Why do people favor NYC firms?

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quakeroats
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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby quakeroats » Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:27 am

rayiner wrote:
quakeroats wrote:
rayiner wrote:I used to have a 30 min driving commute in ATL. At least there I could relax and listen to music and see sunlight. With my 30 min subway commute I'm standing elbow to elbow with people the whole way in a way too hot metal tube, transferring in unaircondioned dingy catacombs.


Atlanta may be the country's worst driving experience east of the Mississippi.


DC, NY, and Boston are way worse. At least ATL has parking.


I say this because Atlanta is completely car dependent. All the cities you mentioned have at least plausible secondary options.

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D-hops
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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby D-hops » Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:27 am

Helmholtz wrote:
rayiner wrote:I used to have a 30 min driving commute in ATL. At least there I could relax and listen to music and see sunlight. With my 30 min subway commute I'm standing elbow to elbow with people the whole way in a way too hot metal tube, transferring in unaircondioned dingy catacombs.


That's funny. I would much rather prefer reading on the subway versus driving in a car and listening to podcasts/music. But then again, I don't transfer and just ride the express all the way down.


Problem is, depending on where you live, reading becomes a near impossibility on a subway because the trains are so crowded and it is not like you are actually getting a seat on them.

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Helmholtz
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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby Helmholtz » Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:28 am

rayiner wrote:You can't do any of those things on an NYC subway commute, unless you can read standing up with your face jammed up against someone's arm.


IPad for books or Instapaper/Kindle on my phone no prob.

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Helmholtz
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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby Helmholtz » Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:28 am

D-hops wrote:Problem is, depending on where you live, reading becomes a near impossibility on a subway because the trains are so crowded and it is not like you are actually getting a seat on them.


Subway was jampacked this morning and I still had enough room to read on my iPad standing up.

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D-hops
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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby D-hops » Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:30 am

Helmholtz wrote:
D-hops wrote:Problem is, depending on where you live, reading becomes a near impossibility on a subway because the trains are so crowded and it is not like you are actually getting a seat on them.


Subway was jampacked this morning and I still had enough room to read on my iPad standing up.


I mean, I do it too, it is just not all that convenient or pleasant. Plus, you have to worry about people jacking your electronic readers.

alumniguy
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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby alumniguy » Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:32 am

rayiner wrote:
Lwoods wrote:You know, Hopstop is pretty accurate with time estimates... though it tends to err on the longer side.

Anyway, the great part about a train commute over a driving commute is that it can be productive, whether it be your zen time or reading time or nap time or typing draft emails on your bberry/iphone time. My current driving commute in the midwest is only 30 minutes one way, compared with my hour+ commute when I lived in the Bronx and worked in Manhattan, but my driving time is completely wasted time. I can't read, I can't write emails, I can't play sudoku on my phone. The best I can do is sing along with the radio, but it's not relaxing. I have to be alert and paying attention the whole time. Sucks. And yes, I know if you're commuting from within Manhattan during rush hour, you're typically standing and crammed in like a sardine, but most New Yorkers can still get stuff done in that situation.

I suppose it's a personal preference thing, though. I personally find driving to be very stressful and exhausting and train/subway travel to be very convenient.



I used to have a 30 min driving commute in ATL. At least there I could relax and listen to music and see sunlight. With my 30 min subway commute I'm standing elbow to elbow with people the whole way in a way too hot metal tube, transferring in unaircondioned dingy catacombs.


Dude, turn you iPod on - bam, you've got music. Do you walk underground to the subway? Presumably not, so you've got some sunlight to begin your commute and then again when you exit GCT. To say that driving is more relaxing that using public transportation is pretty ridiculous, even in NYC. Yes it is crowded, but for most people that doesn't automatically translate into a stressful environment. Would less congestion be preferred, of course, but unless you live near a station that you regularly miss trains due to overcrowding (I'm thinking of 77th Str. and 68th Str. on the 6 line), then I have a hard time believing that a public transportation commute can be "stressful."

My main issue with your time is that you are one person. Not everyone who works in Midtown East needs to get to GCT. Lots of firms are located on the Westside, in the Financial District and in the upper 40s/low 50s on the Eastside. I am not quite sure why you decided to live on the Upper West Side when you have to work in Midtown East, that sounds like a bad decision for someone that considers subway commutes to be stressful. If you omitted a transfer you're commute is going to be infinitely better.

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Helmholtz
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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby Helmholtz » Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:32 am

D-hops wrote:
Helmholtz wrote:
D-hops wrote:Problem is, depending on where you live, reading becomes a near impossibility on a subway because the trains are so crowded and it is not like you are actually getting a seat on them.


Subway was jampacked this morning and I still had enough room to read on my iPad standing up.


I mean, I do it too, it is just not all that convenient or pleasant. Plus, you have to worry about people jacking your electronic readers.


I am a 6'+ broad-shouldered man and I carry a switchblade on me at all times. Haven't felt the need to worry.

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dresden doll
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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby dresden doll » Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:34 am

Subways are the worst thing ever. I yearn for the days when I could commute on the CTA Green Line.

::waits for the world to implode like it should when someone actually compliments CTA::

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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby D-hops » Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:35 am

dresden doll wrote:Subways are the worst thing ever. I yearn for the days when I could commute on the CTA Green Line.

::waits for the world to implode like it should when someone actually compliments CTA::


I didn't know people actually rode the green line. I thought it was some train to nowhere.

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dresden doll
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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby dresden doll » Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:36 am

D-hops wrote:
dresden doll wrote:Subways are the worst thing ever. I yearn for the days when I could commute on the CTA Green Line.

::waits for the world to implode like it should when someone actually compliments CTA::


I didn't know people actually rode the green line. I thought it was some train to nowhere.

It is a train to Hyde Park so you're absolutely correct.

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bjsesq
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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby bjsesq » Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:38 am

dresden doll wrote:
D-hops wrote:
dresden doll wrote:Subways are the worst thing ever. I yearn for the days when I could commute on the CTA Green Line.

::waits for the world to implode like it should when someone actually compliments CTA::


I didn't know people actually rode the green line. I thought it was some train to nowhere.

It is a train to Hyde Park so you're absolutely correct.


What's worse: stepping off the green into the hood, or stepping off the blue into a pack of fucking worthless hipsters?

clone22
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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby clone22 » Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:43 am

rayiner wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I just moved to Gramercy. My commute is 15 minutes tops. Studios and 1BRs are affordable on a biglaw salary, as are other areas with great commutes. Those who complain typically have sky-high demands (luxury condo-like rentals with a doorman, etc.). But my apartment is plenty fine. If you don't have unreasonably high living standards, you should be fine. And yes, expecting there to be affordable new condo-like buildings in the center of Manhattan is unreasonable. If you want to be that pampered, go to Williamsburg and stop complaining.


LOL @ "sky-high" demands. Modern finishes and a gym on a $160k salary? Ridiculous demands!

In any case it's not the expectations, it's the comparison. Chicago biglawyers are living in brand new luxury apartments by the lake a 10 minute walk from work. New York biglawers are living in worse accomodations than I do as a law student in Chicago.


Honestly, I don't see what all the bitching is about. Go to financial district, 200 Water Street rents out studios/ 1 BR starting at 1700 a month. Modern building with gym, doormen, stainless steel appliances. Express trains from financial district get you to midtown in under 20 minutes of actually riding the subway. It really isn't that bad when you know where to look. Check out padmapper.com. After living for 3 years in manhattan, I can say that on a budget of over $1200 a month, you can get a very decent place to live, especially as you're establishing your legal career in nyc (and won't be spending much waking time at home anyway).

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dresden doll
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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby dresden doll » Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:43 am

bjsesq wrote:
What's worse: stepping off the green into the hood, or stepping off the blue into a pack of fucking worthless hipsters?


Walking around the hood makes me feel tough so I'm going with the second option.

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paratactical
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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby paratactical » Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:45 am

Boston is my favorite city to drive in. Y'all just wimps.

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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby ndirish2010 » Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:45 am

bjsesq wrote:
dresden doll wrote:
D-hops wrote:
dresden doll wrote:Subways are the worst thing ever. I yearn for the days when I could commute on the CTA Green Line.

::waits for the world to implode like it should when someone actually compliments CTA::


I didn't know people actually rode the green line. I thought it was some train to nowhere.

It is a train to Hyde Park so you're absolutely correct.


What's worse: stepping off the green into the hood, or stepping off the blue into a pack of fucking worthless hipsters?


Hipsters are always worse.

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bjsesq
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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby bjsesq » Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:46 am

ndirish2010 wrote:Hipsters are always worse.


Absolutely agree.

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rayiner
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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby rayiner » Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:50 am

alumniguy wrote:To say that driving is more relaxing that using public transportation is pretty ridiculous, even in NYC. Yes it is crowded, but for most people that doesn't automatically translate into a stressful environment. Would less congestion be preferred, of course, but unless you live near a station that you regularly miss trains due to overcrowding (I'm thinking of 77th Str. and 68th Str. on the 6 line), then I have a hard time believing that a public transportation commute can be "stressful."


How can you possibly argue the subway isn't stressful? The stations aren't airconditioned, the trains are super crowded, etc. You're underground 80% of the time. That's supposed to be less stressful then being in a climate-controlled car with windows on a sunny day? Driving down in ATL isn't like driving in NYC. Roads don't get shut down due to random craft fairs/parades. You don't have to deal with crazy taxi drivers. There is a giant highway running through the middle of the city so for the most part you're commute is muscle memory.

alumniguy wrote:My main issue with your time is that you are one person. Not everyone who works in Midtown East needs to get to GCT. Lots of firms are located on the Westside, in the Financial District and in the upper 40s/low 50s on the Eastside. I am not quite sure why you decided to live on the Upper West Side when you have to work in Midtown East, that sounds like a bad decision for someone that considers subway commutes to be stressful. If you omitted a transfer you're commute is going to be infinitely better.


I don't think my location is particularly bad or good, and it's definitely quite a popular one. FiDi is probably the best for proximity to Brooklyn but is inconvenient to Queens (which is a big deal if you don't want to live on industrial waste), but GCT is better than higher up in Midtown East (makes living on the UWS infeasible). It's certainly better than battling the mobs of tourists through TSQ to commute to Skadden. Cravath has a good location on the west side, b/c you can live on the UWS and take the C straight down. But it's quite inconvenient to Queens or Brooklyn.

The point isn't that there aren't easily commutable places to NYC offices. It's that the folks saying "bro, just live in the outer boroughs" aren't really considering the full length of the potential commute.

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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby rayiner » Tue Jun 28, 2011 10:53 am

clone22 wrote:
rayiner wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I just moved to Gramercy. My commute is 15 minutes tops. Studios and 1BRs are affordable on a biglaw salary, as are other areas with great commutes. Those who complain typically have sky-high demands (luxury condo-like rentals with a doorman, etc.). But my apartment is plenty fine. If you don't have unreasonably high living standards, you should be fine. And yes, expecting there to be affordable new condo-like buildings in the center of Manhattan is unreasonable. If you want to be that pampered, go to Williamsburg and stop complaining.


LOL @ "sky-high" demands. Modern finishes and a gym on a $160k salary? Ridiculous demands!

In any case it's not the expectations, it's the comparison. Chicago biglawyers are living in brand new luxury apartments by the lake a 10 minute walk from work. New York biglawers are living in worse accomodations than I do as a law student in Chicago.


Honestly, I don't see what all the bitching is about. Go to financial district, 200 Water Street rents out studios/ 1 BR starting at 1700 a month. Modern building with gym, doormen, stainless steel appliances. Express trains from financial district get you to midtown in under 20 minutes of actually riding the subway. It really isn't that bad when you know where to look. Check out padmapper.com. After living for 3 years in manhattan, I can say that on a budget of over $1200 a month, you can get a very decent place to live, especially as you're establishing your legal career in nyc (and won't be spending much waking time at home anyway).


That would be awesome if it were true. NYBits lists double that for a 1BR at 200 Water Street: http://www.nybits.com/apartmentlistings ... 1796f.html

Rents in the Financial District have skyrocketed compared to what they were a couple of years ago: http://ny.curbed.com/tags/200-water-street

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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby alumniguy » Tue Jun 28, 2011 11:08 am

rayiner wrote:How can you possibly argue the subway isn't stressful? The stations aren't airconditioned, the trains are super crowded, etc. You're underground 80% of the time. That's supposed to be less stressful then being in a climate-controlled car with windows on a sunny day? Driving down in ATL isn't like driving in NYC. Roads don't get shut down due to random craft fairs/parades. You don't have to deal with crazy taxi drivers. There is a giant highway running through the middle of the city so for the most part you're commute is muscle memory.


These things make my commute slightly uncomfortable, but it doesn't translate to stressful. Being hot in the summer is an inconvenience, but I don't get stressed out because the stations are are conditioned. In fact, I've learned that it makes the air conditioned subway cars all that more attractive. Driving is stressful because other drivers are constantly cutting in front of you driving at random speeds, which requires you to change your speeds. That is stressful.

It may just be stressful for me. We'll call it a wash.

rayiner wrote:I don't think my location is particularly bad or good, and it's definitely quite a popular one. FiDi is probably the best for proximity to Brooklyn but is inconvenient to Queens (which is a big deal if you don't want to live on industrial waste), but GCT is better than higher up in Midtown East (makes living on the UWS infeasible). It's certainly better than battling the mobs of tourists through TSQ to commute to Skadden. Cravath has a good location on the west side, b/c you can live on the UWS and take the C straight down. But it's quite inconvenient to Queens or Brooklyn.

The point isn't that there aren't easily commutable places to NYC offices. It's that the folks saying "bro, just live in the outer boroughs" aren't really considering the full length of the potential commute.


But your location for a job near GCT is not ideal - especially for someone who appears to be quite concerned with long/stressful commutes made up exclusively of public transportation. FiDi is a great location period. It makes much of Brooklyn a possibility. The west side locations are fine from Brooklyn - you take the A express train. Same thing with Queens - if you live along the E or M/V lines.

In my opinion, you need to plan your apartment around your office location. For many people who work near GCT, they need to consider whether a 35-45 minute door to door commute is going to be an issue or not. If it is, then such people need to consider living on the east side or living in Hells Kitchen. If apartment location is more of a priority, then obviously this opens up other areas. But a 35 minute door to desk commute is NOT bad. I'd be surprised if many people who live in other cities have such short commutes.

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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby rayiner » Tue Jun 28, 2011 11:17 am

alumniguy wrote:But a 35 minute door to desk commute is NOT bad. I'd be surprised if many people who live in other cities have such short commutes.


NYC commutes (average 38 min) are the longest in the country: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/4381363/ns/ ... tops-list/

Also, it's silly to say that cleanliness, temperature, and crowding doesn't contribute to stress:
http://beyondcommuting.blogspot.com/201 ... -woes.html
http://beyondcommuting.blogspot.com/201 ... ealth.html

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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby alumniguy » Tue Jun 28, 2011 11:30 am

rayiner wrote:
alumniguy wrote:But a 35 minute door to desk commute is NOT bad. I'd be surprised if many people who live in other cities have such short commutes.


NYC commutes (average 38 min) are the longest in the country: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/4381363/ns/ ... tops-list/


It is difficult to take away much of anything from that survey. I'm sure you will agree that people who live OUTSIDE of the city (e.g., on Long Island or in Westchester) are likely the reason why that statistic is so high. Many, many support staff life at my firm live in the outer boroughs, on Long Island or in Westchester. Their commutes are significantly longer than most attorney commutes.

Another issue to raise is that most associates have one way commutes only - that is morning commutes. At night, most associates are taking cars home. Perhaps this wasn't case in the past few years with the slowing economy, but with the higher productivity levels at many firms, associates are back to eating dinner at the office and taking a cab ride/car home upwards of 75% of the time. The ironic thing is that my morning commute can be shorter than taking a cab home on some days (but they are usually pretty equal). For me, I get to the office in under 20 minutes door to door, but I am lucky. Sometimes, if the cab driver doesn't make the lights or takes the worst possible route, it takes 20 minutes to get home in cab.

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rayiner
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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby rayiner » Tue Jun 28, 2011 11:42 am

alumniguy wrote:
rayiner wrote:
alumniguy wrote:But a 35 minute door to desk commute is NOT bad. I'd be surprised if many people who live in other cities have such short commutes.


NYC commutes (average 38 min) are the longest in the country: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/4381363/ns/ ... tops-list/


It is difficult to take away much of anything from that survey. I'm sure you will agree that people who live OUTSIDE of the city (e.g., on Long Island or in Westchester) are likely the reason why that statistic is so high. Many, many support staff life at my firm live in the outer boroughs, on Long Island or in Westchester. Their commutes are significantly longer than most attorney commutes.


You said a 35 minute commute is not long and you doubt people in other cities have such short commutes. I gave you a graph that showed that it's longer than the average commute in any other city (people live out in the burbs in other cities too) by a good margin. So how is your response relevant?

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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby alumniguy » Tue Jun 28, 2011 11:56 am

rayiner wrote:You said a 35 minute commute is not long and you doubt people in other cities have such short commutes. I gave you a graph that showed that it's longer than the average commute in any other city (people live out in the burbs in other cities too) by a good margin. So how is your response relevant?


Manhattan's population, if taken separately as a city, increases 87% during the day as compared to night. That is the highest increase of any other city. http://money.cnn.com/2005/10/21/real_estate/buying_selling/daytime_population_cities/ Accordingly, it is likely that New York City's average commute is higher because more people are commuting to jobs here from further away. If there were less non-Manhattan residents commuting, in all likelihood the average commute time would go down. As I suggested earlier, the commute time is assuredly higher due to commuters from outer boroughs, Long Island and Westchester.

Edit: For comparison, average increase in daytime populations of select cities:

Washington, D.C. 73.0%
Boston 41.1%
Seattle 28.4%
Denver 28.0%
Portland, OR 23.0%
San Francisco 21.7%
Charlotte, NC 21.2%
Houston 20.6%
Nashville 19.5%
Austin 19.4%
Last edited by alumniguy on Tue Jun 28, 2011 11:58 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby bgdddymtty » Tue Jun 28, 2011 11:58 am

rayiner wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I just moved to Gramercy. My commute is 15 minutes tops. Studios and 1BRs are affordable on a biglaw salary, as are other areas with great commutes. Those who complain typically have sky-high demands (luxury condo-like rentals with a doorman, etc.). But my apartment is plenty fine. If you don't have unreasonably high living standards, you should be fine. And yes, expecting there to be affordable new condo-like buildings in the center of Manhattan is unreasonable. If you want to be that pampered, go to Williamsburg and stop complaining.


LOL @ "sky-high" demands. Modern finishes and a gym on a $160k salary? Ridiculous demands!

In any case it's not the expectations, it's the comparison. Chicago biglawyers are living in brand new luxury apartments by the lake a 10 minute walk from work. New York biglawers are living in worse accomodations than I do as a law student in Chicago.
This. This a million times over. Those of you taking the pro-NYC side in the debate, take a step back and look at what you're saying. Working 60-80 hours per week, making what any reasonable person would consider a huge salary, affords you a mediocre one-bedroom apartment. Really? This is what you want out of life?

Contrast that with living/working in, say, Dallas. Same starting salary, possibly lower billable expectations, and for the same price and with the same <30 minute commute, you could own a 3000-4000 square foot house (with a pool!) instead of renting a 600 square foot cracker box (with rats!). Or, if you still want to be a townie, <$2500 will get you a super-spacious, ultra-modern luxury flat. Never mind that you could probably pay for either of these options with just the money you'd save in state and city income taxes.

But you guys have "vibrancy." You can't put a price on that.

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Re: Why do people favor NYC firms?

Postby Lwoods » Tue Jun 28, 2011 12:02 pm

rayiner wrote:
alumniguy wrote:To say that driving is more relaxing that using public transportation is pretty ridiculous, even in NYC. Yes it is crowded, but for most people that doesn't automatically translate into a stressful environment. Would less congestion be preferred, of course, but unless you live near a station that you regularly miss trains due to overcrowding (I'm thinking of 77th Str. and 68th Str. on the 6 line), then I have a hard time believing that a public transportation commute can be "stressful."


How can you possibly argue the subway isn't stressful? The stations aren't airconditioned, the trains are super crowded, etc. You're underground 80% of the time. That's supposed to be less stressful then being in a climate-controlled car with windows on a sunny day? Driving down in ATL isn't like driving in NYC. Roads don't get shut down due to random craft fairs/parades. You don't have to deal with crazy taxi drivers. There is a giant highway running through the middle of the city so for the most part you're commute is muscle memory.



It's just a matter of personal preference, I think. I live in a city (Columbus, OH) with really easy / non-existent traffic. Plus I have a reverse commute because I live downtown and work out in BFE. My door-to-door commute is <30 minutes.

I used to live in the Bronx (a 10-minute bus ride from the 6 and a 15 minute bus ride from the 2/5) and work in Manhattan. At one point I worked in tribeca, but for most of the time I lived there, I worked in Turtle Bay. Even though I was in the Bronx, the 2 and 5 were standing-room only by the time I got on. I usually just took the 6 when I worked on the East Side because I could pre-walk and get a seat.

I still would rather have my old commute than my current one. I got so much reading done (and yes, you can do it standing, even with books...paperbacks at least), I'd check my twitter feed, I'd catch up on my emails, etc. I felt like I was so much more aware of what was going on.
In the car, I have to deal with shitty drivers, stop lights, geese in the streets...and that's in the good weather. Add some ice to the road, and my commute is thrice as long.

I have a pretty manageable driving commute and have had pretty crazy subway commutes. I personally prefer the subway. You disagree, and that's fine. Most people around here prefer driving. I like my trains, and I think a number of people who prefer New York over other cities agree. Others, like yourself, just put up with it. At least when you work past 8 (or whatever) you can get your black car home. ;)




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