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Old 05-11-2009, 01:58 AM
 
2 posts, read 11,111 times
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Hi everyone,

I'm moving from Washington, DC to Phoenix this fall. I will work at ASU and am wondering where to live. I am 30 years old and would prefer to be close to nice restaurants and a good bar scene. I currently live in Dupont Circle, in Washington DC.

I currently don't own a car, but I'm quickly realizing that not having one in Phoenix is not a realistic option (especially since I hate walking around a lot in the heat). So, I will buy a car and am looking for an apartment within decent driving distance (0-25 minutes) of ASU.

I have heard good things about the Mill Ave area in Tempe, but my understanding is that the apartment buildings in the immediate area are overrun by undergrads. I don't mind some noise or late nights (I usually go to sleep around 2 or 3am), but I think managers of properties that cater to undergrads tend to be short-sighted and the properties are not always kept in the best of condition. Thus, if I live in Tempe, I imagine I would be in a community 1-5 miles from campus. These communities, I imagine, are relatively isolated and the immediate surroundings won't have good restaurants, bars, etc. within walking distance. In other words, they will be nothing like Dupont Circle.

This leads to me to Scottsdale, which I have also heard good things about. But again, I am unsure whether there is good housing in the immediate vicinity of nice restaurants/bars.

I am looking for a 2BR/2BA apartment, and my price range is fairly wide (700 - 1300). I would obviously prefer to pay less than pay more, but I would be willing to pay on the high end for the "perfect" apartment. If anyone has any opinions on whether I should be looking at Tempe or Scottsdale, or if anyone can recommend specific buildings, that would be very helpful. I'm coming to town for Memorial day weekend and will begin my physical search then. Thank you.
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Old 05-11-2009, 09:22 AM
 
Location: Inside the 101
2,621 posts, read 6,718,533 times
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I already answered you on another site, but I'm cross-posting my answer just in case you check here first:

I'd recommend looking into Grigio Metro, a new apartment complex being built on Apache Boulevard. It's next to a light rail station, allowing a quick train ride of 5 minutes to the ASU Tempe Campus and a longer ride of 30 minutes to Downtown Phoenix. I don't think living there would completely eliminate your need for a car, but it would allow you to rely on the car much less and avoid ASU parking fees, which are substantial. Since it's a new building, upkeep isn't an issue yet, and it's targeting a higher rent bracket than the undergraduate market. As for restaurants and bars, that area is under redevelopment, so you'll have some good international restaurants (Middle Eastern, Indian, etc.) within walking distance but few bars. Fortunately, bars would be accessible via the train.

As for Scottsdale, walkability in Old Town Scottsdale is high, but there's no rail there (just like Georgetown is not a stop on the DC Metro). You could live there and rely on the 72 bus to get to and from ASU, though.
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Old 05-11-2009, 11:22 AM
 
2 posts, read 11,111 times
Reputation: 10
Thanks!!!
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Old 05-11-2009, 01:56 PM
 
17,842 posts, read 39,908,171 times
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I've been watching them build those.. They are essentially RIGHT UP AGAINST THE SIDEWALK. And, for whatever reason, they are taking forever to build. Given the prices they are charging at the Grigio up by the river, I'm sure these are more expensive than the average undergrad apt. But other than light rail convenience, the way the building is located and the "iffy" surrounding neighborhood are red flags, to me.
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Old 05-11-2009, 02:20 PM
 
Location: Inside the 101
2,621 posts, read 6,718,533 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by observer53 View Post
I've been watching them build those.. They are essentially RIGHT UP AGAINST THE SIDEWALK. And, for whatever reason, they are taking forever to build. Given the prices they are charging at the Grigio up by the river, I'm sure these are more expensive than the average undergrad apt. But other than light rail convenience, the way the building is located and the "iffy" surrounding neighborhood are red flags, to me.
"Right up against the sidewalk" is one of the best attributes of Grigio Metro. Eliminating setbacks allows for the buildings to cast more shade and makes them more approachable to pedestrians -- as opposed to suburban-style buildings with parking in front. We need more development like this, especially in areas near light rail stations.
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Old 05-11-2009, 02:47 PM
 
17,842 posts, read 39,908,171 times
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The shade created by the building is fine for the few people walking on the sidewalk, but the building so far looks like it will end up looking very unattractive. The shade from the building won't help the light rail (the parking garage for the light rail (and perhaps will also be for the apts -- I've only been in the garage once, four months ago) is just east of the apts. And I have no idea, from how it looks now, even where the building will be approachable by pedestrians from the McClintock or Apache side.

Doesn't change the "iffy" quality of the immediate neighborhood, either.

Between that building and the high-rise-prison-like architecture of the Barrett Honors College, and the other ugly new ASU building east of Rural, the newest construction along Apache leaves a LOT to be desired in terms of eye appeal.

We'll just have to wait and see, I guess, but I have wondered
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Old 05-11-2009, 03:00 PM
 
Location: Inside the 101
2,621 posts, read 6,718,533 times
Reputation: 2839
Quote:
Originally Posted by observer53 View Post
The shade created by the building is fine for the few people walking on the sidewalk, but the building so far looks like it will end up looking very unattractive. The shade from the building won't help the light rail (the parking garage for the light rail (and perhaps will also be for the apts -- I've only been in the garage once, four months ago) is just east of the apts. And I have no idea, from how it looks now, even where the building will be approachable by pedestrians from the McClintock or Apache side.

Doesn't change the "iffy" quality of the immediate neighborhood, either.

Between that building and the high-rise-prison-like architecture of the Barrett Honors College, and the other ugly new ASU building east of Rural, the newest construction along Apache leaves a LOT to be desired in terms of eye appeal.

We'll just have to wait and see, I guess, but I have wondered
We'll have to agree to disagree on this one. I think Apache right now is the model for successful transit-oriented development in the Phoenix Metro Area. Instead of focusing on speculative condo developments that never get done (as on Mill Avenue), the area is instead moving toward quality rental developments and a more walkable streetscape.
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