U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Covid-19 Information Page
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Maine > Portland area
 [Register]
Portland area Portland, ME metro area
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 03-05-2009, 10:05 AM
 
3 posts, read 6,954 times
Reputation: 10

Advertisements

My boyfriend and I have fell in love with Portland and Maine in general.We have been frequent visitors and exploring all parts of the state for the past couple of years. We have decided to relocate to the Portland area - but with the current economy are hesitant about finding employment. Is Maine ( Portland area) better than RI? RI has just reached 10.5 % unemployment rate and rapidly growing.

I am an artist and my boyfriend makes electric wooden guitars - music and art are a huge part of our life! It would be great if we could find a place in Portland with a garage to convert/use use as studio space...Am I asking too much?

Any was has any suggestions for good recruiters/temp agencies or suggestions for employment - studio space would be welcomed and much appreciated!

We would love to hear from you!

Last edited by providencegirl; 03-05-2009 at 10:41 AM..
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 03-05-2009, 02:15 PM
 
Location: East Boston, MA
9,322 posts, read 17,379,463 times
Reputation: 10989
Hi.

I'm currently living in Portland but I spent a good chunk of my life living on George Street in Providence. So I think I can help. At least I can contribute my opinion.

Rhode Island's economy is bad. It's not just bad, it's the second worst in the nation (Michigan being number 1 but not by much). That being said, Portland doesn't have a reputation for having the best economy either... even in good times. It's consistently mediocre in Portland and as such is not subject to the boom and bust cycles (at least not to the same extent) that many other places (like Providence) are. In the end, neither town is an ideal place to have to look for jobs right now, but Providence (especially given the size of Providence and proximity to other areas) will likely be more consistent in that regard for the long term. No idea about temp agencies in the area... someone else should be able to help you there.

As far as studio space goes, I think you'd actually have better luck finding that in Portland than Providence and it'll probably cost you less here too. Portland is small and most of the city outside of the downtown core is very suburban in set up. There are an abundance of older houses (with excellent historic and architectural integrity) with small yards and garage space in Portland and many of them available at reasonable prices. So, depending on your budget, I don't think you're asking for too much.

When all is said and done, I prefer Providence by a relatively large margin. I love that Providence is and feels a LOT larger than Portland. Portland's population is about 63,000 in the city and 250,000 in the metro area while Providence has about 180,000 in the city and 1.6 Million in the metro area. The size means that there is a bit more of everything in Providence than there is in Portland. That goes for healthcare, arts, dining, nightlife, etc. The pace is slower in Portland and I miss the faster pace of Southern New England. Portland really has the feel of a large town more than a city given the small size and "closeness" of the area... it seems everyone knows each other everywhere here. Furthermore, the "buy local" culture is not something I like... if feels provincial in many ways to me and I don't enjoy it (but I certainly understand why others would like that). I miss the cultural diversity and grit of the parts of Providence that had it as well... they really give it a sense of urbanity which is something Portland, well, lacks (though I hear it used to have some grit a few years back). The arts are good in both towns. There is a broader representation of different styles of art in Providence than Portland, but that can be attributed to the different sizes of the cities. Portland's arts scene is well supported and very good given the size of the town.

The nightlife in Portland is VERY different than in Providence. Nie0214 says that the Old Port is similar to Thayer Street, and I can see the similarities. I, however, prefer Thayer Street (I'm a little biased, I used to live a block away) and I'll tell you why. Thayer street is entertaining, as can be the Old Port. The Old Port even has about the same number of and style of venues that the Old Port has. The difference is that the Old Port is the CENTERPIECE of Portland's nightlife while Thayer is just complement to Providence's nightlife. Sure, Portland has a few small venues just outside of the small Old Port area, but the VAST majority of Portland's nightlife is concentrated to a tiny 1.5 block area around Wharf Street and it's essentially a pub/ dive bar scene (each offering either live music, a dj and small dance floor or no music and a social environment). In Providence, Thayer street has all of that, but Wickendon has the best pubs, Downtown has the big, loud dance clubs, Atwells has the trendy upscale lounges and there's a smattering of different venues mixed in other areas of Providence. The variety that you have in Providence simply doesn't exist in Portland.

I'll also mention that while the Old Port is devoid of many chains, Dunkin Donuts exists in the heart of the Old Port (Fore at Exchange) and other areas around downtown Portland... there's no shortage of them. There are some other chains in the Old Port as well (You'll be familiar with Ri-Ra which they have in Portland's Old Port as well as downtown Providence), but not even nearly enough to take away the character of the area which is quiet, laid back and overall pleasant. Shopping in the Old Port reminds me of sort of a poor man's Downtown Newport RI ("poor man's" in that it's far less exclusive and ritzy). It's a nice area.

Portland has good restaurants for such a small place, but it's not even in the same league as Providence in that regard. Providence has a vast array of dining options that really make it an excellent place in that regard. I miss everything about eating in Providence from the brick oven gourmet pizzas at Al Forno, to Greek at Andreas, to Ribs at Wes's in Olneyville, to New York System Weiners, to Italian at Capriccio, and Steak and Sushi at Ten. It's a big adjustment in that regard even though Portland does pretty well given the size of the town.

I've rambled for too long. Portland is an excellent place (as is Providence). If you're sure you want Portland more than Providence, then you should move here. Hopefully my post offers at least something of value for your potential move. Good luck! You're picking between two nice places.

Last edited by lrfox; 03-05-2009 at 02:25 PM..
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-05-2009, 07:18 PM
 
300 posts, read 696,877 times
Reputation: 247
Quote:
Originally Posted by lrfox View Post
Hi.

I'm currently living in Portland but I spent a good chunk of my life living on George Street in Providence. So I think I can help. At least I can contribute my opinion.

Rhode Island's economy is bad. It's not just bad, it's the second worst in the nation (Michigan being number 1 but not by much). That being said, Portland doesn't have a reputation for having the best economy either... even in good times. It's consistently mediocre in Portland and as such is not subject to the boom and bust cycles (at least not to the same extent) that many other places (like Providence) are. In the end, neither town is an ideal place to have to look for jobs right now, but Providence (especially given the size of Providence and proximity to other areas) will likely be more consistent in that regard for the long term. No idea about temp agencies in the area... someone else should be able to help you there.

As far as studio space goes, I think you'd actually have better luck finding that in Portland than Providence and it'll probably cost you less here too. Portland is small and most of the city outside of the downtown core is very suburban in set up. There are an abundance of older houses (with excellent historic and architectural integrity) with small yards and garage space in Portland and many of them available at reasonable prices. So, depending on your budget, I don't think you're asking for too much.

When all is said and done, I prefer Providence by a relatively large margin. I love that Providence is and feels a LOT larger than Portland. Portland's population is about 63,000 in the city and 250,000 in the metro area while Providence has about 180,000 in the city and 1.6 Million in the metro area. The size means that there is a bit more of everything in Providence than there is in Portland. That goes for healthcare, arts, dining, nightlife, etc. The pace is slower in Portland and I miss the faster pace of Southern New England. Portland really has the feel of a large town more than a city given the small size and "closeness" of the area... it seems everyone knows each other everywhere here. Furthermore, the "buy local" culture is not something I like... if feels provincial in many ways to me and I don't enjoy it (but I certainly understand why others would like that). I miss the cultural diversity and grit of the parts of Providence that had it as well... they really give it a sense of urbanity which is something Portland, well, lacks (though I hear it used to have some grit a few years back). The arts are good in both towns. There is a broader representation of different styles of art in Providence than Portland, but that can be attributed to the different sizes of the cities. Portland's arts scene is well supported and very good given the size of the town.

The nightlife in Portland is VERY different than in Providence. Nie0214 says that the Old Port is similar to Thayer Street, and I can see the similarities. I, however, prefer Thayer Street (I'm a little biased, I used to live a block away) and I'll tell you why. Thayer street is entertaining, as can be the Old Port. The Old Port even has about the same number of and style of venues that the Old Port has. The difference is that the Old Port is the CENTERPIECE of Portland's nightlife while Thayer is just complement to Providence's nightlife. Sure, Portland has a few small venues just outside of the small Old Port area, but the VAST majority of Portland's nightlife is concentrated to a tiny 1.5 block area around Wharf Street and it's essentially a pub/ dive bar scene (each offering either live music, a dj and small dance floor or no music and a social environment). In Providence, Thayer street has all of that, but Wickendon has the best pubs, Downtown has the big, loud dance clubs, Atwells has the trendy upscale lounges and there's a smattering of different venues mixed in other areas of Providence. The variety that you have in Providence simply doesn't exist in Portland.

I'll also mention that while the Old Port is devoid of many chains, Dunkin Donuts exists in the heart of the Old Port (Fore at Exchange) and other areas around downtown Portland... there's no shortage of them. There are some other chains in the Old Port as well (You'll be familiar with Ri-Ra which they have in Portland's Old Port as well as downtown Providence), but not even nearly enough to take away the character of the area which is quiet, laid back and overall pleasant. Shopping in the Old Port reminds me of sort of a poor man's Downtown Newport RI ("poor man's" in that it's far less exclusive and ritzy). It's a nice area.

Portland has good restaurants for such a small place, but it's not even in the same league as Providence in that regard. Providence has a vast array of dining options that really make it an excellent place in that regard. I miss everything about eating in Providence from the brick oven gourmet pizzas at Al Forno, to Greek at Andreas, to Ribs at Wes's in Olneyville, to New York System Weiners, to Italian at Capriccio, and Steak and Sushi at Ten. It's a big adjustment in that regard even though Portland does pretty well given the size of the town.

I've rambled for too long. Portland is an excellent place (as is Providence). If you're sure you want Portland more than Providence, then you should move here. Hopefully my post offers at least something of value for your potential move. Good luck! You're picking between two nice places.
Being a pizza fanatic, what is the best place to get pizza in Portland? I will die without proper nutrition from pizza, and I will be there in 3 weeks!
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-05-2009, 09:14 PM
 
Location: East Boston, MA
9,322 posts, read 17,379,463 times
Reputation: 10989
Quote:
Originally Posted by diablogun View Post
Being a pizza fanatic, what is the best place to get pizza in Portland? I will die without proper nutrition from pizza, and I will be there in 3 weeks!
Don't fret! There are options in Portland for pizza. My favorite is Flatbread's by far. Many people swear by Portland Pie Co. But I would say that it's so-so for pizza and even worse when it comes to subs and such. Riccetta's has good pizza as well. There's a Maine Chain called Pat's pizza and some of their specialty pizzas are good (i like the Pat's in Scarborough best). The Amatos chain makes OK pizzas too. There are a bunch of little pizza joints to check out for yourself here too. Of course, there are the dominos, pizza huts, papa john's, etc (no papa gino's though) if you like those places.

UNOs is the sit-down chain (surprisingly no Bertucci's here) if you like those as well. Pizza Hut has a nicer looking "bistro" but the new look is lipstick on a pig as it's the same old pizza hut.

Anyway, you shouldn't have trouble finding a pizza you like.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-06-2009, 12:47 AM
 
300 posts, read 696,877 times
Reputation: 247
Quote:
Originally Posted by lrfox View Post
Don't fret! There are options in Portland for pizza. My favorite is Flatbread's by far. Many people swear by Portland Pie Co. But I would say that it's so-so for pizza and even worse when it comes to subs and such. Riccetta's has good pizza as well. There's a Maine Chain called Pat's pizza and some of their specialty pizzas are good (i like the Pat's in Scarborough best). The Amatos chain makes OK pizzas too. There are a bunch of little pizza joints to check out for yourself here too. Of course, there are the dominos, pizza huts, papa john's, etc (no papa gino's though) if you like those places.

UNOs is the sit-down chain (surprisingly no Bertucci's here) if you like those as well. Pizza Hut has a nicer looking "bistro" but the new look is lipstick on a pig as it's the same old pizza hut.

Anyway, you shouldn't have trouble finding a pizza you like.
You're the best, I'll start with Flatbreads and work from there. I have found that the best way to go in researching pizza joints is to find the smaller places where people--usually families--have been making it for a very long time. I'll let you know how it turns out :-)
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-06-2009, 01:19 PM
 
Location: East Boston, MA
9,322 posts, read 17,379,463 times
Reputation: 10989
No Problem! Let me know what you find. There are a good number of little ma and pop places in various areas that I just haven't been to yet. I like the family run places best as they go with a recipe that has worked for generations.
Rate this post positively Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-06-2009, 05:41 PM
 
Location: portland, me
810 posts, read 1,999,343 times
Reputation: 445
On the pizza note, Hannafords sells Portland Pie Co dough. We have been making pizzas with it in our apartment every week. There is a Little Ceasar's too for when you want an ok pizza for only $5.


As far as garage space goes, it can be difficult to find a place with one for a resonable price. They are out there though. There are shared studios/wood shops around. That may be a better way to go. I used to build guitars back in the day. I no longer have the equipment/tools, but am still full of advice and knowledge if he needs a hand. Also, there is a place on Forest Ave that makes acoustics. He may want to check there for a job.
Rate this post positively 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:


Settings
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2020 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 > Maine > Portland area
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 11:02 AM.

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

City-Data.com - Contact Us - 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, 36, 37 - Top