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Old 12-20-2009, 01:55 PM
 
Location: Arlington, VA
1,528 posts, read 3,612,623 times
Reputation: 971

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silkdashocker View Post
Doesn't Martinsbug have a commuter train leaving and arriving daily?
They have 2 commuter trains in the morning and 2 coming back in the evening. The problem is a lot of jobs in the DC area are around the Beltway and beyond not necessarily in the District proper. This train doesn't go to the big job centers of Northern Virginia or Maryland. The vast majority commute from the E. Panhandle to Virginia jobs in the Dulles tech corridor, Tysons Corner, Fairfax, Arlington, or Maryland jobs along the I-270 corridor from Frederick to the Beltway. I would recommend against a move to Martinsburg based on the commute alone.
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Old 12-20-2009, 01:58 PM
 
Location: Arlington, VA
1,528 posts, read 3,612,623 times
Reputation: 971
Quote:
Originally Posted by tallydude02 View Post
According to the Census Bureau, Martinsburg is more closely tied to Hagerstown, MD. Martinsburg is included with Hagerstown's urbanized and commuting area. I'm sure there are commuters to DC though, but I sure wouldn't want to do it!
And Hagerstown is tied into DC/Baltimore urbanized commuting area. It is considered it's own census area because it is located about 80 miles away but the vast majority of people in Hagerstown/Martinsburg work closer to DC. I've been in stop and go traffic from the Beltway WELL past Hagerstown on a Friday evening packed in with commuters driving such long distances. I've seen advertisements in the real estate section of the Washington Post for new housing developments up into places like Chambersburg PA (about 15 miles further north of Hagerstown). The sad thing is they try to claim it was "easy access to the major DC area job centers" Yeah. Maybe at 2 am on a Sunday. The things one will do significantly cheaper housing I suppose.
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Old 12-20-2009, 10:25 PM
 
17,483 posts, read 15,433,486 times
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You know, I did that drive from Martinsburg to downtown DC for awhile and it was bad but not killer. Maybe I am just weird though. It was about 2 hours each way, but I left home at 8 and got to work at 10, left at 6 and got home at 8. Long day, but I managed to avoid most traffic and used that time to chill out, listen to books or music, or just daydream. Like I said I only did it 3 days a week which was more than enough. I never considered moving closer, I like living on 6 acres in a quiet, private community.

You have to have a zen approach to long distance communting and resolve not to let traffic or delays get to you. My work was really understanding and flexible with my schedule and limitations due to commuting and that helped a lot. It would not have worked at all otherwise.
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Old 12-20-2009, 11:07 PM
 
Location: Arlington, VA
1,528 posts, read 3,612,623 times
Reputation: 971
Quote:
Originally Posted by zentropa View Post
You know, I did that drive from Martinsburg to downtown DC for awhile and it was bad but not killer. Maybe I am just weird though. It was about 2 hours each way, but I left home at 8 and got to work at 10, left at 6 and got home at 8. Long day, but I managed to avoid most traffic and used that time to chill out, listen to books or music, or just daydream. Like I said I only did it 3 days a week which was more than enough. I never considered moving closer, I like living on 6 acres in a quiet, private community.

You have to have a zen approach to long distance communting and resolve not to let traffic or delays get to you. My work was really understanding and flexible with my schedule and limitations due to commuting and that helped a lot. It would not have worked at all otherwise.
That's impressive but you must have been lucky or known some sort of secret route. I know people who can barely make it from Gainesville VA to our office in Tysons Corner VA (30ish miles) in under 2 hours during peak commute. Of course I-66 is an absolute nightmare. It can take me 45 minutes to an hour to get home from Tysons to Arlington in the evening which is a reverse commute drive of about 6-8 miles. I couldn't imagine 80 miles to Martinsburg headed outbound.
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Old 12-21-2009, 08:10 AM
Status: "Thou Shalt Not Lick the Surfaces of the "T"" (set 6 days ago)
 
Location: Marshall-Shadeland, Pittsburgh, PA
31,055 posts, read 68,875,531 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NOVAmtneer82 View Post
And Hagerstown is tied into DC/Baltimore urbanized commuting area. It is considered it's own census area because it is located about 80 miles away but the vast majority of people in Hagerstown/Martinsburg work closer to DC. I've been in stop and go traffic from the Beltway WELL past Hagerstown on a Friday evening packed in with commuters driving such long distances. I've seen advertisements in the real estate section of the Washington Post for new housing developments up into places like Chambersburg PA (about 15 miles further north of Hagerstown). The sad thing is they try to claim it was "easy access to the major DC area job centers" Yeah. Maybe at 2 am on a Sunday. The things one will do significantly cheaper housing I suppose.
Agreed. I've received flyers in my mailbox from new planned communities in Winchester, a full hour from most of NoVA's major employment centers during non-rush-hour periods, advertising them as being "convenient" to the DC Metro Area for commuters. Sure, maybe if you work in Berryville. I sort of worry sometimes that someday you can drive 50-60 miles in any direction from the District and see nothing but Ashburn-like tract-housing garbage.
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Old 12-21-2009, 09:48 PM
 
Location: In the woods
3,315 posts, read 9,009,188 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaybeWV View Post
I looked at Winchester, VA, but have already heard enough bad things about it to steer clear.
Why have you ruled out Winchester? Are you only interested in suburban, newish, subdivision homes?
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Old 12-22-2009, 08:02 AM
 
385 posts, read 1,759,013 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaybeWV View Post
I'm thinking about moving to the D.C. metro area or one of its exurbs.

I was looking at Martinsburg, WV as a possible place to live.

How does it compare to the DC suburbs? I know it is farther out, but is it something like what I've heard Loudoun County or Ashburn, VA is?

Is it pretty classy? Are there a lot of professionals who live there and take the commute to DC or its closer suburbs?

Just looking at home prices, I see a huge difference, but was wondering about quality.

How are the schools there?

Does it have any local culture (arts, etc) or does everyone go to DC? Does Martinsburg compare to a place like Reston, Ashburn, or Sterling for local amenities (shopping, restaurants, etc)?

I looked at Winchester, VA, but have already heard enough bad things about it to steer clear.
If you want 'classy,' Shepherdstown would be a better choice. It is only 6 miles from the Duffields MARC Station.
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Old 12-22-2009, 08:16 AM
 
Location: EPWV
12,183 posts, read 6,599,109 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silkdashocker View Post
Doesn't Martinsbug have a commuter train leaving and arriving daily?

Yes, the MARC train goes out to Martinsburg, WV. [Mon-Fri, of course]. It is the very last stop on the Brunswick line. There aren't as many trains coming/going to Martinsburg as there are if you caught the MARC train in Brunswick [MD]. The other WV stops heading east into DC are Duffields, and Harper's Ferry.

Maryland Transit Administration (http://www.mtamaryland.com/services/marc/schedulesSystemMaps/brunswick.cfm - broken link)
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Old 12-22-2009, 08:31 AM
 
Location: EPWV
12,183 posts, read 6,599,109 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tallydude02 View Post
According to the Census Bureau, Martinsburg is more closely tied to Hagerstown, MD. Martinsburg is included with Hagerstown's urbanized and commuting area. I'm sure there are commuters to DC though, but I sure wouldn't want to do it!
True, some times it can be grueling but I've done it thus far for a good 10 years now so I'm sure another few years til retirement won't kill me. The MARC train sure does alleviate the time consuming commute. You can sleep, read, chat on the phone, eat and drink which of many is too hard and/or dangerous to do if you were to do it driving in your car. I know there's some people who drive down from the southern end of PA to catch the train in Brunswick. Be forewarned though, you can't always depend on making appointments especially if they're within an hour of your arrival times because the MARC trains do run secondary to the freight trains. But hey, it beats the drive down 270 anyday - for me, anyways. I've heard others say the same thing though.
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Old 12-22-2009, 07:56 PM
 
Location: Jefferson County
380 posts, read 1,024,045 times
Reputation: 103
Default The trade off..

Quote:
Originally Posted by zentropa View Post
You know, I did that drive from Martinsburg to downtown DC for awhile and it was bad but not killer. Maybe I am just weird though. It was about 2 hours each way, but I left home at 8 and got to work at 10, left at 6 and got home at 8. Long day, but I managed to avoid most traffic and used that time to chill out, listen to books or music, or just daydream. Like I said I only did it 3 days a week which was more than enough. I never considered moving closer, I like living on 6 acres in a quiet, private community.

You have to have a zen approach to long distance communting and resolve not to let traffic or delays get to you. My work was really understanding and flexible with my schedule and limitations due to commuting and that helped a lot. It would not have worked at all otherwise.
To Zentropa, it was worth the cost in time to live here and work there; is the trade off worth it to you?
That's the thing most folks who live here in the panhandle and work in the dc burbs have to figure out. Typically you can make a larger salary if you work closer to DC and spend less of it on your housing costs or have a bigger better house and land here with a more relaxed and safer environment for your family. But the commute is not for everyone. My father did it for almost 20 years, I could only take it for a few years. Oddly enough now though I think nothing of driving two hours in a day, but it's not a 'real' commute. Friday I drove about five hours and covered nearly 200 miles from Rio to Berkeley Springs and back to Charles Town. But there was no traffic to contend with, and I rarely travel the same route in a week.
If you live in the panhandle and work a good paying job in the burbs you typically will have more money left over but less time to spend it.
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