Author archives: Edwin Xiao

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Queens Plaza North
Queens Plaza North

Queensboro Plaza 7, N, Q Stop

This is the first stop from Manhattan and the default first stop of Astoria. There are lots of new developments in the area, but only recently have restaurants and food options popped up alongside the older bodegas. Rents here are very expensive and close to Manhattan prices but if ...

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If you ask a New Yorker where in the city they can find affordable roommate housing NYC you may get a wide range of responses. But if you narrow your question down to specifically NYC rooms for students (whether it’s NYC graduate housing, NYC intern housing, NYC international student housing or NYC ESL housing) the answer you are most likely going to get is to look at renting in Astoria with roommates. Learn a new word: Co-living, it means living with roommates in furnished shared spaces.

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Astoria MTA subway map snippet
Astoria MTA subway map snippet

Asrai, a new New York transplant by way of Washington State, has decided to volunteer her time to provide foreign insight into the different communities of New York City. Starting with a series of different blog entries, she will explore the different subway stops within a 5 minute walk of each side of the subway tracks to provide her unique perspective into these NYC neighborhoods.

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Mitchell’s Map of Manhattan and Brooklyn (1890)
Mitchell’s Map of Manhattan and Brooklyn (1890)

About me:

Entire life in real estate and construction management. Built hotels for general contractor of Marriott Hotels for 5 years. Entrepreneur for international student housing. Worked for New York City at HPD and EDC. Property management experience in industrial, hospitality, residential, office assets. Former grad student at Columbia and NYU. Buildings nerd. Urban planning aficionado.

After grad school almost 6 years ago, I was trying to find a work life balance and figure out what locations were the best for me on an entry level budget. The commute to work from Staten Island had been too crazy. Often, I would take a journey by walking 10 minutes, taking the SIRR, a Ferry, then the subway to get to a final destination. I needed to find a place that was affordable and safe, but also a 40 minute or less commute to the center of Manhattan. I looked for short walks to subway access, and no bus transfers.