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Old 05-12-2012, 08:29 AM
 
7 posts, read 18,331 times
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I'm considering a position in Purchase, NY but currently live in Astoria (Queens) and work in Manhattan. I've mapped the commute from Astoria (N,Q -> Qnsboro Plaza -> Grand Central -> White Plains) to the White Plains station from where a shuttle will take one to the job's campus. What's the approximate total commute time? Is this the kind of commute that wears one down? Warrants serious consideration in taking the job? OR is it completely do-able/feasible given iphones, ipads? All comments/feedback are much appreciated.
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Old 05-13-2012, 11:22 AM
 
Location: Minneapolis, MN
369 posts, read 580,674 times
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Not to be rude, but I think this is something that only you can figure out for yourself. Obviously, living in Manhattan, you know how long it takes you to take the subway from Astoria to Grand Central Station.

Then from there, use MTA's website to figure out the different train times from Grand Central to White Plains (I don't know when you need to be at work, and express and local times will be different).

And then use Mapquest to plug in the location of the White Plains train station to your office and figure out how long it takes to drive there. Plus, you'll need to find out how often the shuttle leaves. Would you have to wait an additional 10 minutes when you arrive before the shuttle departs?

I have done a UWS - Penn Station - Secaucus Junction - Office Building commute and while it wasn't the worst thing in the world, I did not enjoy it. It's a lot of transferring and getting up and fighting through crowds. It was about the same length of time as taking the train from Westchester into the city for a lot of people, but the difference is that you never really "zone out."

I also can't offer any advice because I have no idea how important this job is in your career aspirations. If this is a once-in-a-lifetime, "I can't believe it's not butter" kind of moment, then that's worth considering. You really need to figure out for yourself what the commute time is, and then weigh that against what the job will bring you.

Is it do-able/feasible? Anything is do-able. But is it going to make you happy / make you feel like this is a worthwhile endeavor? Only you can answer that.
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Old 05-13-2012, 11:52 AM
 
7 posts, read 18,331 times
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Thank you for the feedback. I appreciate the difference you're conveying in that you can't "zone out." One detail I failed to mention is that my lease expires in April 2013 and therefore, the grind for this commute has an end in sight.
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Old 05-13-2012, 02:19 PM
 
100 posts, read 399,976 times
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It's probably OK in terms of entertaining yourself and staying comfortable given that you'll be pretty much guaranteed a seat on the train, which is the longest chunk of your journey. For people heading the other direction this isn't the case, and limits the benefits of having a laptop or iPad. It honestly sounds pretty bad overall, as you will have to build a bunch of buffer zones into your commute to catch the subways, train and shuttle, in addition to something that will take a lot of time anyway. The best you can do for the train is 34 minutes and the worst is 50, in addition to how ever long the subway and shuttle portions take.

A cheap car might be a good idea if that is financially feasible, depending on how you plan on commuting when your lease expires and you move. The downside of the car is of course that you can't use electronics/books and have to deal with traffic and pay tolls, but I'm guessing a reverse commute would be shorter (google maps from the general area, shows 48 minutes without traffic, which can probably shaved down by driving over the speed limit). This person says that Astoria to White Plains is 1hr30min by public transport and 40 minutes by car with little traffic issues. The other pluses are that you aren't at the mercy of the shuttle/train and can leave early or late, drive places on your lunch break, carry extra stuff in your car, etc. I'm assuming that since you mention an employer "campus" that parking at work wouldn't be an issue.
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Old 05-13-2012, 02:47 PM
 
1,594 posts, read 3,210,735 times
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Astoria to Purchase would probably be 40 minutes by car (mostly reverse to traffic)

By train, I am estimating an hour and 45. Car would generally be cheaper than Metro north anyway.
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Old 05-13-2012, 04:17 PM
 
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The car seemed like a solution at first but then the issues with a car is finding parking for it on a side street in Astoria each day and having no use for it on Sats & Sun. My gym, grocery store, restaurants . . the things I frequent the most are within 4/5 blocks. Another issue is leaving just early enough from Astoria and hanging back just enough in Purchase to avoid morning bottlenecks/traffic.
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Old 05-13-2012, 07:26 PM
 
Location: Harrison
839 posts, read 2,249,671 times
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I wouldn't do it. Ugh. Get to the subway. Ride subway. Transfer subway. Get to GCT. Wait for train. Take train. Get off and walk to where shuttle picks up. Wait for shuttle. Ride shuttle to work. You're looking at 1.5 hours easy door to door, probably more. Honestly, dealing with the parking issues in Astoria for a year would be preferable to wasting 3+ hours DAILY commuting.
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Old 05-17-2012, 12:08 PM
 
956 posts, read 1,024,543 times
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I agree with streetsmart. I'm always schlepping family to Kennedy or LGA. Without traffic (no rush-hour) I could make it to LGA in 45mins. I would time your commute to miss the rush over the bridge, from there it should be a piece of cake, as you are going against traffic. I'd drive, forget the trains/bus. Purchase is a nice area, maybe you can move there eventually.
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Old 05-17-2012, 02:01 PM
 
Location: Bellevue, WA
1,491 posts, read 4,158,831 times
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Just a thought, but can you break your lease? Some landlords would welcome it if you are rent control. Others might let you pay a penalty or allow you to sublease.
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Old 05-18-2012, 08:09 AM
 
Location: on the Hudson
175 posts, read 375,008 times
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Personally, I'd go with the car. Spending 20-30 minutes each evening looking for a parking space would be a pain, but it would still shave 90 minutes off the total and be a much more comfortable commute.

Don't forget that if you take the train you'll have to factor in some slack time in case one of the legs of your trip gets delayed. I take the Metro-North to Westchester on the weekends pretty often, and even on a Saturday afternoon it can be a stressful trip if you're rushing to catch a particular train. Because of the transfers, just one delay can mess up the entire commute, so if I'm going to GCT from my local N/Q stop I always give myself a full hour even though a "perfect" trip only takes around 30-40m. Doing this commute every day during rush hour, and adding a shuttle bus schedule on top of that, would be way more stress than I'd ever want to deal with.

Like the other poster said, if the job is good enough to make the commute worth it, breaking your lease might be the best option. You could live in White Plains itself (which is a great place to live), or if you wanted to stay in the city you could find somewhere in the Bronx near a Metro-North stop.
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