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Old 10-21-2008, 10:41 PM
 
Location: Atlanta ,GA
9,086 posts, read 13,294,677 times
Reputation: 2929

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Quote:
Originally Posted by WilliamM View Post
Basically, Atlanta suffers a bad rap for some of the same reasons that its close cousin, Los Angeles, has also historically been disrespected: 1) its physical characteristics fly in the face of any classical or traditional conception of the city as an organic expression of human possibilities and a creative harnessing and synergistic taming of the rawest human energies on a colorful stage giving rise to theatrical styles and habits (in short, it hasn't been seen as 'gritty' enough for many city lovers); 2) for various political and historical reasons it has lacked the density of other major world cities (though this is beginning to change and with increasing oil costs and million-plus increases in population per decade it's likely that Atlanta will someday reach a critical mass of urban density, as happened long ago in LA, even without a natural barrier to growth); 3) It, unlike New Orleans, for ex., is located in the interior US South, which has not traditionally been hospitable to the development of the qualities mentioned above in a city (e.g., low historical immigration rates); 4) Finally, and unlike LA, it does not enjoy the profile of being the center of a major industry that is central to world culture such as film, music, publishing, advertising, fashion, or finance.

That said, and surprisingly to some, Atlanta may actually get more respect outside the US than inside (Atlanta ranks 37 in the world in a list of the 60 most important global cities published in the journal Foreign Policy, one of only 5 US cities included in the list). Don't forget, Atlanta gave the world the person who is arguably the most influential and important American of the 20th C in the minds of many people around the world.

Ultimately, though, in my opinion much of the 'disconnect' that you get with Atlanta (between hype and the backlash of the naysayers) comes from its almost meteoric rise in a relatively short time from, as the Wikipedia entry puts it, "a city of regional commerce to a city of international influence". This sudden rise causes a certain confusion of categories when comparing Atlanta with other cities. For example, does it really make sense to compare Atlanta with a city like Birmingham, AL or Little Rock, AR? Well, these were the cities that were Atlanta's peers just a half century ago before the Civil Rights movement. Now - like it or not - Atlanta is, as mentioned above, in the top tier of US cities in economical and cultural influence. So now for example it's not even very helpful to compare Atlanta with other mid-size US cities such as Denver, Cleveland, Buffalo, and Pittsburgh, because frankly Atlanta has shot past them and is now out of their league. Atlanta's true peers are cities like Houston, Dallas, Miami, Seattle, Boston, and Toronto, just to name some on the same continent. But at the same time, being in this top echelon of cities Atlanta is then inevitably compared more frequently with the most elite of world cities, cities which have been leading global centers for upwards of a century or more, the New Yorks, San Franciscos, Chicagos, and Parises, etc. Naturally, when compared with these cities Atlanta will be seen in a less favorable light, largely for the reasons mentioned above.

But my point is that when criticizing Atlanta in this context we often forget that just a few decades ago no one would have even thought to compare Atlanta shopping with New York, for example. But now we do, and that should not be seen as a knock on Atlanta but rather a tribute to how far it has come.
That was one of the most eloquent well thought out written responses I have seen in sometime.OUTSTANDING!!

 
Old 10-22-2008, 05:31 AM
 
Location: ATL
4,688 posts, read 6,621,649 times
Reputation: 1804
Quote:
Originally Posted by FromCLTtoATL View Post
If I gave Atlanta a bad rap, it would be for this:

Compared with everywhere else I've lived, it's more difficult to get around because of the sprawl and traffic and I don't find government and business/banking services to be as efficient, competent or friendly. You have to jump through more hoops to get less, it seems to me.

I've definitely had a harder time moving here than other places, just in terms of time spent at the DMV, at the bank for run-of-the-mill services, getting my utilities, vast oceans of trouble with my cable company, trouble with people who clearly shouldn't be holding the jobs they hold because of surliness or competence or both. I sure hope I've just had a run of bad luck and that it's not typical for most people moving here.

That has definitely put a sour taste in my mouth I didn't experience in other moves (to Greensboro, N.C.; Austin, Texas; and Charlotte, N.C). Those cities seemed to be more efficient, less bureaucratic and had friendlier workers who did their jobs better.

But this city has much to offer, and I am slowly crossing off the one-time items on my moving laundry list, and I hope that will adjust my view of my new city accordingly with much of that behind me.
DMV is horrible. 1 out of 20 people have aids, the highest rate in america. The cost of living is horrible, too cold, more crime, etc
 
Old 10-22-2008, 05:50 PM
 
Location: Georgia native in McKinney, TX
7,413 posts, read 10,078,074 times
Reputation: 5922
Quote:
Originally Posted by LovinDecatur View Post
Great post
Ditto, well said WilliamM.

There is a thread on the General US forum debating which American cities are seen as truly global cities and Atlanta is getting ragged there as well. Have to admit I was trying to figure a way to cut and paste -- not really -- but I was trying to figure out how to post a link on that thread to this one here.

One of the best, well thought out posts I've read on this site.
 
Old 10-22-2008, 06:03 PM
Status: "I hate living in Georgia!!" (set 15 days ago)
 
48,232 posts, read 45,519,102 times
Reputation: 15346
This just my theory. I could be wrong, but I am thinking about this. The reason for why Atlanta gets a bad rap is because it is mainly new residents who feel this way. There is a difference between visiting Atlanta as a tourist and living there as an everyday resident. One can see the good side of Atlanta as a tourist and that is all one will see. If a person moves to Atlanta and sees it all, then that person will have a different perspective. I think this is why some new residents have trouble with Atlanta. There is a difference between what one hears and what one sees.
 
Old 10-22-2008, 06:49 PM
YBF
 
Location: Atlanta, Ga
1,260 posts, read 2,989,974 times
Reputation: 581
Quote:
Originally Posted by pirate_lafitte View Post
This just my theory. I could be wrong, but I am thinking about this. The reason for why Atlanta gets a bad rap is because it is mainly new residents who feel this way. There is a difference between visiting Atlanta as a tourist and living there as an everyday resident. One can see the good side of Atlanta as a tourist and that is all one will see. If a person moves to Atlanta and sees it all, then that person will have a different perspective. I think this is why some new residents have trouble with Atlanta. There is a difference between what one hears and what one sees.
This is soo true...IMO. Most people will always tell you the good things about anything...I think if more ppl could afford to stay in Atlanta for a month or so they would make their own judgements as to whether or not they want to live here. Put short of having a surplus of money/vacation time in their current/previous area that wont happen. So most ppl spend what little time (if any) they can just looking for residence and/or jobs while in town other than the hotspots everybody sees. And the rest they research on the internet. I think this site helps prospective relocators if they know how to use the information correctly. If you only look for utopia thats all youll see....that is until you get here and have to deal with the real deal. Some ppl adapt easily some dont.
 
Old 10-22-2008, 07:01 PM
Status: "I hate living in Georgia!!" (set 15 days ago)
 
48,232 posts, read 45,519,102 times
Reputation: 15346
Quote:
Originally Posted by YBF View Post
This is soo true...IMO. Most people will always tell you the good things about anything...I think if more ppl could afford to stay in Atlanta for a month or so they would make their own judgements as to whether or not they want to live here. Put short of having a surplus of money/vacation time in their current/previous area that wont happen. So most ppl spend what little time (if any) they can just looking for residence and/or jobs while in town other than the hotspots everybody sees. And the rest they research on the internet. I think this site helps prospective relocators if they know how to use the information correctly. If you only look for utopia thats all youll see....that is until you get here and have to deal with the real deal. Some ppl adapt easily some dont.
That is my point. I have been living in metro Atlanta for 12 years. I thought it was going to be great. So did my family. Now I am dissapointed by it. I am speaking from my own personal experience. I only heard Atlanta from an outside perspective. When I spent time here, and read about other places, I became dissapointed with Atlanta. It happens to alot of people.
 
Old 10-22-2008, 07:41 PM
 
Location: Atlanta ,GA
9,086 posts, read 13,294,677 times
Reputation: 2929
Quote:
Originally Posted by pirate_lafitte View Post
This just my theory. I could be wrong, but I am thinking about this. The reason for why Atlanta gets a bad rap is because it is mainly new residents who feel this way. There is a difference between visiting Atlanta as a tourist and living there as an everyday resident. One can see the good side of Atlanta as a tourist and that is all one will see. If a person moves to Atlanta and sees it all, then that person will have a different perspective. I think this is why some new residents have trouble with Atlanta. There is a difference between what one hears and what one sees.
New residents come from all over.Small cities, big cities.Some better cities some worseAtlanta has lost some of its charm that made it because so many people are not from here.There is a lack of community.5-10 years ago you never heard of anyone saying they were born and raised in Atlanta.Now lately,over the last couple of years ,it seems that has drastically changed.The second generation are here in force now.With that said,I think we are in the middle of a 20 year growing pains,Identity to the area by more groups of people is becoming more ingrained.Its a fact that more people stay here than leave after moving here and MOST people like it.This growth thing is nothing new.
The guy earlier hit the nail on the head, Atlanta has become so much so fast that their is aa myth vs reality because even if we talk about something we don;t really have,we walwayssooner or later make it happened.I remeber why we won the Olympics.There has always been an attitude of "we are great and we dont care what you think" mentality.It goes against the what people are taugh about boasting.People automatically will make you a target and try to shoot you out of the sky.

Its amazing that no matter how many more people that love Atlanta,surveys that back it every year for over 30years,MOSTLY peope who do not even live here,or been here are the nay sayers.Ive learned that by going to some of the general forums that is mostly those form the northeast.I think if Atlanta was not in the south but the West,it would be regarded differently.The south gets abad wrap(some of it deservedly so),but Atlanta is an will be in my Opinion within 20 years one of the 10 most influential cities in the world.
 
Old 10-22-2008, 09:04 PM
 
3 posts, read 5,870 times
Reputation: 10
I've been blessed compared to the stories I've heard sound like nightmare. I've met people who were gainfully employed (but stressed out) moved to Atlanta only to be informed that their company was sold months after relocating to arriving here or discovering that your job was given away to an internal employee without notification. Once they get here, they suck it up by getting jobs as wait staff or security guards until they can return home.
It's been like moving to another country in so many ways. The hype is over the top to the point where it's downright sad. The most "real" people are the rockstars. Watching regular people overextend themselves financially is disappointing. Having people profess their interest in building a friendship based upon your zip code and car class is startling. Listening to transplants reinvent their lives back home where they describe their upbringing as a "dynasty" rather than just happy to move away for college where they have no plans to return to gun shots and drugs.
We are in the midst of a housing crisis due to bad business, poor decision making and no oversight.
 
Old 10-23-2008, 07:56 AM
 
719 posts, read 1,476,800 times
Reputation: 220
Default On Atlanta seeming foreign

Remy, I'm curious where you're coming from that Atlanta "seems like a foreign country" to you ("It's been like moving to another country in so many ways") and what do you attribute that impression to?
 
Old 10-23-2008, 08:37 AM
 
Location: St Simons Island, GA
23,122 posts, read 35,061,639 times
Reputation: 15309
Quote:
Originally Posted by Remy69 View Post
I've been blessed compared to the stories I've heard sound like nightmare. I've met people who were gainfully employed (but stressed out) moved to Atlanta only to be informed that their company was sold months after relocating to arriving here or discovering that your job was given away to an internal employee without notification. Once they get here, they suck it up by getting jobs as wait staff or security guards until they can return home.
It's been like moving to another country in so many ways. The hype is over the top to the point where it's downright sad. The most "real" people are the rockstars. Watching regular people overextend themselves financially is disappointing. Having people profess their interest in building a friendship based upon your zip code and car class is startling. Listening to transplants reinvent their lives back home where they describe their upbringing as a "dynasty" rather than just happy to move away for college where they have no plans to return to gun shots and drugs.
We are in the midst of a housing crisis due to bad business, poor decision making and no oversight.
Why are these situations attributable to Atlanta? IMO they could occur anywhere.
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