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About northshorepom

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  1. northshorepom

    Stanhope Gardens commute to city

    It's pretty good for somewhere so far out The bus network is extensive - see network map here: http://www.cdcbus.com.au/IgnitionSuite/uploads/docs/13472_Region_4_Network_Guide_JAN14_Page2.pdf The key is to get on a direct bus route. Which means the 616X or one of those going down Old Windsor Rd (and thence on to the M2 in to the city) Bus timetables are here: http://www.cdcbus.com.au/HillsBus-Maps.html Buses do get delayed when the traffic is very bad but reliability is *OK*. On the way in there are bus lanes along the most congested area (from the Lane Cove Tunnel to the Bridge), way home is a bit worse because all traffic gets held up a bit funnelling from about 12 feeder lanes on to the 4 over the bridge, and the M2 can get congested quite badly around the Epping tunnels When the NWRL opens in 2019 it will get much better still - Kellyville station (which will have a large car park) is on the junction of Samantha Riley Drive and Old Windsor Rd. It will take you in to Chatswood in about 30 minutes - then cross the platform to catch a North Shore Line train to the city, takes an extra 15-20 mins to get to Wynyard or Town Hall
  2. northshorepom

    Why do live where you do?

    Hi matthewSorry, only just seen this: This place is pretty dead, and I don't go in PIO any moreI would concentrate on budget and what is an acceptable time/mode of commute to you before anything elseSee here for a map of the "areas" of Sydney - within each of these areas are many, many suburbs: In general, anything close to water, or close to the CBD, is expensive. On the map above, everything in the Northern Beaches, Eastern Suburbs, Central Sydney and Lower North Shore is going to cost a lot, as are the more central/waterfront areas of the Inner West, South Sydney and North WestIf you are going to be budget limited (which most of us are, but "affordable" means something different to everyone) then I would suggest looking to the suburbs in the Sutherland Shire in the first place - the presence of the railway makes the commute to the city much more realistic from a longer distance (and train fares are cheap) so you can get somewhere that ticks the other boxes without spending a fortune. From anywhere in the shire to the beaches at Cronulla will take less than 35 minsI can't recommend anywhere specifically down there as I'm on the other side of the city. On this side of town I would look at suburbs north of Hornsby - Asquith for example. Direct frequent trains from here to the CBD take about 50 minutes, the schools are really good and it's quite a nice place, close to bushland, lots of facilities (leisure centre, shops etc) in Hornsby. The beach from there would take about 40 minutes to the closest of the northern beaches (Mona Vale, Warriewood) or the beaches up on the Central Coast, which are an easy run up the M1 Freeway. Also look west of Hornsby in towards the Hills - Thornleigh, West Pennant Hills, Cherrybrook etc. Transport not as good but otherwise very good areas, again similar beach distance.If you can live without the beach in 30 minutes then you have many more options (but that might not be a good thing!) as it pretty much opens up the whole north west where there are lots of affordable, good suburbs with good schools
  3. northshorepom

    Commuting to/from Parramatta

    You are better off on the North side, but even that will be quite painful S-i-L used to commute from Neutral Bay to Parramatta and it took her 45 mins on a good day, more typically an hour. Manly would be an extra 15-25 minutes probably. Eastern suburbs I would expect to be worse, because you've got to get through the CBD and then travel on Parramatta Rd (which is always bad) One of the problems you will face is that you're not really going against the traffic. From any beachside location into the CBD you'll be in the thick of the rush hour yourself I understand the attraction of wanting to live near the beach but commuting from the beach to Parra every day is not something I'd want to do, given the choice. Better to live more central and travel to the beach, so you save yourself an hour a day and then spend 20 mins getting to the sea when you feel the need. If you won't be home until 7pm on a good day, the chances of you actually getting to the beach after work are pretty slim even in summer
  4. northshorepom

    Why do live where you do?

    I sacked PIO - took a break for a while, came back and remembered why I'd left, so gone for good
  5. northshorepom

    Spit to Manly Walk

    It forms part of the "Coastal Walk" and also the "Harbour to Hawkesbury" long walk.......see schematic route map here: http://walkingcoastalsydney.com.au/downloads/trunkSydCoastHbr_21.03.07.pdf One of my minor irritations is that the brochures/maps of these waymarked walks are quite hard to find online - and yet the paper brochures are given away free at tourist and NP offices, which seems a bit odd. Would surely make sense to put them on the web and print a few less. In the meantime there is a series of excellent walking guide books available here: http://www.exploroz.com/Shop/Books/Walking_Guides/Woodslane/Default.aspx The "Best Harbour & Coastal Walks" and "Best Bush, Park & City Walks" particularly useful - they range from easy 3km strolls to proper 20-30km hikes I would like to to the "Great North Walk" if I ever get the chance (212km from Sydney to Newcastle) but as the father of young kids there are other calls on my limited time off work......
  6. My brother was over/down from Brissy last week so I skived off work and we did this walk (it's about 10km, so a bit far for my son's little legs just yet)It's fantastic. You really wouldn't believe you were near the centre of a huge city. The path wends through thick rainforest like bush around Sandy Bay before reaching the open space and lovely family friendly beach at Clontarf. Then you climb up towards Castle Rock, the path is through bush hugging the edge of low cliffs above a series of tiny beaches, then climbs up to viewpoints across Grotto Point and Dobroyds Head. From there it drops down to a couple more beautiful beaches at Reef Beach and Forty Baskets Beach before rounding the reserve at the end of north harbour and joins the Manly scenic walkway that takes you in to town through the reserve between the sea and the houses, through the penguin sanctuary.Takes about 2.5 hours if you're fit/quick, 3 if you want to savour the views, 3.5 if you want to stroll. It's a bit up and down from Clontarf to Grotto Point but not exactly strenuous. I think it's best done the way we did rather than from Manly, as there's not a lot at the Spit....catch a bus to the Spit (there are dozens), then walk to Manly and enjoy a well-earned drink at that town before catching the ferry back to the city.We timed it so we caught the ferry just as the sun was setting, which was great. And then had the Vivid festival to go to in the city with a few beers :)Apologies for poor quality of pictures, took them on a really old phone Above Grotto Point, looking back over Balmoral Beach (in mid ground) and Mosman to the city From Castle Cove lookout to Manly and North Head From Castle Cove lookout to South Head and Watson's Bay/Vaucluse From Dobroyd's Head to Manly From Forty Baskets Beach And again! Sunset over Seaforth Rounding Bradley's Head, Mosman on the ferry back to town Approaching Circular Quay Projections on the Customs House
  7. northshorepom

    Why do live where you do?

    We were lucky enough to have a relocator help us for a week before I signed up for my contract to come out here, and they took us around a number of suburbs and schools First on the list for us was a sensible commute, I work (mostly) in Chatswood, St Leonards or North Sydney so wanted to be on the north side, and also wanted to get back to bike commuting so was looking for somewhere within 15km or so of those places. We chose where we live now - Wahroonga - on the basis of it being the nicest in feel (to us) of the Upper North Shore suburbs, as it's very green, leafy, large house sort of place with a nice village feel in the shops/cafe area. Now we have bought in the same area as we settled well and have friends and community here, so didn't want to move away. That's worth thinking about, if you rent first as most do, you can get stuck living somewhere you can't afford to buy if you stretch yourself too far, as like for like you'd be paying more in mortgage than in rent - depending on deposit and so on, of course Things we like about it are the leafiness, the public transport, the proximity of national park, the schools, the feel still of the local amenities. It isn't cheap though If it were up to me and commuting was no object, I'd like to be more urban, or on the beaches, or maybe both if I was made of money. I am a city boy and love the sea. However it's not just up to me, commuting is an object, my wife likes the space and privacy of the suburbs and as a redhead has very little interest in beach-related activities. For almost all of us, budget is the first and primary consideration, especially in this city where housing costs a lot
  8. It probably is an easier journey to the M1 by using the LCT and M2, then Pennant Hills Rd but by, it's a pricey one. You'd cop for over $10 in tolls each way, not including the harbour crossing Pac Hwy is probably no slower as it's more direct, so long as you can tolerate the traffic lights! When they put the M1-M2 tunnel in, there's no direct link proposed between the new link and the M2 to or from the city, you'll have to come off at P/H Rd and dive back into the new tunnel or vie versa, seems like an oversight to me. Surely it is in the government's interest to try and encourage as much traffic as possible off the Pac Hwy, it's certainly in Transurban's interest! I like going that way up to the Blue Mountains - Bells Line of Road is a lovely drive and never that busy, way nicer than using the GWH which I always find a massive pain in the ar5e. So have travelled through Windsor and Richmond a fair bit.....they feel like proper country towns, which is pretty rare here, not bad places at all.
  9. Yep. moved in 2 weeks ago. Finally not surrounded by boxes, and finally have the internet on. Lots of jobs to do though! It is *fantastic* to be out of the whole rental BS world. I have always hated it, cleaning the house for return (and at the time cleaning up loads of dirt we know wasn't ours) cemented it in my mind as something I wish to forever remain away from - on both sides. I used to have 2 houses in England and rented one out, got rid of it as it became a pain in the backside. Foolishly I had idly contemplated getting back into property investment over here as there are so many tax giveaways to encourage it, but I am firm now that I have no interest - will invest elsewhere. The whole investment/rental market is just way too big here, no one (from either side, landlord or tenant) ever puts any money, love or effort into houses that are in that market so they inexorably decline over time. Looking around the housing market when buying was depressing with the amount of ex-rentals on the market, most were dreadfully tired and in need of total reno or demolition. The poor quality of so much housing here is something I will never get over. I'm not blaming property investment/rental for it, but it certainly doesn't help PS Buy shares in Bunnings (OK, Wesfarmers). Their profits are about to go through the roof. It feels great to be able to get on with some projects again
  10. Haven't got one yet, I should do really but at the moment I'm an infrequent train user I like the speed with which they have rolled it out, and the ease of use. I dislike (intensely) the way TfNSW have failed to address the current fare structure issues in order to make multi-modal journeys more attractive - the lessons of this sort of system are well learned as dozens of cities worldwide have implemented them, the trick is to make it easy and beneficial (ie cheaper) for people to use it in order to realise the benefits (lower operating costs, greater patronage). Wasted opportunity, but they'll get there in the end I like lots of the way this NSW government is pushing public transport (but them I am biased as it puts bread on the table for me) :-)
  11. northshorepom

    Moving to Sydney, Suburb help!!

    Budget is the main consideration for many. Living near the beach is never cheap but if you're OK with apartment living then it's usually do-able If you are likely to be working in Alexandria/Mascot (some form of airport service/shipping?) and with a wife working in the CBD, then Eastern Suburbs would seem to be the obvious choice if you want beach proximity whilst keeping the commute sensible. It is expensive, but then so is the lower north shore. Manly is nice, but the commuting from there to the airport will be a (big) pain, going over the harbour every day gets pretty old pretty quickly Both north and south of the harbour, there is little in the way of trains going out to the coast (the lines go over the bridge) so you're likely to be reliant on buses - network is quite extensive so this isn't really a problem
  12. Telstra building in Killara has to take the biscuit for the ugliest of all. Their in-house architect in the 1970s/80s must have hated the world
  13. Arts centre has been going a while I think. They screwed the drainage up though - the lane round the back stinks! An expensive problem to fix I suspect That shopping centre/high rise development over the station was stalled for about 2 years post GFC. It was always part of the plans for the new station when they built it, they flogged off the oversite development rights to help pay for the station works (and the ECRL). The developer went bust though, then they had to get someone else to take it on before the work restarted. Just wait until it is finished - the station will be in a shopping mall, they've done a good job with the temporary walls (colorbond) hiding this but it will look completely different when it's all finished and the shop tenants have moved in. A shame they couldn't find a way to demolish the Telstra building adjacent (between the station and the RSL) at the same time. Truly a monumentally ugly building. I drink in the Orchard from time to time. I quite like it (standard crap Aussie pub, but it's friendly enough) but my, is it pricey. Pushing $7 a schooner which is taking the p1ss IMO.
  14. northshorepom

    You Beauty!

    The biggest issue with living on the beaches for most is the commute, but a job in Dee Why sorts that out, so very well done to the OH :-) I love it out there - would love to live on the Northern Beaches, but not up for an hour each way, I like to commute by cycle. Manly (or places close by) is cheaper for water/ocean proximity than harbourside suburbs closer to the CBD, it's still not cheap but it sounds like you are Dinks so I can't see you having too many worries. Go for location every time in living here I think, especially if you don't *need* the space. So concentrate on Manly town if I were you, anywhere inland or up the coast starts getting a bit family-ish By the way... I'd be a bit circumspect if I were you, you might be surprised. Australia isn't in many ways the forward thinking society many assume it to be from outside. There's a lot of whinging and negativity here too.....more than you'd think. Best off keeping an open mind and seeing how it goes ;-) Enjoy :-)
  15. northshorepom

    457 visa issue

    6 months sounds like a long time. I'm not completely au fait with the system but I believe employers have a few hoops to jump through to satisfy Immi that they are able to recruit from overseas My employers flew me over for a week when we were negotiating - I was unsure as to how far the money would go so they flew us over and put us with a relocator to go and visit a few schools and look at some houses before I signed up. Then I still had to wait for the visa before I gave notice, and my old company made me work my 3 months notice so ultimately I'd visited in June, signed up in July and didn't arrive in Aus until November. It (coming for a week) is really useful I think, especially if you're not paying, and is invaluable in terms of looking for where you might want to live/where to go to school As for working out a take home salary, there are tax calculators online that will work it out for you - try this for example: http://www.paycalculator.com.au/ As for where to live, "affordable" is relative so hard to comment. From Silverwater, there are a lot of pretty grubby areas t o the south and southwest. To the east (other side of Olympic Park) is Strathfield/Burwood and then the Inner West, which gets progressiveley more expensive (and none of it is cheap) the closer you get to the CBD. Over the Parramatta River might be worth looking at - Carlingford, North Rocks and then up into the Hills district (Baulkham Hills, Castle Hill, West Pennant Hills etc - all good family areas). Try searching on domain.com for rentals and see what you think you can get for the money. Nowhere in Sydney is cheap, though, so be warned One word of warning - on an ETA visa, you are supposed to be a tourist, not going for work or looking for work. Tell immi when you land you're a tourist rather than visiting a company who might be hiring you, and don't have loads of stuff like CVs with you. People have been caught out

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