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Moving to Raleigh - Where do I live?

oldsakoldsak Registered User regular
edited January 2014 in Help / Advice Forum
Raleighlulia!

The girlfriend and I are moving to Raleigh, NC in the very near future. We're looking to rent in the short term, preferably close to down town Raleigh. We don't know anything about Raleigh.

If anyone is familiar with the city, can you direct me towards nice areas to live and tell me which areas to avoid?

Also, any advice regarding local culture, customs, and interests are greatly appreciated.

Thanks

oldsak on

Posts

  • tarnoktarnok Registered User regular
    edited January 2014
    Local customs have been all but washed away by a flood of newcomers over the years. Most of the barbecue places don't even serve real barbecue. Even that heathen western stuff would be an improvement.

    I can't give you much advice on specific areas to live in downtown Raleigh but here's some general help:

    The road system was designed by an inebriated baboon. If you don't know precisely where you're going beforehand there's a good chance you'll miss your exit several times.

    Nearly everything of possible interest is within a thirty minute drive by the highway. In fact, even stuff that should be closer is usually thirty minutes away because you have to get on the highway.

    440 is the beltline. It encircles the city and connects with 40 in ways that only make sense to an inebriated baboon. 540 is supposed to be some kind of bypass that encircles 440. It's not complete yet and part of it is a toll road. These roads along with 64, 70 and a few with actual names which will vary somewhat depending on precisely where you land, will dominate your directions.

    Captial blvd is a very important road which runs right through Raleigh and is sometimes US 1, sometimes US 401 and sometimes both. Inebriated baboons!

    Avoid Durham, people get shot there.

    Cary is an expensive but generally nice place to live. Downside is that the police and local government have _way_ too much time on their hands. The color of _roof_ that businesses can have is regulated.

    Raleigh is growing out, not up. You can probably still buy a house surrounded by tobacco cotton fields and in a few years the city will be lapping at your feet.

    I have no explanation for this one but the people in the extreme southeast part of the Raleigh area, toward Clayton and Garner, are the worst drivers in any part of America. Watch for some truly creative maneuvers which will threaten your blood pressure if not your life.

    tarnok on
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  • gjaustingjaustin Registered User regular
    edited January 2014
    Everything tarnok says is true. He didn't even exaggerate that much!

    That said, he left out Apex and Morrisville. Both border Cary and are about 15-30 minutes from Raleigh, depending on where you are in them. They're both smaller than Cary, but have less meddlesome local government, slightly cheaper property prices, and more new townhouses and apartments going up. As for living in downtown, is there a specific reason you want to live there? The Triangle is a very spread out population center with limited public transportation, so you'll have to drive no matter where you live.

    To answer your specific questions, I recommend Apex. It's a good mix of low crime, reasonable property prices, and proximity to RTP and Raleigh. It's where I bought my house.

    As for local customs, you must try real and proper barbecue. It is pork in a delicious vinegar based sauce. Other local customs involve not using your turn signal and saying ya'll. And complaining about the new section of 540 (outer beltline) being a toll road - but only half of it.

    And, most importantly, caring way too much about college basketball. Fans down here can be atrocious to each other. Duke fans are smug assholes, UNC fans are cretins, and NC State fans are the loser who gets mad that the hot girl (UNC) pays more attention to the preppy rich guy (Duke).

    And, yeah, I went to one of those three schools.

    gjaustin on
  • oldsakoldsak Registered User regular
    We were thinking downtown or nearby because the gf's job is in the Wellsfargo building. Also, we've been led to understand it's very walk-able for bars and restaurants. That could just be people messing with us.

    As for bbq, my girlfriend will love that. I, however, mostly eat vegan. Am I going to starve?

  • gjaustingjaustin Registered User regular
    oldsak wrote: »
    We were thinking downtown or nearby because the gf's job is in the Wellsfargo building. Also, we've been led to understand it's very walk-able for bars and restaurants. That could just be people messing with us.

    As for bbq, my girlfriend will love that. I, however, mostly eat vegan. Am I going to starve?

    Vegan? You'll live, you just won't be able to have any of the local cuisine.

    As for bars and restaurants, there is a decent amount downtown. If you want to be able to just wander the street from restaurant to bar to bar then back home, living downtown would be perfect for you. It's just that you'll still be using your car pretty much daily if you want to do anything else. For example, the premiere performing arts theater (DPAC) is in Durham (30-45 minute drive), the local arena is past the NC State campus (10-15 minute drive), etc.

    I'm just personally a fan of standalone houses with yards, so I'm playing devil's advocate.

  • tarnoktarnok Registered User regular
    Yeah, there's a lot of stuff downtown you probably could walk to depending on precisely where your apartment is, but I have to imagine that the rent at that sort of place would be extremely high. If you're used to living and driving in a city Raleigh may not be that big a deal, but in that area you'll be looking at all one-way streets (designed by an inebriated baboon you'll recall) and the real possibility that you won't be able to extract your car from the parking deck because the street is shut down for a festival or something.

    To give you an idea on prices I was paying almost $900 dollars a month for what I would consider a decent (only decent mind you) two bedroom apartment in an area where I got to park on actual ground. Anything less than that and I'd have been sharing lodgings with the local insect life if you take my meaning.

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  • PhasenPhasen 2020 or bustRegistered User regular
    For vegan food check out Remedy it's amazing

    psn: PhasenWeeple
  • PhasenPhasen 2020 or bustRegistered User regular
    edited January 2014
    There is also a flying biscuit in raleigh. Also I live in Cary it is a beautiful city with lots of Greenways and parks. I'm about 10 minutes from Raleigh

    Phasen on
    psn: PhasenWeeple
  • oldsakoldsak Registered User regular
    Tried Remedy yesterday. It was legit. I've never had flying biscuit, but I'm going to check it out this morning.

    We settled on an apartment on 6 forks. We're coming from Brooklyn so I'm used to walking everywhere. I have a feeling it's going to take me a little while to adjust.

  • gjaustingjaustin Registered User regular
    Six Forks has seen some nice new construction in the past few years, so that's a pretty solid choice. North Hills used to be a dump, but now it's one of the nicest set of shops and restaurants in the area.

    And, to help you feel good about your move: Raleigh's Biggest Accolades of 2013/

  • PhasenPhasen 2020 or bustRegistered User regular
    Glad you liked Remedy. I'm not too keen on vegan food but theirs is great. I may just need to find better vegan recipes.

    psn: PhasenWeeple
  • CptHamiltonCptHamilton Registered User regular
    I don't get over to Raleigh very often so can only attest to the veracity of the comments re: the roads and their shittiness.

    The bit about Durham is BS, though. Ten, fifteen years ago it was true that you should avoid Durham at all costs. They have since cleaned up the city a good bit. If you stay west of Roxboro it's a nice, friendly town comparable to Carrboro or Chapel Hill with better parking. Lots of local food places and decent bars. Just don't go east of Roxboro except on your way out of town, and then don't stop. That part is still terrifying.

    Also, if you want vegan food, Durham and Chapel Hill are where you want to go. The latter more than the former. Chapel Hill and Carrboro are filled to overflowing with weird little trendy places and local-fresh-vegan-other-foodie-buzzwords restaurants. There are also a couple of vegan-friendly food trucks in the Durham area.

    PSN,Steam,Live | CptHamiltonian
  • tarnoktarnok Registered User regular
    Oh yeah, and vote democrat. Republicans pretty much control the state government here for the first time in almost a century from what I understand, and they're already scaring me shitless with the crazy shit they're doing.

    Gay marriage is now unconstitutional in NC, teachers have been getting the shaft since the new governor came in, the governor is all about fracking and exploring for oil off the coast, and a scandal is emerging where someone falsified numbers to make our medicare program look inefficient so they could dismantle it when in fact it may have been one of the most efficient in the country.

    Yay North Carolina....

    Wii Code:
    0431-6094-6446-7088
    gjaustin
  • gjaustingjaustin Registered User regular
    I don't get over to Raleigh very often so can only attest to the veracity of the comments re: the roads and their shittiness.

    The bit about Durham is BS, though. Ten, fifteen years ago it was true that you should avoid Durham at all costs. They have since cleaned up the city a good bit. If you stay west of Roxboro it's a nice, friendly town comparable to Carrboro or Chapel Hill with better parking. Lots of local food places and decent bars. Just don't go east of Roxboro except on your way out of town, and then don't stop. That part is still terrifying.

    Also, if you want vegan food, Durham and Chapel Hill are where you want to go. The latter more than the former. Chapel Hill and Carrboro are filled to overflowing with weird little trendy places and local-fresh-vegan-other-foodie-buzzwords restaurants. There are also a couple of vegan-friendly food trucks in the Durham area.

    Yeah, I'll back you up on Durham. Parts of it are really nice. Parts of it will get you shot. The areas around Duke, DPAC, and the baseball stadium (Tobacco District) are the good parts I'm aware of. I'm sure there's more.

    And Chapel Hill has all the commies :P, so it'll be a good source for anything that people my grandma would call "hippies" would like.

  • histronichistronic Registered User regular
    edited January 2014
    One good place to look into living at that is near downtown Raleigh is an area called Cameron Village. It is about a 5 minute drive from downtown and a very nice area with a lot of local shops/restaurants/bars of its own. Its a little pricey but you can usually find some decent deals on nice townhouses and its a lot less sketchy than living directly downtown, where some areas can be a little rough (specifically the southeast side of downtown, where I used to live).

    As for things to do in Raleigh, Carolina Hurricanes and NC State basketball games are fun and fairly cheap to go to depending on where you sit. There is also a pretty good local music scene with a lot of bars downtown that have bands playing on the weekends.

    Edit: Also, when you get to Raleigh one of the first things you'll want to learn is to avoid the belt line (440) between 8-9 AM and 5-6:30 PM at all costs.

    histronic on
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