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Old 04-03-2009, 01:47 PM
3 posts, read 10,589 times
Reputation: 13


I am a white, 58-year-old male who works for the State, presently near San Diego. Our agency may relocate to the State Building on Civic Center Plaza in Santa Ana. If that happens, I'm either will try to find another position in San Diego county or I may relocate.

If I move, I'm wondering if I should try and find a place as close as possible to Civic Center Plaza. From what I've heard, there is very little available parking, so I'm trying to find out options, such as commuting via bus or train...

I've also toyed with the idea of buying a small RV and living in it during the week and then returning to San Diego on the weekends. Are RVs allowed to park overnight on the street in Santa Ana, or do they get ticketed?

If I got a place in nearby Orange, how long would it take to commute via bus to Civic Center Plaza in Santa Ana?

Thank you.
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State Building, 28 Civic Center Plaza, Santa Ana-orange-county.gif   State Building, 28 Civic Center Plaza, Santa Ana-santa-ana-civic-center.gif  
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Old 04-03-2009, 02:44 PM
Location: Grosse Ile Michigan
30,708 posts, read 79,857,385 times
Reputation: 39453
THere is no train that goes downtown. You can take a train from many OC cities to the Santa Ana train station. It is just over a mile walk from the train station to you office.

Parking is really not that bad. It depends in part on whether you are willing to pay anything. There are quite a few garages a short walk away that never seem to get filled up completely.

Orange is a great place to live, especially near the Old Town circle. The OCTA busses are not too bad. My daughter used to ride one home from school once in a while. The time depends on where you live in Orange. The Circle is about 10 minutes from your work by car. I do not know the bus routes, but I would guess that it would take 20 minutes to half an hour on the bus. Some parts of Orange are as much as half an hour to forty minutes by car.

You might want to consider riding a bicycle. I lived in downtown Santa Ana and rode my bike to work often. My office was a block from where you will be working. I even rode in a suit and just put a rubber band around my pant legs to avoid getting greasey. On the or so three days a year that it rains, you have to make other arrangements. Also if you carry a lot of stuff, a bike becomes impractical. I did not bike becuase of parking issues, I just enjoyed it. If I had to carry a lot of stuff, I would often walk.

There are some pretty decent neighborhoods where you can live in Downtown Santa Ana. The nicest is Floral Park. French Park, Park Santiago, Wilshire Square and Washington Square are all reasonably decent. Not perfect, but liveable (for many people anyway). You could walk or ride your bike easily from any of these places. Park Santiago is a long hike maybe too long for some people.

You can also live in Fountain Valley and be reaosnably close, but you have to pass through part of Santa Ana formely known as the Combat Zone and still a little rough. Parts of Tustin are aslo reasonably close to downtown Santa Ana.

RVs are not tolerated in any decent neighborhood and you have a good chance of having criminal problems in any neighborhood that is likely to tolerate an RV. You might get away with it if you moved daily to a new location and never returned to the same place. In my old neighborhood (French Park) the neighors were very active and watchful and it is unlikely that you would stay one night without a visit from the police. You would want to be very careful. Parts of Santa Ana are pretty rough.

There are some new condos across from Main place mall that are in a pretty convenient location. (A park and a shopping mall accross the street, great freeway access, close to Orange and Santa Ana). That would be a longish walk to your office (almost two miles), but might be tolerable.

Keep in mind that Santa Ana is roughly 80% latino/hispanic. THe poverty levels are pretty high. That bothers some people. We enjoyed parts of the culture and hated other parts. Santa Ana has a somewhat higher crime rate than many adjoining cities, but we stayed out of the bad parts of town and never had any problem. We lived there for 9 years and raised 5 children and enjoyed living there a great deal. It is an odd city where you may see a millionaire taking a walk, a flock of chickens pecking at the asphalt, and a group of cruising gangbangers all on the same street.
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