. Peacham has one of the most photographed white steepled churches in the state. Lots of towns still have their historic village centers: Shrewsbury (more than one village in fact), Wallingford, Brandon, Castleton, etc. Some towns never developed those villages: Hubbardton has no real center but is a very historic place. Glastenbury is another example of that (it's mostly a ghost town now, reverted to wilderness). Many of the tiny NEK towns had very little in their villages to start with. Norton was unincorporated until late in its history. Lewis never had any settlers. Island Pond is relatively intact as a village. There is/was a village of sorts in Averill but that village (very little to it but a post office and there's a tiny store in Averill) is not actually entirely in the town of Averill exactly. Not a place many would want to photograph for buildings. The wilderness is the draw in that region. Lewis Pond I think arguably has the best foliage scene in the state if you time it right, but it's not a village of course.

The farm landscape has been disappearing for decades. VT farmers can't compete with the Midwest. Most of the state is now forested, a complete reversal of the situation 100 years ago. Consider too that these well preserved villages have next to nothing in the way of jobs (or else they'd be more developed). Good luck making a living in a place like Island Pond or Peacham in spite of it being affordable by VT standards. Shrewsbury, Wallingford, Brandon, etc., are close enough to more developed cities to find jobs but there's still little available with good pay.
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Old 08-24-2012, 10:20 PM
Location: on a dirt road in Waitsfield,Vermont
2,186 posts, read 5,972,780 times
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Brandon is alot closer to Burlington than 1.5 hours, maybe 45 minutes, hour at the most. Vermont has tons of great bakeries now who produce alot of french type products. The Warren Store Bakery puts out this giant crossant that melts in your mouth. In Montreal years ago we liked to go to this little bakery called La Pattisserie, now Vermont has many good bakeries we don't bother anymore. The Bristol Bakery and Coffee Shop is another wonderful bakery. They also produce the best coffee in the state, the Vermont Coffee Company, it's expensive but it's the best coffee I have ever had that you can make at home.
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Old 08-24-2012, 11:25 PM
Location: Randolph, VT
72 posts, read 85,127 times
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Originally Posted by OhBeeHave View Post
I have placed it on local (NY) FC pages and people who have responded are looking for me to be giving away a desk.
Why don't you put it on Craigslist?
If people are responding poorly to you on Freecycle, it's because the ethic of Freecycle is to *give things away*. For free.

I love the local thrift store and recycled furniture place. I got a futon sofa plus a maple kitchen table with 6 chairs for $400, which I thought was reasonable considering they have overhead.

I find the best deals can come from Estate Sales rather than classifieds or e-bay, because the folks are looking to clear out a Lot of Stuff fast. There's usually pressure to get the house emptied out so the prices can get fairly low.

I have some stuff from IKEA, but after the newness wears off, it looks kind of sad and soulless. It doesn't have any element of care embodied in it.
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Old 08-25-2012, 05:49 AM
444 posts, read 682,717 times
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Originally Posted by MRVphotog View Post
Brandon is alot closer to Burlington than 1.5 hours, maybe 45 minutes, hour at the most.
Just to make a small correction, it's about an hour and 15 minutes from Brandon to Burlington. 51 miles on Route 7. I live between them and was in Brandon last Sunday.
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Old 08-25-2012, 08:02 AM
Location: Everywhere and Nowhere
14,131 posts, read 26,974,364 times
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I always thought this French bakery in Chester was excellent. Although I think they were in Cavendish when I used to go there.

Baba-a-Louis Bakery in Chester, Vt
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Old 08-26-2012, 07:05 AM
Location: Providence, RI
986 posts, read 2,023,055 times
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Originally Posted by OhBeeHave View Post
I am surprised that there isn't one in Concord or Lebanon, NH. Everyone has to either go to CA or down to Stoughton, MA of New Haven, CT.

There are two on geographic LI (1 in Brooklyn, 1 in Hicksville). While I haven't been to their Brooklyn location, the Hicksville store is always crazy busy. The bulk of the shoppers appear to be 1) young couples; 2) college students; 3) foreigners/immigrants; 4) people redoing their children's bedrooms; 5) elderly people looking to beat the heat and get something cheap to eat. There are plenty of people who fit into one or more of those categories in VT & NH. I guess the low population density hurts the chance of us ever seeing one in VT or NH.
There are plenty of people that fit into those categories (and remember, the old people looking to eat cheap are not who they are trying to attract), but not in large enough quantities.

The New Haven one serves the 3 million people in CT who mostly live along 95 or 91, as well as those coming down from Western Mass. The Stoughton store serves the entire greater Boston area and RI. That's 4-5 million people. While I do think they could put a store just north of Boston, like near or just over the NH border (Nashua/Salem) or even in Burlington, or in the northern reaches of "Boston" (Somerville/Cambridge), there are too few people in Lebanon or Concord.
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