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Old 02-10-2009, 05:17 PM
Location: Fort Worth/Dallas
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As much as I dislike the cold, Houston is just too humid for me.
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Old 02-10-2009, 05:24 PM
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I lived in Chicago (south loop) for 8 years, before moving to Houston last summer. I actually really like Houston and can foresee myself living here in the long run.

To me Chicago is more of a city to visit or to live temporarily (say if you're going to college/grad school, not so much to live permanently. It's full of features and amenities that look impressive and you may find enjoyable; but at the same time you may get bored of after a while. That downtown scenery and the Fields museum may look impressive, but after a couple of years they just turn blah. The temperature becomes more important than what your eyes see.

I echo the sentiment that the city is very traditional and segregated. Traditional perhaps because it's somewhat isolated in the center of midwest, free from influence of another nearby major city. It is segregated that you know the whites live in the north side and west/north suburbs, and the blacks in the west side & south side of the city, and the south suburbs.

It has a lot of international people, but still not as diverse as other major U.S. cities like NYC, LA, or Houston. I think the isolated location and the cold weather somewhat deter internationals from coming to the city. Even foreign tourists don't frequent Chicago as much as the coastal cities.

I agree that Houston is underrated. I think Houston, just like the oil & gas industry, has a lot of stigma to it: hot, humid, industrial, dirty, unsophisticated. This is where form is less than factor. In the long run, the city would do itself a service by doing better PR jobs and cultivating industries other than O&G.

A major part of Houston that I love is its diversity... variety of people from different races and many internationals. And many many ethnic foods, so much more than what Chicago has. Houston is perhaps on par with LA in this regard.

And, Houstonians are very nice people. Chicago's midwestern values are nice, but Houstonian' southern hospitality bring it to another level. And people in Houston suburbs tend to have more conservative values, something that I share and are really important to me.
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Old 02-10-2009, 10:59 PM
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How has this thread not been renamed Houston Vs. Chicago and moved to the city vs. city forum yet?
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Old 02-11-2009, 12:17 AM
Location: Central Bay Area, CA as of Jan 2010...but still a proud Texan from Houston!
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Yes we are highly under-rated...hey just go to Austin and tell them you are from Houston and they will say "well thank God you are here instead of there...get down and kiss the ground that you are here in Austin instead of Houston. I have lived in Houston for 43 years and I love Houston. We have a lot going for us that many may take for granted as I did when I moved away last year to Austin. I could not wait to come back and I truly have a greater appreciation for Houston.
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Old 02-11-2009, 12:56 AM
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Originally Posted by calid00d View Post
It seems clearly better than Chicago (at least from my experiences) in terms of number of things to do, weather, and proximity to other interesting places. Houston is near Galveston, a short car/train ride (in the future) from Austin, San Antonio, Dallas. Chicago is the only big town for 1000s of miles. The entire cultural life of Chicago seems to consist of getting drunk on cold nights. Houston offers lots of museums, arts, etc., in addition to more clubs/bars than you could ever want. Why doesn't it get more love?

Also "natural beauty" isn't the reason - Chicago is cold and bleak most of the year and is just as flat as Houston. Houston is lush and green year-round.

I would put the U.S. cities like this:

L.A. > NY > SF> Houston > Chicago
Woah! Did you forget America's Finest City... San Diego in the mix? Or Miami?
As terms of Chicago and Houston, it's a toss-up. However something inhibiting Houston from becoming to the next level and throw in Dallas to that mix is DENSITY! DFW/Houston are so spread out for good reason, however people when the come visit a city don't want to be driving for hours from end to end to get the "feel" they want. DFW and Houston Downtown's are primarily for work, not for play. It's not cosmo like the other cities and attracts a family kinda of crowd. I would say that it's better suited and would get better marks if you're a family of 4 w/ 2 dogs and on a 100k a year income, Houston is the city for you.

Nothing against Houston, but it will never get the media attention but it's for good reason. Low density, nothing really glamorous and not scenic. No beaches/mountains for miles (and lets not really consider Galveston much).
It's a retreat for locals, but really people around the world go the LA/SF/NY/MIA ... Houston is nowhere to be found on that list (which is just fine).

Albeit, the Chi vs Houston weather is a toss-up. Cold and bleak vs Humid and icky. Just depends on the which you can tolerate.
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Old 02-11-2009, 01:10 AM
669 posts, read 1,406,291 times
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Originally Posted by coog78 View Post
Food for thought, eh? Well, hope you're hungry. Houston is second only to NYC for headquarters of Fortune 500 companies (more than Chicago has or will ever have). Houston has the second largest theatre district in the United States (more shows and larger than Chicago has or will ever have). Houston has one of the best medical centers worldwide (better than Chicago has or will ever have). Houston is endurable outside 365 days a year unless you're some Midwest wuss that melts when it gets hot outside. Houston continues to constantly increase density inside the loop and boasts an array and diversity of food Chicago does not have nor will ever have. All that and Chicago is older than Houston by over 50 years. Eat up!
I had no intention of pointing out the obvious and bashing Chicago, but the previous post clearly begged to be called out and put on point. It will be less than 25 years until Houston's population surpasses Chicago. We will continue to be an international hub for the Mideast, Asia, and South America. Chicago will continue to be cold and unbearable to be outside for 5 months of the year. Your city has nothing to make you such a snob, so make like Oprah and eat that food for thought!
Well, reason being Houston or Texas for that matter has the most fortune 500 companies is simple:
1) Location to rest of the country (between west and east coast)
2) Energy companies of course and TX being the energy capitol of the US
3) The biggest reason of all... TAXES.

Being somewhat of a accountant/business finance person why would companies set up shop in TX? TX has the MOST favorable corporate tax rates anywhere. In states that tax businesses to death, ie NY and CA why the heck stay there? Remember a tax difference of 5-15% in terms of what a corporation brings in, we're talking tens of billions sometimes (imagine what that does for your bottom line?)

If TX ever adopted liberal tax laws and businesses fled, it would be a ghost town. Thank goodness that there is still a conservative state in the US corporate business, albeit that's slowly changing.

So keeping in mind when companies set up shop in Tx, it's not for many reasons other's think - it's for the good old American Dollar.
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Old 02-11-2009, 05:37 AM
Location: from houstoner to bostoner to new yorker to new jerseyite ;)
4,085 posts, read 11,220,884 times
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Originally Posted by Scitats View Post
How has this thread not been renamed Houston Vs. Chicago and moved to the city vs. city forum yet?
Because no one reported it. Anyway, good point. Thread moved from Houston to City vs. City.
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Old 02-11-2009, 06:27 AM
Location: La Isla Encanta, Puerto Rico
1,129 posts, read 2,936,050 times
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Default Rappers & Grills

Originally Posted by basf1225 View Post
Houston has more dangerous ghettos and better rappers, so there . . . take it and live with it
Much better grills, too. Sharpstown Mall has more bling bling grill jewelers than any other city in the country. All the big rappers from not just the south coast but the east and west coasts shop there after Paul Wall made this little Vietnamese guys shop famous.

I believe that most sophisticated urban connesseurs consider "quality of grill shops" the quintessential factor on what makes a city great.
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Old 02-11-2009, 06:42 AM
Location: ITP
2,133 posts, read 5,492,598 times
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I've heard some crazy things on this board, but for some people out there to claim that Houston is more dynamic, more diverse, and more prominent than Chicago is absolutely insane. I'm not trying to bash Houston in anyway, but I'll state what Chicago has over Houston.

First of all, Chicago has way more history than Houston. It was the sight of the 1893 Worlds Fair, which introduced many inventions, innovations, and cultural icons that we still use or identify today such as the Ferris Wheel, Cracker Jack, Pabst Blue Ribbon, etc.

It's very well known as a destination for immigrants and Southern blacks in the late 19th/early 20th century--making it one of the more diverse cities in the country. It has the largest population of Poles outside of Warsaw and you can find TV and radio stations that broadcast in Polish. Not to mention you can find ethnic enclaves all over Chicago that date back a century--from Irish Bridgeport to the Ukranian Village.

Its architecture and architectural history is almost unparalleled in this country as it was the place that many of the great architects came to cut their teeth such as Burnham and Root. Its urban landscape is well-recognized around the world as is its skyscrapers and stunning lakefront panorama.

In regards to commerce, it may not have as many Fortune 500 companies as Houston, but so what? It's the biggest transportation hub in the country as it serves as our rail hub, hosts the second-busiest airport in the world along with a very busy secondary airport, and has a functioning port. It's also a major crossroads for our Interstate highway system as 7 primary routes meet in the metro area--positioning it as a major freight hub.

I could also go on and on about Chicago's contributions to the arts. I know Houston has its Arts District, but nothing outside of NYC can touch the Art Institute of Chicago. Also its museums such as the Field Museum and the Museum of Science and Industry are extraordinary.

In the realms of higher learning, it has a large concentration of universities--with some of them being among the most elite institutions in our country and the world, such as U of Chicago and Northwestern University.

Don't get me wrong, I'm sure Houston is a great city and I can see how some may prefer it over Chicago; but it is no where near being on the same level as Chicago...not even close.
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Old 02-11-2009, 07:30 AM
Location: Atlanta and St Simons Island, GA
20,893 posts, read 32,892,157 times
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I don't know if "underrated" is the word for it, but I do think the average person is uninformed about where Houston is as a city. It has changed so much in the last few years that unless you are a frequent visitor of the city, you wouldn't be aware of it. The same is true of Dallas and Atlanta IMO.
Houston is a great town and I would have no problem living there.
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