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View Poll Results: Which metro area would be better for me?
Houston 20 48.78%
Tampa 21 51.22%
Voters: 41. You may not vote on this poll

Old 04-29-2014, 06:00 PM
Location: Washington D.C. By way of Texas
18,211 posts, read 25,902,249 times
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Originally Posted by orlando-calrissian View Post
You do realize that a lot of what you say is a huge exaggeration right? What the h3ll is a "Bubba" type? Ghetto mentality?
Like I said, take what he says with a grain of salt.
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Old 04-29-2014, 06:50 PM
Location: Atlanta
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The Tampa area beaches are stunning, not the cesspool of the western Gulf.
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Old 04-29-2014, 06:56 PM
Location: A subtropical paradise
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Originally Posted by 8to32characters View Post
Tampa pros--cheaper and easier to access your family in CT (lots of relatively inexpensive direct, nonstop flights from TPA to BDL), lots of Italian folks from Northeast & Great Lakes states; gay-friendlier metro area overall, IMO, esp. in the 'burbs compared to Houston outskirts/'burbs; close family nearby; more familiar culture (Tampa's more like the Northeast than Houston, although distinct); more bearable summers due to influence of Bay/Gulf (IMO); noticeably warmer winters; less conservative metro area overall; fewer Southern/country accents; less religious overall (not solidly Bible Belt like Houston); much better beaches; better access to more world-class destinations; greater number of unique/interesting places nearby; prettier scenery.

Tampa cons--very transient, salaries disproportional to COL, weak economy, lots of tourists, lots of angry/deviant/bizarre folks (Florida), weird crimes make the press every single day, lots of competition for few jobs, constantly raining from May-Oct, rude/unfriendly locals, more prolific sinkhole problem than Houston, pervasive ghetto mentality (although not as bad as Miami, Atlanta, or even Orlando), more tweakers, lots of trash-mouths/people with very low vocabulary, people don't want to be your friend/get to know you.

Houston pros--lower COL, higher salaries, stronger economy, better infrastructure network, cooler winters (better for some), less transient, more civic pride, more affordable housing, larger housing inventory, more international vibe, better shopping, friendly/easier-going people, more diverse.

Houston cons--more hazardous weather overall (tornadoes, hailstorms); more oppressive summers; colder winters with the potential for ice, although rare; dirty, undesirable beaches; less health-conscious/fatter population; fewer Italian people/Northeast transplants (I know that's important to you); very conservative and religious populace (lots of mega-churches); farther from CT, so fewer direct/nonstop flight options; more potholes; more toll roads; lots of "Bubba" types; more Southern/redneck than Tampa Bay overall; hodge-podge city layout; more rundown-looking than Tampa; horrid air quality; lots of litter/trash everywhere, esp. compared to FL; etc.
Pretty on point post, with the exception of a couple things I bolded.

As diverse and international as the city of Houston is, the diversity continues outside towards the major suburbs, especially in Sugar Land in Fort Bend County (one of the most diverse counties in the nation), and that diversity includes gays as well. That is expected, as Houston was the first US city to elect an openly gay mayor, and is the largest US city to do so.

Houston is not more conservative than Tampa, nor is it more Southern. That factor in regards to the two cities is more nebulous. Houston may have mega-churches like Lakewood, but it is actually not in the Bible-Belt. Houston is also not conservative at all (the suburbs, baring major ones like Woodlands, Sugarland, Katy, are more conservative, however). You won't really see a lot of "bubba" types in the Greater Houston area, except on the extreme northern and eastern fringes in proximity to the small East Tx towns. You can hear foreign languages alot more than Southern accents in Houston, depending on where you are (over 90 languages are spoken in the Houston metro).

Tampa has more of the Northeastern culture compared to Houston due to its location(being that its closer to CT), allowing it to recieve more transplants from the North (especially Italians); however, Houston will have more of the "Western culture", with the California transplants, again, due to its location further west. But Houston is no slouch in regards to the amount of Italians in the city.

Contrary to popular belief, Houston is quite health concious (its actually one of the fitter metros); the reason it was voted the "fattest city" in the past was that the methodology of the ranking was based not on the actual fitness of the population, but instead based on the amount of restraunts per capita (which is expected, being that Houston is a signifigant "foodie" city).

Houston does indeed have hotter summers, and colder winters than Tampa (though not all that drastic), and that is due to the fact that Houston is not only farther north in latitude than Tampa, but is also quite farther from the coast compared to Tampa. The cooler winters make Houston more prone to ice, though the occurence in both metros is very rare.

It is absolutely wrong to state that Houston suffers from tornadoes and hailstorms; both events are very rare in Houston, and any city in the US that is by the coast. People associate Texas with extreme weather, but Houston, and the rest of the coastal/Southern locations in the state have relatively stable weather (in the sense that dangerous storms rarely happen). Now, something that BOTH Tampa and Houston actually do have to contend with are hurricane threats, due to the fact that both are on the Gulf Coast.

When determining which place is more connected to world-class destinations, look not just at location of a place (Which I assume you did), and instead consider the presence of things like major airports. Houston, for example, has the much larger airport (George Bush IAH) that is more interconnected with cities across the world than Tampa (Houston, for example, has direct flights to Nigeria, and also is quite connected with Latin America).

Houston is quite nearby to a lot of interesting places as well, especially places in the Western US, Latin America, etc, as well as places such as New Orleans, San Antonio, Dallas, etc.

Not all of the urban design in Houston is "hodge-podge"; Houston's downtown, for example, is designed with a neat, Manhattan-style grid pattern that is quite obvious. Also, Houston is actually quite clean for a large city, due to the fact that it is much newer compared to other large cities in the country, so though you can expect more trash in Houston than in Tampa, being that it is a larger city, you can't expect lots of it. The same also goes for the pot-holes, run-down areas, etc.

As for scenery, take beaches out of the equation, and both cities are neck-in-neck in terms of scenery. Both have varied subtropical landscapes, from lush coastal plains to wetlands, to subtropical forest. As for the beaches, Tampa's are much better, but the beaches of Houston are not undesirable at all. But like the OP said, he doesn't care much about the beaches.

That being said, I think Tampa is a better choice for the OP, being that it is less removed from the Eastern Culture the OP desires, and the fact that it is much closer to CT compared to Houston.

Originally Posted by bigstick View Post
The Tampa area beaches are stunning, not the cesspool of the western Gulf.
The beaches of the western Gulf are quite beautiful as well actually; less so than those of the Eastern Gulf, but still quite beautiful.
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Old 04-29-2014, 07:34 PM
Location: Jacksonville, FL
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Well personally, I think both metro areas have appealing aesthetics, for different reasons. Houston has a nice lush green non-palm tree greenery, but Tampa is similar but incorporates more waterways, bays, etc. Also, is it just me or does it seem like Houston's housing stock tends to look older, while Tampa's is newer?

The bad thing about Houston is that it often looks quite ugly in many areas, with huge electric transmission towers all over the place and it seems like nearly 100% of the roads are all gray concrete, which is odd.

It seems like I'd be comfortable living within the greater Houston area, but it also seems like as soon as you step foot out of the general area, it becomes redneck really fast. So then, is Houston metro basically an enclave surrounded buy ultra conservative culture? On the other hand, from Tampa, you can go to Orlando or south to Sarasota and it still feels comfortably northeastern enough.
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Old 04-29-2014, 09:21 PM
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Funny, after living in Southern California for four years before moving to Texas, I never really got that whole "California vibe" in Texas that everyone on this forum seems to tout. Didn't meet too many transplants from California either. Most people in the Dallas/Plano area seemed to be native to that area or transplants from OK/AR/LA/other parts of TX. Hmm.

Texas is way, way more like Florida--where I lived for years--than California.
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