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Had Enough of Eugene; Where to Next?

Old 12-16-17, 01:29 AM
  #51  
B. Carfree
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Originally Posted by rando_couche View Post
I'd move back to Bend in a heartbeat if I could. Never experienced any shortage of good road riding and xc skiing all winter makes for great fitness and enthusiasm when you get back on the bike in the spring. Good-paying jobs and affordable housing are both in short supply there, though.


Ooops, scratch that. Bend is AWFUL. Too cold in the winter, too hot in the summer, too many tourists, too yuppy. Absolutely sucks. Don't know why anybody would live there.


SP
OC, OR
Hot in the summer in Bend? Not from my perspective. I spent twenty years in the Sacramento Valley at a time when if the high was under 100F, it must be sometime between mid-September and late-April. It's taken me all these years to adjust to Eugene's lack of heat. As far as winter goes, meh, I want my water in liquid form. That frozen stuff just causes trouble. I don't want to live in a place with ice if I can avoid it, and I believe I can avoid it. I'll leave Bend for those who are into it.
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Old 12-16-17, 08:00 PM
  #52  
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Originally Posted by B. Carfree View Post
Hot in the summer in Bend? Not from my perspective.
Read that second sentence in the Bend post again a little slower.
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Old 12-18-17, 04:59 PM
  #53  
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You seem to be painting a rather grim picture of Eugene that makes it sound like a place like Cleveland or Chicago's South Side.

Granted, I have not spent time in Eugene; I admit that I may be making a busload of assumptions here.

I am taking a hair brain high risk assumption that Eugene is comperable to Bellingham, Washington. Both are university towns that are are about 2 hours or so from the nearest major cities; therefore they are stand-alone university towns.

If I an not mistaken, Eugene is a liberal town surrounded by more conservative rural areas. This is similar to Bellingham. North of Bellingham are Ferndale (often called Ferntucky) and Lynden, which is a very religiously conservative city (Dutch Reformed Christian).

Both have a University/Hospital/Service employment base; ie; job market sucks compared to Portland/Seattle/SFO/Boston/etc.

I am guessing that housing is comperable in both cities.

What I find mystifying is that here in Bellingham, I am NOT seeing any where near the dire things that you are citing in your essay here. There is no part of Bellingham that I am afraid of riding on my bicycle. There are three short sections of streets here that are dangerous (Meridian between the mall and the I/5 interchange; Lakeway between Holly and the Civic Field; and Woburn between Sunset and the Railroad Trail crossing.

Sure, we have bike theft, but it's now where near as bad as I remember of PDX. And moreover, the police are now taking a pro-active bike theft stinging approach and have arrested a number of thieves recently.

I have NOT heard of any section of town where the police refuse to respond or take reports from.

I have never been assaulted/threatened/or had uring/feces thrown at me by anyone while on my bike (homeless or otherwise). I have heard of some verbal abuse by others toward bicyclists, but *VERY* rarely have heard of bicyclists being assaulted.

No where on any trails/roads/bridges/underpasses have I felt even the remotest threatened or smelled urine as was cited in this posting.

I am not saying what you said is false; it just blows me away that Eugene, which I see as a sister to Bellingham; is so much more challenging to the safety to bicyclists and pedestrians. This being said suggests to me that something is really going on in Eugene that has my brain running around in circles.
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Old 12-18-17, 11:30 PM
  #54  
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Originally Posted by maallyn View Post
You seem to be painting a rather grim picture of Eugene that makes it sound like a place like Cleveland or Chicago's South Side.

Granted, I have not spent time in Eugene; I admit that I may be making a busload of assumptions here.

I am taking a hair brain high risk assumption that Eugene is comparable to Bellingham, Washington.
A key here may be the population and size differences. Eugene is linked at the hip to Springfield to create a "city" of 230k, whereas Bellingham is just over a third that size. We also have more populated suburbs surrounding us. Like Bellingham, those suburbs are far more conservative, and they are where our cops are all coming from and living; I'm guessing that most of your police live inside the city. The large geographical area means that the powers that be perceive it as possible to allow some areas to have festering problems while they live completely separated from those issues. One would be hard pressed to find a single city employee in the top ten rungs of management who lives in any of the lower elevation neighborhoods.

That said, fifteen years ago Eugene was completely different, much more like the descriptions I see of Bellingham, except that the right-wing controlled the city government (they still control the county). There were a noticeable number of homeless people, but they weren't generally trashing the place and definitely weren't violent. (I knew many of them in a passing way and even invited some to my home.) Currently the progressives control the city council, though none of them has ever ridden a bike, and our homeless population has exploded, though all in one area. That could be related to the shanty-camps the city has authorized (none where city staff live), or it could just be part of a general growth of homelessness on the west coast (you should see the size of the camps in/near Sacramento). The cause is likely multi-faceted, but I don't think I need to sort that out, not that I could. However, I am committed to getting the bike paths back from the thugs. I'll, or actually the entire community, will either succeed over the next three years or I'll be on my merry way.
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Old 12-19-17, 01:40 AM
  #55  
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You would do well to realize that just about any small to medium sized multi-city region in Northwest Oregon and Southwest Idaho has grown to the point where it's wall-to-wall stuff. Nampa, Meridian, Caldwell, Boise and even Kuna, Eagle and Star, Idaho are just about one zone.
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Old 01-03-18, 10:02 AM
  #56  
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Having done the RSVP twice I found Bellingham a delightful place. I have always loved Ashland but it has gotten way too expensive. Medford is an alternative. I wouldn't have thought so 10 years ago but a buddy of mine moved there several years ago having visited him there I can say I was favorably impressed.

The homeless issue is a vexing one that is a problem for all west coast cities. Homelessness is up 10% in Portland over the last 2 years, 16% in Seattle, 30% in LA and a whopping 39% in Oakland.

Don't think we are going to have a solution from the top down given our political climate. Gone are the days of the Great Society.

Perhaps one answer is to get involved in a local solution. Volunteering at a shelter or being the squeaky wheel in your mayors office.

Just a thought
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Old 01-03-18, 03:30 PM
  #57  
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Hard to find Housing , here.. but if you can shrink your lifestyle to fit on a Boat there are Live-Aboard Moorage opportunities
on Puget sound and some Marinas around Portland , and a couple out on the western end of the Columbia..

I see a few Houseboat communities , if typical, they are limited to sewage hookups permitted..

Though some have become quite luxurious..




....
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Old 01-03-18, 06:12 PM
  #58  
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Carfree, you know me from BP. I lived in Eugene for 7 years and if you don't like Eugene, I do not recommend Portland.

By my perspective, Portland is just a much more expensive version of Eugene with better access to goods and geography but with every problem you describe multiplied. While I love the PNW and will stay, my opinion of Portland and cycling in the environs is low.

What is your work situation and how flexible are you? There are many small towns where you can reasonably live car free that cost a fraction of Portland, where crime is nonexistent, and cycling is so much better than the supposedly cycling Meccas that it's not even funny.
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Old 01-04-18, 10:55 AM
  #59  
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Not sure where/how to avoid PNW MUP colonization short of staying east of the mountains or up in Alaska.
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Old 01-04-18, 04:04 PM
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Originally Posted by B. Carfree View Post
Corvallis is on the radar. It has the advantage that I could move there while my daughter is doing D.O. school. Her school is in Lebanon and her husband works in Eugene.

...

What's Albany got to offer, other than the train station? ..
Corvallis is decent but spendy. Services there are excellent and there are some bike shops.

I'm not a huge fan of Albany, though it is relatively cheap, Corvallis is a short ride away, and there's good riding to be had, especially to the northwest of the town.

If you're looking for a more affordable alternative to Corvallis in the same general area, I recommend Monmouth or Independence. Nice towns, everything is compact so doing simple things is convenient on a bike, fantastic access to a wide variety of cycling terrain -- rolling agricultural land, wine country, seriously gnarly hills, and is way better for cycling than anything you have in Eugene. Air is decent -- the reason your air is so bad is the smoke blows down the valley and gets stopped by the hills at Eugene.

The Monmouth/Independence area is a great jumping off point to other places. I commuted from there by bike to Corvallis for a number of years. You can easily bike to Amtrak and both Portland and Eugene are accessible from there. Both Portland and Eugene are surprisingly convenient.
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Old 01-05-18, 01:03 AM
  #61  
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Originally Posted by riversiderider View Post
Having done the RSVP twice I found Bellingham a delightful place. I have always loved Ashland but it has gotten way too expensive. Medford is an alternative. I wouldn't have thought so 10 years ago but a buddy of mine moved there several years ago having visited him there I can say I was favorably impressed.

The homeless issue is a vexing one that is a problem for all west coast cities. Homelessness is up 10% in Portland over the last 2 years, 16% in Seattle, 30% in LA and a whopping 39% in Oakland.

Don't think we are going to have a solution from the top down given our political climate. Gone are the days of the Great Society.

Perhaps one answer is to get involved in a local solution. Volunteering at a shelter or being the squeaky wheel in your mayors office.

Just a thought
I own a house in Medford that my nearly-disabled sister lives in. I'm there often enough that I know that's not a place I want to live. Besides, I really dig having train service to NorCal since I have to be down there a few times each year. I hate driving and really, really hate driving when the water does that weird solid phase thing, my wife gets ill on a bus or plane and, while I do ride down the coast rain or shine, I don't want to do it multiple times per year any longer.

As to volunteering and getting involved, I do quite a lot of that already. However, a group of us is now committed to taking some of the elected offices (there are others in the group who are electable, unlike tactless me). I'm committed to doing all I can over the next three years simply because I'd rather see Eugene get better than just run away.
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Old 01-05-18, 01:21 AM
  #62  
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Originally Posted by banerjek View Post
Carfree, you know me from BP. I lived in Eugene for 7 years and if you don't like Eugene, I do not recommend Portland.

By my perspective, Portland is just a much more expensive version of Eugene with better access to goods and geography but with every problem you describe multiplied. While I love the PNW and will stay, my opinion of Portland and cycling in the environs is low.

What is your work situation and how flexible are you? There are many small towns where you can reasonably live car free that cost a fraction of Portland, where crime is nonexistent, and cycling is so much better than the supposedly cycling Meccas that it's not even funny.
I do enjoy your input on BP (you're not part of the nodding head groupies, which is awesome) and I was just thinking today that I'd love to hear your input here. You're correct that I wouldn't like Portland. I used to spend quite a bit of time there, sometimes taking the train, sometimes driving a group of folks and many times riding my bike. It's got that donut problem in spades. (Donut problem: central section with no dough equals decent around-town riding. Doughy section of suburbs is horrid. Outside the suburbs, no dough, is good riding again.)

If you haven't been living in Eugene over the past five years or so, you may not appreciate what's happened. Seriously, one has to be on guard constantly. Another thug was arrested thirty feet from my doorstep this morning after a neighbor called in his burglary activities. This is becoming a routine thing. I rode along the river three miles to the Home Depot on New Years Day past eleven homeless camps; these are the guys who got kicked out of the shelters for being violent. I did see a handful of people on bikes, but it was literally a handful (five). Just a few years ago I would have expected to see thirty or forty people on bikes at that time.

As far as work and such, I am self-employed and semi-retired at that. I need access to mail service since I ship out forty packages a week or so, though I'll likely give this up in a few years and just play. I doubt if there are any places I would want to live where I couldn't afford housing.
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