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Old 04-08-2007, 02:14 PM
21 posts, read 51,320 times
Reputation: 49


Hi there, I'm contemplating moving in about two years, after I finish my community college computer programming course. I'm wondering if people can suggest some locations that might be good for me.

Here's what I'm looking for:

- A meduim to largish city
- A "blue state" area (no offense intended to conservatives )
- An area with rental apartments/homes in a "nice" section of town (i.e. not a part covered with graffiti and strewn with broken glass--been there done that! Doesn't have to be ritzy, just not crimeridden) that I can afford on one income, probably on the less than $800 a month scale
- Preferably somewhere with a strong public transit system.
- Somewhere with a burning need for computer programmers would be nice
- My perfect climate: sunny warm/hot summers, not very cold winters (some snow is okay), and little humidity. I'm flexible on this, but that would be my IDEAL climate
- A nearby state college would be great, as I might complete an additional two years
- Preferably somewhere with nearby US Dog Agility Association competitions--I don't really expect everyone to know whether their city has this, I'm just throwing it out there in case anyone on the board happens to do agility, LOL. Must be USDAA, not AKC agility, because AKC doesn't allow mutts.

Right now I am considering Portland. It doesn't have the climate I want, but otherwise is pretty much what I'm looking for (although I'm not sure about apartment prices . . . I've looked online and found some I could afford there, but are they in a "good" section of town? I don't know.) I'm particularly impressed with their public transit. Someone also suggested Vancouver, WA too me, saying it would be cheaper to rent in than Portland but I could still go to Portland for events and shopping.

I've also considered St. Paul or somewhere else in Minnesota. I visited there frequently in the summer for up to a month at a time and I like its friendliness and quirkiness. However, I'm not sure I could handle the winters. (I visited once in the winter, for a funeral.) Intense cold bothers me. And, of course, the summers are very humid. I can put up with humidity, though, the cold aspect bothers me more. I also have a lot of relatives there--my folks were originally from MN. I like my relatives, but they're much more, ummm, "visity" than I am, so this could be both a pro and a con.

Any thoughts?
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Old 04-08-2007, 04:40 PM
Location: Wi for the summer--Vegas in the winter
653 posts, read 3,307,560 times
Reputation: 283
Austin Texas, maybe??
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Old 04-10-2007, 03:19 PM
Location: In exile, plotting my coup
2,408 posts, read 14,027,514 times
Reputation: 1866
Austin, Tucson and Denver are a few of the possibilities I can think of.
To handicap them given your criteria:

Blue area - Denver is the most liberal when referring strictly to the city limits, but Austin is right up there as well. Tucson leans liberal, but not to the same extend at the other cities. It's more moderate with a liberal streak.

Rents - Tucson offers the best deals and a one-bedroom in a decent area for $800 should be a piece of cake. Austin would be your next bet. Then Denver, where the prices could get pricey if you decide to stay in one of the more popular neighborhoods within the city.

Public transit - Denver wins out as it has light rail. The coverage area isn't incredibly extensive but it exists at the very least, and the city also has a large bus network. Austin and Tucson have buses as well, but are both mostly car cities. I would say that Austin however has more walkable parts than Tucson which is incredibly sprawly.

Computer programmers - Not sure about the specific need but all three cities have terrific economies and I'd imagine that both Austin and Denver, with their good number of high-tech companies, have a need for programmers.

Climate - Austin gets really humid in the summer though not QUITE as unbearable as much of Texas, and it's winters are mild. Tucson is scorching hot but with low humidity in summer, whereas it is nice the rest of the year. Denver has extremes. It's very sunny and dry but lots of snow in the winter and freak snowstorms in April or October aren't uncommon, and similarly temperatures soaring into the 100s aren't unheard of in summer. Weather is a bit of a wild ride there.

State college - Both Tucson and Austin are home to their state's flagship school, the most well-renowned in their state, and Denver has a good number of public schools within a short drive.

Can't help with the dog thing. I'm not sure if any of the above helped or just made things more confusing. Best of luck!
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