Author Topic: .  (Read 1096 times)


  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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  • Posts: 31
« on: June 19, 2018, 11:13:49 AM »
« Last Edit: July 15, 2021, 09:17:42 AM by FXF »


  • Walrus Stache
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  • Posts: 5239
  • Location: Northwest Indiana
I grew up in the Detroit metro. The city was built around automobiles, and it's almost considered a sin to not drive places. You may also get shit for not having an American vehicle (regardless of where it was actually built). Public transit sucks. I'm sure that there are people biking, but realistically, you are going to need a car at least some of the time. Give it a try, but don't be surprised if it's really hard.

Geographically you are massively spread out here. There is a HUGE different between Auburn Hills and downtown. Do as much as you can to condense and live locally. You can't control work obviously, but you can control the rest of it. I'm not sure what the shaded areas represent, but the pins are a huge area. For example, I grew up on the east side of the bottom red area. Aside from work, people didn't go to the green areas.

You will also have quite the weather/climate transition. Right now, you've got sun and decent weather pretty much year around. Detroit is not the same. It is very possible to not see the sun for 6+ months in the winter. Be prepared for that shock.

I don't know what ethnicity you are, but that is unfortunately a real issue. Black, white, yellow or polka dot, you will run into problems SOMEWHERE in there. A lot of Detroit's problems are rooted in racism, and it shows.

Detroit has been getting better. Their school system is possibly the worst in the country. A large part of the population is poor and poorly educated. A large chunk of the former population has left. The city has issues with corruption. (Yes, it actually is better now than it used to be, but when it starts out as bad as it was, it's not easy to fix.)

Practically speaking - pick the main blue spot. Locate near it, but be cognizant of access to major roads and needed things like grocery stores, etc. Rent for a year, and figure out where you actually want to live. Then move to that area.


  • Magnum Stache
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  • Posts: 4619
  • Location: Metro Detroit
Yeah, Auburn Hills and surroundings (Troy, Rochester Hills, the Bloomfields) are very car-reliant. However, other Oakland County suburbs like Birmingham, Royal Oak, and Ferndale are very walkable and fun and will have the lifestyle amenities that you want. Rochester itself is smaller and may not have everything, but it has a very cute, walkable downtown.

Weíre very much behind the curve in terms of public transportation here, and unfortunately Oakland County has a history of voting down regional mass transit. Downtown and midtown Detroit are also nice and walkable/moveable and have your listed amenities, but rental costs are high and you would have a long commute up I-75.

It would be hard to say whether you will need a second car without knowing where your wife will be working. Itís certainly possible to live within walking/biking distance of one spouseís workplace. However, the weather can be harsh in January-March (not to the point of no sun for 6 months, but cold and snowy) so thatís a consideration.

As for foreign vehicles: I live in the Dearborn area (i.e., home of Ford Motor) and drive a Prius. No one cares. Sometimes people tell me that my car is cute.

canadian bacon

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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  • Posts: 91
I live in the detroit metro area.  You have work areas targeted with Ford (dearborn), GM (Warren) and FCA (Auburn Hills).   You are looking at a significant distance between these.  40+ miles.  This is a tough bike ride regardless of the route.

In general, apartments are scarce.  People that rent will often rent a small house.

As sibley said, remember our summers get hot and humid at times and our winters get cold.   Every day is a new treat with large temp swings possible day to day.  People are not generally courteous to bikers so you will often need to use sidewalks

You mention though that you will be working in Auburn Hills.    Around Auburn hills you can plan to get around using the paint creek trail and the clinton river trail.   These are both rails to trails type of paths (converted railways) so they are flat and gritty dirt.   

I like cities with a downtown area vs strip mall sprawl so below is what I recommend:
Rochester is the closest city I would choose to Auburn hills.  It has a good downtown and is close to large parks (mountain biking and such).  Rochester is hell to get in and out of in a car.  You can bike to Auburn hills from Rochester but driving is frustrating.

I live in Royal Oak.  it has one of the better downtowns in the metro area and gives equal commute to most of the OEMs.  My drive is against traffic to most places and is 20 min to FCA/Ford/Nissan/GM...  In a car, I can get to Auburn hills faster than someone in rochester.  Grocery stores everywhere.

Having downtowns:  Birmingham is an expensive/nicer/douchier version of Royal Oak.  Berkley/Clawson are cheaper versions of royal oak.  Ferndale is a grittier version.  All of these feature post war 1000 sq fot bungalos (that you can rent).  Very walkable/bikeable  area.  Decent schools with Birmingham the best of the bunch, Ferndale probably the worst but all workable.
With no downtown, Troy is a sprawley area that has bigger homes than the ones above.   Good schools.

Going North of Auburn Hills may seem appealing but you can quickly get to a spot where your place is nice but commute really really long.   

You can live in Detroit but your commute will suck.  I75 backs up going south at the end of the day at 696.  This can double your commute length if you cant avoid it.   Bad schools

Note that my suck drive comments are all detroit metro scaled.  If I slow down from 70mph to 30mph on the highway, this is my typical sucky.  getting into rochester is like LA congestion but a short distance of it.
« Last Edit: June 19, 2018, 02:26:02 PM by canadian bacon »