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Old 03-30-2013, 02:32 PM
 
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Hi, everybody! I'm a college senior and will move up to Detroit for work early next year after I graduate. Being a totally stranger to the city, I pretty much have no idea about where I should live, I really need some suggestions from the people who live there. As a single, male, 20-ish college graduate, I don't earn a lot of money and I have to save up for my graduate school and future family need when I start one. My budget on rent is $1000 per month and it would be great if I could spend less than that amount. The company I will be working for is in Dearborn. I want to live in an area that is safe, preferably has a fair amount of young people and if necessary, I could accept having a long daily commute. Bars and clubs are not really important to me as I don't drink and my social life would be centered around my church and church activities, but I would love to live near some great restaurants or theaters. Would you please give me some suggestion that where should I live? Is living in Dearborn a good choice? Is there any area that I should avoid in and around Dearborn? How do y'all think about the idea of commuting to Dearborn from Ann Arbor everyday? Thank you!
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Old 03-30-2013, 10:33 PM
 
Location: Detroit
3,671 posts, read 5,431,458 times
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The downtown area. Enough said. Downtown itself may be quite expensive (more than your budget) but I believe Midtown is a bit cheaper and is home to the 3rd largest university in MI so there are a lot of young people in and around there. Midtown is also one of the safest areas of Detroit. From there you shouldn't be any more then 15-20 minutes from Dearborn if you take I-94. Maybe 25 minutes if your job isn't right off the freeway. Michigan Ave also goes straight through downtown Dearborn from downtown Detroit. That may take almost twice as long but is a great detour to use if something is going happening on the freeway. Dearborn is a decent place. For a shorter commute it could be worth it. The rent there I don't think is too bad either.

Welcome to Detroit. As you get a feel of the area you will see what's right for you vs the cost and if it's worth it.
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Old 03-30-2013, 11:42 PM
 
406 posts, read 722,928 times
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Originally Posted by MarvinStrong313 View Post
The downtown area. Enough said. Downtown itself may be quite expensive (more than your budget) but I believe Midtown is a bit cheaper and is home to the 3rd largest university in MI so there are a lot of young people in and around there. Midtown is also one of the safest areas of Detroit. From there you shouldn't be any more then 15-20 minutes from Dearborn if you take I-94. Maybe 25 minutes if your job isn't right off the freeway. Michigan Ave also goes straight through downtown Dearborn from downtown Detroit. That may take almost twice as long but is a great detour to use if something is going happening on the freeway. Dearborn is a decent place. For a shorter commute it could be worth it. The rent there I don't think is too bad either.

Welcome to Detroit. As you get a feel of the area you will see what's right for you vs the cost and if it's worth it.
You think so? I think Midtown is a little more expensive then downtown but has more of a variety. Most of the cheaper apartments seem to all be for students. But I think this person could find something in either location.

Also, Dearborn would be a good choice. Especially if you want to be close to your job
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Old 03-31-2013, 10:56 AM
 
Location: Detroit
3,671 posts, read 5,431,458 times
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Originally Posted by detroit's own View Post
You think so? I think Midtown is a little more expensive then downtown but has more of a variety. Most of the cheaper apartments seem to all be for students. But I think this person could find something in either location.

Also, Dearborn would be a good choice. Especially if you want to be close to your job
I just know that downtown has alot of condos and high rise apartments and lofts that tend to cost more. Things seemed a bit cheaper in Midtown when I was apartment hunting but maybe many of them was for students.
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Old 03-31-2013, 11:41 AM
 
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Keep in mind that "safest area in Detroit" is a VERY relative term.
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Old 03-31-2013, 09:47 PM
 
3 posts, read 7,976 times
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Originally Posted by Arthur Digby Sellers View Post
Keep in mind that "safest area in Detroit" is a VERY relative term.
Quote:
Originally Posted by MarvinStrong313 View Post
The downtown area. Enough said. Downtown itself may be quite expensive (more than your budget) but I believe Midtown is a bit cheaper and is home to the 3rd largest university in MI so there are a lot of young people in and around there. Midtown is also one of the safest areas of Detroit. From there you shouldn't be any more then 15-20 minutes from Dearborn if you take I-94. Maybe 25 minutes if your job isn't right off the freeway. Michigan Ave also goes straight through downtown Dearborn from downtown Detroit. That may take almost twice as long but is a great detour to use if something is going happening on the freeway. Dearborn is a decent place. For a shorter commute it could be worth it. The rent there I don't think is too bad either.

Welcome to Detroit. As you get a feel of the area you will see what's right for you vs the cost and if it's worth it.
Thank y'all for answering my question. I did a little research on midtown and it seems pretty nice. By safe area, I mean a place I could go back to my apartment after midnight after a weekend movie night with friends without worrying about the danger of being robbed and shoot. I know that the "safe area" is pretty relevant and I have to use common sense when living in a big city. Lucky enough for me I lived in Los Angeles for two years so I know what to avoid.
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Old 04-01-2013, 02:00 AM
 
Location: Detroit
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Originally Posted by FTSouth View Post
Thank y'all for answering my question. I did a little research on midtown and it seems pretty nice. By safe area, I mean a place I could go back to my apartment after midnight after a weekend movie night with friends without worrying about the danger of being robbed and shoot. I know that the "safe area" is pretty relevant and I have to use common sense when living in a big city. Lucky enough for me I lived in Los Angeles for two years so I know what to avoid.
Don't pay any attention to Auther when it comes to the discussion of Detroit and safety. He thinks every neighborhood in Detroit is the ghetto where crackheads are just waiting to rob and kill you. If you lived in Los Angeles before i'm sure you will be FINE in Midtown. People from outside the city are constantly trying to move into the area and there is also many investments in the area right now. Those are 2 factors that would not thrive without at least decent safety. The area is mostly protected by WSU police which makes it even that much safer.
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Old 04-01-2013, 06:33 AM
 
2,209 posts, read 3,236,502 times
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Originally Posted by MarvinStrong313 View Post
Don't pay any attention to Auther when it comes to the discussion of Detroit and safety. He thinks every neighborhood in Detroit is the ghetto where crackheads are just waiting to rob and kill you. If you lived in Los Angeles before i'm sure you will be FINE in Midtown. People from outside the city are constantly trying to move into the area and there is also many investments in the area right now. Those are 2 factors that would not thrive without at least decent safety. The area is mostly protected by WSU police which makes it even that much safer.
Why so defensive? Did I say that? I'm just trying to give some context to the term "safe." Safe compared to what? The national crime average? Well, Midtown still has a very high crime rate when compared to the national average. "Safe" is a very relative term and means different things to different people. It sounds like the OP is OK with that level, which is great.

I just try and keep it honest considering some of the flat out lies that have been told on here (i.e. Coldjensens' lie that Midtown "is as safe as Birmingham.")
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Old 04-01-2013, 06:39 AM
 
7,237 posts, read 12,169,210 times
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Originally Posted by Arthur Digby Sellers View Post
Did I say that? I just try to give some context to the Kool-Aid drinkers who try and make it sound like Midtown is as safe as Mayberry. Midtown still has a very high crime rate when compared to the national average. "Safe" is a very relative term and means different things to different people. It sounds like the OP is OK with that level, which is great.

I just try and keep it honest considering some of the flat out lies that have been told on here (i.e. Coldjensens' lie that Midtown "is as safe as Birmingham.")
True.

Midtown is only safe by Detroit's standards, and that's only because of the federally-subsidized WSU Police.
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Old 04-01-2013, 07:39 AM
 
Location: Grosse Ile Michigan
30,255 posts, read 74,447,032 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Arthur Digby Sellers View Post
Why so defensive? Did I say that? I'm just trying to give some context to the term "safe." Safe compared to what? The national crime average? Well, Midtown still has a very high crime rate when compared to the national average. "Safe" is a very relative term and means different things to different people. It sounds like the OP is OK with that level, which is great.

I just try and keep it honest considering some of the flat out lies that have been told on here (i.e. Coldjensens' lie that Midtown "is as safe as Birmingham.")
Thank you for that nice comment. Please stop acting like a child. (Well, you probably are a child, so I guess it is OK to act like one, but if you are over 15, what is your problem?). Actually I relayed a comment made by the chief of Detroit police on the radio and later expressed by the Mayor at a meeting. The comment was later relayed on another radio station and in the paper. Frankly it is a silly thing to make a big deal over and a really strange thing to obsess about.

Perhaps a poster on CD with a paranoid obsession about Detroit (look at other posts) has more knowledge than the chief of police or the mayor, perhaps not.

Franky it does not matter whether Midtown is as safe as Birmingham, slightly safer, slightly less safe, what matters is whether it is safe enough for you to be comfortable. Comfort level will vary with your experience, prejudice, alertness, paranoia, and other factors. If you have typical suburbanite paranoia about being anywhere inside the City of Detroit borders, you will live in fear there (or probably anywhere).

Whether it is safe enough for your comfort level will be difficult to get a grasp on. People on CD cannot really tell you that. We can tell you whether it meets our comfort level, but not yours. First, Midtown is not well defined as a specific area, thus depending on what you include, the statistics will vary. You do not have to get terribly far away from midtown to get pretty scary, so if you expand your definition, you will get varying results. One solution is to ask someone who lives there. However if you happen to ask someone who has lived there for 15 years and never seen or heard of anyone who has experienced any crime, they will tell you it is 100% safe. If you happen to find the unlucky guy who got robbed twice - he will tell you it is a third world equivalent. I have spent a lot of time in some parts of mid-town at night and during the daytime, particularly around the DIA and WSU campus. I have not lived there. I know two people who live there and three who used to live there. I know a handful of people who attend WSU or work there and live elsewhere. Some think it is great, some are terrified. Based on my knowledge and experience I would not have a problem living there. I would not have a problem with one of my kids living there (depending on which kid). I would not want them living there alone, but I do not want them living anywhere alone. I would tell them to carry their pepper spray in hand with the safety off when walking to and from their car or walking around at night, but I tell them that anywhere (they listen sometimes).

You do need to know a few things to stay reasonably safe.

Know where the boundaries of the safe areas are. Learn that from your neighbors (the ones who get out and live, not the ones who stay huddled behind a locked door).

Make sure you have some common sense (aka street smarts). Do not engage people you are not comfortable with, do not get into hostile arguments, do not buy or sell drugs, sex, or guns. Do not strut about showing off your fine watch, phone, jewelry. Do not walk alone at night except when necessary. Carry about $40 in your wallet any other money carry elsewhere. Do not leave valuable in your car, especially not where they can be seen. Do not ever flash a knife or gun or other weapon thinking it shows what a tough guy or gal you are. If you are going to flash a weapon of any kind, it better be to use it to defend yourself. Do not engage people who ask for money, Simply say no sorry. Do not attract attention to yourself. There are classes you can take on how to avoid confrontations. One such place is in Detroit, I cannot remember the name. A good class for anyone living anywhere. Detroit is very much like downtown LA before they built LA live. It is mostly empty. Midtown is a bit more lively, although it gets pretty quiet in the winter.

Plan ahead. Park in lighted areas and know where you are going, Do not wander aimlessly, especially at night. Exploring is fine, I do it all the time. But if you walk around looking scared, you are inviting trouble if trouble is around. Buy gas in places you are comfortable with and during the day. The most common reports of people getting robbed or hurt who are not engaged in drugs, guns or prostitution (or family disputes) are people getting gas alone at a station in a rough area at night.

Walking around midtown at night I am tense and alert, about the same as walking around downtown LA at night if I am not in an active place like LA live. Not scared, but certainly paying attention. I bring my kids to midtown at night fairly frequently. We have not had any trouble, but we have had some interesting experiences that make great discussion for them at school. In both mid-town and downtown I occasionally see groups and individual attractive young women walking, jogging, and the like. I see some of the same young women year after year, so they clearly feel comfortable living there.

Mid town is safer than other parts of Detroit for several reasons. It has attracted a lot of young professional types and students, these are mostly "good guys" The population is dense enough for people to look out for each other. Bad guys do not like to be seen, thus they do their bad guy stuff in secluded areas. The Wayne State Police, DMC Security and Detroit police work together to provide security for the area. Of these, the most capable force is the WSU police. Thus, closer to WSU is generally better. The concentration of people also allows the DPD to focus their resources so fewer officers can provide security to a greater number of people. Response time is much better than other areas.

What really attracts me to midtown is the direction it is heading. It is one of the most lively places for younger and/or active people. There is a lot to do, especially int he summer, and you can walk to most of it. It is getting better and better. As the area gets more lively and attractive, it will bring in more "good guys". This pushes the bad guys further and further out.

The one thing I do not like is the walk from midtown to downtown. You have to pass through some less than nice areas (like brush park) and it is dark and empty. Ages ago when I was at WSU, I used to run when I went through that area both for exercise, and because people are less likely to bother someone who would require an effort to bother. I have no had any trouble passing between the two at night, and I do not know anyone who has, but it makes me pretty uncomfortable going through there alone and not in a car. I do not do it often. Usually i drive if I am traveling between midtown and downtown.
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