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Old 03-22-2014, 05:50 AM
 
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Is the crime really that bad or only in certain areas? Is it affordable? Does it have decent public transit? Are there good restaurants?
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Old 03-22-2014, 09:16 AM
 
Location: Saint Louis, MO
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Crime is a problem in certain areas of the city and county; I'd say the rest of the city lives like people would in any other large city when it comes to crime: taking measures to prevent it, but not really worrying about it all that much.

It's definitely affordable. I'd say when it comes to the established suburbs with good schools, people might be surprised by the prices because they are definitely higher than the metro-wide averages. Public transportation is what I would describe as decent. If you live by a MetroLink stop, its not that hard to live without a car (I was car free for several years).

I think STL has a pretty great food scene. Good mix of good high-end places, but plenty of really great places to eat when you're not looking to spend a ton of money too.
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Old 03-22-2014, 10:50 AM
 
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Crime is not that bad unless you live in the bad areas (typically the North side of the city). The rest of the city is fine.

Affordability-wise, St. Louis is pretty affordable and has a lot of cheap, historical housing stock available for you. There's also a lot of cheap/free stuff to do-Forest Park, for example, with the Art Museum, History Museum, Zoo, and Science Center.

The public transit is ok, but if you want to take something other than a bus, you are limited to the central corridor of the city, where the metrolink runs.

Like billiken said, the food scene is pretty good here, and we also have a number of "specialized" areas in terms of cuisine offered. For example, The Hill neighborhood is the Italian Food Mecca of the city.

Of course, my answers only apply to the city, but I can answer stuff on the metro area too if you'd like.
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Old 03-22-2014, 11:03 AM
 
Location: St. Louis, MO
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There are pockets of crime, as others have said, but on the whole, crime isn't nearly as bad as it's made out to be. There are plenty of safe areas of St. Louis City and County, and it's easy to avoid the less desirable areas.

Compared to other major metros, St. Louis is insanely affordable. Housing is very reasonable, and as OuttaTheLouBurbs stated, there are a lot of 'free' amenities, in addition to affordable ones.

How decent you think the public transport system is will depend on where you are located. If you're along one of the light rail corridors, you'll probably think it's decent. If you're way out in the County and reliant on buses, you'll probably have a different opinion.

As for restaurants, there are SO many amazing options here. There is basically something for everyone. There is everything from greasy spoon, mom & pop diners, to dozens of varieties of international and ethnic food, to your standard chain restaurants. You definitely wouldn't be going hungry. I have no complaints about the variety of restaurants on offer in the metro area

Overall, I LOVE St. Louis as a place to live. ♥♥♥
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Old 03-22-2014, 05:23 PM
 
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As others have said, crime is pretty localized. It's probably a tad worse in the areas its localized within than other bad areas of similar metros, but again, it's localized.

Transit is adequate for a metro of its size. I'd actually say that for a metro of this size, with the lack of density that St. Louis has compared to similar metros, transit is actually quite good if you live in the city or within the older inner ring suburbs.

I'll take the food scene a step further than others here. The food scene here is not only good, it's fantastic. You aren't going to get ultra-high end, highly experimental food here. To make a comparison with a larger "food scene" I migrated from:

In Chicago, there are probably a 10-15 places you have to spend through the nose on that nothing in STL really rises to. Then there is the next tier of places in Chicago, which maybe 3-4 restaurants in St. Louis can rise to. This isn't an STL slight, there are a long list of Beard winners/finalists/nominees and Top Chef Masters contestants, and Top Chef winners that are in these groups.

Then you hit the $80-$120/couple for the full experience (excluding drinks) category, which is where most people will be doing their "good dining" anyway. The food here in that range is at least as good and probably better than anywhere else I've ever been. I'm not joking.

At the $50-$80 per could range (no drinks), it's probably as good as anywhere else I've been too.

The other areas where the area falls a little short on are certain specialty ethnic cuisines, seafood, and ultra-cheap street type food. This shouldn't really be a surprise. If you want excellent seafood, 99% of the time you need to be on a coast. Ethnic food quality correlates with ethnic populations, which STL is great at in certain areas (particularly Vietnamese), but the metro isn't exactly a hub of immigration. High quality, ultra cheap food tends to be ethnic.

The city has two food and restaurant-oriented publications. That should tell you they take their dining pretty seriously here:

Feast Magazine, St. Louis : Inspired Food Culture
Sauce Magazine: Intelligent Content For The Food Fascinated
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Old 03-22-2014, 06:43 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spicymeatball View Post
Is the crime really that bad or only in certain areas? Is it affordable? Does it have decent public transit? Are there good restaurants?
Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes.
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