From Manhattan Valley to the East Village: Fewer strollers...and lower cab fare

By Lee Bradshaw | February 24, 2012 - 12:56PM 

I'm from Washington, D.C., so when I first arrived in New York City 10 months ago, I wanted to experience the great stuff that's happening here.

I had two weeks to find a place before relocating for my new job, and I took a place on 107th Street and Columbus Avenue sight unseen, after finding it on Craigslist.

Unfortunately, l didn't know that the neighborhood wasn't really what I was looking for. I only know that now, after moving last month into an apartment with a parkside view of Tompkins Square Park.

It feels like I'm finally actually living in New York City.

When I lived in Manhattan Valley, everything felt so far away. Also, it seems like everyone in the Valley/on the Upper West Side is either twice my age or has lived in that neighborhood for their entire lives and never leaves their block! 

Sure there was plenty for a 25-year-old like me to do up there--I'm a runner and cyclist and I do miss Central Park and I did like the Lion's Head Tavern and the beer garden on 120th Street--but it just didn't give me the right feel. 

Now that I'm living in the East Village, I walk everywhere.

In the last two weeks, I walked 10 miles just exploring. I have a huge list of restaurants I want to eat in--I love Morandi, Brunch at Essex and the Sunburnt Cow--and there's so much to do here.

I've also saved a ton of money by making this move. Let's take cabs, for example. When I lived uptown, I always went out downtown and was spending between $300 and $500 per month on cabs.

And, while my apartment is a bit more expensive ($2,400) than my last one ($2,000), my current place is three times the size of the old one and has a great park view.

It's funny. I'm actually glad that I didn't make the move sooner. I appreciate what I have so much more now. I love that I'm surrounded by my peers now--it's so much better than eating dinner uptown in places that are jam-packed with strollers and diaper bags! 

Transitions highlights New Yorkers’ first impressions as they transition from one neighborhood to another.  Want to tell us your transition story? Drop us an email.



Brick Underground articles occasionally include the expertise of, or information about, advertising partners when relevant to the story. We will never promote an advertiser's product without making the relationship clear to our readers.