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Old 04-17-2009, 12:20 PM
 
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How about Metuchen? You could find a nice house for that, have a walkable downtown, parks, YMCA and direct line on the NE Corridor.
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Old 04-17-2009, 12:24 PM
 
Location: Central, NJ
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The traffic is much better in and out of PA through the Lincoln Tunnel. The traffic is bad for the downtown commute through the Holland. The Academy buses are quite comfortable but it would be a waste if you can't read.
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Old 04-17-2009, 12:40 PM
 
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I used to take the PATH train and I was wary of making the switch to the bus as well (I take a Community Coach bus). There IS traffic, but in the morning, there is an exclusive bus only lane on 495 into the Lincoln Tunnel, directly into the Port Authority. Also, the bus drivers are expert at cutting through traffic. After a year of taking the bus, I have found that there aren't any more incidents than with NJ Transit, and when there are traffic incidents, the bus drivers have detours and alternate routes. I have also found that the bus stays pretty faithful to the timetable (I thought it was going to be pretty unpredictable, but it's not at all).

There are advantages and disadvantages to everything, though. You might find that the bus stop in your NJ town is located inconveniently to your house. Maybe the timetable is not convenient with your schedule. Plus, every Wednesday & Friday there are extra tourists and theater goers in Times Square and the bus station.

But, I'm sure the Penn Station people here will tell you that the hordes of people they have to deal with on a daily basis isn't exactly a party either. I remember standing in a packed PATH train and looking out the window at the NJ Transit train on the next track over (this is outside the tunnels between JSQ and Harrison/Newark) and being surprised to see that it was just as jam packed with people as the PATH train, with people standing between cars and everything. In my year of riding the bus, I've had to stand ONCE (and with ample breathing room...I didn't have my head in some guy's armpit like in the PATH train). It's always clean, and the seats are plush on the bus.
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Old 04-17-2009, 02:12 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spacekungfuman View Post
What would be a realistic commute from these areas to midtown? I want an hour or less door to door. Right now I have 30 minutes door to door, so I don't want such a drastic change. . . We're also thinking about west chester, but I like the idea of NJ (grew up in morris county).

Edit: I want to point out that I'm not just trying to be spoiled regarding commute time. I have long hours (attorney), and want to be able to see my wife (and down the line kids) as much as possible. I also want to thank everyone for the helpful input.

From Maplewood and South Orange, Millburn, Short Hills and Summit you're looking at approx. 30 mins on the NJ transit train itself to Penn Station. The you've got to get to and from the station to work, so it's at least an hour of pretty hard work, and probably more.

And Penn Station is pretty grueling in the PM commute, but I'll let someone else chime in about that since I haven't done it in years

I have a relative in Bergen Co. (Haworth) who works long hours as an attorney and he drives into work every day over the GW bridge. For him, even though the commute is long, he likes the comfort and convenience of driving his own car, esp. when he's working late.
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Old 04-23-2009, 10:17 AM
 
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Originally Posted by tandcookies View Post
How about Metuchen? You could find a nice house for that, have a walkable downtown, parks, YMCA and direct line on the NE Corridor.
Metuchen is pretty nice, not overly expensive compared to a Westfield, for instance. It has a nice down town, eclectic mix of restaurants and shops, train service to NYC, and the residents are really friendly.

You also need to consider taxes - towns in Essex may have what appear to be reasonably priced homes, but the taxes can be sky high. Bergen county tends to have both, high property values and high taxes. Union - it depends on the town - Westfield is definitely one of the more upscale towns in the region - really beautiful - but there is a variety housing stock from which to choose.
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