city living... WTF?

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cimorene12
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Re: city living... WTF?

Post by cimorene12 »

jacob wrote:@JohnnyH - Again, this will depend on what [how common] your interests are and what your strength as a facilitator and bringing people together is. My interests are uncommon and I'm not a great facilitator (IRL), so big cities makes it easier for me. I actually do not consider my introversion such a great thing, for me. I suspect I'm more extrovert than I test---if only I could find more people on the same wavelength as me.

My hope is that I can find some Goldilocks location. Or convince enough people to "get where I am" (under the assumption that I picked wisely) that we can create ERE city. Like semi-rural but with many interesting people. Or discovering the next Portland, OR or whatever.
According to The Rise of the Creative Class Revisited, Richard Florida's book on creative minds, urban planning, and growth, 0.6% of Americans bike commute to work. In Eugene, OR and Fort Collins, CO, the percentage is 5%.

Eugene is definitely an interesting place and the home of a university. However, apparently OR taxes people 10%. http://www.city-data.com/forum/oregon/1 ... ton-3.html Even though the effective rate is 5%, I still chafe under huge state taxes. In Wisconsin, I pay around 6% in state taxes. I still feel like everyone's eating my lunch.

Fort Collins is interesting because it's one of the most innovative cities in America. http://xfinity.comcast.net/slideshow/ne ... ecities/7/
It has 143,986 people. That's a good sized for a person-friendly city, as MMM says. On the west side of Fort Collins, you've got a huge natural park. To the south, you have Longmont, where MMM is, and you have access to the Denver airport for those of us with the travel bug. Fort Collins is near enough to Denver to take advantage of amenities if you are so inclined, but far enough away to be safe from the insane Denver housing prices.

workathome
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Re: city living... WTF?

Post by workathome »

I've been contemplating moving to Wyoming (0% tax rate), about 45 minutes from Ft. Collins so I could visit things like Whole Foods once or twice a month or whatever.

Riggerjack
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Re: city living... WTF?

Post by Riggerjack »

so, what's with the suburb hate? i've never really looked at the development plans for other cities, but around here, downtown has high rises, and industrial buildings, and lots of little specialty shops. the houses are either old and crazy expensive, or old rentals, or new infill, where the lot has been divided up so another house without a yard can be built, or 2 houses were torn down so a 6plex condo with no yard or parking can be built. if you want a hardware store, the closest in i'm aware of, is Hardwick's. a nice old style hardware store, with some specialty wood working tools, but it's in the U-district, not even downtown.
this gets back to the cramped feeling of cities, there's no space to do anything big. i know, there's the lofts i see in the movies, but those spaces are $$$$, and rare.
speaking of places in the movies, do other cities really have the empty warehouses and industrial buildings in the movies? who can afford all that empty space, making no money? why leave it empty?
i guess i'm letting my predudices show. when i started this post, i was going to ask about this "sprawl" problem. is near as i can tell, the issue is suburbs have houses with yards? so they aren't dense enough? is that it?

Chad
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Re: city living... WTF?

Post by Chad »

Riggerjack wrote:So far, the best reasons for city living seem to be:
Art galleries are awesome if within walking distance, but aren't worth the drive.
You can get really good food, without having to learn to cook.
Spinach is cheaper in Asian markets. Let's just not talk about gardens...
City libraries are prettier.
Sharing roof/walls and gyms (and maintenance) can be cheaper than owning them (and maintenance) .
Serendipity.
Did I miss anything?
My entire post.

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jennypenny
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Re: city living... WTF?

Post by jennypenny »

You can do more in the city in less time. When we lived and worked in Philly, I could...

go to a terrific gym before work
go to Reading Terminal Market on my lunch hour for lunch/groceries
stop at a gallery opening or similar event on my way home for an hour or two

... all in the same amount of time it might take someone in my suburb to commute to a job.
so, what's with the suburb hate?
I'm not a fan of the suburbs, but they have some good points. Property values don't fluctuate as much in well-established suburbs. (ours hardly budged during the crisis, same in Long Island and around DC) It's also a good compromise if one partner is a city person and the other isn't, or if you work in different places. (people in my town work in Philly, Princeton, and NYC) It's also an option if you don't like the city but need specialized medical care.

George the original one
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Re: city living... WTF?

Post by George the original one »

cimorene12 wrote:However, apparently OR taxes people 10%. http://www.city-data.com/forum/oregon/1 ... ton-3.html
Silly point of clarity about Oregon income taxes... most people are in the 9% bracket unless they're making doctor wages and there's no sales tax.

Of course I think the state is crowded enough, so please do keep spreading the rumour that we tax at 10% :-)

workathome
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Re: city living... WTF?

Post by workathome »

9%! You guys are getting ripped. Screw that.

cimorene12
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Re: city living... WTF?

Post by cimorene12 »

cimorene12 wrote:
jacob wrote:@JohnnyH - Again, this will depend on what [how common] your interests are and what your strength as a facilitator and bringing people together is. My interests are uncommon and I'm not a great facilitator (IRL), so big cities makes it easier for me. I actually do not consider my introversion such a great thing, for me. I suspect I'm more extrovert than I test---if only I could find more people on the same wavelength as me.

My hope is that I can find some Goldilocks location. Or convince enough people to "get where I am" (under the assumption that I picked wisely) that we can create ERE city. Like semi-rural but with many interesting people. Or discovering the next Portland, OR or whatever.
According to The Rise of the Creative Class Revisited, Richard Florida's book on creative minds, urban planning, and growth, 0.6% of Americans bike commute to work. In Eugene, OR and Fort Collins, CO, the percentage is 5%.

Eugene is definitely an interesting place and the home of a university. However, apparently OR taxes people 10%. http://www.city-data.com/forum/oregon/1 ... ton-3.html Even though the effective rate is 5%, I still chafe under huge state taxes. In Wisconsin, I pay around 6% in state taxes. I still feel like everyone's eating my lunch.

Fort Collins is interesting because it's one of the most innovative cities in America. http://xfinity.comcast.net/slideshow/ne ... ecities/7/
It has 143,986 people. That's a good sized for a person-friendly city, as MMM says. On the west side of Fort Collins, you've got a huge natural park. To the south, you have Longmont, where MMM is, and you have access to the Denver airport for those of us with the travel bug. Fort Collins is near enough to Denver to take advantage of amenities if you are so inclined, but far enough away to be safe from the insane Denver housing prices.
I was trying to find the article that I saw that said that Boulder and Fort Collins were really hot places for startups. http://www.theatlanticcities.com/jobs-a ... tion/6493/

Also, Denver is trying VERY hard on the tech front and succeeding. Their urban planners are stellar. They are getting a satellite patent office!! Excitement that makes me want to move into that region. There's just all kinds of things happening over there.
workathome wrote:9%! You guys are getting ripped. Screw that.
Agreed. Again, in Wisconsin, they take around 6%. Between state, payroll (SS and Medicare), and federal
taxes, I'm paying 26-28% effective on something around 21k in income (6 months working since I just graduated from university). :( Granted, I expect this all to come out in the wash when I file in 2014 and possibly gets some of it refunded, but still - I checked my W4 and it is accurate. It makes me feel like I'll know what I've saved this year once I get the refund sometime in 2014.

Adding 3% on top of that is not my cup of tea.

Riggerjack
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Re: city living... WTF?

Post by Riggerjack »

ok, so i did a little looking, because i haven't looked at downtown apt in a long time, and most 600+/- ft2 apts, w/o parking, rent for more than my 1640 ft2 suburban home, w 2 car garage, and a fenced yard, and enough parking for 12 cars, rents for... ok, not very comparable, but i was curious.
While i was looking, i found "artist lofts". clearly, this ain't for me, but since there are income restrictions, and a 2-3 year waiting list, i thought i'd mention it for the urbanite ERE possibility.

http://tklofts.com/rental-inquiries/livework-lofts/

EnglishSaver
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Re: city living... WTF?

Post by EnglishSaver »

chicago81 wrote: Here are some reasons why I am tired of living in the city:
- This morning at 4:30am, the garbage truck awoke my partner and me while it was in the alley collecting trash from the dumpsters. This happens often, although not always quite that early.
- I am tired of hearing my neighbors music, footsteps, babies crying, fire alarms from burning food, etc through the shared walls in the condominium building.
- I am tired of the high taxes.
- I am tired of the traffic and the noise from so many people honking.
- I am tired of the constant rudeness and general irritability of most people in general in a big city.
- I am tired of the high crime rate, and hearing police/fire/ambulance sirens ringing DAILY in the evening or at night.
- I want to have a fairly large and private outdoor space.
I agree with you as I live near London and the riots we had recently have soured me on the place.

Honestly I'm not sure I can imagine living in a rural area. I think I would jump at every twig breaking as it would be too quiet for me.

Riggerjack
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Re: city living... WTF?

Post by Riggerjack »

"Honestly I'm not sure I can imagine living in a rural area. I think I would jump at every twig breaking as it would be too quiet for me."

um, what makes you think you would hear a twig breaking? the woods are NOT quiet!

riots are for people who choose to live with riots. you can choose your fate in an urban environment. or a rural environment. the choice is in place, and level of control. in the end, it's always up to you.

EdithKeeler
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Re: city living... WTF?

Post by EdithKeeler »

It occurs to me reading through this thread is that we're assuming some monolithic definition of "city." I've lived in an inner-ring suburb of Dallas that was actually pretty urban (close to public transportation, walking distance to grocery stores, drug stores, restaurants and even some bars, easy access to nearby "culture," etc.). I've lived in DC, Atlanta, Pittsburgh, and Memphis, all of which are cities, and all of which are about as different from one another as they could possibly be, and even living downtown in any one of them would not be the same as living downtown in Boston, NYC, or Chicago. I guess my point is that the answer to "why live in a city" is as varied as the cities themselves. I like living in Memphis right now because I appreciate the cost of living, there's enough culture for me here, but there's a lot of green space and nature and room for my dogs, which is also very important.

Spartan_Warrior
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Re: city living... WTF?

Post by Spartan_Warrior »

x2 on the Ft. Collins/Longmont/Denver area for a potential ERE city. If that were decided I would start planning my move today. I've always loved the area.

workathome
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Re: city living... WTF?

Post by workathome »

Wyoming is 0% income tax and only ~45 minutes from Ft. Collins :-)

arrrrgon
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Re: city living... WTF?

Post by arrrrgon »

Somehow we seem to only have the choices of big cities or tiny towns. Medium cities seem to have been left out.

I live in a city of about 40,000 people. I live towards the outside of town with a farm directly behind me. We have everything listed for both small and large cities. I live in a very peaceful and quiet neighborhood. I can get to anything I need in 5-10 minutes. We have multiples of every type of store. If I wanted to go to the gym, I have tons of choices.

I could technically ride a bike to work, but I drive around town for work a lot.

I personally hate big cities, but I can't say small towns are much better. If I had to choose one, it would depend entirely on my current situation. If I was already FI then I would choose a small town, and vice versa.

Big cities are definitely the way to go if you want to make a lot of money, but it also comes with high costs in general.

cimorene12
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Re: city living... WTF?

Post by cimorene12 »

workathome wrote:Wyoming is 0% income tax and only ~45 minutes from Ft. Collins :-)
Cheyenne, Wyoming is actually a startup hotbed too - just not as hot as Boulder and Ft. Collins. And when you say that it's only 45 minutes from Ft. Collins, you're talking about car rides. There are those of us on these forums who would very much like to switch to primarily bike transportation. If 5% of the population commutes to work via bike, that means that there's significant bike friendly infrastructure.
Spartan_Warrior wrote:x2 on the Ft. Collins/Longmont/Denver area for a potential ERE city. If that were decided I would start planning my move today. I've always loved the area.
cimorene12 wrote: On the west side of Fort Collins, you've got a huge natural park. To the south, you have Longmont, where MMM is, and you have access to the Denver airport for those of us with the travel bug. Fort Collins is near enough to Denver to take advantage of amenities if you are so inclined, but far enough away to be safe from the insane Denver housing prices.
It sounds like Longmont is getting a huge rush for housing as well, which is why I think that if we did do an ERE city out there, we'd probably go a bit further north.

My sister's house is on the south side of Denver (Highlands Ranch-ish), and I want to be close enough to see her future children on a weekly or biweekly basis. However, I still want to be far enough away for her not to call me last minute when she wants to go to the grocery store.

To totally contradict myself, if we (ERErs) were set on actually being part of the Denver metro area, I would be insanely in love with their light rail http://www.rtd-denver.com/lightrail.shtml and just over the moon to use the subway on a regular basis. I did regularly use the subway/metro in DC when I was interning there. I love the subway in NYC. I've used the metro (or equivalent) in every country I've studied abroad in. It would be a silver lining to Denver's insane housing market.

JohnnyH
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Re: city living... WTF?

Post by JohnnyH »

IMO, the front range of Colofornia is essentially 1 big mega-city: Fort Collins/Loveland/Greeley south to Colorado Springs... People do bike and there are some good trails, but the infrastructure is still very much western sprawl and car oriented.

Front range is lousy with cars and associated pollution, magnified by coal power plants... Sadly, the state has taken a decided authoritarian turn, in what used to be quite libertarian. City politics rule... The Denver accessible mountains have become an amusement park with 100 miles of traffic jams on the I-70 corridor.

I love Colorado, and even the front range has very pleasant pockets, but I'm glad I don't live there anymore.

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Ego
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Re: city living... WTF?

Post by Ego »

There is an interesting infographic over at The Atlantic today about the suburbs....

http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/arc ... sh/354689/
..... 20.1 million senior households that will attempt to sell their homes between 2015 and 2030, the University of Utah researcher Arthur C. Nelson estimates that 7.4 million won’t be able to find people to buy them—an imbalance that could be extreme enough to trigger a reprise of the 2008 panic.

workathome
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Re: city living... WTF?

Post by workathome »

Thanks EGO, interesting article! We'll be trying to sell 2014-2015... lol

What would be a good strategy to play that? Rent for 5 years until a market crisis hits and pick up a cheaper home?

JohnnyH
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Re: city living... WTF?

Post by JohnnyH »

Article definitely picks up on an important trend, but I don't think it fits nationally... Suburbs will likely be just fine in growth cities but doubly hammered in dying cities.

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