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Old 08-03-2011, 10:59 PM
 
Location: Chicago, IL
3 posts, read 8,152 times
Reputation: 13

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I am hoping to get some opinions on trying to live in Sacramento without a car. I am going to be a student at Sac State, and hopefully will find an apartment within walking distance. My main concerns are: Is the summer heat just that oppressive that you must have a car? Are there good sidewalks, crosswalks, bike lanes, and other pedestrian amenities near Sac State?

I am currently living in Chicago, where I do not have a car. Not too sure if I will be able to save enough before I move in May 2012 to buy a car.

Thanks,

Brett
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Old 08-03-2011, 11:17 PM
 
Location: Sacramento, Placerville
2,511 posts, read 5,452,116 times
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If you are in the urbanized area of Sacramento County you shouldn't have a problem. You may have to walk a little in some areas but it will be good for you.
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Old 08-04-2011, 08:23 AM
 
8,375 posts, read 15,219,603 times
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If you're going to live close to Sac State (East Sac, College Greens, Elmhurst, Midtown etc.) then yes, you can get by car-free. The streets in most of those neighborhoods are well-shaded with trees, and shade makes an enormous difference in Sacramento's summers--they are hot, but not humid, so shade makes them much more comfortable. Being a Sac State student also gets you a free RT pass to use buses and light rail, although due to budget cuts transit stops running about 9:00 PM. You might find the older neighborhoods west of Sac State similar to the older suburbs around Chicago. Good sidewalks, bike lanes okay but getting better, crosswalks and walkable street grid are pretty easy to find. The older neighborhoods (East Sac and Midtown) are more walkable with more character, while College Greens is a little more car oriented due to its era of construction, but well within biking distance of campus.

And if you might need a car sometimes, you can always sign up for Zipcar!
Zipcar Sacramento, CA - Zipcar is easier than Sacramento, CA car rental and car ownership
Right now the locations are all in downtown or Midtown but they'll probably expand it towards the college soon.
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Old 08-04-2011, 08:29 AM
 
Location: SW MO
23,601 posts, read 33,032,692 times
Reputation: 29158
We lived downtown for four years without a car after ours was totaled by a red light-runner. Once or twice a month we rented a car on a 3-day weekend special for major shopping or to get out of town. It was cheap, convenient and we walked to and from work, entertainment and a lot of shopping plus we used light rail. Saved us bundles.
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Old 08-04-2011, 08:30 AM
 
Location: Vallejo
15,764 posts, read 17,712,795 times
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Sac State isn't super urban, so you'll have a bit of a trade off and have to make a decision if you want to live in midtown and commute or live near Sac State and not have a lot of things to do around you.

They do have a shuttles... one runs from Arden Fair Mall area and another picks up at the 65th St. light rail station (light rail runs through midtown to downtown). Both areas are popular with students. I'd rather be in midtown but it's more expensive and you'd have to transfer from light rail to the shuttle.
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Old 08-04-2011, 08:57 AM
 
8,375 posts, read 15,219,603 times
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Or you can take the 30/31 bus down J Street (or other central city buses) that goes directly to Sac State's front door--it is also one of the most frequent bus lines. It is endlessly aggravating that light rail isn't closer to Sac State, but there are the shuttles and several transfer bus lines, and walking to Sac State from 65th isn't that difficult. There are two routes, a pass-through under the tracks and the entrance under Hornet Avenue.

East Sac isn't super urban, but if you like things a little quieter it can be a good choice. There are a lot of options along Folsom Boulevard and J Street in the 30s, 40s and 50s for shopping and dining: Corti Bros. and Trader Joe's, Burr's Fountain and OneSpeed, Espanol Restaurant (closest thing to a Chicago-style old-school southern Italian restaurant in town) and La Trattoria Bohemia...good stuff.
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Old 08-04-2011, 11:51 AM
 
27 posts, read 82,595 times
Reputation: 26
Get yourself a used car. It is not worth it to not have a car. You will miss out on alot.


Risks:
1. You will find a different type of crowd in the buses here, this is different than Chicago.
2. Many parts of sacramento are not well lit at night, walking back late at night and getting mugged is not worth the risk.

Benefits:
1. YOU can go to tahoe with your buddies.
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Old 08-04-2011, 12:49 PM
 
Location: West Coast
1,190 posts, read 2,292,472 times
Reputation: 2100
Its best to live close to Sac State if you don't have a car. Sacramento is spread out, so its a hassle if you rely on the bus to get to school. The buses and trains stop running earlier here than they do in Chicago.
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Old 08-04-2011, 05:18 PM
 
2,953 posts, read 5,568,571 times
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Folsom and 65th is a nice compromise. Walking distance to a lot of shops and about a 10 min walk to sac state campus.
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Old 08-04-2011, 08:47 PM
 
8,375 posts, read 15,219,603 times
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Having ridden on buses in Chicago, I'm pretty certain that anyone used to Chicago buses won't get any surprises riding Sacramento transit. And you can still go to Tahoe with your buddies--just find a buddy with a car and chip in some gas money.
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