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View Poll Results: Where would you rather live?
Kansas City 38 48.10%
Portland 41 51.90%
Voters: 79. You may not vote on this poll

 
 
Old 04-29-2014, 10:10 AM
 
Location: Bothell, Washington
2,680 posts, read 4,456,862 times
Reputation: 3622

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Quote:
Originally Posted by JackLonsdale View Post
Oh gosh. Interesting comparison, but this one really isn't close. Portland is beginning to rival Seattle and Vancouver, BC as the most interesting and vibrant city in the Pacific Northwest. Kansas City is an oasis of culture and urbanity in the Great Plains, but it doesn't really hold a candle to any West Coast metro. Heck, it doesn't even compare to Denver.

Portland is emerging as a destination city. KC is a great place to live, but you wouldn't plan a vacation there unless you lived in driving distance.

Portland wins for airport, scenery, amenities, diversity, and urbanity. Kansas City wins for cultural heritage, American food (love that barbecue) and probably museums. But too much of KC is stuck in the 80s and 90s -- suburban sprawl, massive shopping malls, Johnson County, office parks off the freeway, an airport that's located 25 miles away, etc. A Portland Timbers game is a better fan experience than a Chiefs game at Arrowhead. The Pearl trumps the Plaza. Midwest cities are usual friendlier than West Coast cities, but Portland is as friendly as KC.

Two HUGE pluses for KC however are cost-of-living/real estate, and the weather. On those grounds, Portland is definitely the city to visit, but the two are tied in terms of where to live.
I agree with all of this except for the last comment about weather- Portland wins hands down on weather. I used to live not too far from KC, and the weather is miserable- too cold in winter and far too hot/humid in Summer. Portland's mild climate in all seasons is far better. Not to mention the green landscape that remains green even through the winter.

Scenery is one category also needing to be mentioned- Portland is gorgeous with the mountains, forests, and even volcanic peaks within view- Mount Hood hanging on the horizon over Portland is an incredible sight to see. KC is just mostly flat farm land with a few minor bluffs around the river- nothing scenic to see in or anywhere within a long distance of the metro area.
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Old 04-29-2014, 10:11 AM
 
Location: Washington, DC area
10,705 posts, read 18,488,746 times
Reputation: 5405
Quote:
Originally Posted by s.davis View Post
KC is like Portland in 1985: an overlooked, forgotten or ignored, midsized backwater that most people couldn't be troubled with, but that locals know has a lot of character, a lot of ammenities, and a lot to recommend it as a pleasant, if unexciting, place to live. The 2 biggest differences are that KC has lot more soul and grit but also a lot less hope of ever experiencing the boom Portland has experienced in the interim.

In terms of comparison, I prefer KC, mostly because I think culturally its just more my speed, I find it more dynamic, more interesting, more grounded and more real, plus I like the Midwest a great deal more than the Pacific Northwest in terms of climate and geography, but obviously loads of people feel different.

As cities, they share a lot of built environment similarities, the same kind of housing stock and built density, but Portland has very little of the kind of large scale abandonment, blight and ghetto that KC has, and has been densifying for a couple decades while KC has continued to hollow out. The best neighborhoods in KC and the best ammenities in KC are on par with the best neighborhoods and ammenities in Portland, but Portland has a much more uniform distribution of those neighborhoods and a much broader spectrum of those ammenities.

Culturally, they are pretty divergent, and I think that gap is only widening. Portland is more vibrant, has more energy and is more progressive. KC is more staid, has a lot more industrial midwestern influence, and is significantly more laid back. I think Portland takes the prize pretty easily for nightlife and music and food. I think KC has an art scene that is ahead of Portland's, has a little edge in terms of the old-school cultural ammenities, and seems less insufferably focused on immediately post collegiate 20-something-white-kid and DINK-disneyland culture. Hard to argue with Portland's immense advantage in transit and walkablilty, though, and I know that those 2 things are in no small part linked to those same "insufferable" 20-somethings and DINKS.

I wouldn't consider moving back to the Pac NW for anything, and if I did, I doubt it would be to Portland, but I certainly think that in a head-to-head on the criteria listed, its hard to make a case that the two cities are particularly comparable.
Good post too. Like I said, KC is just missing that urban vibrancy (people on sidewalks, traffic on streets, tons of people in parks and our biking and running etc. If KC ever figures out a way to apply many of the Plaza characteristics of vibrancy to areas north of the plaza and the metro area's residents and corporate community stops ignoring downtown, then I think KC will be right there with places like Portland or Denver. But right now it's just way too sleepy 90% of the time. KC sure has the bones to be amazing though.
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Old 04-29-2014, 10:13 AM
 
Location: NJ
124 posts, read 114,121 times
Reputation: 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by 8to32characters View Post
If the severe storms of the past day or so don't serve as a reason to not live in a place like Kansas City, then Christ Almighty, I couldn't tell ya what does.
Landslides and earthquakes can happen in the NW, **** happens...
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Old 04-29-2014, 10:18 AM
 
9,972 posts, read 14,014,718 times
Reputation: 9193
Greenlite is back as Staygully now?
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Old 04-29-2014, 01:32 PM
 
Location: Denver, Colorado U.S.A.
14,174 posts, read 22,492,358 times
Reputation: 10428
Quote:
Originally Posted by 8to32characters View Post
Kansas City is the type of place you leave the day after you graduate from high school for a city like Portland, OR.

I'll leave it at that.
That's basically what I did lol! I grew up in KC and left at age 18. It's not a horrible place, but definitely not for me as an adult. To me, it's like a big small town. People in the 'burbs (which is most of the metro area) aver very anti-urban. They think "the city" (meaining downtown/Midtown KCMO) are bad, dangerous places and they don't like to go there.

It's also, overall, very conservative and "Bible Beltish". It's a slow city to progress (meaning not much has changed since the late 80s when I left) and downtown is nearly the opposite of downtown Portland. Very empty, no rail lines, not many people living there. They did recently build an entertainment district downtown that's nice, but still nothing like downtown Portland.

And the weather in KC leaves much to be desired. It goes from too cold and humid to too hot, buggy and humid very fast. So being outdoors is uncomfortable most of the year.

I've been to Portland and if you can handle the winter gloom, it's a much livelier city. If you're liberal, choose Portland If you're conservative, heterosexual and want to live in the burbs, choose KC.

Oh.. and KC has a lot of poverty and racial issues going on. It's still quite segregated, but the inner ring suburbs are beoming much more integrated. And pretty much the entire city of KC, KS is a dump that looks the same today as 40 years ago.
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Old 04-29-2014, 03:18 PM
 
Location: Kansas City, MO
31 posts, read 41,632 times
Reputation: 34
When I graduated from college, my plan was absolutely to leave Kansas City. That's because, like many of the previous posters, I thought Kansas City was too suburban. That was until I got a great job offer and chose to live downtown. Now, I love Kansas City and want to stick around to see this place continue to improve and grow, because it definitely is doing that.

Denverian, you sound like someone who probably grew up in the suburbs, like many of the people I know, so they think "Kansas City" sucks, but really just the suburbs and the constant fighting across the state line sucks. And that whole "KC is dangerous" mentality exists much more prominently on city-data than it does in real life. That's awesome you left and enjoy it where you are now, but don't act like Kansas City is some downtrodden farmland stuck in the 50s. You're lying to yourself if you think nothing about downtown Kansas City has changed since the late 80s. "Not many people living there" is also absolutely false. I think there's something like 20,000 people living downtown, not including midtown, Westport, Plaza, etc., and apartment complexes are around 97% occupancy, which is why new apartment complexes and loft rehabs are proposed all over the place, and a new high rise building just broke ground near Power and Light.

Granted, Portland is obviously killing it and leading the way in urban planning, transportation and being a progressive city and all that good stuff. Props to them. I hope to visit some day. But in no way is Kansas City just a crappy "big small town." We're working on improving mass transit and appealing to the younger generation. Do a lot of people move out to the suburbs at a certain point? Yes. But a lot of people, young and those with families, are also choosing to stay in the city, because it's definitely improving. Albeit at a much slower pace than its peers. I will no doubt give you that. Progress does seem to take forever here.

Actually Kansas City, the city proper, is much more liberal than its suburban entities. So no, you don't have to be a heterosexual, white, suburbanite to enjoy Kansas City.

Spring and fall in KC is perfect. Summer is hot and humid. Winter can be mild to bitter cold. I find plenty of time to feel comfortable outside.

Of course KC has poverty issues. Doesn't every good sized city?
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Old 04-29-2014, 04:21 PM
 
Location: NJ
124 posts, read 114,121 times
Reputation: 74
IDGAF wat anybody say, KC is automatically cool cuz Tech N9ne from there. Portland dont have anybod unfortunately. Before someone xtra sensitive tries to correct me, Ill rephrase it: Portland doesnt have anybod dope.
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Old 04-29-2014, 04:28 PM
 
Location: Washington, DC area
10,705 posts, read 18,488,746 times
Reputation: 5405
Quote:
Originally Posted by staygully View Post
IDGAF wat anybody say, KC is automatically cool cuz Tech N9ne from there. Portland dont have anybod unfortunately. Before someone xtra sensitive tries to correct me, Ill rephrase it: Portland doesnt have anybod dope.
Tech N9ne even lives in the suburbs of KC
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Old 04-29-2014, 04:31 PM
 
Location: NJ
124 posts, read 114,121 times
Reputation: 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by kcmo View Post
Tech N9ne even lives in the suburbs of KC
True, whenever he doesnt tour, seem like always. His shows are some of the best I ever been to. He's better than 95% of the rappers, and they dont even know it.
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Old 04-29-2014, 04:34 PM
 
Location: Pacific NW
6,415 posts, read 10,033,388 times
Reputation: 5779
Oh wow. You're right. That does make Kansas City a much greater place.
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