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Old 04-26-2013, 11:48 AM
 
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What type of housing are you looking for? Apartment, single family house, condo? Do you want in the thick of it all or a quiet tree lined street?

For active areas with nice houses I would look in these general areas: Anything east of Governor Street and west of 1st Ave in Iowa City (north of highway 6). Iowa City east of Mormon Trek and west of Riverside, south of Melrose. Areas north of highway 6 in Iowa City where the river makes it's bend and traps a small residential area with beautiful houses for the most part (along Park, Rocky Creek).

If you want quieter tree lined streets than look anywhere in Coralville north of I-80, anywhere in North Liberty, anywhere eastof 1st Ave in Iowa City and anything west of Mormon Trek in Iowa City (western Iowa City is all very similar except west of Mormon you're into newer houses and a bit further from downtown) except maybe for those apartment complexes right around Mormon Trek and Melrose.
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Old 04-28-2013, 05:41 PM
 
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Thanks for the reply! I am pretty much open to anything. To start with an apartment or condo might be a good place to start and make sure things are going well before I buy a house. Mainly want to get a feel of the city, make sure the relocation is permanent, etc. I'd prefer somewhere on a quieter street, don't need to be in the center of things. From my understanding you could probably drive across the whole city in 15 - 20 mins or so, so I don't htink I'll be too far from anything. Like I said safety is more important than most things else, since traffic seems to be a non-issue compared to other places I've lived.

Thanks!
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Old 04-30-2013, 07:07 AM
 
3,492 posts, read 5,150,666 times
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I don't think you ever mentioned what is bringing you to the Iowa City area.

I thought I'd give a few updates to clarify a couple of seeming conflicts. The strip in coralville is bad, most of coralville is safe. The majority of coralville has pretty nice houses also. For renting, the best options are probably the apartments right off cherry creek in North Liberty. Those should run around 900/month for a 2bed/2bath. There are some near the post office that are cheaper, but the quality of the management plummeted over the last couple years. They went from being highly recommended and having a waiting list to no one I knew wanting to be there. It was strictly an issue with management.

If you have work between Iowa City and cedar rapids, I'd recommend CR instead, but you'd need a whole new thread of advice on which areas to live in for CR.

There is traffic in Iowa City, but if you are used to Atlanta's traffic this will seem very tame and be non-existent except for rush hour. Rush hour compared to Atlanta's rush hour will still be a joke. If you went to CR, there is no rush hour because the streets were built intelligently.

People that think these areas are not dangerous could use more real world experience dealing with bad areas. Experience with someone that can keep them safe so they don't get killed or raped, of course. There are "hoods" in chicago where you can plan to get yourself killed by going there. These aren't that bad but you are putting yourself at significant risk for bodily harm if you go there regularly. In my opinion, having a 10% chance that you'll be a victim of a significant crime by going there each day for a year or two is vastly too high of a risk level for my family. So while others may think "you probably won't die if you live there", I think "that risk is still way too high".

Gangs are less of an issue, but hoodlums are still common. The hoodlums just aren't organized into cohesive organized crime.

Some people have referenced mormon trek. You may want to check that area as well. I don't know the rental market, but there are some nice places around there.

Make sure you are preferred for the cold. I found a long string of reasons to want to avoid living in Iowa, but if you decide to do it, you'll want to be prepared.
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Old 05-04-2013, 05:44 PM
 
17 posts, read 84,167 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lurtsman View Post
I don't think you ever mentioned what is bringing you to the Iowa City area.

I thought I'd give a few updates to clarify a couple of seeming conflicts. The strip in coralville is bad, most of coralville is safe. The majority of coralville has pretty nice houses also. For renting, the best options are probably the apartments right off cherry creek in North Liberty. Those should run around 900/month for a 2bed/2bath. There are some near the post office that are cheaper, but the quality of the management plummeted over the last couple years. They went from being highly recommended and having a waiting list to no one I knew wanting to be there. It was strictly an issue with management.

If you have work between Iowa City and cedar rapids, I'd recommend CR instead, but you'd need a whole new thread of advice on which areas to live in for CR.

There is traffic in Iowa City, but if you are used to Atlanta's traffic this will seem very tame and be non-existent except for rush hour. Rush hour compared to Atlanta's rush hour will still be a joke. If you went to CR, there is no rush hour because the streets were built intelligently.

People that think these areas are not dangerous could use more real world experience dealing with bad areas. Experience with someone that can keep them safe so they don't get killed or raped, of course. There are "hoods" in chicago where you can plan to get yourself killed by going there. These aren't that bad but you are putting yourself at significant risk for bodily harm if you go there regularly. In my opinion, having a 10% chance that you'll be a victim of a significant crime by going there each day for a year or two is vastly too high of a risk level for my family. So while others may think "you probably won't die if you live there", I think "that risk is still way too high".

Gangs are less of an issue, but hoodlums are still common. The hoodlums just aren't organized into cohesive organized crime.

Some people have referenced mormon trek. You may want to check that area as well. I don't know the rental market, but there are some nice places around there.

Make sure you are preferred for the cold. I found a long string of reasons to want to avoid living in Iowa, but if you decide to do it, you'll want to be prepared.
Thanks for the feedback! When you say the strip is bad, do you mean it is bad to walk around in, live on, drive through, or all of the above? Is this true for the entirety of the strip or just that portion around 23rd and such? Because I plan to drive a significant majority of the time or possibly take the bus to campus/work if the weather is bad. So if I am coming home late at night, would the strip be dangerous to walk if need be? Are there any other pockets you'd avoid? Such as the far southeast side? I have heard conflicting things about that area too, that there are some complexes to avoid but at the same time there are many nice things in that area as well.

I will be coming to Iowa City to both take classes at UI and work as well. It will likely be for a 2-3 years, so my fiance may relocate as well, so I naturally want the best possible area.

Cold and snow is no problem at all for me, so that is the least of my worries!
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Old 05-05-2013, 09:43 PM
 
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Those are great questions.

I suppose the definition of the strip is one of the challenges. This refers to highway 6 that runs through Coralville. It starts near the UofI area, and I'd consider it to be ending at the coralville mall, though other long term residents may have a better definition. Knowing those terms was less of a concern to me than the actual areas Note: This street is also known as 2nd street.

Walking/living/driving: Driving down the strip is quite safe. No danger of car jacking or anything like that. Any damage that comes to you would likely be by a drunk driver, which is an ever present danger. Living - I would not consider living off the strip. I know most of it reasonably well. Walking - parts of it are perfectly safe to walk at night, other parts are not. Compared to some slum in Chicago, it is very safe. Compared to areas that are actually safe, it is not. If you're around 200 pounds and sport a beard, you're going to be relatively safe. If I was a woman (without a beard) I'd be much more careful.

Bus service to the parking lots works, but I wouldn't really want to rely on the bus as a way to get around. Some people do it, but it's much more effective in a big city with a strong bus infrastructure.

Other pockets I'd avoid: Clearly, anything that is a trailer. Most of Iowa City's inner areas I would avoid because I feel they are over priced, not because they are dangerous. The southeast - avoid it. Specifically where Highways 1 and 6 meet, don't live southeast of there. I had to do some work in those areas, and it's not good. There are some apartments that look like they might be okay (if you go searching, you'd figure out which ones I meant), but they are not. I witnessed a manager yelling at a tenant that had came into the office while I was there on business. Not good.

Where to live depends on how much money you have. If you can afford to rent a house, you either want the southwest part of iowa city(near 360) or the northeast part of coralville (Above I-80, in the general area of dubuque or 1st (yeah, I know, a street named "first" that is actually a nice area? North of I-80 it certainly becomes just that).

2-3 years, yes I imagine you'd want your fiance to be there with you. It's hard to spend so much time apart from someone you want to spend the rest of your life with.

If you don't have much money for rent, there are some condos off cherry creek next to a little lake. They seemed okay, but I never talked to the owners. To be clear, this is WEST of 965. Much of North Liberty is reasonably safe, but the cops don't respond quickly and the road infrastructure is inadequate for the growth of the city.

As a side note: If you had the option of attending school and working in a larger area, you might find more job opportunities for yourself and your fiance. This is also a great time to be buying a house, but the costs of selling means it wouldn't be worth it if you were only going to be there for 2 or 3 years. It would be really beneficial to be in the area you want to be in long term for housing as well as for networking opportunities. If you plan to leave in 2 to 3 years, the network you build from school and work will largely disappear when you leave. I usually advise people to be careful with the 2 to 3 year moves because it can be so hard to find good jobs when you land there, and again when you move away.
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Old 05-06-2013, 06:05 PM
 
11,289 posts, read 23,014,495 times
Reputation: 11164
Quote:
Originally Posted by lurtsman View Post
I don't think you ever mentioned what is bringing you to the Iowa City area.

I thought I'd give a few updates to clarify a couple of seeming conflicts. The strip in coralville is bad, most of coralville is safe. The majority of coralville has pretty nice houses also. For renting, the best options are probably the apartments right off cherry creek in North Liberty. Those should run around 900/month for a 2bed/2bath. There are some near the post office that are cheaper, but the quality of the management plummeted over the last couple years. They went from being highly recommended and having a waiting list to no one I knew wanting to be there. It was strictly an issue with management.

If you have work between Iowa City and cedar rapids, I'd recommend CR instead, but you'd need a whole new thread of advice on which areas to live in for CR.

There is traffic in Iowa City, but if you are used to Atlanta's traffic this will seem very tame and be non-existent except for rush hour. Rush hour compared to Atlanta's rush hour will still be a joke. If you went to CR, there is no rush hour because the streets were built intelligently.

People that think these areas are not dangerous could use more real world experience dealing with bad areas. Experience with someone that can keep them safe so they don't get killed or raped, of course. There are "hoods" in chicago where you can plan to get yourself killed by going there. These aren't that bad but you are putting yourself at significant risk for bodily harm if you go there regularly. In my opinion, having a 10% chance that you'll be a victim of a significant crime by going there each day for a year or two is vastly too high of a risk level for my family. So while others may think "you probably won't die if you live there", I think "that risk is still way too high".

Gangs are less of an issue, but hoodlums are still common. The hoodlums just aren't organized into cohesive organized crime.

Some people have referenced mormon trek. You may want to check that area as well. I don't know the rental market, but there are some nice places around there.

Make sure you are preferred for the cold. I found a long string of reasons to want to avoid living in Iowa, but if you decide to do it, you'll want to be prepared.
That's not really true. I'm in Chicago and have been in plenty of horrible neighborhoods multiple times. I never felt in fear of my own safety. 80% of murders are gang related, and anyway even in the very worst neighborhoods statistically 99.95% residents are NOT murdered every year.

Anyway, as far as Coralville, the strip is busy and sucks for walking, but it's perfectly safe from a crime stance (crime in Iowa City is very very low, especially violent crime). Traffic in Iowa City would be thought of as "busy" in most of the country, but never "horrible traffic". Even at rush hour going from one end of town to the other might take a few minutes longer at 5pm compared to 2am. There are a lot more cars on the road, but it doesn't get all clogged up or turn into parking lots where you sit for 20 minutes moving nowhere.

If I were making a list of things to look into when moving to Iowa City traffic wouldn't even be on it. It's not worth worrying about.
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Old 05-08-2013, 01:45 PM
 
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I guess the moving person will have to decide whom to trust about crime related issues in Iowa City. Your experience being in Chicago, or my experience having lived for several years in Iowa City recently and having my work put me in regular contact with many of those places.

You can say it's not true, but that is inaccurate. Statements of opinion are not true or false.
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Old 05-08-2013, 01:59 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lurtsman View Post
I guess the moving person will have to decide whom to trust about crime related issues in Iowa City. Your experience being in Chicago, or my experience having lived for several years in Iowa City recently and having my work put me in regular contact with many of those places.

You can say it's not true, but that is inaccurate. Statements of opinion are not true or false.
It's my understanding that the person you are referencing (Chicago60614) has grown up in Iowa City and still has his parents and family living in IC, who are/were working professionals in IC.
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Old 05-08-2013, 08:40 PM
 
11,289 posts, read 23,014,495 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iagal View Post
It's my understanding that the person you are referencing (Chicago60614) has grown up in Iowa City and still has his parents and family living in IC, who are/were working professionals in IC.
Yeah I grew up there for 22 years, still go back 6-7 times a year and know multiple police officers and teachers in schools around the district, etc. I'm not trying to say there ISN'T crime, but I've talked with other people like the OP who might be from Atlanta or Chicago and their opinions and idea of "crime" are normally on a much much more heightened level than someone who grew up in Iowa City. I just didn't want the OP to think there are swaths of the city that are totally off limits to enter or be near because of a constant level/fear of violent crimes. Same with the idea of "traffic". In Atlanta and Chicago you have to be extremely aware of where you live and where you work and how the expressways are and traffic to get you around. Many times it's well over an hour to move around town. Luckily in Iowa City it's just a non-issue.

Anyway, crime can and does happen, but overall you're very safe wandering around in Iowa City. Even if I walk down the street at 8pm on the southeast side it doesn't mean I'm being extremely stupid and putting myself in sudden danger. I have a friend who lives in that area and we walk around all the time. We're aware of our surroundings, but I'm not terrified of walking down some street over by Broadway.
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Old 05-09-2013, 01:06 AM
 
Location: Davenport, Iowa
2,467 posts, read 3,700,044 times
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Lol at the Coralville strip being unsafe.
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