By Georgie Flynn | Student Columnist
We are in the middle of the second semester of the school year, so trying to find a place to live in the upcoming year is going to cause some stress. Freshmen have the only option of on-campus housing going into their sophomore year. That leaves them with Towers or Vickroy. Juniors and seniors with the option to live off campus are apartment searching and struggling to decide on a multitude of variables. One of the most important variables would have to be location.
Living off campus is an exciting option that gives young adults the chance to gain a new form of independence, but it does not come without its occasionally unpleasant consequences. Determining whether to live on or off campus includes deciding whether or not you can deal with those consequences. To help you decide where you might be most comfortable living, here’s some perspective on your upperclassman living options.
Brottier apartments on campus are the option with the least worries. Although it is on campus, you get your own kitchen and a larger living space than the dormitories have to offer. Also, did I mention the incredible view that comes with the apartments? The majority of the apartments have a picturesque view of downtown Pittsburgh while the other side has an equally great view of campus. This will give the feeling of true city life. Waking up to a sunrise over skyscrapers is a great perk. Brottier apartments tend to be a little bit pricier in comparison to other housing options.
The proximity to campus, meaning the literal five-minute walk to any classroom building, and the incredible rooms are worth the Brottier price. And waking up to a beautiful view every morning is an opportunity you won’t find elsewhere in the city.
Another area with a beautiful view of Pittsburgh is Mount Washington. This area might be a little bit farther than Brottier and at a higher elevation, but it is affordable and has your bare necessities at places such as grocery stores and pizza shops at your fingertips. The apartments on Grandview Avenue are quite inexpensive as a one bedroom apartment can cost up to $450 – $700.
Also, the route to get to school; whether by car, bicycle, or foot, the commute is simple and will only take a short period of time. You also have the option of the Incline that is the same price as regular bus fare, but with a much greater view. Going across the Liberty Bridge which goes into downtown offers a very picturesque view of the skyscrapers of your city. Mount Washington is far enough away from campus, but close enough so you can get to and from every day with ease.
The Southside is another excellent option. Southside is where everything is happening, day and night. During the day you can stroll down to East Carson and visit all the vintage shops and restaurants. If you need to go grocery shopping, you have Giant Eagle and Aldi at your fingertips. The Southside is usually the place to be on the weekends, with bars on nearly every street. Also, the Southside shuttle offered by Duquesne, which takes you from Southside to the University Monday through Friday, is a helpful resource for students who live in the off-campus area. However, you must purchase a $75 shuttle pass.
This is an excellent place to live if you enjoy a location with hustle and bustle. But if you are planning on renting a space with the expectation of having some quiet time, Southside might not be the place for you. If you do move down there, then hopefully you enjoy all that East Carson and its noise has to offer.
Oakland is another popular area of residency for Duquesne students. Oakland is prime college area, as it is the home of the University of Pittsburgh and Carnegie Mellon University. Living in this area will give you the chance to meet other students from different universities. Oakland can give you the chance for a new beginning, if this is what you crave. This new beginning can involve meeting new people, being employed at a new job or simply new scenery.
It is easy to catch a bus to get back to campus, but Duquesne students living in Oakland do not have the same options as Duquesne students living on the South Side. Riding the bus everyday adds up. If you are going to live in Oakland, the best option is to probably have a car. However, the consequence of having a car is parking, which is a hassle and will burn a hole in your pocket. Purchasing a bus pass is another option, but this will also kill your paycheck as it costs nearly $100 a month.
The issue of transportation goes the same for Squirrel Hill, Shadyside, Lawrenceville and other areas of Pittsburgh. If you are not willing to pay for a bus pass or put gas in your car, then I suggest you look elsewhere, but if you are more than willing then pack your bags and enjoy.
These locations are all exciting places to live that have positives and negatives. Brottier is a dream, Mount Washington is a gorgeous and homey location, Southside is an exciting atmosphere with a million things to do and Oakland is the home a fellow campus’ life. The options of areas are endless and it will be very exciting to finally make the choice to live on your own. Be prepared to pay bills and grocery shop. Your new apartment is waiting.
Georgie Flynn is a junior English and print journalism major and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.