gd1972's Blog

Nov. 19, 2010 at 10:23am

Moving to Tacoma

My boyfriend will be moving to Tacoma soon for a year long job. Neither one of us has ever been there so we don't know where  to live or anything. He won't have a car or anything and will be working at the Port of Tacoma. So something kind of close and maybe close to some kind of transportation. An all inclusive place with washer and dryer in unit in a quiet neighborhood would be ideal. If anyone could give advice on what we should do I'd appreciate it so much.

comments [21]  |  posted under moving


by NineInchNachos on 11/19/2010 @ 11:25am
stay away from anything called "fredo city"

by fredo on 11/19/2010 @ 11:48am
I refudiate that remark.

We've got all the comforts of home at FC. But I don't know where you're going to put your washer and dryer. We usually wash up our dungarees down at the lagoon, the same place we catch our vittles. Sometimes what you catch looks back at you with three eyes but once they're in the stewpot it don't make much difference. So bring along your blue tarp and an extention cord and we'll make a space for you.

by The Jinxmedic on 11/19/2010 @ 12:06pm
A very strategeric use of my favorite new word in a sentence. Well done.

by The Jinxmedic on 11/19/2010 @ 12:10pm
Seriously though- if he is working in the Port, Salishan on the 41 bus route might be a good bet.

Otherwise, apartments in the Stadium district would work well- and would give you walking access to a decent grocery store, multiple eateries, a pharmacy, and Wright Park. Don't need a car in Stadium District. Nope.

by The Jinxmedic on 11/19/2010 @ 12:10pm
Seriously though- if he is working in the Port, Salishan on the 41 bus route might be a good bet.

Otherwise, apartments in the Stadium district would work well- and would give you walking access to a decent grocery store, multiple eateries, a pharmacy, and Wright Park. Don't need a car in Stadium District. Nope.

by Erik on 11/19/2010 @ 12:13pm
Yep. Stadium is a good launching pad for new Tacomans.

by Dave_L on 11/19/2010 @ 1:39pm
Gosh, it's been a long time since I've worked in the Port, and while I haven't checked bus routes and living expenses, etc., don't overlook N.E. Tacoma, Brown's Point etc. on the "other" side of the Port and Commencement bay. Although this site is obviously Tacoma-centric, even very close Fife/Milton might be worth considering, at least for starters. (That comment may have just gotten me kicked out of the club, though.)

by The Jinxmedic on 11/19/2010 @ 2:01pm
Those places, they are boring and dreary. (But possibly quite practical)

by KevinFreitas on 11/19/2010 @ 2:12pm
I'd easily choose Stadium for it's walkability and transit over NE Tacoma or Salishan any day. Apartment prices are pretty reasonable (anything owned by Williams Properties may be good -- heard good things about them) and there's a great grocery store, tasty restaurants, and great pubs within walking distance.

Good luck and welcome in advance!

by Dave_L on 11/19/2010 @ 2:24pm
You are correct on both counts Jinx. And the Salishan/lower Portland Ave. (once Tacoma's Polish neighborhood) area was traditionally a home to the Port's working class. Bus route 60 seems to access the Port pretty well.

by morgan on 11/19/2010 @ 2:51pm
Downtown has a number of living options from $250 to $1,000,000. It has a transportation hub and pretty soon Flex Car. An added bonus, there's the Amocat Cafe :)

by cisserosmiley on 11/19/2010 @ 2:54pm

by Dave_L on 11/19/2010 @ 3:22pm
Really, Morgan? $250?? You don't mean 10 years ago when there were affordable apartments (and the Walker was one of them)? I know a few years ago, I knew a guy who knew a guy whose quaint, but 80-year old studio apt. near your cafe was being hiked every 6 months well into the $700 range. Eons ago when I worked in the Port, Fife apartments were a practical option to co-workers. It also might matter of one worked nearer to the I-5 Port exit or the Poodle Dog exit.

by NineInchNachos on 11/19/2010 @ 3:28pm
The Tacomic endorses Stadium District "old brick" apartments. The Tacomic DOES NOT ENDORSE the Fredo City blue tarp special.

by fredo on 11/19/2010 @ 4:11pm
FC has a nice breezy atmosphere, no old lady mothball smell.

by Jesse on 11/19/2010 @ 5:20pm
I lived in the Stadium District and it was a nice central location with plenty of ammenities within walking distance. Great neighborhood.

by Leischen on 11/19/2010 @ 7:14pm
First of all, Welcome to Tacoma! It's a lovely little city and I hope that you will be very happy here.

I live in the Stadium district now (well mostly), I have to tell you, I wouldn't want to live any where else. We have a great supermarket, good diners and restaurants, a stellar bakery, a wonderful independent movie theatre, a bookstore, wine shops, a beautiful park and the best view in town. All within walking distance.

My advice on finding a place to live in the Stadium district is to simply drive around and look at places. A ton of things are on Craigslist but many places just seem to have signs outside. I happen to think that Williams Properties can be overpriced for what you get. A sweet building is the Vintage (they have washers in the basement) and they are a steal for rent. All in all, there is a wealth of great places to live here.

Stadium district is great, I hope you choose it.

by jenyum on 11/19/2010 @ 7:43pm
Also voting for Stadium. If you don't have a car you'll be miserable in NE Tacoma, but Stadium is built to be pedestrian and transit friendly.

Just FYI Pierce Transit is planning on nixing the only bus route that still goes to the Port of Tacoma (the 60). Hope your boyfriend has a good bike and doesn't mind all-weather riding. It's not too far from Stadium if you bike it across the Murray Morgan bridge. (Closed to vehicular traffic, but you can still ride a bike across.)

by L.S.Erhardt on 11/19/2010 @ 7:46pm
Welcome, gd1972! You've come to the right place.

Firstly, a little info. I've worked in the Port of Tacoma for 6 years and I live in the Stadium District.
Let me address the transportation and living amenities separately.

In regard to transit, fair warning that the buses to the port aren't the best. If your boyfriend works "normal" day hours (9-5), you're in luck. The #60 runs from downtown to the Port.
If he works swings or graveyard, not so much luck. The hours the # 60 runs don't accommodate those shifts too well.

In regards to living, I'd suggest to you either the Stadium District or the adjacent neighborhood of St Helens. St Helens is actually technically the northernmost edge of downtown. Both neighborhoods have much going for them. There's a grocery store (Stadium Thriftway), neat restaurants (the Harmon Hub, Bayside Cafe, Puget Sound Pizza, the Harvester Frisko Freeze, etc). There are a TON of choices for your coffee, including Satellite, Amocat Cafe, Vanilla Bean, Tully's, etc. There are bars too, including Doyle's, the Harmon Tap Room, the Mix, Silverstone and the Parkway. In 2012, we'll have a McMenamins (and possibly another grocery store) added to the list. You also have the Grand Cinema, an indie movie house, and Stadium Video for your DVD rental needs. You also have Wright Park, a 27 acre park/arboretum with the WW Seymour conservatory. In the summer, Wright is the location for several festivals including Ethnic Fest, Out in the Park and the new Tacoma Hempfest. Furthermore, the area is served by bus routes #1, 11, 16, and #26. All these routes provide access to downtown and pretty much most of the places in the county you'd want to go. In downtown, you can ride the light rail (free), and there is bus/train access to Seattle, Olympia and beyond.

On the bad note, traffic is frequently a pain on Division Ave near Wright Park due to Stadium High school and the nearby Tacoma General/Mary Bridge hospital complex. Medevac is sometimes annoying, as that helicopter always seems to be at the hospital when you're trying to sleep. Also, there are a lot of hipsters around here. That's good or bad, you decide.

As for which neighborhood, I'd recommend St Helens based on your wanting "all inclusive". Stadium has many 100+ year old buildings which are superior in charm but lacking in amenities. St Helens has the newer buildings which tend to be all-inclusive with parking, fitness centers and laundry in your unit.

I've provided some links here, I hope you find them useful.

Bella on Broadway
the Metropolitan
Chelsea Heights (not quite St Helens neighborhood, but close)
Hanna Heights
Park Tower Apartments
Vista Del Rey Apartments

Other good info
Pierce transit note... pay attention to routes 1, 11,16,26 and 60
Wright Park
WW Seymour conservatory
Stadium District
6th Ave

by Jesse on 11/19/2010 @ 7:58pm
I second Thorax in saying that there are some charming old buildings pretty much all over Tacoma. Just avoid the ones with the old single pane windows like The Miller -- although it is an insanely charming 1909 building in pristine condition. Been there, done that. Brrrrrrr!!!!!!!! Drops past 40 and you'll never get the place warm in this part of the country.

by Marty on 11/19/2010 @ 10:30pm
Stadium District has a Great Video / Record Store.

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