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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Possibly thinking of moving to the Denver area in the next couple of years to start raising ankle-biters. I'm in Tucson now and just aren't convinced it's a great place to raise children. Terrible schools, etc. The g/f and I would like a place with a bit more culture (art museums, theater, sports) as well as actual SEASONS, still outdoorsy, and are curious about Denver. We both grew up in areas that had lots of snow (her in mid-NY and me in Flagstaff, AZ) so we like the cold/snow.

I know things can change a lot in a couple years, but what suburbs are decent? I'm a graphic designer and she will most likely be getting an elementary teaching degree by the time we move. Cost of living seems to be just *slightly* higher there than in Tucson, but (according to Salary.com) employers pay 11% better there than here, so that's a plus if it's accurate.

All my internet sleuthing comes up with a ton of "I love it!" and a ton of "I hate this place!" so I was hoping for something a bit more fact-driven from ya'll.

On a biking related note, I'm more of an aggressive XC kinda guy. My main ride is a rigid SS with a full-squishy all-mountain(ish) backup ride. Got a mid-level road bike, too. Are there some good mtn and roadie clubs in the area? Bike commuting a possibility?

I'm sure you're all sick of this kind of post but help a guy out. So give it to me straight... what are the pros and cons of the area? :D :thumbsup:
 

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Awesomist™
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I'm not sure about Tuscon specifically, but much of the Front Range communities (Denver, Co Springs, Ft. Collins) have similar cost of living to Phoenix and Flagstaff last I checked. There are always some exceptions but for the most part I think they're pretty similar.

Many of the outlying communities in Denver are decent, everything has it's nice parts and crappy parts. I think ya gotta live here to figure it out but I would suggest Littleton, Lakewood, or Golden if it were me moving here.

Denver is up and coming culturally, the schools seem to be solid, and there's plenty of live music, theater, art museums, sports, etc. to be had.

There are definitely seasons here, and most of the people are "outdoorsy" at least a little bit. Actually, I thought Phoenix would have a similar attitude towards outdoor recreation as Denver, and was surprised out how "city" oriented the people I met were. Tuscon and Flag are probably more in line with the attitude here.

If you're down for aggressive XC we have it in SPADES. There are some AZ rides that are way badass (South Mtn, Trail 100, La Milagrosa, and many others) but Colorado probably has more of an abundance of trails overall, at least compared to PHX. Some of the AZ stuff I have ridden is a little more brutally technical than much of the Colorado stuff, but you can find the technical here for sure. I doubt you'll be disappointed, especially when you can go out for a ride at 1 in the afternoon in the middle of July - something not possible in PHX anyways.

Bike commuting is definitely a possibility - the bike path system (on and off street) is really good here. Plus with public transportation equipped to handle bikes you're golden!
 

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!Vamos, flaco!
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"Denver" is a big metro area with lots of suburbs. Parts are very nice and have excellent schools, such as Cherry Creek, and parts are not so nice, such as certain northern suburbs. It all depends on what part you live in.

Bike commuting is year round, if you don't mind the cold. Precipitation is rare and the paths/streets dry quickly.

For your lady friend, avoid working for Denver Public Schools. All school districts in Coloroad (except for DPS) use the PERA, state retirement plan. Denver has its own and you can't really transfer from PERA to Denver's. Also, DPS has pretty rough schools. The Cherry Creek School District (which is not really in the Cherry Creek neighborhood of Denerv) is the best district in the state: well-funded, progessive, research based, but hard to get your foot into.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
SkaredShtles said:
Ummmm........ New York is MUCH nicer. :D
;) You caught me! Still thinking of New York area, but the taxes there make me want to: :madman:

Full Trucker said:
I'm not sure about Tuscon specifically, but much of the Front Range communities (Denver, Co Springs, Ft. Collins) have similar cost of living to Phoenix and Flagstaff last I checked. There are always some exceptions but for the most part I think they're pretty similar.
Thanks, FT. Flagstaff is absurdly expensive... moreso than Phoenix. We'd LOVE to live in Flag (thought the whole "culture" thing isn't there so much). But the job market there sucks, and housing is lame. My sister and her fiance still live in Flag and the only place they could find was an 800sq ft old summer "cabin" 10-miles south of Flag... for $200k. And it needs foundation work. Lame!
 

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Well, it is a lot better than Tucson in every way. I'm in a rare hungover state (vendor-paid dinner-drinks) so not in a state to provide more detail. Do keep in mind that this forum can be very cliquish so don't let that turn you off....there are plenty of riders who are open to showing you trails and including you on rides but joing a club is probably the best/quickest way to meet the cool cats. Just don't be a hardass or overly competitive and you will be invited to more rides.
There are tons of roadie clubs and running clubs. There are also a couple of great mtn biking clubs. This place could be roadie heaven but it sounds like hell to me. Weather is nice enough- much cooler than AZ and fewer snakes and less desert.

If I think of more, I'll let you know.
 

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skillz to pay billz
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graphic designer(art director) here. The market is pretty ok, My company just got bought by a large ad agency(CP+B). There are a few other decent design shops in denver and boulder.

I personally wouldn't live in denver unless youre in the west part. It's just too far away from the trails(20-30 minutes drive).
 

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Awesomist™
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nOOby said:
graphic designer(art director) here. The market is pretty ok, My company just got bought by a large ad agency(CP+B). There are a few other decent design shops in denver and boulder.

I personally wouldn't live in denver unless youre in the west part. It's just too far away from the trails(20-30 minutes drive).
Hey is your company looking for any "talent" ? Not that I have any...
 

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It is further away from the trails. Golden/Morrison are closer. I don't mind this so far since I am 15 mins away from work. I'd rather live close to the trails but I'd have a hard time dealing with an hour commute. I work in the Denver Tech Center. I'll be buying a house early in 2009 so I have time to look into the cummute.
 

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I think most of the Front Range is great for culture, riding and bike clubs. I settled here after many moves to many cities and am glad to be raising a little one in this enviroment. The riding is endless and mostly high quality. I'd just say watch out for Colorado Springs. Good riding down there but maybe not as open in the religion and politics area. The weather beats most areas for me. Can't afford southern Cal so this is it for us. Good luck.
 

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Colorado Springs

bstrick said:
I think most of the Front Range is great for culture, riding and bike clubs. I settled here after many moves to many cities and am glad to be raising a little one in this enviroment. The riding is endless and mostly high quality. I'd just say watch out for Colorado Springs. Good riding down there but maybe not as open in the religion and politics area. The weather beats most areas for me. Can't afford southern Cal so this is it for us. Good luck.
In Colorado Springs I have over 100 miles of trail/singletrack 30 seconds from my front door.I choose my own religion and politics and never had a neg.issue about that with anyone.I guess if I stood on a soapbox and yelled my opinions I could get some arguments...but that would happen anywhere. Biking is not about religious views or politics (unless they try to close trails).I love the Springs and all of Colorado.
 
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