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Old 08-30-2011, 10:52 PM
 
Location: Bethesda, Maryland
102 posts, read 129,179 times
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Default Columbus, OH vs. Indianapolis, IN

Hi, I am looking at a job transfer to one of the following three cities: Columbus, OH; Indianapolis, IN; and Lexington, KY.

I know enough about Lexington, KY so I won't be asking about it.

However, I do not know much about Columbus and Indianapolis.

I know both are in the Midwest; they are not that much different in population with the exception of Columbus's having larger metro population and Indy's having professional teams. I know both Columbus and Indy have stable economy with lowest unemployment rate in their respective state known for its struggling economy.

What are the differences between Columbus and Indy? What are the pros and cons of each city? Which one feels more urban in terms of big city amenties, museums, zoos, activities/things to do, etc.? Which city is better overall?

Of course, I know I have to visit each one to make the final decision for myself but I still want your opinions/experiences/complaints of each city. I would appreciate it very much.
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Old 08-31-2011, 05:30 AM
 
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Most people will tell you Columbus is better but in my opinion Indianapolis is equal and way overlooked. Many also will try to tell you there's nothing to do in Indianapolis, but as the 12th largest city in the US that's kind of ridiculous if you think about it. As you mentioned it offers pro football and basketball, and is the amateur sports capital of the US as it hosts many championship events in track and field, swimming, cycling, gymnastics and more. The city hosts many concerts as one of the major cities in the country and supports a wide range of cultural institutions ranging from theater/orchestra to museums/galleries. To me Indianapolis has more going on downtown than Columbus and has a more urban feel in that sense. The city has an extensive parks system and one of the largest urban parks in the country (Eagle Creek Park), White River State Park just west of downtown is quite sizable and also hosts the Indianapolis Zoo as well as the NCAA headquarters, NCAA Hall of Champions museum, an IMAX theater and an outdoor concert venue. The city also has extensive biking/running trails, much of it through the downtown area as well as it's greenway system. The city has some interesting/vital historic neighborhoods worth investigating. Check out Broad Ripple Village, Massachusetts Avenue corridor, Fountain Square and Garfield Park. In summary Indianapolis is more diversified and not all about a major university like Columbus is.
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Old 08-31-2011, 08:13 AM
 
Location: Mexico City, formerly Columbus, Ohio
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It really depends on what you're looking for. I think the two are fairly similar in several ways, but different in others. They are both fairly newer as far as overall development goes. They have similar metro growth rates and both are growing in the city themselves with Indy at 6.1% and Columbus at 10.6%. Some of the differences would be that Columbus has a bit better economy and higher density, along with better core neighborhoods. Indianapolis probably has a better downtown but Columbus is trying to change that. Indianapolis is less diverse overall, but has a higher number of Hispanics. Indianapolis has higher crime than Columbus including a higher murder rate. Overall, I think they are both nice cities and both going in the right direction as far as development.
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Old 08-31-2011, 01:00 PM
 
Location: KCMO, returning to Indy in 2012!
121 posts, read 52,660 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jbcmh81 View Post
It really depends on what you're looking for. I think the two are fairly similar in several ways, but different in others. They are both fairly newer as far as overall development goes. They have similar metro growth rates and both are growing in the city themselves with Indy at 6.1% and Columbus at 10.6%. Some of the differences would be that Columbus has a bit better economy and higher density, along with better core neighborhoods. Indianapolis probably has a better downtown but Columbus is trying to change that. Indianapolis is less diverse overall, but has a higher number of Hispanics. Indianapolis has higher crime than Columbus including a higher murder rate. Overall, I think they are both nice cities and both going in the right direction as far as development.
I'm in KC at the moment but have lived in both Indy and Columbus over the years (what can I say, I just LOVE I-70!) and Indianapolis does not "probably" have a better downtown, it's not even a competition. And Columbus would need 20+ years of constant development to catch up to where Indy is right now. But Indy isn't staying put, they're still developing their downtown at a breakneck rate. I moved away from there in 2008 and there have been a staggering number of changes in DT Indy since then.

Columbus has better neighborhoods though, that's for sure. Housing stock in both cities is rather uninspired for my taste, but KC really isn't any better. If you love an American Foursquare (the tract home of yesterday) you'll be happy in either. If you're leaning towards suburban living then Indy wins hands down as it has Carmel, which is light years more progressive than any of the Columbus burbs and has become a model for suburban redevelopment throughout the midwest.

You try to complement Indy while slamming it without offering specific data to back it up, which reeks of boosterism.

I loved my time in both cities and wouldn't mind living in either again. I find Columbus' vibe, especially in the urban core, a bit more to my liking but Indy has more of a big-time city feel to it because of the pro sports and big events it gets to host.
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Old 08-31-2011, 04:11 PM
 
Location: Mexico City, formerly Columbus, Ohio
7,418 posts, read 4,396,970 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EmmanuelGoldstein View Post
I'm in KC at the moment but have lived in both Indy and Columbus over the years (what can I say, I just LOVE I-70!) and Indianapolis does not "probably" have a better downtown, it's not even a competition. And Columbus would need 20+ years of constant development to catch up to where Indy is right now. But Indy isn't staying put, they're still developing their downtown at a breakneck rate. I moved away from there in 2008 and there have been a staggering number of changes in DT Indy since then.

Columbus has better neighborhoods though, that's for sure. Housing stock in both cities is rather uninspired for my taste, but KC really isn't any better. If you love an American Foursquare (the tract home of yesterday) you'll be happy in either. If you're leaning towards suburban living then Indy wins hands down as it has Carmel, which is light years more progressive than any of the Columbus burbs and has become a model for suburban redevelopment throughout the midwest.

You try to complement Indy while slamming it without offering specific data to back it up, which reeks of boosterism.

I loved my time in both cities and wouldn't mind living in either again. I find Columbus' vibe, especially in the urban core, a bit more to my liking but Indy has more of a big-time city feel to it because of the pro sports and big events it gets to host.
Hmm, I don't think I was being unfair to Indy. What specifically did I say that you find incorrect?

I would also argue against the point that indy feels more like a big city given its densities in the Downtown area. They are very similar to Columbus'. The big difference is the urban ring neighborhoods. Did you know that Indianapolis does not have a single population tract of 10,000 or more ppsm? Not in the Downtown, not in the ring suburbs, not anywhere. I used the census data and was actually surprised by this. The densist is tract 3542 which has 8,098.8 ppsm. Columbus' was 29,042 ppsm, which is not exactly impressive either considering some other cities, but still. One could make a different argument.

I think in this regard Indy and Columbus are switched, where Indy's downtown feels busier and is more developed while Columbus' surrounding neighborhoods have the density and activity. I agree, Columbus' downtown needs work, but they are making a lot of effort in this regard. If it takes 20 years, so be it, though I think, given what has occurred just in the last 5-10, it won't take that long. We'll see.
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Old 08-31-2011, 09:27 PM
 
Location: South Beach and DT Raleigh
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There's a difference?

....just kidding
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Old 08-31-2011, 10:08 PM
 
33 posts, read 41,882 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rnc2mbfl View Post
There's a difference?

....just kidding

Hahah Ive only driven thru Indy and been to a few specific locations. Indy does fell very similar to Columbus when driving on their outerbelt and on I-70. Both have cowtown type areas in city limits. Ive been to their kiddy museum which was pretty cool and obviously a regionally draw. Columbus does seem more urban but Indy still felt like a bigger city. Most of the infill in Indy seems to be more suburban in nature compared to Columbus. Both seem to have similar demographics and similar amount of traffic. Indy does have pro teams which is a plus. Seems like a toss up to me.
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Old 09-01-2011, 02:58 PM
 
Location: Bethesda, Maryland
102 posts, read 129,179 times
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Thanks for the helpful posts comparing Columbus and Indianapolis!

I am beginning to see the differences between two cities. So far, I like what I learned about Indianapolis with better downtown, more pro teams, and a popular progressive surburb of Carmel. I'm more into subdivisions than older houses so I like the idea of living in Carmel.

What about the friendliness of the residents in Columbus and Indianapolis?
I would like to live where friendly people are especially with my being from Tennessee.

Are the Ohioans friendly at all? No offense, my dad said they are not friendly. Dad lived there for awhile and he worked as a trucker driving all over the country. Dad said Indiana has more friendly, down to earth people.
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Old 09-01-2011, 03:07 PM
 
Location: Lansing, MI
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I do not know what the college culture is like in IN, so only speaking strictly from experience living in OH. The OSU fan base is over the top. Columbus eats, breaths and lives OSU. It is like no other college fan base I've ever experienced.
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Old 09-01-2011, 05:33 PM
 
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As others have stated, there are some differences between the two cities. Downtown Indy is better than DT CBus but CBUS has better urban neighborhoods, The food is about the same. Indy is the least segregated major metro in the Midwest and actually is the 2nd best economy of the major metros in the Midwest.

CBus of course has OSU which is the largest school in the nation so just about everything sports related is OSU based IMO even though they have NHL and Soccer if I'm not mistaken. Indy having two professional sports teams of course is dominant esp. the Colts but on the college level, IU and Purdue are 40-50 minutes each north and south of the city so you get a huge following for both schools here in the city. Indy is far better in sporting events though. They are both on the major concert circuits and I've never been to any CBus museums so can't relate anything to that.
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