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Old August 21st, 2007, 09:17 AM   #1
festiboi
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Advice on moving to Seattle

Hey everyone,
I noticed someone else had a similar thread up about advice on where to live in the Seattle area, but they were looking for something different and had a different lifestyle.

So I'll put your local knowledge to the test again and see what you suggest.

I currently live in LA and even though it's a fun city, I can never imagine living there forever. I'm not a fan of huge expanses of concrete, the traffic, and being very pale, the 350 sunny days we have all year is a drag. I grew up in Melbourne, Australia which is a very rainy and cold city and that's what I'm used to. Hence why I love Seattle so much, I can climatise very easy to the weather and the culture/atmosphere is very similar to back home. Each time I go to visit I never want to leave. Hence why I've been looking for jobs and apartments in the area, but I don't know any of the neighborhoods well and can't tell which ones are bad or good.

Just a run-down on me, I'm a 25 y.o. gay male. Love being in a city, but not in a really built-up area. In other words, surburbia, as it's cheaper, easier to get around, easier to park my two cars (they are my babies), but I still have the hustle and bustle nearby. Can't afford a whole lot as I'm in the service industry, but still willing to pay a tiny bit more to be somewhere safe, clean, and where I won't end up being a crime statistic. I have a job offer in Renton, but I've never heard good things about the area, but maybe theres areas nearby that are good. Aside from that, not much else, as long as it's safe, clean, close enough to Seattle (I'm from LA where going 30 miles for dinner isn't uncommon), and has good parking. Any ideas on where this may be? Also any areas I need to avoid at all costs?

Thanks so much everyone!
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Old August 21st, 2007, 09:20 AM   #2
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How about Downtown Renton? Lots of new housing there. Or maybe the new apartments that will open in a year or so in Renton Landing?
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Old August 21st, 2007, 09:25 AM   #3
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Awesome! You will love Seattle for sure!

Renton is nice and improving suburban community as well. Renton is a GLBT friendly suburban community as well. Of course Renton is safe place for you to park your two cars.

I think Renton might be right place for you since you have a job offer there and fit your lifestyle.

Seattle has a several GBLT neighborhoods (e.i. Capital Hill, Fremont, University District and some parts of Belltown/Queen Anne) You can look around at these neighborhoods if you are interested.
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Old August 25th, 2007, 07:44 AM   #4
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Yes, move here.

Last edited by seattleboyD; August 25th, 2007 at 07:56 AM.
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Old August 25th, 2007, 07:57 AM   #5
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Nonsense. Please feel welcome in Seattle.

Even the so called "gay" areas, are really not...it's mixed, especially Capital Hill...which has that rep, but many straights live there too. Most areas in the Seattle metro are very welcoming, despite your orientation. It's one of those quirks that makes Seattle what it is. You could move into most Seattle neighborhoods and not feel out of place.

The above poster seemed to be more concerned with your "California" roots, than your sexual orientation. Perhaps that says a lot.

EDIT: The "above poster" seems to have edited his post since I wrote this...hmmm....that may say something too.
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Old August 26th, 2007, 07:41 PM   #6
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Pass on Renton. West Seattle has become the alternative location for the gay scene (especially those 'settling down'). There's a small urban area that runs along the top of the hill on California. Lots of my gay friends have opted to move there as it is still a 15 minute drive to downtown and Capitol Hill but still affords them the space (doggy needs a yard!) to grow and a bit quieter environment. Just don't go too far south over there and you'll be fine.
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Old August 27th, 2007, 02:05 AM   #7
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Columbia City in the southeastern area of Seattle is a gay friendly area (from my experience) and offers much of what you're looking for. The area does not have a gay bar, but there are many GLBT folks that mix into many of the areas establishments, including Seward Park (home of a co-op grocery) and Hillman City. A couple of ladies I know are planning to open up a GLBT bar and restaurant next year, so in that regard, things are looking up. The commute to downtown Seattle, the Eastside (via I-90) and the University of Washington are relatively easy and you're close to Lake Washington (which has a small beach that queer and clothing option folks frequent during the Summer months. That's my vote. Oh, and the rents are generally cheaper in this area.
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Old August 27th, 2007, 02:32 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CityView Jim View Post
Pass on Renton. West Seattle has become the alternative location for the gay scene (especially those 'settling down'). There's a small urban area that runs along the top of the hill on California. Lots of my gay friends have opted to move there as it is still a 15 minute drive to downtown and Capitol Hill but still affords them the space (doggy needs a yard!) to grow and a bit quieter environment. Just don't go too far south over there and you'll be fine.
What's to the south? Rednecks abound?
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Old August 27th, 2007, 04:55 AM   #9
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^Renton, Kent and many of the suburbs in southern King County were considered very hick, say 15 years ago, but much of it was an exaggeration and today these areas are far from redneck. I like your sense of humor though.
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Old August 27th, 2007, 05:12 AM   #10
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Seattle is great...if I moved anywhere outside of Chicago it would probably be to Seattle. My uncle lives in Renton and it seems really nice there.
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Old August 27th, 2007, 02:13 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nutterbug View Post
What's to the south? Rednecks abound?
I wouldn't say Seattle has a red neck population, but there is one it would be found in the Renton/Kent/Auburn valley. But I'm snotty city folk and can't imagine living anywhere but downtown (or near). A friend of mine lives up the street from me on Dexter Ave N and works in Renton for REI. He says it's a simple 20-30 minute drive each way as it is a reverse commute.
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Old August 27th, 2007, 10:17 PM   #12
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A few thoughts: Seattle is much rainier and somewhat colder than Melbourne. Melbourne has a reputation of a rainy, grey city, but that's in Australian terms, where most metro areas tend to have more than 250 sunny days a year. If you look at the statistics, Melbourne is both somewhat warmer in the summer, somewhat milder in the winter, and has less rainfall. (653mm in Melb, 942mm in Seattle.) Melbourne's average high in the winter is 14 c vs. Seattle's 8. Melbourne's average high in the peak of summer is 26 compared to Seattle's 24, so that is closer.

And while LA is definitely a concrete jungle, Seattle is not exactly a whole lot better, it just happens to have lots of trees which create deception in this regard.

I'm kind of disappointed that a prospective Seattle immigrant would have two cars for one person. I bet if you admitted that to the average Seattle person, they'd find it to be disdainful and excessive. Not that they would outright dislike you, but it seems really frivolous, and this city tends to frown on that.

Since "good parking" matters to you, I would pick one of the single-family neighborhoods that pose as 'urban' - parts of West Seattle might do.

I personally find Seattle to be no match for Melbourne, and other than possible similar weather I see no similarities at all. Seattle is very tilted towards high-tech in its industry, whereas Melbourne having a more Chicago-like "all around" economy, with everything from mining to car factories. Seattle has a completely different vernacular style of architecture, doesn't have those lovely trams or a reasonable commuter rail system either. Melbourne is rather flat until you get towards the Dandenongs, whereas Seattle has the unusual situation of being very hilly in the central part of the city but flatter as you venture north/south.

But if you like it, there's no harm in making the comparison I guess...
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Old August 29th, 2007, 09:38 AM   #13
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Thanks to everyone on the advice; that helps me get pointed in the right direction.

Any areas to stay away from at all costs? There doesn't seem to be anywhere that is terrible by LA standards, but I'm sure Seattle has its rough parts. I noticed the other posts of Rainier Blvd. and that it's a little dodgy, but opinions seem to be mixed on that as well. What suburb is that in?

Thanks for the side-by-side comparision to Melbourne. Always seems like Melb. has more rain than that, but it may be the fact that it rains almost everyday that adds to that mentality. I realise that Seattle has its differences to Melbourne, but as American cities go, it's the closest I've come across. I'm just not ready to go home and I'm really enjoying the States, be just good to have somewhere a little similar to my old surroundings. But I do appreciate your advice and speaking in my terms, lol.

As far as the two cars, I don't reckon it's disdainful; one is an '87 Subaru, the other a '95 Ford Escort. They're nothing glamarous, but I just don't have the heart to get rid of either one, as they are my kids almost (I bath them, feed, take them places). Okay, I better stop as this is sounding really sad...... But would anyone up there really find that excessive?
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Old August 29th, 2007, 10:50 AM   #14
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^
Rainier Ave is in the Seattle City Limits.
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Old August 29th, 2007, 04:53 PM   #15
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I don't think that those two cars together even equals one SUV, so you're fine! Also having a Suburu in and of itself ups your Seattle bling. Must be a challenge transporting them from place to place, though!
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Old August 29th, 2007, 07:08 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by festiboi View Post
Thanks for the side-by-side comparision to Melbourne. Always seems like Melb. has more rain than that, but it may be the fact that it rains almost everyday that adds to that mentality. I realise that Seattle has its differences to Melbourne, but as American cities go, it's the closest I've come across. I'm just not ready to go home and I'm really enjoying the States, be just good to have somewhere a little similar to my old surroundings. But I do appreciate your advice and speaking in my terms, lol.

As far as the two cars, I don't reckon it's disdainful; one is an '87 Subaru, the other a '95 Ford Escort. They're nothing glamarous, but I just don't have the heart to get rid of either one, as they are my kids almost (I bath them, feed, take them places). Okay, I better stop as this is sounding really sad...... But would anyone up there really find that excessive?
Well, in melbourne in the winter it might rain almost everyday, but in Seattle, it will rain 20-25 days straight consistently with few breaks.

Having two cars, it just seems kind of frivolous. i don't mean to call someone out on their lifestyle, but even if it pollutes less than one SUV, well, one SUV is bad, too.

I guess I am baffled... i would kill to move to melbourne, I have actually been trying for some time but I miss the points threshold to immigrate by less than 10.
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Old August 29th, 2007, 07:31 PM   #17
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I don't agree with the 20-25 days point. Over any period that long, I'd guess the most would be rain falling around 60% of the time. And ususually, in the winter rain season, I'd guess the typical might be more like 25% of the time.

I walk from Belltown to the CBD seven days a week. Maybe five or six times a year the rain is enough that I'm overly wet when I sit down at work.
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Old August 29th, 2007, 08:38 PM   #18
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Last November, we had precipitation on 29 of the 30 days in the month. And December '05 we came close to breaking the record for days in a row with rain at 28. It does happen
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Old August 29th, 2007, 08:48 PM   #19
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Other cities get more rain than Seattle (Houston...) it's just they get it all in a month. Seattle receives a little bit each day.
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Old August 29th, 2007, 09:00 PM   #20
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Houston will get a thunderstorm that dumps 3 inches in an hour, Seattle, it will rain half an inch a day for 6 days
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The French are the mechanics
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