Author Topic: Urban vs. Suburban  (Read 2961 times)

heybro

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Urban vs. Suburban
« on: April 13, 2018, 01:33:28 AM »
Hey hey...

My car-lack life has always been enabled by living in the city.  During the recession, vacancy rates were high and the city was still quiet.

Now that the recession is over and that living in a city is extremely popular, I'm not as keen on it anymore!  It could be just that I'm getting older as well.  There are so many more people here.  And things go so much later here than before.

There are some suburbs that I could still access public transportation with and I could still choose to live close to certain central business areas in a suburb. 

Will things be more quiet out there.  I've lived in a small town before but never a suburb.  What is it like usually?


Malkynn

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Re: Urban vs. Suburban
« Reply #1 on: April 13, 2018, 06:40:59 AM »
Hey hey...

My car-lack life has always been enabled by living in the city.  During the recession, vacancy rates were high and the city was still quiet.

Now that the recession is over and that living in a city is extremely popular, I'm not as keen on it anymore!  It could be just that I'm getting older as well.  There are so many more people here.  And things go so much later here than before.

There are some suburbs that I could still access public transportation with and I could still choose to live close to certain central business areas in a suburb. 

Will things be more quiet out there.  I've lived in a small town before but never a suburb.  What is it like usually?

Iíve personally never met a suburb I could live in.

Iíve lived in very small towns and very big cities, and I love both because itís easy to live ďcentral,Ē but suburbs always feel so residential to me. The ones Iíve seen are really geared towards driving everywhere and shopping at box stores or eating at chain restaurants.

That might just be the burbs around where I live, but not having kids, not liking driving, and not liking major chain retailers, I see no appeal in the burbs.

Fomerly known as something

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Re: Urban vs. Suburban
« Reply #2 on: April 14, 2018, 07:15:18 AM »
I like to call my preferred housing style "semi-urban."  I like having some space/a small yard but don't want much.  (My ideal house would be an east coast row house but I don't live on the east coast.). My last two residences have been in the "Suburbs" of larger cities but I was very careful in picking.  So I think it can be done but you really have to look hard at the commuinty. 

One was in an old, inner ring suburb of a large midwestern city.  The suburb was developed prior to WW2/into the 50s.  Therefore, the streets were still a grid system and there was a walkable business district from the house.  (Although the closest grocery store closed while I lived there making the walk/bike for food at a 4 mile round trip). 

My current is in a new subdivision that is a mile away from what was originally a small farming town.  It is a 10 mile drive into a mid-sized Midwestern city.  I have everything I need within walking distance but it is limited.  When I was looking in my new area, I was really looking at a very small number of neighborhoods and was for example watching listings in my current neighborhood like a hawk in order to find a smaller house on a smaller lot within a limited distance of that small town I was talking about.  (there were 2-3 other areas around the larger city that were I was also looking.)

MayDay

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Re: Urban vs. Suburban
« Reply #3 on: April 14, 2018, 08:46:16 PM »
Not retired yet, but we also live in a first ring suburb, grid streets, built 1950-60's. Walk or bike to grocery, target, bike shop, library, etc etc, plus on several bus lines. But have a third of an acre. I think it is the best of both worlds.

John Galt incarnate!

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Re: Urban vs. Suburban
« Reply #4 on: June 25, 2018, 03:30:12 PM »
Hey hey...

My car-lack life has always been enabled by living in the city.  During the recession, vacancy rates were high and the city was still quiet.

Now that the recession is over and that living in a city is extremely popular, I'm not as keen on it anymore!  It could be just that I'm getting older as well.  There are so many more people here.  And things go so much later here than before.

There are some suburbs that I could still access public transportation with and I could still choose to live close to certain central business areas in a suburb. 

Will things be more quiet out there.  I've lived in a small town before but never a suburb.  What is it like usually?

I’ve personally never met a suburb I could live in.

I’ve lived in very small towns and very big cities, and I love both because it’s easy to live “central,” but suburbs always feel so residential to me. The ones I’ve seen are really geared towards driving everywhere and shopping at box stores or eating at chain restaurants.

That might just be the burbs around where I live, but not having kids, not liking driving, and not liking major chain retailers, I see no appeal in the burbs.


I grew up in a nice suburb but I like living out in the sticks.

Never could I live in a city; I couldn't stand the incessant din.

A line from Ginsberg (or is it Ginzberg) the poet comes to mind: "The sound of garbage grinding in the street below."

 If not verbatim it's close.

 I think he penned this line after hearing a garbage truck picking up garbage early in the morning.

When I'm really old I'll probably move to a nice suburb or quiet retirement community.

Malkynn

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Re: Urban vs. Suburban
« Reply #5 on: June 25, 2018, 03:37:01 PM »
Hey hey...

My car-lack life has always been enabled by living in the city.  During the recession, vacancy rates were high and the city was still quiet.

Now that the recession is over and that living in a city is extremely popular, I'm not as keen on it anymore!  It could be just that I'm getting older as well.  There are so many more people here.  And things go so much later here than before.

There are some suburbs that I could still access public transportation with and I could still choose to live close to certain central business areas in a suburb. 

Will things be more quiet out there.  I've lived in a small town before but never a suburb.  What is it like usually?

Iíve personally never met a suburb I could live in.

Iíve lived in very small towns and very big cities, and I love both because itís easy to live ďcentral,Ē but suburbs always feel so residential to me. The ones Iíve seen are really geared towards driving everywhere and shopping at box stores or eating at chain restaurants.

That might just be the burbs around where I live, but not having kids, not liking driving, and not liking major chain retailers, I see no appeal in the burbs.


I grew up in a nice suburb but I like living out in the sticks.

Never could I live in a city; I couldn't stand the incessant din.

A line from Ginsberg (or is it Ginzberg) the poet comes to mind: "The sound of garbage grinding in the street below."

 If not verbatim it's close.

 I think he penned this line after hearing a garbage truck picking up garbage early in the morning.

When I'm really old I'll probably move to a nice suburb or quiet retirement community.

I literally love that sound.
I spent most of my afternoon on my balcony listening to the sound of jackhammers working on the neighbouring high rise apartment building.

That said, I do value good sound proofing, but the ďhumĒ of the city is so meditative to me.
Granted, Iím a pretty hardcore extravert and weíre known to like a lot of background noise. It helps me concentrate, so I do a lot of work out on my balcony.

« Last Edit: June 25, 2018, 05:40:03 PM by Malkynn »

John Galt incarnate!

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Re: Urban vs. Suburban
« Reply #6 on: June 25, 2018, 03:46:32 PM »
Hey hey...

My car-lack life has always been enabled by living in the city.  During the recession, vacancy rates were high and the city was still quiet.

Now that the recession is over and that living in a city is extremely popular, I'm not as keen on it anymore!  It could be just that I'm getting older as well.  There are so many more people here.  And things go so much later here than before.

There are some suburbs that I could still access public transportation with and I could still choose to live close to certain central business areas in a suburb. 

Will things be more quiet out there.  I've lived in a small town before but never a suburb.  What is it like usually?

Iíve personally never met a suburb I could live in.

Iíve lived in very small towns and very big cities, and I love both because itís easy to live ďcentral,Ē but suburbs always feel so residential to me. The ones Iíve seen are really geared towards driving everywhere and shopping at box stores or eating at chain restaurants.

That might just be the burbs around where I live, but not having kids, not liking driving, and not liking major chain retailers, I see no appeal in the burbs.


I grew up in a nice suburb but I like living out in the sticks.

Never could I live in a city; I couldn't stand the incessant din.

A line from Ginsberg (or is it Ginzberg) the poet comes to mind: "The sound of garbage grinding in the street below."

 If not verbatim it's close.

 I think he penned this line after hearing a garbage truck picking up garbage early in the morning.

When I'm really old I'll probably move to a nice suburb or quiet retirement community.

I literally love that sound.
I spent most of my afternoon on my balcony listening to the sound of jackhammers working on the neighbouring high rise apartment building.

That said, I do value good sound proofing, but the ďhumĒ of the city is so meditative to me.
Granted, Iím a pretty hardcore extranet and weíre known to like a lot of background noise. It helps me concentrate, so I do a lot of work out on my balcony.


How opposite we are!

I concentrate best in solitary silence.
« Last Edit: June 25, 2018, 03:48:56 PM by John Galt incarnate! »

LifeHappens

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Re: Urban vs. Suburban
« Reply #7 on: June 25, 2018, 03:47:39 PM »
I'm about to move from a more rural location to an older suburb of a major metro area. At the start of my relocation research, I looked for towns that had a defined grid pattern in their town center. This told me they at least had the possibility of a walkable central district. I then did Google Map searches for desired amenities like a library, grocery store and community center. After that, I had to visit them in person to make sure the "feel" was good - this eliminated a bunch of places! The city we finally ended up in is a great combination of small town feel with access to a large urban area. It can be done, but the search may be long.

Malkynn

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Re: Urban vs. Suburban
« Reply #8 on: June 25, 2018, 05:44:05 PM »
How opposite we are!

I concentrate best in solitary silence.

Yep.
Very different.

I find silence deafening.
I avoided the library the entire time I was in school. It was almost overwhelmingly silent and the littlest noises would irritate me. Even as a baby, the best way to get me to sleep was to blare rock music. Itís a neurotype.

DreamFIRE

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Re: Urban vs. Suburban
« Reply #9 on: June 25, 2018, 09:06:19 PM »

I like silence from those around me.  On topic, there is a thread in the off topic section about suburban noise pollution.  It's not perfect there, either.

https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/off-topic/suburban-noise-pollution/

soccerluvof4

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Re: Urban vs. Suburban
« Reply #10 on: July 08, 2018, 03:18:24 PM »
I am about 30 miles from a major midwest city and live couple blocks from a small downtown area if i cut through some trails. I have lived in all different scenarios and found I dont want to live in the city for reasons you mentioned and many others. Subdivisons have way to many rules unless there older and I never liked the whole subdivision feeling. With 4 kids my wife and i use to say the best place would be to live across the street from the subdivision. But we love where we finally have settled if we have to stay in this state. We can walk to get anything we could possible need, best school system in the state, people of all ages, so much green space, low taxes for a ritzy ritz area and alot going on we can chose to be part of or not. Also with all the lakes and stuff its pretty land locked so area cant grow to much at least in my lifetime.

jooniFLORisploo

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Re: Urban vs. Suburban
« Reply #11 on: July 08, 2018, 03:35:54 PM »
Iíve several times lived in what I would call a suburb. I really really really liked them. You can get better and not-better locations in a suburb. I aim for the quiet spot within a 15 minute walk of library, main grocery store, etc (yes, look for hidden trails etc).

Iím a person that loves silence. Iíve lived in very rural areas, in tiny tourist towns, in suburbs, and in downtowns of fair-sized cities (Vancouver, etc). Iíve loved most of them and found most of these to be about the same level of sound. In Vancouver I had -yep- the garbage truck sound several times per week, but otherwise my neighbourhood was super quiet. Rural was gorgeous until the 4am bird sanctuary or acres (!) of mowing started up. Tourist towns were fab until the summer humans descended. So, just different sounds at different times.

Rural and rural village was great overall until my kid started needing to get to town multiple times per week. When he finishes growing, I would likely go rural (with car trip once a week) or suburb. I like the peace and trees and walking in those best.

smoghat

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Re: Urban vs. Suburban
« Reply #12 on: July 15, 2018, 08:50:25 PM »
It all depends on specifics, you and the burb. Iíve lived in the country, the city, and now the burbs. But let me qualify that, this burb was a town before it became a burb and is a train town near NYC. It is pricey but the quality of life is high. Houses and streets are idyllic, you can walk or ride your bike to things, itís like a college town life minus hoards of drunken students. We have great cultural amenities, etc. But if you wanted me to move a couple of towns over into Right wing cookie cutter house and mind land, no way! The same would go for the country. Iíd prefer to live in Stowe, but my teenage daughter wonít have it and since NYC is less than an hour away, I get it. But move me to a rural town in the middle of farm country with the nearest store a Wal Mart 40 minutes away? No way!

As far as noise, thatís my biggest complaints, the morons who hire landscapers to make their lawn spotless while they are grinding away at their jobs. Um, I mow my own lawn with a manual mower... itís more disruptive than when I lived in the city. But so it goes.

RedmondStash

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Re: Urban vs. Suburban
« Reply #13 on: July 18, 2018, 10:54:17 AM »
I've lived in several suburbs. I like them. They tend to be quieter but have a lot of kids running around. The big thing for me is that in suburbs, things are more spread out, so shopping and services are probably a car ride instead of a walk (unless you are a hardcore bicyclist).

I like the quiet, and I like having a yard for a dog. I also like being able to garden. But it is not really a pedestrian life, and it takes longer to get places than if you're living in the heart of a city or small town. And having good neighbors, or at least neighbors who leave you alone, is crucial. Neighbor spats can get unpleasant. That's true anywhere, but in suburbs, I find you're less likely to know your neighbors well, which makes misunderstandings more common. (Or that may be a function of where I live, the Pacific Northwest, which is notoriously chilly to strangers.)

I find suburbs more private than cities or small towns. People pretty much leave you alone, leading to the common "But he seemed so quiet" neighbor on the six o'clock news. :)

It probably all depends on what you're used to and what you want.

erutio

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Re: Urban vs. Suburban
« Reply #14 on: July 18, 2018, 12:35:53 PM »
There are always exceptions, and some suburbs are unique (Some. Many are indistinguishable from one another).  However, if we are going by stereotypes, you may find living in the stereotypical burb hard for you, since you are used to living in an urban environment with no car.  Again, exceptions exist, but the stereotype is that you'll need a car to get everywhere.  Public transportation will exist, but it will not be as robust or convenient.  You can find a nice location that is a 15 min bike ride to a store, but that may wear on you if you were used to 5 mins rides before.  Bike infrastructural can be non-existant.  (you mentioned public transportation, but not sure if you're a biker.)

Why are you getting tired of urban life?
You mentioned too many people.  Well, if you move to a suburb, that problem doesn't disappear.  There will be less people living around your immediate home, but when you drive to the store or anywhere else people want to go, it's gets crowded there also. 
You also mention living near certain central business areas/downtowns.  Well there, you get both the drawbacks of city living (crowded), and the drawbacks of suburban life (less diversity of things to do, need a car to get places).

And things go so much later here than before.
Not sure what this means.  Do you live over a nightclub?

Car Jack

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Re: Urban vs. Suburban
« Reply #15 on: July 18, 2018, 01:06:49 PM »
Even if you can find a place right near transportation, how much does that cost.  I suppose I could bike to the closest commuter train station in about half an hour.  Then it's $15 to get into town and $15 to get back.  For a 5 day a week job, that adds up.

rctid lady

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Re: Urban vs. Suburban
« Reply #16 on: July 18, 2018, 02:33:46 PM »
Search for a planned community in your city's suburbs?

As a very urban-oriented person, we lived for 7 years in a planned community called Reston, outside of Washington, D.C. It was created and built in the early 1960s, I believe. Very walkable, the entire town connected by bike trails, with a downtown core less than a mile away. A mix of chain restaurants and independents. A mix of housing options in each "neighborhood village." Very quiet and safe. It did attract families, but also single people of all ages as well.

Definitely a model of suburban living. I enjoyed our time there. Now we live in urban Seattle.

smoghat

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Re: Urban vs. Suburban
« Reply #17 on: July 20, 2018, 06:52:34 AM »
Reston is great, but there are few such planned communities. My own isnít planned but is the product of 19th century wealth, so itís great, if expensive beyond moustachian words. Such places usually are. You get what you pay for.

As I said before, it all depends on the community. I say this partly because I taught courses on urbanism for two decades at top graduate universities before FIRE.knew none of my neighbors last time I lived in the city, in an urban part of LA. I know all of my neighbors here in the burbs and I maintain an email list for our community. I know tons of people in town. If I go to the Farmers Market and donít meet someone I know, Iím shocked. Itís become a problem jogging since every fourth time I meet someone I know and we chat.

Our burb is full of wealthy liberals though, and they are generally community oriented. Would an exurb full of survivalists and automatic gun enthusiasts be the same? I doubt Iíd be walking over to a house with a Donít Tread on Me sign.

Try these tools... They are accurate enough for most people to choose a place theyíd like.

https://segmentationsolutions.nielsen.com/mybestsegments/Default.jsp?ID=20&menuOption=ziplookup&pageName=ZIP%2BCode%

That said, I am noticing that the segments today are much less interesting that they were 2 decades ago. Could be that things have changed or that people are less interesting.

And of course there are arguments like that in the Big Sort, that we shouldnít move to like minded communities. But so it goes.

« Last Edit: July 20, 2018, 07:05:06 AM by smoghat »