U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Covid-19 Information Page
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Iowa > Iowa City
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
 
Old 02-22-2009, 11:47 AM
 
14 posts, read 41,973 times
Reputation: 17

Advertisements

I have been accepted into the Iowa Writer's Workshop but have never so much as even driven through IC. My Iowa knowledge, sadly, is bound by I-35; however, I'm excited to get back to the Midwest!

Rent/where to live:
What's average for a 1 bedroom w/in walking distance to campus? I am from Kansas City, currently live in Austin, Texas, and am used to shelling out $700-$750 for 600sq.ft, so I'm hoping I'll be pleasantly surprised at lower rents!
Is it hard to find places that allow dogs? I have a 20lb terrier I refuse to give up. Should I expect pet rent?
What area would be best for a grad student? I don't mind traffic noise at all but screaming undergrads running under my window at 3:00am is not ideal. :-)
Will I need to pay for a parking spot?
What neighborhoods are most walkable in general?

Culture:

I got my BA at the University of Kansas in Lawrence, Kansas (though I lived in KC and commuted due to work). I've been told that IC is similar to Lawrene as far as its art/music "vibe." Can anyone comment on that?
Do you tend to get mostly local/fledgling bands or do higher profile acts come through frequently?
Austin is far and away less diverse than KC. Will IC trump Austin?
Can I expect good restaurants? (Do you have any awesome middle eastern/thai/chinese/vietnamese/korean restaurants!? Please say yes to one! Austin doesn't really, and it pains me! ha)
Is IC more hippie dip or indie or greek, or a good mix?
What about vintage/resale clothing stores?
This is odd, but hold on before you shake your head--I have entirely too much fun with fashion and not only like being in an environment where that's appreciated and encouraged, but I sell clothes I make sometimes. Is IC a town where people will stop me while i'm out on a saturday night and ask about my clothes and I can palm off a business card and make some extra cash, or are people not really interested in that kind of thing?
Organic grocers?
Can I get Boulevard Wheat on tap anywhere? :-)

Etc:
How tiny does IC feel for those of you from large metros?
What is traffic like?
Bus system? Both the school and the metro?
How much snow do you guys get over winter? I know it's more consistant than KC. I've got 4wd and don't mind driving in the snow at all, just curious.
Anything else you want to tell me? :-)

Thanks!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 02-22-2009, 04:11 PM
 
Location: Johnston, IA
70 posts, read 253,284 times
Reputation: 30
I havent lived in I.C. for about 8 years, but my guess is that $600-$700 for a 1 BR is probably spot on. I would NOT say it is lower if you want to live near campus.

I would say a good mix, the greek life is not too prominent, compared to other Big Ten schools.

There is an organic Coop on the east side of campus/downtown, the name escapes me.

Boulevard is in every Iowa city Ive lived in...

Traffic isnt bad, but parking is brutal around downtown/campus
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-22-2009, 08:46 PM
 
Location: Coralville/Ames, IA
267 posts, read 1,122,786 times
Reputation: 167
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pipermackie View Post
I have been accepted into the Iowa Writer's Workshop but have never so much as even driven through IC.
First of all, congratulations! The Writer's Workshop is excellent, so many talented authors have come out of it. (Iowa City is one of the UNESCO's three World Cities of Literature because of it, the only such city in North America so far.)

I will attempt to answer as many of your questions as I can, but I don't know much about rent and other apartment things because I don't live in one...if I didn't answer a question you asked it's because I didn't know.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pipermackie View Post
What neighborhoods are most walkable in general?
I use this site to give a rough estimate: Get Your Walk Score - A Walkability Score For Any Address
The most walkable areas are the ones closest to Downtown. North (the Northside neighborhood) and east of downtown would be especially walkable.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pipermackie View Post
I got my BA at the University of Kansas in Lawrence, Kansas (though I lived in KC and commuted due to work). I've been told that IC is similar to Lawrene as far as its art/music "vibe." Can anyone comment on that?
Do you tend to get mostly local/fledgling bands or do higher profile acts come through frequently?
They are similar, but I think Lawrence wins in this category. Lawrence gets far more concerts than Iowa City due to its proximity to a larger metro (KC). Iowa City's concerts are mostly local groups, but occasionally we'll get some cool indie groups. I've seen Grizzly Bear, Bon Iver, Cursive, Band of Horses, Wilco, and Andrew Bird here within the last 2 years if you are familiar with any of those. This April, we're holding the 2nd annual Mission Creek Festival, with acts like GZA (of Wu-Tang Clan fame), The Mountain Goats, No Age, Beach House, and some others.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pipermackie View Post
Austin is far and away less diverse than KC. Will IC trump Austin?
Probably. This is mostly because Iowa City is so much smaller than either Austin or KC. Walking around on campus, it feels diverse, but statistically we have a higher percentage of white people than either Austin or KC, by about 30%.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pipermackie View Post
Can I expect good restaurants? (Do you have any awesome middle eastern/thai/chinese/vietnamese/korean restaurants!? Please say yes to one! Austin doesn't really, and it pains me! ha)
I think we have all of those types of restaurants here, but I haven't been to some of them. Middle Eastern: There is a restaurant called Nile Valley which serves middle eastern food, we also have an Ethiopian/Eritrean restaurant downtown and a falafel place in Northside. Chinese: My favorite chinese restaurant closed (Yen Ching! *sigh*), but Aoeshe and Jade Sisters are both quite good. Aoeshe also has Japanese and Korean dishes. I think we have Thai and Vietnamese restaurants but I have never been to them. I like our restaurants here, but that is just my opinion.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pipermackie View Post
What about vintage/resale clothing stores?
Ragstock is our main "vintage" clothing store, it's downtown. Second Act (on the SE side of town) is quite nice as well, it's more of a vintage consignment place while Ragstock is more trendy, new but vintage-looking clothes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pipermackie View Post
Organic grocers?
The name Mastermind is searching for is "New Pioneer Co-Op". They have two locations, one on Van Buren downtown and one in Coralville.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pipermackie View Post
What is traffic like?
You're coming from a large metro, so it will probably be laughable to you. Traffic is never terrible except on game days, rush hour traffic is (as it is in every metro) fairly heavy headed out from downtown but nothing too bad. It really wouldn't ever take you more than 30 minutes to get from downtown to anywhere else in the IC/Coralville area. (Unless there's an ice storm...)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pipermackie View Post
Bus system? Both the school and the metro?
There are three bus systems in the IC metro: Iowa City, Coralville, and Cambus (the UI's bus). You can definitely get to anywhere you would need to go using a bus if you wanted to. All of the buses have stops at Old Capitol Town Center, so from there you could really go anywhere. It's not the most convenient way of getting around IC, but it definitely works. I always recommend having a car, but you may not need it daily or even in a few days.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pipermackie View Post
How much snow do you guys get over winter? I know it's more consistant than KC. I've got 4wd and don't mind driving in the snow at all, just curious.
We get an average of 30" of snow each year, compared to about 20" in Kansas City. I honestly don't think you'll find it too much different from KC, but obviously we do get more.

If you need any more elaboration on any of these, let me know. I'm glad to help if I can
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-23-2009, 11:05 AM
 
Location: Chariton, Iowa
681 posts, read 2,807,698 times
Reputation: 446
So many questions! Here's some short answers to add to what everyone else is saying.

Rent/where to live:
What's average for a 1 bedroom w/in walking distance to campus? I am from Kansas City, currently live in Austin, Texas, and am used to shelling out $700-$750 for 600sq.ft, so I'm hoping I'll be pleasantly surprised at lower rents!
I would say average rent on a one bedroom is around $500-600, with some "luxury" apartments for $700 or more.
Is it hard to find places that allow dogs? I have a 20lb terrier I refuse to give up. Should I expect pet rent?
It is somewhat hard to find places that take pets. But since you have a little guy, you should be able to find something. You'll probably have to pay a "pet deposit" though.
What area would be best for a grad student? I don't mind traffic noise at all but screaming undergrads running under my window at 3:00am is not ideal. :-)
Look for apartments in the Northside/Goosetown neighborhoods first, then maybe College Green. Avoid S. Johnson St, S. Van Buren, S. Dodge St. Those are the areas with big "student slum" complexes.
Will I need to pay for a parking spot?
Maybe.
What neighborhoods are most walkable in general?
Again, check the Northside and College Green. Anything close to downtown is quite walkable.

Culture:

I got my BA at the University of Kansas in Lawrence, Kansas (though I lived in KC and commuted due to work). I've been told that IC is similar to Lawrene as far as its art/music "vibe." Can anyone comment on that?
I've never been to Lawrence, but I imagine it is pretty similar.
Do you tend to get mostly local/fledgling bands or do higher profile acts come through frequently?
Mostly local or regional bands--out of Chicago or Minneapolis a lot of the time. Higher profile acts do come through sometimes (see iowegian's impressive listing). Overall, a good scene, not great.
Austin is far and away less diverse than KC. Will IC trump Austin?
See iowegian's comment, nailed it.
Can I expect good restaurants? (Do you have any awesome middle eastern/thai/chinese/vietnamese/korean restaurants!? Please say yes to one! Austin doesn't really, and it pains me! ha)
Yep. IC has a good-sized Asian/Middle Eastern community, and has the restaurants to go with it.
Is IC more hippie dip or indie or greek, or a good mix?
IC and UI are surprisingly non-Greek, IMO. Outside of that, I would say "indie", maybe. There are quite a few hippies, but we're not really urban enough to have a huge "hipster" crowd.
What about vintage/resale clothing stores?
Ragstock, Second Act, Stuff Etc. are all good. The Goodwills in town also get a lot of cool stuff.
This is odd, but hold on before you shake your head--I have entirely too much fun with fashion and not only like being in an environment where that's appreciated and encouraged, but I sell clothes I make sometimes. Is IC a town where people will stop me while i'm out on a saturday night and ask about my clothes and I can palm off a business card and make some extra cash, or are people not really interested in that kind of thing?
Maybe? I think most people here are probably too reserved to stop you on the street and gush about clothes, though. There are several local businesses that would probably be interested in selling your clothes though.
Organic grocers?
Yep. Check out New Pi, you'll like it.
Can I get Boulevard Wheat on tap anywhere? :-)
Wouldn't surprise me. There are a whole lot of bars around, one of them's bound to have it.

Etc:
How tiny does IC feel for those of you from large metros?
I'm not from a large metro, but to me, IC feels "big" for it's size. It's surprisingly urban for a city of only about 70k.
What is traffic like?
Eh...I think it's kinda bad, but I don't have a very big frame of reference. Iowa City's an old town, and there are places where the streets seem overcrowded (Burlington St, Clinton, Dodge, Riverside, 1st Ave in Coralville), especially at rush hour.
Bus system? Both the school and the metro?
Very good.
How much snow do you guys get over winter? I know it's more consistant than KC. I've got 4wd and don't mind driving in the snow at all, just curious.
More consistent? I'm not sure what you mean. It really varies, year to year. This winter hasn't been too bad (3-4 snow storms), but last year was awful.
Anything else you want to tell me? :-)
Nope. Take a weekend off, and come and visit. Get a feel for the place, and make the most of your time at the UI!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-24-2009, 08:18 AM
 
Location: Des Moines, IA
1,744 posts, read 6,706,925 times
Reputation: 1208
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pipermackie View Post
. I've been told that IC is similar to Lawrene as far as its art/music "vibe." Can anyone comment on that?
Do you tend to get mostly local/fledgling bands or do higher profile acts come through frequently?


I think Iowa City tends to get more local/fledgling bands or more established underground acts. The last couple bands I've seen out there were Madball in 2007 and Murder City Devils in 2000. I don't get out there too often, but as far as venues go there's The Picador and The Mill. I've never been to the Mill, but I think it's supposed to be a little classier and a little more folk-orientated than The Picador which is more indie. There used to be some cool record stores in Iowa City, but I'm not so sure anymore. I guess I'm not really sure what sort of music you're into though. Myself, I'm mainly into stuff like punk, hardcore, Oi! and there's not much of that going on in Iowa City these days.

Bands to check out in Iowa City: Public Property. These guys are pretty popular in Iowa City. Reggae band with a few other influences. They play some covers and styles from the pre Jah-Jah and hippie days of reggae, but mainly have the hippie vibe and audience going for them.

Pinebox Rhythmn Revue: Kind of an Iowa City band. Friends of mine. Interesting show and very ecclectic.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-24-2009, 11:40 AM
 
14 posts, read 41,973 times
Reputation: 17
Awesome responses, guys! I'm sad I won't be there in April to see the Mountain Goats. Can't wait to come check IC out.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-26-2009, 08:50 PM
 
37 posts, read 143,221 times
Reputation: 41
I don't know any of the answers, but I wanted to say that I LOVE your questions. They're relevant to real life and the answers told me more about the area than looking at a bunch of dry statistics.

And many thanks to Iowegian for the Walk Score link.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 02-26-2009, 11:00 PM
 
1,911 posts, read 3,318,835 times
Reputation: 911
Very liberal college town, probably has the strongest "liberal vibe" in the Big Ten. At least it did from what I remember.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-01-2009, 08:43 AM
 
Location: Coralville/Ames, IA
267 posts, read 1,122,786 times
Reputation: 167
Quote:
Originally Posted by SharpHawkeye View Post
This is odd, but hold on before you shake your head--I have entirely too much fun with fashion and not only like being in an environment where that's appreciated and encouraged, but I sell clothes I make sometimes. Is IC a town where people will stop me while i'm out on a saturday night and ask about my clothes and I can palm off a business card and make some extra cash, or are people not really interested in that kind of thing?
Maybe? I think most people here are probably too reserved to stop you on the street and gush about clothes, though. There are several local businesses that would probably be interested in selling your clothes though.
I just remembered this: you should definitely check out White Rabbit when you visit. They specialize in local and regional artists' fashions. You could talk to them (or email them) about selling your works there, I'm sure they would be interested. Here's their myspace with a bit more info: MySpace.com - White Rabbit - 28 - Female - IOWA CITY, IOWA - www.myspace.com/whiterabbitgallery

They're on S. Linn just a few doors down from the Public Library.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-07-2009, 04:44 AM
 
Location: Wisconsin
6 posts, read 22,652 times
Reputation: 13
Depending on how important it is for you to walk to school, you may want to consider living a little bit further away from the downtown pedestrian mall area. This is the area with all of the bars, and there will be a lot of undergrads out until 3 AM Thursday - Saturday. There are a few options for living around the intersection of Melrose Ave and Morman Trek (on the west side of town). This would be a bus or bike ride to campus. Being on the west side is nice b/c you are closer to Coralville, which has shopping and restaurant options. If you drive to campus, you can usually park on a side street within a few blocks for free. There are also parking ramps on campus.

As someone already mentioned, the busing system in Iowa City is great. Also, cab rides are very cheap, so if you live away from the downtown area and need a ride home after a night out, that is the way to go. There is also a dog park in Iowa City.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Options
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2016 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Iowa > Iowa City
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2020, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top