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Neville Street Isnt' bad...not too far from campus...a bit of a walk, but you can catch a bus. However, the closer you get to Center avenue the worse the area gets. center avenue and in north oakland is not the best place to live.

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Thanks for the info.

Would this area not be safe? I had read before that it was an okay place to live. My question is is it better to live in Shadyside but further to campus (I found an apartment that is like 1.4 miles) or in this place at Neville Street (0.8 miles)?

I know I am asking too many details but I am an international student and I will have to get the apartment without seeing it.

Thanks a lot.

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Hey nazzaz99 .. Im another intl. student considering CMU too.. Grad student in ME. Whats ur take..? decided anything..? Its CMU definitely in my mind now. I'm from india btw.. so quite a weather change..

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Yeah, I have already told the professors I will be working with that I am coming. Going crazy over the apartment hunt now, the trouble never ends!

Congrats on your admit, good luck finding a place to live:)

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hey there...what's the addresses on the places you are looking at. center and north neville can get sketchy. it all depends on where you are at in oakland. if you send me the addresses I'd be able to help you more.

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Hey dmh26,

Thanks so much!

Right now I am looking at two places, one is the Amberson Plaza Apartments at 5030 Center and the other is Kennilworth at 5700 Center, supposed to be right across from the Giant Eagle. I am trying to look at reviews at apartmentratings.com for a place that has relatively good reviews and of course, somewhere close to school. These two seem fine so far. I will really appreciate comments, thanks a lot!!

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Hey there,

those are both good locations. Just try not to go to close to Center Avenue and North Craig...that area is SKETCHY. Your apartment is near shadyside hospital so lots of people are around. But just be careful at night if you are walking around Center Avenue and North Craig..and that is only a few blocks from where you are...but believe me...sometimes in Pittsburgh, a few blocks makes a big difference.

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If funding negotiations don't work through with other schools, I will be a UPitts grad student starting this Aug. Like a maniac, I have researched the area and like what I see so far. I hate to self-categorize myself but I'm sort of into the artsy, chic type of neighborhoods and look forward to finding a place in either Lawrenceville or Bloomfield. I was just wondering how feasible these areas are to the university (I won't have a car) and whether this is a good choice in general. I also would not mind biking. I've noticed rent is a lot cheaper than what I'm used to (born and raised in Southern CA) which is a plus. If there's any other insight into nightlife, that is also appreciated :) I think the weather might be my biggest challenge but I did exchange in Holland for 6 months so I think it won't be too much of an issue. Thanks!!!

:D

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Hi again!

Thanks for the comments. I will keep looking for a place within my budget that is further from Center and North Craig. Perhaps on 5th street?

Also, I have been told many times that I should not be out on the streets by myself at night. Better to be too scared from the start than be stupid I guess..

Lynz0r, I heard that biking becomes quite an issue in winter because of snow.:(

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Like a maniac, I have researched the area and like what I see so far. I hate to self-categorize myself but I'm sort of into the artsy, chic type of neighborhoods and look forward to finding a place in either Lawrenceville or Bloomfield. I was just wondering how feasible these areas are to the university (I won't have a car) and whether this is a good choice in general. I also would not mind biking. I've noticed rent is a lot cheaper than what I'm used to (born and raised in Southern CA) which is a plus. If there's any other insight into nightlife, that is also appreciated :) I think the weather might be my biggest challenge but I did exchange in Holland for 6 months so I think it won't be too much of an issue. Thanks!!!

:D

Bloomfield is much much safer than Lawrenceville. Although Lawrenceville has a distinct art sector, most of the area is not the greatest. There are lots of drug dealers that live in and around Butler Street, not to mention you will see prostitutes. Once again, it all depends on the area in Lawrenceville. You may want to plan a visit before you sign a lease and scope out the area, talk to neighbors, etc. Get a feel for the streets immediate around your house.

Nightlife in Pittsburgh focuses mostly on bars....and bars in the Southside area tend to be popular. You may look into Southside for a place to live also. It's very eclectic. A blend of young professionals, old steel workers, old religious ladies, and artists. It's generally very safe, but because of its proximity to downtown and increased popularity, rents have skyrocketed. You could bike to Oakland, but it will take a lot longer than if you lived in Bloomfield and Lawrenceville. Just a tip though, biking in Pittsburgh can be difficult...some areas are super flat, others are on large hills...and I do mean large hills! lol

Other areas of nightlife, the Waterfront (a suburb of Pittsburgh) has restuarants, a movie theater, and shopping. Shadyside and Squirrel Hill have some smaller bars and theaters. You should try to bring a car with you because the bus system can be a pain.

As far as the weather, it's not so bad, but the city does a horrible job with snow and ice removal, especially if you live on a side street!

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Hi again!

Thanks for the comments. I will keep looking for a place within my budget that is further from Center and North Craig. Perhaps on 5th street?

Also, I have been told many times that I should not be out on the streets by myself at night. Better to be too scared from the start than be stupid I guess..

Fifth Avenue is a good location, a lot of kids from CMU and Chatham College live there. It's generally a very nice area, lots of old mansions turned apartment buildings and some schools. Like you said, just be cautious and careful at night. My friend was just robbed on fifth, in shadyside...which is highly unusual for that area. It can happen to anyone, just be cautious!

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If funding negotiations don't work through with other schools, I will be a UPitts grad student starting this Aug. Like a maniac, I have researched the area and like what I see so far. I hate to self-categorize myself but I'm sort of into the artsy, chic type of neighborhoods and look forward to finding a place in either Lawrenceville or Bloomfield. I was just wondering how feasible these areas are to the university (I won't have a car) and whether this is a good choice in general. I also would not mind biking. I've noticed rent is a lot cheaper than what I'm used to (born and raised in Southern CA) which is a plus. If there's any other insight into nightlife, that is also appreciated :)

wow, are you me? kidding, but i'm in the exact same boat. i would love to live a little further from campus and especially in an area with good nightlife. i don't mind a walking/biking/bus commute at all, in fact i would gladly trade a short commute for a more fun/"hip" area to live.

can anyone offer some insight about when is the best time to visit and look for apt's? i've scoured craigslist like a madwoman, but it generally seems to not be the best source for pittsbutgh.

and i have a cat, so that's a concern as well b/c i will NOT be leaving my baby behind.

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I'm a 2nd year Engineering PhD student at Pitt. My first year I lived in Squirrel Hill, and while I know several people who biked, I tried and, well, the hills were more than I bargained for, at least with the used bike I got from Craigslist! Maybe a nice road bike would be better. Anyways, you can definitely bike most of the year, I would just say that you need to have some experience biking (unlike me!). On the other hand, I was surprised what someone said about the bus in Pgh. I feel that the public bus service is excellent, it's one of the best in the country from my understanding. Pitt (and I believe CMU) students can ride the bus, day or night, for free with their student IDs. This has come in SO handy for me, not only for daily commute but especially for off-hour transit. You can get to wherever you need riding the bus, and there are buses that go to places like the Waterfront, etc. that offer grocery stores and other things. If you're up for a longer ride, there's plenty of buses that head to the suburbs, right to some large malls (Monroeville, Ross Park, among others), if you're need to do some shopping. There's also some nice parks here, Schenley and (my favorite, used to live across the street from) Frick Park. Love the name :)

In my opinion, Squirrel Hill is VERY safe and quiet, but rent prices seem a bit higher there than some of the surrounding areas - you can get a pretty good feel for this just by scanning Craigslist though. Shadyside seems to be a bit more popular in terms of "the cool place to live" for grad students, but Squirrel Hill suited me just fine. Lots of students there.

In general, I would stay away from living in Oakland, lots of undergrads live there, lots of partying, can be somewhat trashy, etc. Oh, and watch out for the rental company with the pink sign "Los Lobos". Their spanish name suits them, they definitely act like wolves! I have heard good things from Walnut Capital - very professional, albeit pricey. There's also tons of local landlords with just a property or two. If you have any questions, feel free to ask.

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On the other hand, I was surprised what someone said about the bus in Pgh. I feel that the public bus service is excellent, it's one of the best in the country from my understanding.

If you live in or around Oakland, or in the east hills...yes. If you live in the South Hills or in South Pgh..not so much. When I lived in Southside, the buses were great. I moved 10 minutes up the hill...and it takes me an hour and 15 minutes to get to Oakland by bus (because I have to walk 6 blocks to a stop up the hill, catch a bus to Southside, and transfer to another bus.....by car its 15 minutes...lol. Since I live on a giant hill....the buses may or may not come when there is snow. It's hit or miss.

So I would have to say that PAT uses are good depending on your location!

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If you live in or around Oakland, or in the east hills...yes. If you live in the South Hills or in South Pgh..not so much. When I lived in Southside, the buses were great. I moved 10 minutes up the hill...and it takes me an hour and 15 minutes to get to Oakland by bus (because I have to walk 6 blocks to a stop up the hill, catch a bus to Southside, and transfer to another bus.....by car its 15 minutes...lol. Since I live on a giant hill....the buses may or may not come when there is snow. It's hit or miss.

So I would have to say that PAT uses are good depending on your location!

You are right, I agree that the bus service depends on your location, and that they are less frequent into Oakland from the South Hills area. I live near Dormont now and I either need to walk about a mile to catch a direct bus to Oakland (44U, only operates around the morning and evening rush hours), or else catch more frequent buses that go downtown, and then transfer (or catch a ride downtown with my wife in the morning, then transfer!). Total time about 45-60 minutes. But that's me, I chose this way on purpose, I get more exercise now, and my point is that there ARE ways to get to Oakland on public transportation, it's free and, for the most part, reliable. True that they may take longer from some areas in Pgh, like the South Hills area (bring a book!), but then again I wouldn't recommend new students coming to live in the South Hills either.

Best bet - if you are coming to Pgh, planning to use public transportation, then before deciding on where to live, check out http://www.portauthority.org/PAAC/Sched ... fault.aspx - just enter your potential new intersection, an intersection near school, and it will give you the buses that travel that way. Since I new I needed to have reliable bus transportation, that's how I was able to figure out what buses come to my new neck of the woods :) Also, you can obtain a PDF copy of the whole schedule once you know the route number - just replace the XX with the appropriate route number in the following URL (there is also a way to get them directly from the site, but this seems more direct!): http://www.portauthority.org/PAAC/apps/pdfs/XX.PDF

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Hi, I'm going to be a grad student at Pitt this summer. How's the climate there? I hear it's very depressing during the winter. Lots of snow and rain. Some people said that it's hard not to see a cloudy sky even in the spring and fall. Since I'm a type of person whose mood gets affected by the weather a lot, I am wondering if I can survive there without going insane for six years or so... Also, does anyone know how the climate in pittsburgh is compared to the one in Columbus, Ohio? I've lived in Columbus for a year almost 10 years ago and I thought the climate there was pretty good for me. :-)

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Hi, I'm going to be a grad student at Pitt this summer. How's the climate there? I hear it's very depressing during the winter. Lots of snow and rain. Some people said that it's hard not to see a cloudy sky even in the spring and fall. Since I'm a type of person whose mood gets affected by the weather a lot, I am wondering if I can survive there without going insane for six years or so... Also, does anyone know how the climate in pittsburgh is compared to the one in Columbus, Ohio? I've lived in Columbus for a year almost 10 years ago and I thought the climate there was pretty good for me. :-)

I don't know how Columbus is, but Pittsburgh's climate can vary. In the winter, there is a lot of snow and ice and it can be very overcast. However, some days it will be bitter cold and bright and sunny. The spring tends to have very nice sunny days, btu when it does rain..it will rain all day! In summer we get a lot of sun, humidity, and severe thunderstorms. In the fall we tend to get a lot of rain and then snow. I have to admit that when it rains all day, people around campus seem to move slower and just generally feel more tired. My advice, find a hobby or something you like to do to pass the time during the rainy days.

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I am coming at the end of August to Pittsburgh to start grad school at Pitt. I am an international student and I was wondering how early I should start look for a place to live. Are there any websites that could be helpful?

Hey!

Craigslist would give you an idea I guess. Also, Franklin West, Walnut Capital and Meyers Management have a lot of nice places. Mozart also has a lot of properties but I read some terrible things about them on the net.

As for the date, I am looking to move in August and most realtors told me that they will know about availability in May.

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I am coming at the end of August to Pittsburgh to start grad school at Pitt. I am an international student and I was wondering how early I should start look for a place to live. Are there any websites that could be helpful?

I have friends that found a place as late as late August / early September, but if you had the choice I would obviously recommend getting here sooner to find a place, should be more opportunities and should save you some sanity :mrgreen:

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Hey!

Craigslist would give you an idea I guess. Also, Franklin West, Walnut Capital and Meyers Management have a lot of nice places. Mozart also has a lot of properties but I read some terrible things about them on the net.

As for the date, I am looking to move in August and most realtors told me that they will know about availability in May.

Thank you for all this information! I will definitely start checking these places. I am so glad we have internet :D It is so useful for this kind of stuff!

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I have friends that found a place as late as late August / early September, but if you had the choice I would obviously recommend getting here sooner to find a place, should be more opportunities and should save you some sanity :mrgreen:

I will have to come at the end of August as I still need time to solve issues such as VISA and other documents. Plus I am planning to spend some time with my family and probably going in some nice trip with my friends as I won't be seeing them for a while.

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I have friends that found a place as late as late August / early September, but if you had the choice I would obviously recommend getting here sooner to find a place, should be more opportunities and should save you some sanity :mrgreen:

would you recommend waiting until july (if i want to start a lease on august 1)? or just trying to come up there as soon as possible?

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Hey!

This will be too detailed but I am asking since there are people who know the area well. I found a one bedroom apartment from Franklin West at 340 S.Highland Avenue in Shadyside. It is like a mile to CMU and close to Giant Eagle and stuff. The rent is $870 (heat included). Do you think this is a good deal? I know there are cheaper places but I keep reading horrible things (roaches, terrible management etc) on the net about places that seem nice at first glance and I am worried about security as well. What would you say?

Thanks so much. All the comments so far have been so helpful:)

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Hi there-

I'm currently living in a 1BR in Shadyside for 720/month + electric. Shadyside is one of the most expensive neighborhoods in the city limits; most of my friends (CMU MAs) are paying between $500-600/month (sometimes including utilities), though I am one of the most centrally located. If you wanted to be able to walk to school from where I live (near Walnut St; Negley off 5th), it's about 20 min to CMU and 30 min to Pitt. I walk everyday, and when I took a course at Pitt in the fall, I walked there, too.

If you live in SqHill, it's a bit cheaper than Shadyside, but not as walkable, unless you're pretty fit or at the tail end of Forbes Ave (if you're going to CMU). Living on Centre is quite affordable, as are the Amberson Apts.

If there are any Literary and Cultural hopefuls, I am happy to answer questions about our program. Pittsburgh is AWESOME!

-Ashira

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