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Old 08-03-2010, 04:26 PM
 
52 posts, read 210,883 times
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I'm sure this topic has been posted already, but I've done some searches and haven't quite found the answers I seek. So I'm hoping you can all help me out, even if you just link to helpful threads in the forum archives. Thanks in advance for any assistance you can provide.

I'm...
-in my late twenties
-recent law school graduate (hoping for good news when Bar results post in a few months )
-moving to DC to work at a law firm

looking for a clean, updated apartment...
-with at least 1 BD (no roommates)
-in a safe and diverse area
-within walking distance of the Metro (up to 5 mins max)
-with an addt'l commute to downtown DC at no more than 15 mins. max


In a perfect world, I'd pay no more than 1500-$1600 max.

Also, it's really important to me, as a single woman, that I feel safe and secure when walking about at night. It's also important to me as a black woman that I'm around young professionals of all races -- most especially fellow black people. I want to be in an area that is lively and vibrant -- with lots of things to do at night and over the weekends. That said, I'm not at all into the bar scene, and I definitely don't want to be surrounded by college students in my spare time.

Finally, I'm still undecided about whether to live in DC proper or to branch out into VA or MD. Based on what I've gathered from this forum, NoVA may be too "suburban" for my newly acquired urban sensibilities. And MD seems to have too heavy a tax burden (and too far of a commute) to make it a viable option for me. On the other hand, I don't want to live downtown DC itself if it's going to be a ghost town at 5 pm.

Given my preferences, what neighborhoods do you suggest?
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Old 08-03-2010, 05:26 PM
 
Location: Fort Worth, TX
9,396 posts, read 14,945,573 times
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Silver Spraaaaaaang

But yes Maryland has huge taxes. They seem to not go to waste but they're still pretty high. Arlington, VA (specifically neighborhoods like Ballston, Rosslyn, Court House and Clarendon) feels as urban as Silver Spring IMO. It's on the Orange Line and not a far commute to downtown, although it gets incredibly crowded. I don't think it's quite as diverse... and IIRC has a lot of popped-collar douchebag types.

Silver Spring is on the red line and not too far from downtown. It still gets crowded but not as crowded as the Orange line. It's quite safe, especially near the Metro. It's always bustling, which IMO is a good thing. I feel much safer walking around in Silver Spring at night than I would in, say, Fairfax City.

You might also consider southern Arlington (more commonly known as Crystal City). It's more quiet than Silver Spring or northern Arlington but it's also cheaper and you'll still have Metro access with a not too long commute downtown.
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Old 08-03-2010, 07:01 PM
 
334 posts, read 899,733 times
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Most women seem to be renting in Bethesda. It's a safe, cosmopolitan, pleasant area, although on the expensive side.

Every time I'm in Bethesda I see lots of single women, so I think that's what they prefer.
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Old 08-03-2010, 07:06 PM
 
2,414 posts, read 5,134,926 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HurricaneDC View Post
Silver Spraaaaaaang

But yes Maryland has huge taxes. They seem to not go to waste but they're still pretty high. Arlington, VA (specifically neighborhoods like Ballston, Rosslyn, Court House and Clarendon) feels as urban as Silver Spring IMO. It's on the Orange Line and not a far commute to downtown, although it gets incredibly crowded. I don't think it's quite as diverse... and IIRC has a lot of popped-collar douchebag types.

Silver Spring is on the red line and not too far from downtown. It still gets crowded but not as crowded as the Orange line. It's quite safe, especially near the Metro. It's always bustling, which IMO is a good thing. I feel much safer walking around in Silver Spring at night than I would in, say, Fairfax City.

You might also consider southern Arlington (more commonly known as Crystal City). It's more quiet than Silver Spring or northern Arlington but it's also cheaper and you'll still have Metro access with a not too long commute downtown.




YouTube - Silver Springs
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Old 08-04-2010, 08:21 AM
 
Location: Crooklyn, New York
30,119 posts, read 30,690,032 times
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First, let me say that Washington, DC is not a perfect world. Therefore, I would increase my upper bound on the rent by at least $300. It will make a huge difference in the quality of apartment. As a firm lawyer, you can afford it. You just have to get over the sticker shock.

Second, I would say that Silver Spring is not going to give you what you want. It's a nice area, but the commute will be closer to 30-40 minutes, assuming you're working in Gallery Place, Metro Center or Farragut North, where most of the big firms are concentrated. Silver Spring is safe, but it's not really walkable, so you get robbed of the "urban living" experience. But if you don't care about that, I say go for it. I have friends who live in Bowie and Columbia and drive to the city every morning, and they wouldn't have it any other way. Plus, you'll get a good deal of diversity in Silver Spring, so it does meet that criterion.

My recommendation is Ledroit Park/Bloomingdale, which encompasses the area surrounding Howard University. With the hospital, med school, and other grad schools so close, you always see lots of young black singles in the neighborhood. Ledroit Park is serviced by the Green Line (about a 5-10 min walk, depending on where you live), but there's also the G8 bus that runs pretty regularly. It doesn't have the bars and nightlife of a U Street or Dupont Circle, but it's close enough to those areas where you don't feel like you're missing the action. U Street is about a 15 minute stroll from my house. And I think it's a good thing that the neighborhood doesn't have too many bars and restaurants (though it certainly needs more). That means you don't have people from Virginia taking all of the parking spaces on your street at night.

I think you also have to factor in whether or not you intend to have a car. If I didn't have a car, I would love to live around Logan Circle. But having a car over there is such a liability. You'd either have to (1) pay at least $150/month to park it or (2) battle it out with Virginians for a limited amount of street parking and avoid the DC parking nazis in the process. It will also cost you much more to live in an area like Logan, and the quality of your apartment will likely not be as good.

One nice place that comes to mind is The Envoy off of 16th Street. A one-bedroom will probably run you about $1700. It's a short walk to U Street, and there's a bus that runs about as regularly (if not more so) than the subway.

Hope that's helpful.
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Old 08-04-2010, 08:56 PM
 
Location: ATL
4,688 posts, read 7,284,765 times
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Watch out. DC is ranked #1 in America in HIV and STDS
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Old 08-04-2010, 09:10 PM
 
Location: Columbia Heights, D.C.
331 posts, read 854,718 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HurricaneDC View Post
I feel much safer walking around in Silver Spring at night than I would in, say, Fairfax City.
Wait, Silver Spring is safer than Fairfax City?

Each time I go to downtown Silver Spring its always rival crews fighting and stabbing each other (mostly during the summer and friday and saturday nights). I had no idea Fairfax was worse?
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Old 08-04-2010, 09:22 PM
 
Location: Fort Worth, TX
9,396 posts, read 14,945,573 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Avtomat Kalashnikova View Post
Wait, Silver Spring is safer than Fairfax City?

Each time I go to downtown Silver Spring its always rival crews fighting and stabbing each other (mostly during the summer and friday and saturday nights). I had no idea Fairfax was worse?
uhm I didn't say that

I said I FEEL safer. I don't know, I'd prefer walking around Silver Spring at midnight than I would in Fairfax where it'd probably be dead quiet. I fear some psycho jumping out at me from the woods (or a soccer mom running me over in her SUV) more than I fear some silly gangbangers fighting each other.

Also I've been to downtown SS a few times especially during the summer and I never see gang fights.
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Old 08-04-2010, 09:37 PM
 
Location: Columbia Heights, D.C.
331 posts, read 854,718 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HurricaneDC View Post
uhm I didn't say that

I said I FEEL safer. I don't know, I'd prefer walking around Silver Spring at midnight than I would in Fairfax where it'd probably be dead quiet. I fear some psycho jumping out at me from the woods (or a soccer mom running me over in her SUV) more than I fear some silly gangbangers fighting each other.

Also I've been to downtown SS a few times especially during the summer and I never see gang fights.
You should be at the mcdonalds or by the bus stops or metro station. like when its late or early morning.
idk I used to hand down silver spring every night and done seen it all.
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Old 08-04-2010, 09:42 PM
 
Location: Fort Worth, TX
9,396 posts, read 14,945,573 times
Reputation: 6256
Quote:
Originally Posted by Avtomat Kalashnikova View Post
You should be at the mcdonalds or by the bus stops or metro station. like when its late or early morning.
idk I used to hand down silver spring every night and done seen it all.
lol I have. buncha kids acting uh, ignorant but that's run-of-the-mill around any popular DC night spots. Gallery Place comes to mind.
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