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Old 04-10-2014, 04:14 PM   #1
Jazz62 OP
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Checking out Portland - let's hear it

Mrs. Jazz and I are coming to Portland for a few days.

We're thinking about moving out there. Mrs. Jazz has a real job, a school teacher and has an interview at a Portland Public Schools job fair. I'm a jazz musician, internationally known but still make poverty level income. If I didn't teach part time at a university it would barely be that. We're both passionate nature lovers.

Neither one of us has ever been there but we've been unhappy here in Chicago for a long time. The violent crime, the endless filth, the alarmingly low literacy rate, all the corrupt political bullshit that ultimately makes the cost of living unmanageable etc. It's worn us down. It's gotten so stressful to live here that even the complete unknown can somehow, inexplicably resemble sanctuary.

I have family in Olympia, WA so we'll spend a few days there (because we have to ) but we'll have 4 days in Portland. What neighborhoods/areas should we not miss in trying to vibe with the town?

We don't have any specific plans aside from her interview. Just want to try to get a feel for the place. Sorry for the lack of specificity in this post but let's hear it, lay it on me, don't pull any punches.

Thanks,
Jazz

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Old 04-10-2014, 07:58 PM   #2
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If you are really looking to move here, start by looking at rents on craigslist and focus your time in Portland hanging out in the hoods you can afford.

Portland's rental (and buying) market is out of control, and is insane in the "cool" neighborhoods.

Get a feel for downtown/Pearl, and whatever random neighborhoods you find interesting. But one of the things I like best about Portland is how fast and easy it is to not be in Portland. Mt. Hood, the coast, etc. will sell you on the idea of Portland better than any of our adorable super gentrified hipster 'hoods.
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Old 04-10-2014, 08:05 PM   #3
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I'd start by checking out the regular weekly PDX ADV meet-ups. Plenty of local knowledge available there...



























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Old 04-10-2014, 08:12 PM   #4
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Old 04-10-2014, 08:16 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by WB-PDX View Post
If you are really looking to move here, start by looking at rents on craigslist and focus your time in Portland hanging out in the hoods you can afford.

Portland's rental (and buying) market is out of control, and is insane in the "cool" neighborhoods.

Get a feel for downtown/Pearl, and whatever random neighborhoods you find interesting. But one of the things I like best about Portland is how fast and easy it is to not be in Portland. Mt. Hood, the coast, etc. will sell you on the idea of Portland better than any of our adorable super gentrified hipster 'hoods.
Thanks for the reply. I know the real estate scene is off the hook. From what I know about the Pearl it has no appeal nor do the trendoid hipster hoods. I'm 51 and over all that coolness. I'm fine with being "out" a bit. The quick access to some serious natural beauty is a HUGE draw for both of us. Thanks again.
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Old 04-10-2014, 08:24 PM   #6
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My wife and I are looking at it too, but we travel to the northwet whenever we can. She is flying out for a second interview in Salem and I just applied for 2 positions in the south portland area. Its funny because my sister lives in the other south portland.
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Old 04-10-2014, 08:31 PM   #7
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I'd start by checking out the regular weekly PDX ADV meet-ups. Plenty of local knowledge available there...
Yeah I thought about that....for a minute and umm, then...
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Old 04-10-2014, 08:40 PM   #8
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Wa/or

A couple of thoughts.
Oregon, you have to pay income tax. But no sales tax.
Washington, sales tax, but no income tax. Something to think about.

For what its worth, I would do Portland over Seattle.
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Old 04-10-2014, 08:49 PM   #9
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If you can deal with the rain and gloom for almost nine months of the year, it's a pretty nice place once you get over the weirdos and the fact that nobody knows where the right lane is on the freeways. Oh and the ridiculous 55 mph limits everywhere. But the scenery is awesome and there's lots of great ADV riding.

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Old 04-10-2014, 09:17 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Jazz62 View Post
Thanks for the reply. I know the real estate scene is off the hook. From what I know about the Pearl it has no appeal nor do the trendoid hipster hoods. I'm 51 and over all that coolness. I'm fine with being "out" a bit. The quick access to some serious natural beauty is a HUGE draw for both of us. Thanks again.
Mid-40s........Gresham is pretty good living, Saturday market during summer with live music. Springwater Trail bicycle path goes out to Sandy as well as down into Portland, otherwise 2 hours west to the beach, and about 45 minutes to an hour east takes me to Mt. Hood which is chock-full of hiking, cross-country skiing, forest road riding. About 30 to 45 minutes east on I84 takes me into the Columbia River Gorge, which is also full of trails, waterfalls, etc. Some of those trails offer a lot of solitude and fairly raw beauty once you find the trailheads (everyone goes out to Multnomah Falls) . Google "Lost Lake" for good camping, clean water.
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Old 04-10-2014, 09:31 PM   #11
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I lived in Portland for a while, and plan on moving back. I'd echo others suggestions. Check rates and see what you can afford. Also, if your wife has a specific location she'd be working at, try to get close to wherever it is. Commuting in that city when everyone goes to work/gets off work is a nightmare. It's much easier to bike/walk. At least that was my experience, but I lived close to downtown.

In all honesty, one of my favorite places to live and I plan on moving back. No matter where you end up, you're close to nature. You're usually close to a fresh food market. Plus, there's always something fun happening on any given night.
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Old 04-10-2014, 09:53 PM   #12
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Yeah I thought about that....for a minute and umm, then...
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Old 04-10-2014, 10:20 PM   #13
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A couple of thoughts.
Oregon, you have to pay income tax. But no sales tax.
Washington, sales tax, but no income tax. Something to think about.

For what its worth, I would do Portland over Seattle.
But if you live in WA and work in OR you will pay OR income tax.
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Old 04-11-2014, 05:13 AM   #14
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Portlandmaps.com more data than you may expect.

the closer to the core of Portland the more expensive.

the currant crime area is east of 82nd south of burnside west of 180th north of foster. this is also the most sterile when it comes to culture. it used to be north and st jhons. some of the locals will speak of felony flats. it has moved around a few times and doesn't really have hard boundary's the spring water corridor bicycle path does have a lot of homeless issues so don't live with it right in your back yard get a few blocks away. also right in the immediate area of the MAX stops does have more random crime. but real crime here is relatively lower than other city's.

the cost of housing is out of parity with real value because we have a constant growth of newcomers. I have witnessed many from California go nuts after 3 years of rain and dark winters and run back to cali. we also are not practiced for snow driving because we don't get enough of it.

blue monk on se belmont street is a jazz club.

powells books is a must see if you think or read at all.

http://www.fendersmotocafe.com/default.aspx will give you a feel of the Woodstock area

http://www.mcmenamins.com/ you could spend the whole 4 days just touring these places. kennedy school will put you in inner north east. bagdad theater hawthorn district.

then there is the coffee crawl

http://extractocoffee.com/

http://ristrettoroasters.com/

http://coavacoffee.com/

http://theredecafe.com/

http://stumptowncoffee.com/

if you are going to work for PPS stay in Multnomah county. Clackamas and Washington county are too far of a commute. west of the hills over downtown is seriously congested during commute times it can take 90 minutes from Beaverton to downtown.
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Old 04-11-2014, 07:28 AM   #15
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Portlandmaps.com more data than you may expect.
Thank you very much.
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