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Old 06-19-2017, 09:56 AM
 
169 posts, read 131,823 times
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As stated, Ann Arbor is too far from everything, as is Brighton. I don't even consider those communities to be in metro Detroit. I'd rather live in Northville because it's similar to AA, but it's location is more centralized.
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Old 06-19-2017, 12:08 PM
 
Location: Chicago
941 posts, read 847,050 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DTWflyer View Post
Ann Arbor is a very good place to live but it doesn't necessarily have the mass appeal to many, and is also pretty distant from some of the major business/employment centers in Detroit. Its really only viable for those who work in Ann Arbor, Brighton, Plymouth/I-275 corridor, Dearborn, and at the limits for Downtown Detroit. Its a horrendous commute to Troy, Warren, Auburn Hills, and even Southfield during peak afternoon rush hour.

Ann Arbor is a dense, vibrant, liberal, world-class research university town. Its also very expensive.
It may not appeal to families who want a larger piece of property or a quiet setting, at least for areas within the core city.

Ann Arbor, like most places, its not a one-size fits all locale.
I would probably not include Ann Arbor in Metro Detroit for most of these reasons, just as an FYI... most people I know from here would not consider Ann Arbor to be part of Metro Detroit, an attitude that is typically read as smugness but more accurately reflects a reality wherein you very rarely venture farther east than the airport for anything other than an occasional concert because it's simply too far. If you went to a group of born and raised Ann Arborites, even the most down to earth "I went to EMU instead of UM" ones, and told them that Ann Arbor was too far from "everything" you would get a decent number of blank stares... people who live here honestly and sincerely aren't aware that there are things in Oakland County worth doing that they are missing out on. Maybe they have heard of a place called Ferndale, but odds are pretty high that they have no idea what it is or if it's cool and there's precious little incentive to drive an hour for some funky ethnic food and beer when you have it yourself.

I disagree on A2 being unappealing for families. It's well worth the buy in if you can afford it, because the vast majority is sedate and suburbanized... the schools are good, there are incredible amenities for families including museums that are within walking or biking distance, over 100 parks, a number of cultural activities that run the full gamut from boring but developmentally important to kid catnip **** like FestiFools. With respect to Northville or any other Detroit suburb with a charming downtown and decent schools, there really isn't a comparison.

Ann Arbor may be the kind of place where people act as though Chicago is the nearest major city and Detroit doesn't exist, sure. But if you work within commuting range, as the poster I was replying to stipulated, and can afford the hefty buy-in, I really cannot think of a city that offers more in Southeastern Michigan... the best place to live in Metro Detroit, as a subsection of SE Michigan, is a much tighter balancing act IMO.
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Old 06-19-2017, 12:34 PM
 
Location: Metro Detroit
1,786 posts, read 1,937,484 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brodie734 View Post
... the best place to live in Metro Detroit, as a subsection of SE Michigan, is a much tighter balancing act IMO.
Which is why the initial post was more than simply "Hey, what's the best?!" It was broken down in quite a bit of detail to allow us to address that there is a "best" for many different situations. For some, Ann Arbor (which in my opinion is absolutely Metro Detroit) .. but for some, it may be the best. For me, it is not. I would hate living in Ann Arbor for previously stated reasons, but I totally get the appeal to others. So... go read the first post - then respond to each qualifier. It's fun to analyze for yourself just how diverse and welcoming Metro Detroit is to all stages of life.
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Old 06-19-2017, 01:10 PM
 
Location: Ann Arbor MI
2,113 posts, read 1,356,642 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Geo-Aggie View Post
Liberal supporter of PP here: Can't stand Ann Arbor.... I'm sure it's great if you are a student/professor and never want to leave Ann Arbor, but it's an hour away from everything else. Also it's reallllly expensive. Unless you're earning 100k+ (or a student from a family earning 100k+), living in Ann Arbor is pretty much not a thing.
Do you just make this stuff up as you go along? I don't care if you don't like Ann Arbor but I do care when you distort "facts" for why you don't like Ann Arbor. I can get to anywhere downtown (casinos, athletic fields, Fox theater) in 45 minutes. I can get to the zoo in less than 50 minutes. It takes me 30 minutes to go to the AMC theater in Livonia which we do often because I get free passes. My wife travels to the Grosse Pointes weekly and its usually 50-55 minutes. Now some of that is close to an hour but a lot of it is a fair amount less. 45 minutes is not "an hour".
The median household income in Ann Arbor is about 55,600. While the median family income is about $92,000 54% of family incomes are less than 100,000. 73%+ of household incomes are less than $100,000.
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Old 06-19-2017, 03:59 PM
 
Location: Chicago
941 posts, read 847,050 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Geo-Aggie View Post
Which is why the initial post was more than simply "Hey, what's the best?!" It was broken down in quite a bit of detail to allow us to address that there is a "best" for many different situations. For some, Ann Arbor (which in my opinion is absolutely Metro Detroit) .. but for some, it may be the best. For me, it is not. I would hate living in Ann Arbor for previously stated reasons, but I totally get the appeal to others. So... go read the first post - then respond to each qualifier. It's fun to analyze for yourself just how diverse and welcoming Metro Detroit is to all stages of life.
I don't want to argue, especially as I usually find you quite agreeable and we are discussing subjective issues here, but I think a simple lumping of A2 in with Metro Detroit might be an issue because then the distance from other parts of Metro Detroit becomes prohibitive. The thing is, Ann Arbor is mostly self sufficient. I know people who were born and raised here and never went to Detroit, never went to the Detroit Zoo, never went to a concert at the Palace or DTE. We're not talking about boring ivory tower types, either. There is just very little incentive when you live here to go hang out elsewhere. Unless you really, really want to go see a certain concert, there's little incentive to trek to those concert venues. Unless you really like sports or Broadway type musicals there was no real reason to visit Detroit until the past decade. Most in the area, and you might not know this being a recent transplant, would agree that the Toledo Zoo is better than the Detroit Zoo and Ann Arbor is equidistant. Places like Ferndale and Royal Oak really have nothing that downtown Ann Arbor doesn't.

It may be kinda far from a lot of places, but it really doesn't need to be. Which is why I think it needs to be categorized separately (and it usually is, both here and in official docs where Metro Detroit is the tricounty area).

I think I will try my hand at the little form in the OP, though, for kicks.
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Old 06-19-2017, 09:02 PM
 
Location: Detroit
3,671 posts, read 4,810,585 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brodie734 View Post
I don't want to argue, especially as I usually find you quite agreeable and we are discussing subjective issues here, but I think a simple lumping of A2 in with Metro Detroit might be an issue because then the distance from other parts of Metro Detroit becomes prohibitive. The thing is, Ann Arbor is mostly self sufficient. I know people who were born and raised here and never went to Detroit, never went to the Detroit Zoo, never went to a concert at the Palace or DTE. We're not talking about boring ivory tower types, either. There is just very little incentive when you live here to go hang out elsewhere. Unless you really, really want to go see a certain concert, there's little incentive to trek to those concert venues. Unless you really like sports or Broadway type musicals there was no real reason to visit Detroit until the past decade. Most in the area, and you might not know this being a recent transplant, would agree that the Toledo Zoo is better than the Detroit Zoo and Ann Arbor is equidistant. Places like Ferndale and Royal Oak really have nothing that downtown Ann Arbor doesn't.

It may be kinda far from a lot of places, but it really doesn't need to be. Which is why I think it needs to be categorized separately (and it usually is, both here and in official docs where Metro Detroit is the tricounty area).

I think I will try my hand at the little form in the OP, though, for kicks.
Just to touch on your other post: living in Kalamazoo and knowing a ton of people in A2/Ypsi, Grand Rapids, Lansing, ect. Most people even in Kalamazoo go to Detroit a little bit more than they do Chicago so I know there is no way most people in Ann Arbor go all the way to Chicago and never go to Detroit. That's how far? Almost 4 hours. Maybe for a weekend trip sure.

Granted, Ann Arbor is mostly self sufficient, but saying there is no reason for people there to come to the area is pretty false. People in Ann Arbor and Ypsi all the time come to the tri county area for shopping, concerts, festivals, events, casinos, museums, the aquarium, parks, pro sports, ect and even to go out to some restaurant or nightlife (although A2 has a pretty decent food and nightlife scene on it's own). And I know this because I know plenty of people who live in that county. Quite a few of them even work in or near Detroit. You can go out and about to any of these places I mentioned on any given weekend a meet people from the Ann Arbor area.
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Old 06-20-2017, 04:57 AM
 
Location: Windsor Ontario/Colchester Ontario
1,530 posts, read 1,467,990 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brodie734 View Post
I don't want to argue, especially as I usually find you quite agreeable and we are discussing subjective issues here, but I think a simple lumping of A2 in with Metro Detroit might be an issue because then the distance from other parts of Metro Detroit becomes prohibitive. The thing is, Ann Arbor is mostly self sufficient. I know people who were born and raised here and never went to Detroit, never went to the Detroit Zoo, never went to a concert at the Palace or DTE. We're not talking about boring ivory tower types, either. There is just very little incentive when you live here to go hang out elsewhere. Unless you really, really want to go see a certain concert, there's little incentive to trek to those concert venues. Unless you really like sports or Broadway type musicals there was no real reason to visit Detroit until the past decade. Most in the area, and you might not know this being a recent transplant, would agree that the Toledo Zoo is better than the Detroit Zoo and Ann Arbor is equidistant. Places like Ferndale and Royal Oak really have nothing that downtown Ann Arbor doesn't.

It may be kinda far from a lot of places, but it really doesn't need to be. Which is why I think it needs to be categorized separately (and it usually is, both here and in official docs where Metro Detroit is the tricounty area).

I think I will try my hand at the little form in the OP, though, for kicks.
I know that the city is pretty much self sufficient, but your assessment really makes Ann Arbor sound insular, snobbish and very provincial. Not very flattering at all, and I've been there quite a few times and like the city for the most Part!
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Old 06-20-2017, 07:36 AM
 
Location: Metro Detroit
1,786 posts, read 1,937,484 times
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Ann Arbor would be self-sufficient, I agree, but it absolutely benefits from proximity to Detroit. Contrast it with towns like State College, PA (2.5 hours from Pittsburgh) or South Bend, IN (2 hours from Chicago). Ann Arbor is a way better town than either of those, despite the universities all being relatively comparable. So yeah, Ann Arbor is self-sufficient, in the same way State College or South Bend are, but what makes Ann Arbor special is that it's located within one of the largest metros in the nation.

Playing around with the SEMCOG traffic map shows that traffic volumes on M14 or I94 west of Detroit are about the same as you'd find on M53 or I94 northeast of Detroit. Nobody would try to make the argument that northern Macomb County isn't part of Metro Detroit, but the number of people going to and from the region is similar to the number going to and from Washtenaw County. And this whole discussion really speaks to the snobbishness I'm talking about. Ann Arbor wants to make sure everyone knows it's separate. "Oh, we're not associated with the hoologans out east." It reminds of how Provo acts toward Salt Lake City or Irvine toward Los Angeles. C'mon guys, you're one continuous city, just because you're one of the nicer exurbs and have your own established industry and character doesn't actually mean you're not part of the greater city. Without the proximity and economic dependence to the large city, the small city wouldn't be quite what it is.

Regarding the median income number from craig's post, this is highly skewed by the number of <25 earning <$10,000 (many of whom come from relatively affluent families). While median income is indeed pretty average for Southeast Michigan, when you look at incomes by age or family size you see that those into their careers earn significant more than the average Michigan family. The median family of 4 in A2 earns $118,400 and 12.5% of families earn more than $200k per year. Those numbers are about on par with some of the more modestly upscale suburbs like Northville or Rochester Hills. We can cherry pick statistics to support an agenda all day, but the point is Ann Arbor is for the most part upper-middle class and one of the wealthier municipalities in the state, and the nation. This is not a bad thing, actually it's a very desirable thing, it only becomes bad when it takes on that certain unquantifiable attitude (Birmingham has it, Huntington Woods does not). This statement is purely subjective, but Ann Arbor has that attitude. That's why I don't particularly like it. It reminds me of Orange County or Northern Utah Valley.

A2 Income Numbers from CD - //www.city-data.com/income/inco...-Michigan.html
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Old 06-20-2017, 10:19 AM
 
Location: Windsor Ontario/Colchester Ontario
1,530 posts, read 1,467,990 times
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I definitely agree that Ann Arbor benefits from it's proximity to Detroit. That 4.5M people right next store that are available to come and visit all their stores and restaurants, really helps make the city that much more vibrant and busier than it would be if it were further away much more isolated! It is definitely a part of the Greater Detroit Region, even if it isn't formally a part of "Metro Detroit".

I find always have to go back and change the spelling of the city as I always spell it Ann Arbour, the Canadian way of spelling of the word arbour, lol.
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Old 06-20-2017, 10:57 AM
 
Location: Chicago
941 posts, read 847,050 times
Reputation: 1112
Quote:
Originally Posted by North 42 View Post
I know that the city is pretty much self sufficient, but your assessment really makes Ann Arbor sound insular, snobbish and very provincial. Not very flattering at all, and I've been there quite a few times and like the city for the most Part!
I don't really understand how that makes a place sound insular and snobbish. Don't get me wrong people don't think they're too good to go to Metro Detroit, they just don't need to. What is the benefit of going to Ferndale or Royal Oak if you live in Ann Arbor? That is 2 hours of driving just to get a very similar experience to downtown Ann Arbor itself. If you grew up in Ann Arbor prior to Detroit's resurgence in the past few years, what was the incentive to go there? The thinking in Michigan in the 1980s and 90s was that Ann Arbor was the closest thing the state had to a vibrant cosmopolitan city, which should tell you a lot. Parents would plead with their kids to consider moving to Ann Arbor instead of Chicago or New York or whatever, this isn't based on growing up in Ann Arbor these are things I observed in Livonia. Older generations around here are still more prone to thinking Ann Arbor is the coolest place around. I don't necessarily agree with that thinking, but if you've never encountered it in Metro Detroit then I would suggest talking to more people over the age of 30.

The issue is that the city is betwixt and between. It is the absolute fringe of anything that could be called Suburban Detroit, beyond that it is closer to Jackson and Lansing than most places in Suburban Detroit. You can argue that it's isolated from those things or you can argue that it's at the center of its own thing. All I am saying is that most people who live here see it as the latter or, to put it a way it was described to me by my girlfriend who grew up here, if you ask someone from Ann Arbor to picture downtown the first thought they would have is of State or Main Street in downtown Ann Arbor and not the Renaissance Center. Maybe that's insular, but I don't see why you should expect anything different considering the geography. There isn't any malice or snobbery involved from my perspective. You do still have those older people for whom Ann Arbor represented something more like what Detroit and Grand Rapids eventually became, but that is a dying ideology that is so clearly not supported by facts on the ground that I think you would be okay to just dismiss it
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