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  #1  
Old 11-26-2008, 08:43 AM
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zpl zpl is offline
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Default Best neighborhood to live car free in Portland?

This is my first post here so I'd like to say hello and introduce myself. I currently live in NH but am lining up job interviews right now and hope to relocate to Portland this Winter, shortly after the holidays.

I've visited the city a few times and know enough that I'm certain I want to live someplace close-in. Most of my knowledge about close-in neighborhoods is pretty shallow, so I'm looking for some advice from current residents.

As an avid bike commuter who wants to eventually become car-free, I've been looking at neighborhoods along the Max lines with the assumption that they will be the most convenient. Some friends are recommending that I try to find a place in Laurelhurst to enjoy the most of what Portland has to offer.

What would you recommend for a couple in their early 30s who would like to live in a walkable and bikeable neighborhood, with the budget to rent a 2 BR duplex or bungalow for around $1200/mo?

I'm not currently considering multi-unit apartment complexes due to bad past experiences with noisy neighbors - I work from home frequently late at night and need the ability to concentrate. I don't mind city noise and the occasional rowdy revelers in the streets, but want to find someplace with a reasonably mature community without ending up in suburbia.

What are your thoughts?

Thanks,

Scott
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  #2  
Old 12-02-2008, 09:25 PM
brettoo brettoo is offline
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Welcome in advance to Portland! A lot depends on where (if anywhere) you and/or your wife commute. If you're going downtown, a house in inner SE (for easy access to the Hawthorne Bridge) or inner NE (for easy access to the Broadway Bridge) would be handy for bike commuting.

You're smart to look at Max lines. You should know that the Max Green Line will start up next September and eventually provide easy access to Sellwood, Milwaukie and other SE areas. Also, there'll soon be a streetcar line running on the east side along MLK and Grand and possibly one down Burnside.

I haven't been in the market for awhile, but my casual impression is that the hottest places for young couples now are North Portland (the so-called Fifth Quadrant), Mississippi , Alberta and other N and NE neighborhoods. If you can afford Irvington, any of the NW neighborhoods (served by streetcar), or inner SE, that's certainly convenient, again assuming you want easy access to downtown. Laurelhurst area is gorgeous and that park is one of my fave places, but my impression is that it's pricey. You really need to talk to someone who's following the rental market, though, as it's been pretty volatile of late. I hope someone who knows more about it will weigh in here. So great to see people moving here to take advantage of our bikey culture. Good luck with the move. See you on the bike paths!
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Old 12-03-2008, 01:08 PM
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bubbaPDX bubbaPDX is offline
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Default just got here myself

My wife and I arrived in July, and I'm delighted with our "inner SE" location in Sellwood/Moreland. Half-hour ride down Springwater Corridor
(http://www.40mileloop.org/trail_springwatercorridor.htm)
across the Hawthorne Bridge, and into downtown.
Soon to become a one-car household, after years of navigating suburban sprawl!
Good luck and soft landings here in PDX!
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  #4  
Old 12-03-2008, 04:53 PM
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Se clinton between 39th and 20th
Se Belmont - out to 50th
Ne Alberta 13-40 something-th
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  #5  
Old 12-03-2008, 09:08 PM
jake_m jake_m is offline
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A friend of mine and his wife live on SE 42nd, just south of Hawthorne, and that's a great area if you can get something near there. It'll be a lot better when New Seasons (a locally owned grocery store) opens on Hawthorne.

It's close to shops, stores, not too far from a max line, and it's a quick bike ride to downtown. My buddy works downtown, and often jogs the commute.

We're car-free and live at about SW Hamilton and SW Corbett. It's great, except it's a little too urban. The ride to Fred Meyer (another grocery store) is along a pretty busy street, which is fine when I'm by myself, but kinda sketchy when I have my daughter in her trailer behind me.
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  #6  
Old 12-06-2008, 11:37 AM
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Thanks for the suggestions! I'll be in the city next week and will definitely check these areas out for housing options.

Scott
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  #7  
Old 12-29-2008, 08:45 AM
allisons allisons is offline
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We live in Mt. Tabor. We're a few steps from many bus lines, the Max stop at 60th, several bicycle boulevards and I know you could find an apartment to rent for that or less (although I think it'd be hard to find a house anywhere in Portland for under $1600 - mostly because they tend to be bigger than 2bdrms).

You should know about the Max lines - the Green line opening in Fall will *not* go to Sellwood. The Milwaukie extension is in the works, but would not be open until 2011 at the earliest. The green line will run from Clackamas Town Center along I-205, to Gateway Transit Center, join the main line there and go along I-84 and then go down 5th avenue from Union Station to PSU and then back up 6th. But even with a Max line, I would not recommend moving to that part of SE - it's kind of unfun. Might change eventually, but not yet.
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  #8  
Old 12-31-2008, 08:20 AM
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Thanks everyone for the advice. I found a great rental in the Hollywood neighborhood that is extremely walkable - in fact it scored 97 out of 100 on walkscore.com. My wife and I just sold one of our cars and are moving in in a few weeks! I'm looking forward to being part of the bike community in Portland.

Scott
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  #9  
Old 12-31-2008, 08:46 PM
LESTER LESTER is offline
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I like mine, as there are two grocery stores and two coffee shops on the way from home to work, and a Krispy Kreme ain't too far out of the way.

The only thing lacking is a decent newsstand.

There are absolutely NO hip functions to be had in the area, however. Luckily I have a killer record collection.

EDIT: once in a while a good rock show will hit the grange..., but ...

Oh, and 7-11 is 3 blocks away and Muchas Gracias 24 hour greasy tacos is 3.5 blocks away!!!!! I skate there when it's dry.

And 3 blocks to the bowling alley!!!!!

Further EDIT: I guess that ain't Portland... But I still like it better. Portland's one of those places that are nice to visit, but I wouldn't wanna live there.

Last edited by LESTER; 03-05-2011 at 05:16 PM.
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  #10  
Old 12-31-2008, 08:47 PM
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$1200 a month rent won't buy that much, so might I suggest North Portland, esp Kenton and Arbor Lodge neighborhoods, or perhaps along N Lombard, in Portsmouth,St Johns. Other possibilities might be Woodstock in SE, as well as Montevilla.( SE)

Any of these neighborhoods offer good transit service, have walkable streets and strong business's that address daily needs. I live in St Johns, and find it to be 'out on the end of the city' but still manage to get my daily needs met without having to leave the neighborhood,except to work.

Things I look for.. mutlple transit lines, strong business district, good community assets such as library,parks,etc..
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