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Old 03-08-2011, 01:56 PM
 
4 posts, read 9,847 times
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We are two students who might be moving to the Philadelphia area in the fall, one to work in Philly and one to attend Widener University in Chester. Any advice on good places to live between the two, preferably very close to rail lines, as we will be without cars? I have a bike for getting around in town, and would prefer trains over buses for the ease of bringing a bike along if neccesary. I plan to bike between the Chester Transit station and Widener University whenever possible.

We've been looking at Eddystone, Ridley Park, Prospect Park, Norwood, Glenolden, Folcroft, Darby, and Colwyn, although I'm sure some of these are a little above our means. We don't need places with good schools or pristine neighborhoods, but somewhere safe enough to come home at night alone would be good. Somewhere with at least a small "green" or progressive community would be nice, as we are both vegans who like to eat at restaurants and shop at Trader Joe's!

When are you moving? Late summer.
Where are you coming from? Lexington, KY
Why are you moving? Attending Widener University
Where will you be working? One of us will be at Widener, the other hopefully working in Philadelphia
Have you been here yet? No!

Will you buy or rent?: Rent.
If renting, are you looking for an apartment, a townhouse or loft? : Looking for any type of two bedroom space.
How much can you spend?: As little as possible! Under $1000, if feasible.
Do you prefer hi-rise or walk up?: either, as long as there is safe bike storage.

Are you married or single? Single, but two of us.
Do you have children? No
Do you have pets? 2 cats.
Do you want or need a yard? Wouldn't mind one, but would also be happy with a balcony or shared deck of some kind.
Are you keeping a car? No, if we can find a place close to a Regional Rail line.
Do you prefer bustling activity or calm and quiet? Either is fine, although trees and parks nearby would be highly appreciated!

What do you want to be closest to?
Work
Shopping
Basic services (supermarket, drugstore, etc.)
Nightlife
Train or subway stations
: Train or subway stations running between Chester and Philly.

Do you want to live with people of a similar age, race, religion or sexual preference or do you prefer a diverse neighborhood?: Doesn't really matter, as long as it is affordable on two student budgets! (I.e. on next to nothing.)

Coke or Pepsi?: Organic vegan soy milk

Thanks for your help!

Last edited by erin&don; 03-08-2011 at 03:13 PM.. Reason: adding info
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Old 03-08-2011, 02:26 PM
 
584 posts, read 1,426,661 times
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Well, none of these neighborhoods are going to be "green". Of the areas you list you'd be fine looking at: Ridley Park, Prospect Park, Norwood, Glenolden. I'm sure you'll find something in your budget in these areas, but I'm not so sure whether these areas would fit your lifestyle. I don't know that you'll find a green community in these areas and the closest Trader Joe's is in Media (which would actually be a really good fit with what you're looking for in terms of a neighborhood). Without a car, it wouldn't be very convenient to shop here regularly (the Trader Joe's is accessible via the R3 train line, or the 101 trolley line). The Train line you're looking to live along is the R2.

You might actually be able to find something for $1K or under downtown, have you thought about living in Center City. You could look, for instance in University City so that whomever is community to Widener can hop on the train at 30th St.
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Old 03-08-2011, 02:42 PM
 
Location: a swanky suburb in my fancy pants
3,391 posts, read 8,790,149 times
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That entire area is solid working class, safe and stable but not fancy and as afordable as any suburb in the metro. However you can't reach Wiedner by train. You have to take a bus from the train station in downtown Chester to the University. (Chester itself is pretty bad, not a place to be after dark.)
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Old 03-08-2011, 02:57 PM
 
1,030 posts, read 3,419,766 times
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Delaware County... GREEN! ROFL!!

On a serious note, Glenolden is nice and dense, with lots of stores along McDade Blvd, and good bus service.

I would start there.

And to let you know.. you may be in for a bit of a culture shock along the Wilmington line (old R2 line.)
These are the older, more worn, provincial Philadelphia suburbs, and river towns (Chester.) It's not a green area at all, as you'll see more refineries and old industry than you may have ever seen in your life.

I still love Delco though
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Old 03-08-2011, 02:58 PM
 
584 posts, read 1,426,661 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bryson662001 View Post
That entire area is solid working class, safe and stable but not fancy and as afordable as any suburb in the metro.
I actually wouldn't classify the entire area as safe and stable. For instance, I would not recommend Darby to anyone that has the option to live elsewhere. It has not been a nice area for a very long time. Ditto for Colwyn. Folcroft is ok, there is nothing that would really draw anyone to his area other than it's affordable. The other areas the poster is looking at are all around better areas...just not especially progressive by any means.
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Old 03-08-2011, 03:05 PM
 
4 posts, read 9,847 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by templeu View Post
You might actually be able to find something for $1K or under downtown, have you thought about living in Center City. You could look, for instance in University City so that whomever is community to Widener can hop on the train at 30th St.
Thanks! That's a good idea. I know nothing about the area, so any advice for places that aren't unreasonably far away from Widener is really helpful. University City looks like it might be a great fit for us, if we can find somewhere affordable around there.
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Old 03-08-2011, 03:09 PM
 
4 posts, read 9,847 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe84323 View Post
It's not a green area at all, as you'll see more refineries and old industry than you may have ever seen in your life.
Yeah, that's the impression I've been getting from looking at info about Chester! That's why I'm trying to find somewhere nicer to live that I can still commute to Widener from, since going there is my whole reason for moving to the area. I can deal with industry just fine, but I want to see a tree or two out my bedroom window.
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Old 03-08-2011, 04:39 PM
 
584 posts, read 1,426,661 times
Reputation: 240
Quote:
Originally Posted by erin&don View Post
Yeah, that's the impression I've been getting from looking at info about Chester! That's why I'm trying to find somewhere nicer to live that I can still commute to Widener from, since going there is my whole reason for moving to the area. I can deal with industry just fine, but I want to see a tree or two out my bedroom window.
Most of the neighborhoods along the R2 line that you've mentioned have green spaces (e.g., homes with yards, trees, neighborhood parks). But what you won't necessarily find is a town-wide conscience towards "green lifestyles" (where green = sustainable). Nor will you find a plethora (if any) vegetarian restaurants. Those neighborhoods will also be affordable. You will have 0 problem finding a 2 bedroom for well under 1,000 /month.
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