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  1. #1
    Senior Member Ktmartin's Avatar
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    Birmingham's road scene

    I got a job in Birmingham and just wanted to see if there is anyone on here from there and what rides you do around there. Are there a lot of cyclists? Is there a part of town you would suggest I live in? My office will be near the Brookwood Mall, Mountain Brook area. Any advice is appreciated.
    2006 TREK 2100

  2. #2
    Senior Member cnkjr's Avatar
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    I don't live in Birmingham, but have ridden there visiting my wife's family. I just poked around myself, but did a pretty good ride along the ridge in the Mountain Brook area. There is some good climbing up that ridge, and the views from the top are nice.
    --Body built for downhill--

  3. #3
    ... . Tmax1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ktmartin
    I got a job in Birmingham and just wanted to see if there is anyone on here from there and what rides you do around there. Are there a lot of cyclists? Is there a part of town you would suggest I live in?
    Welcome to town. B'ham for the most part is cycling friendly. There are several racing teams and a couple of clubs.

    The Brookwood/ lakeshore/ Mt. Brook area is well cycled with groups leaving from several locations close several times a week.

    Homewood Cycles on Tuesdays at 5 if you want to go fast for 30 miles or Botanical Gardens if you want to go slower at 6:00 for about 20 miles.

    Check this interactive calender for other rides.

    And here's a race team/ club.

    And a tri club if you go that way.

    I'd suggest just get out driving around to find a place to live. Ask folks at work. Lofts are downtown, apartments on Southside and all kinds of dwellings "Over the Mountain".

    Let us know when you get here. PM me or vpiuva.

  4. #4
    Senior Member gapowermike's Avatar
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    Leaving Ga KT? What in the world? At least you're already prepared for the hills coming from Athens. The wife and I are actually considering a future move to the North Georgia area. I've only driven through Birmingham but had a recent adventure in Anniston and loved it. Alabama is beautiful.

    Cheers and Good Luck in your new job,

    Michael
    RIP Stacey. =3.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Ktmartin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gapowermike
    Leaving Ga KT? What in the world? At least you're already prepared for the hills coming from Athens. The wife and I are actually considering a future move to the North Georgia area. I've only driven through Birmingham but had a recent adventure in Anniston and loved it. Alabama is beautiful.

    Cheers and Good Luck in your new job,

    Michael
    Yeah, as much as I like Georgia I got an opportunity I couldn't turn down in Birmingham. I wasn't real excited about working in Atlanta so Birmingham turned out to be a good alternative. Oh, and the hills should be no sweat once I get back into shape, it's been a long winter for me.

    I was actually walking out of the building after my interview and 2 guys rolled through the parking lot on bikes. I knew that had to be some kind of omen.

    Thanks for the help so far, keep it coming, I'll be doing some more looking before I move but any help on here is appreciated.
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  6. #6
    ... . Tmax1's Avatar
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    There's a real nice climb behind Brookwood Mall- a slow winding road to the crest of Shades Mountain- Smyer Road. A local favorite for repeats.

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    Senior Member Ktmartin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tmax1
    There's a real nice climb behind Brookwood Mall- a slow winding road to the crest of Shades Mountain- Smyer Road. A local favorite for repeats.
    Is it up what looks like a private driveway? The one with a small security gate at the bottom? Just curious because that's where the 2 guys I saw were heading.
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  8. #8
    * vpiuva's Avatar
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    That's probably it. The security gates are on all 3 entrances to the Morgan Keegan building there. The "middle" exit up that short steep incline leads to Smyer, then Shades Crest.

    The main key to finding a place to live anywhere is never live west if you have normal hours. If you do live west you drive into work looking into the sun, and commute home into the sun. In B'ham an additional key is staying off of 280 unless you are reverse commuting from the city out to Brookwood - that will work. I've lived in Hoover near the Galleria - real suburbia, really sucks; in the city in Forest Park, very nice older home, would still be there but it was cheaper when my daughter got to school age to move to Mtn. Brook than to send her to private school. (you can sell the increased housing price later, can't sell that tuition). She could walk to elem school and the shopping village. Live close to work if you can afford it, some B'ham commutes are as bad as ATL, and you'd rather be riding, particularly on Tuesday night.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Ktmartin's Avatar
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    What about the Highlands area (1 block off Highlands ave) I found a decent apt in Hanover Circle Condominiums. Is it a good area?
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  10. #10
    * vpiuva's Avatar
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    Highlands is very close to where I used to live. I was on Lakeview Crescent, behind Ind Pres Church located at the corner of Highlands and 32nd St down at the end with the Highlands Golf Course. I'm not sure exactly where Hanover is, but I have heard of it. I think you'd like it there. Close to night life at both Five Points and the Lakeview District. James Beard winner Frank Stitt has his signature restaurant Highlands Bar & Grill in the Five Points area. Also close to the Virginia Samford theatre for local troupes, and less than 10 minutes from everything downtown, and about 10 minutes from the starting point of rides from Homewood Cycles and the B'ham Bicycle Co.

  11. #11
    ... . Tmax1's Avatar
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    That would be on the "good" side of Southside. I've had several apartments on Southside and I found the Highland Avenue area to be pleasant enough. From Hanover it would be a quick bike commute to Brookwood. Welcome to town.

  12. #12
    Go Team BH! teambhultima's Avatar
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    Welcome to B-ham, Ktmartin!

    I'm sure you will find many opportunities to ride around here. Unfortunately, the local newspaper is stirring up a controversy between motorists and cyclists sharing the road right now, but there are lots of good rides. If you want to start riding away from traffic, try Oak Mtn. State Park - lots of road and mountain riders go there. Also check Tmax1's links. If the Montevallo rides on Saturday mornings are back on the schedule, they are nice, moderately paced country rides. Worth the drive to Montevallo, for sure.

    Also, best wishes on finding a place to live. There are lots of great choices around here and many are near where you will be working. My wife and I lived in Cahaba Heights in '89 - '91 and it was a nice community. Close to Brookwood, too.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Ktmartin's Avatar
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    I signed a lease this weekend for an apt in Lake Heather Reserve, it's in the Inverness business park behind the Fresh Market on 280. Seems like a good area to be able to ride out of my front door, and it looks like I can get to Oak Mountain Park pretty easily if I take a few back roads.
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  14. #14
    * vpiuva's Avatar
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    You will be closer to Shelby County rides, and there are lots of routes out there. If you like group rides, just be sure to bring your bike to work on Tuesday for those rides, and there are after-work rides from the B'ham Bicycle Co. close by on M, W, and Th.

  15. #15
    Ride First, Work Later!!! af2nr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ktmartin
    I signed a lease this weekend for an apt in Lake Heather Reserve, it's in the Inverness business park behind the Fresh Market on 280. Seems like a good area to be able to ride out of my front door, and it looks like I can get to Oak Mountain Park pretty easily if I take a few back roads.
    Nice complex but you will get to deal with 280 traffic to and from work each day. As far as riding out the door there, not too sure, as that is a high traffic area when you get out of the business park even within it sometimes as people use it as a cut off between Valleydale and 280. I live in that area until March and the traffic can be very frustrating to say the least. There is a shop between you and your job as well as one just down 280 the other way, not to mention a couple in Homewood and BBC in Crestline.

    Although it's probably too late I would have probably recommended either Colonial Grand at Mt. Brook or Liberty Park, both of those are great for out the door riding as well as the apartments themselves. They are also closer with less traffic to the Brookwood Mall area, my office is in that area as well. Good luck with the move and welcome to the area. I have a friend who lives in the Chelsea area and we usually alternate meeting up between his place and mine to ride, which you would be between us. PM me and we will have to get together and ride sometime or if you have any questions.

    Scott
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the exam first, the lesson afterwards.
    Vernon Law

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ktmartin
    I got a job in Birmingham and just wanted to see if there is anyone on here from there and what rides you do around there. Are there a lot of cyclists? Is there a part of town you would suggest I live in? My office will be near the Brookwood Mall, Mountain Brook area. Any advice is appreciated.
    Welcome to birmingham. Are you going to be working in the new building at Brookwood mall? Nice building. I am a dentist right across from the mall. I have been here a year from Memphis and have really enjoyed it. Good riding. I am a roadie, but I have also really come to enjoy mtn biking at oak mtn state park. Good luck with the new move. If you have any questions about anything, feel free to ask or pm. Later

  17. #17
    * vpiuva's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vpiuva
    In B'ham an additional key is staying off of 280 unless you are reverse commuting from the city
    new arrivals - have you found out yet why I said this was important

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