a VirtualTourist member
My boyfriend and I are likely going to be moving to CA to attend grad school. I will be going to San Jose State and he will be going to UC Santa Cruz. We were planning on living somewhere in between the 2 cities but it doesn't look like there's anything we'll be able to afford. Is the commute from San Jose to Santa Cruz as awful as people are saying it is? And if so, does anyone have any suggestions as far as affordable (as cheap as possible) places nearby to live? We would really appreciate any help!
The main road, CA 17, is just a 4-lane freeway for much of its length (south of CA 87, I believe) and gets pretty bad at rush hour. Both UC-Santa Cruz and SJSU also have horrendous parking situations, and I wouldn't want to drive into either campus.
If you move out to Campbell, which is about the last town in the San Jose area to the south (Los Gatos is further out, but a very expensive place to live), that should work for you both. It's not too expensive, on the VTA light rail line (which goes right to SJSU) and would probably work for getting to UC-Santa Cruz. It's a little suburban, but is still fairly interesting and isn't too far from San Jose.
There is a bus that goes betwen San Jose and Santa Cruz, but I don't how it would work for your situation.
San Jose's a cool town and, if it were me, I would definitely move there over Santa Cruz, although that's just my personal opinion of not being particularly fond of Santa Cruz. You should visit both cities a bit before making a decision on exactly where to live.
Thanks for the input! Very helpful =)
The commute from SJ to SC is at times "difficult." The road is fun to drive when empty, but too many people drive it too fast and there tend to be traffic problems as a result. There's no real alternative once committed so if there is an accident, you can sit for hours.
There are a couple of small communitities along the way but that would require commuting for any activities. You should check out the localities and the commutes before commiting to a place to live.
You don't say where you are coming from, and may have already thought of this, but I'll mention it anyway.
You might consider renting a "month-to-month" place when you first get out there, then take a weekend or two of reconnoitering the areas between the two schools to see if there is something more convenient and less expensive for your needs. This way you can give your thirty days notice and move to the ideal place for both of you.