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Old 03-02-2011, 02:25 PM
 
Location: London, England
643 posts, read 1,027,002 times
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This may sound very broad but what is the city like to live in.

Good/bad areas etc...
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Old 03-03-2011, 06:41 AM
 
Location: Grand Rapids Area
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I'm not a native here myself but I find Grand Rapids to be an amazing town. The culture and opportunities are more on par with cities usually twice its population (GR is a little under 200k pp) Grand Rapids is the largest of the West Michigan cities and collectively we hover about 800k-1 million people, between Holland, Muskegon and Grand Rapids. The lakeshore (lake Michigan) is only 30 minutes away and the average commute is 15 minutes to work. I help a lot of people relocate to GR and they always laugh when natives talk about "the traffic" - its truly a city with solid infrastructure (except the potholes this time of year.) I've relocated people from all over the world and the US and they all seem to say one thing: the people are firendly, and its a good community feel.
If you want to know more, let me know.
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Old 03-04-2011, 08:31 AM
 
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I'm not from Grand Rapids either but lived there for 7 years. It's a good place. While it won't keep you as busy as larger cities, there is enough going on to keep you from getting bored. It's convenient, ridiculously affordable, and has some solid restaurants.

It has it's problems like any any city, but it's generally safe, clean etc etc.

It looks like you are in London, and if that is the case GR is def. going to be a change of pace, so keep that in mind.
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Old 03-04-2011, 09:27 AM
 
Location: London, England
643 posts, read 1,027,002 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jandur View Post
I'm not from Grand Rapids either but lived there for 7 years. It's a good place. While it won't keep you as busy as larger cities, there is enough going on to keep you from getting bored. It's convenient, ridiculously affordable, and has some solid restaurants.

It has it's problems like any any city, but it's generally safe, clean etc etc.

It looks like you are in London, and if that is the case GR is def. going to be a change of pace, so keep that in mind.

You say change of pace, how so?
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Old 03-04-2011, 11:24 AM
 
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It's just a smaller and slower-paced city. It doesn't have the same energy and hustle of a larger city, which isn't a bad thing depending who you ask. It's not very dense and only a couple small parts of it are urban at all. The vast majority of Grand Rapids is suburban, house, lawn, cars etc.

I've only been to London once, and it was for 3 days, but it's night and day. London has like 7+ million people and is a world class city. Grand Rapids has 200k people and is limited because of that. Now, for a city of that size, it is probably one of the best.

On the flip side Grand Rapids is cheap, commute times are short, you can camp, hunt, fish etc without going very far (if thats your thing). They do have a symphony, ballet, art museum and a lot of good things. It's like mini-version of a large city, if that makes sense.
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Old 03-04-2011, 11:34 AM
 
Location: London, England
643 posts, read 1,027,002 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jandur View Post
It's just a smaller and slower-paced city. It doesn't have the same energy and hustle of a larger city, which isn't a bad thing depending who you ask. It's not very dense and only a couple small parts of it are urban at all. The vast majority of Grand Rapids is suburban, house, lawn, cars etc.

I've only been to London once, and it was for 3 days, but it's night and day. London has like 7+ million people and is a world class city. Grand Rapids has 200k people and is limited because of that. Now, for a city of that size, it is probably one of the best.

On the flip side Grand Rapids is cheap, commute times are short, you can camp, hunt, fish etc without going very far (if thats your thing). They do have a symphony, ballet, art museum and a lot of good things. It's like mini-version of a large city, if that makes sense.

You have pretty much described my haven! Where i currently live is so busy it's a joke, i'm looking to downsize bigtime (but not to a useless, crappy place that isn't going anywhere).
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Old 03-04-2011, 02:26 PM
 
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In that case Grand Rapids is probably a great fit for you. The area gets better year after year and continues to expand its offerings to people in the area.
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Old 03-04-2011, 04:32 PM
 
357 posts, read 956,399 times
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Grand Rapids is a progressive city. Many people will say that it is Dutch and conservative, but from what I have seen, the city seems to be always pushing forward, and in the right direction, for example, green construction, transit, bicycle friendly, planning, events, free live music...

The downtown has been expanded and it has new (night)life, as well as one of the best breweries in the world. There is an expanding arts scene. You can walk from a downtown high rise to the river and fish for salmon in a river that is highly rated as a fishing destination. Hopefully soon there will be a whitewater kayak run (that may take a while though). There is discussion to add a trolley system to parts of the town. You can drive an hour to wilderness hiking areas such as the North Country Trail in the Manistee Forest. You can drive for less than an hour and be at Lake Michigan resort towns with some of the nicest beaches in the world.

Downsides? There are a lot of poor people. There is some crime, I believe that crime is down though (?). A lot of the shopping is out in suburban areas.
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Old 03-05-2011, 01:51 PM
 
Location: Grand Rapids Metro
8,885 posts, read 18,144,558 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LondonUSA View Post
You have pretty much described my haven! Where i currently live is so busy it's a joke, i'm looking to downsize bigtime (but not to a useless, crappy place that isn't going anywhere).
I think you'll like it then. I know a couple of people from England living here. One is an atheist, so he has a little trouble w/ how "Christian" Americans are.
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Old 03-05-2011, 05:36 PM
 
Location: London, England
643 posts, read 1,027,002 times
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Originally Posted by magellan View Post
I think you'll like it then. I know a couple of people from England living here. One is an atheist, so he has a little trouble w/ how "Christian" Americans are.
I should do a little better then! I'm not quite Athiest but i don't care for religion but also don't push my beliefs on others.

Is Grand Rapids quite religious then? I never really think of the Northern States being that religious.
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