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View Poll Results: Which do you prefer?
Austin 64 48.85%
Sacramento 67 51.15%
Voters: 131. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 05-31-2010, 04:08 AM
 
Location: Austin, TX/Chicago, IL/Houston, TX/Washington, DC
10,171 posts, read 12,195,623 times
Reputation: 4047

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There's always a large hype between California and Texas and similarities between both and such on here City Data. So why not take it up a notch and compare the political cities for both states.

Sacramento and Austin are both state capitals, and are both going through their own booms.

So the criteria would be;

- Life style
- Economy overall
- Education
- Metropolitan Area population
- City Area population
- Professional Sports
- College Sports
- City Scape (downtown, skyline, notable buildings)
- Public Transportation
- Major Interstates and other roads
- Airport
- Housing
- Food (Ethnic food, unique food of it's own, etc..)
- Proximity to other locations
- Economy growth and diversity (Post Recession climate)
- Art galleries
- Music scene
- Museums
- Parks
- Shopping
- Climate (which you prefer, and why?)
- Notable companies headquartered here
- Anything else you can possibly think up and want to add

You don't have to answer all the criteria, just the ones you actually know. Again keep it civil and make sure to give reasoning as to why you picked a certain location, don't just write the city name and leave it unexplained.

Austin:


Sacramento:


Here's another picture of Sacramento, I thought the picture above didn't do it justice.
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedi..._(cropped).jpg
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Old 05-31-2010, 04:48 AM
 
Location: Zurich, Switzerland/ Piedmont, CA
31,587 posts, read 53,140,492 times
Reputation: 14509
- Life style---I prefer Sacramento in this regard.

- Economy overall---Austin has been making the news for its economy.

- Education---U. Texas vs UC Davis...Davis is stellar, but Id say Austin wins.

- Metropolitan Area population--Sacramento is larger.

- City Area population---Austin is larger.

- Professional Sports---Sacramento has an NBA team.

- College Sports---Longhorns.

- City Scape (downtown, skyline, notable buildings)---Austin

- Public Transportation---Sacramento has a pretty nice LRT.

- Major Interstates and other roads--Sacramento is the Western Starting/End Point of US50(Goes all the way to Ocean City, MD) and I-80 and I-5(two major interstates) intersect in Sacramento.

- Airport---I dunno about Austin, but from Sacramento you can fly to Mexico, Hawaii and pretty much everywhere in the West and many destinations in other parts of the country.

- Housing---tied.

- Food (Ethnic food, unique food of it's own, etc..)---Sacramento has excellent restaurants...Im sure Austin does too.

- Proximity to other locations--Sacramento is 50 miles from the Wine Country, 70 miles from the Pacific Ocean, 90 miles from Downtown San Francisco, 100 miles from Lake Tahoe and Reno. Yosemite Natl Park and the Sierra Nevada is also nearby.

- Economy growth and diversity (Post Recession climate)--Sacramento's economy is very weak right now--but slowly coming around. So Id say Austin.

- Art galleries--tied.

- Music scene---Austin's music scene is famous.

- Museums---I don't know.

- Parks---tied.

- Shopping---Sacramento.

- Climate (which you prefer, and why?)--To be honest-neither. Im a huge weather snob and aside from the California coast, Im not a fan of any places climate.

- Notable companies headquartered here-Austin has Dell.
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Old 05-31-2010, 04:55 AM
 
Location: Tower of Heaven
4,023 posts, read 6,268,082 times
Reputation: 1438
Austin globally

- Life style Austin because music festivals and low taxes
- Economy overall Austin without hesitations, booming city
- Education I don't know
- Metropolitan Area population Austin
- City Area population Austin
- Professional Sports IDK
- College Sports IDK
- City Scape (downtown, skyline, notable buildings) Austin
- Public Transportation Sacramento
- Major Interstates and other roads IDK
- Airport IDK
- Housing Austin
- Food (Ethnic food, unique food of it's own, etc..) Sacramento
- Proximity to other locations Sacramento
- Economy growth and diversity (Post Recession climate) AUSTIN
- Art galleries IDK
- Music scene Austin
- Museums Austin
- Parks Sacramento
- Shopping IDK
- Climate (which you prefer, and why?) Austin
- Notable companies headquartered here Austin
- Anything else you can possibly think up and want to add
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Old 05-31-2010, 05:00 AM
 
1,263 posts, read 3,457,060 times
Reputation: 610
I think Austin wins for shopping. There is nothing in Sacramento which can compare with the Domain. The Roseville shopping mall of Sacramento is just so so. Austin is also the headquarter of National Instruments and Freescale (split from Motorola). Others I agree.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 18Montclair View Post
- Life style---I prefer Sacramento in this regard.

- Economy overall---Austin has been making the news for its economy.

- Education---U. Texas vs UC Davis...Davis is stellar, but Id say Austin wins.

- Metropolitan Area population--Sacramento is larger.

- City Area population---Austin is larger.

- Professional Sports---Sacramento has an NBA team.

- College Sports---Longhorns.

- City Scape (downtown, skyline, notable buildings)---Austin

- Public Transportation---Sacramento has a pretty nice LRT.

- Major Interstates and other roads--Sacramento is the Western Starting/End Point of US50(Goes all the way to Ocean City, MD) and I-80 and I-5(two major interstates) intersect in Sacramento.

- Airport---I dunno about Austin, but from Sacramento you can fly to Mexico, Hawaii and pretty much everywhere in the West and many destinations in other parts of the country.

- Housing---tied.

- Food (Ethnic food, unique food of it's own, etc..)---Sacramento has excellent restaurants...Im sure Austin does too.

- Proximity to other locations--Sacramento is 50 miles from the Wine Country, 70 miles from the Pacific Ocean, 90 miles from Downtown San Francisco, 100 miles from Lake Tahoe and Reno. Yosemite Natl Park and the Sierra Nevada is also nearby.

- Economy growth and diversity (Post Recession climate)--Sacramento's economy is very weak right now--but slowly coming around. So Id say Austin.

- Art galleries--tied.

- Music scene---Austin's music scene is famous.

- Museums---I don't know.

- Parks---tied.

- Shopping---Sacramento.

- Climate (which you prefer, and why?)--To be honest-neither. Im a huge weather snob and aside from the California coast, Im not a fan of any places climate.

- Notable companies headquartered here-Austin has Dell.
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Old 05-31-2010, 08:43 AM
 
Location: Houston
2,026 posts, read 3,582,944 times
Reputation: 460
Quote:
Originally Posted by 18Montclair View Post
- Food (Ethnic food, unique food of it's own, etc..)---Sacramento has excellent restaurants...Im sure Austin does too.
Austin has some very good Tex-Mex and BBQ restaurants.

Quote:
- Proximity to other locations--Sacramento is 50 miles from the Wine Country, 70 miles from the Pacific Ocean, 90 miles from Downtown San Francisco, 100 miles from Lake Tahoe and Reno. Yosemite Natl Park and the Sierra Nevada is also nearby.
This is basically the Texas Triangle and the Hill Country vs Northern California and Western Nevada. San Antonio is only about an hour away (depending on where in Austin you live), it's on the eastern most edge of the Hill Country, and about a three and half hour drive to Houston, Dallas, and Fort Worth.

Quote:
- Music scene---Austin's music scene is famous.
SXSW, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Willie Nelson, Austin City Limits, Spoon, etc. Yeah, I think Austin has this one.

Quote:
- Museums---I don't know.
Austin has a lot of historical museums, art museums, and a Mexican American history museum downtown. I don't know about Sacramento, but I would assume it would be about the same as Austin. From what I've seen, Austin does have some decent art museums (nothing famous though) and they do get quite a bit of art from Houston's art scene.

Quote:
- Notable companies headquartered here-Austin has Dell.
Whole Foods as well. Not quite as famous, but C3 who books musicians for Lollapalooza, ACL Fest, and many other festivals and music venues across the country is also located in Austin.
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Old 05-31-2010, 11:20 AM
 
Location: Zurich, Switzerland/ Piedmont, CA
31,587 posts, read 53,140,492 times
Reputation: 14509
Quote:
Originally Posted by fashionguy View Post
I think Austin wins for shopping. There is nothing in Sacramento which can compare with the Domain.
The Domain has a few high end boutiques but otherwise the same stores can be found in Sacramento-and Roseville Galleria(Louis Vuitton, Tiffany & Co.) is much larger than the Domain as far as shopping. Also, Sacramento has Arden Fair Mall(another very large mall) which has Armani Exchange, Coach, Nordstrom etc.

So I think the Domain wins as far as having more high end boutiques, it doesnt have that many more, and Sac still has two really huge and profitable malls strategically located at both ends of the Metro Area.

Also, Sacramento has a rather large mall in the heart of its CBD called Westfield Downtown Plaza and it has the largest Macy's in the entire Central Valley.

Anyway, Im babbling.
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Old 05-31-2010, 11:23 AM
 
Location: Zurich, Switzerland/ Piedmont, CA
31,587 posts, read 53,140,492 times
Reputation: 14509
Quote:
Originally Posted by wpmeads View Post

This is basically the Texas Triangle and the Hill Country vs Northern California and Western Nevada. San Antonio is only about an hour away (depending on where in Austin you live), it's on the eastern most edge of the Hill Country, and about a three and half hour drive to Houston, Dallas, and Fort Worth.
I see what ur saying but I Sacramento seems much closer to the destinations of NorCal than Austin does to the other places in the TX Triangle.

Hill Country is beautiful btw.
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Old 05-31-2010, 12:34 PM
 
Location: Northridge, Los Angeles, CA
2,685 posts, read 6,152,971 times
Reputation: 2355
Being an admitted California homer, I would be happy in either place. With that being said, I do think that Sacramento is one of the most underrated cities in the country simply because its located in a state where you have 2 world cities (LA and SF) + 1 major vacation city (SD). Compared to that, Sacramento on the surface seems like "Anyplace, America" that probably should be out in the Midwest instead of California.

I've posted my thoughts about Sacramento a few times in threads around City Data.

http://www.city-data.com/forum/13813648-post78.html


In terms of being underrated out of the larger metros in the state, I vote for Sacramento. Yeah, there may not be that many cultural attractions and its mostly surrounded on its north and south sides by farmland, but its really trying to become a decent urban center (source: . Sacramento already has light rail, which serves nearly 50,000 daily, has more decent weather than most of the country (yeah, hot summers but really good winters), nice riverfront that you can go boating or water skiing in (which is very fun), has a lively Uptown and very historic Old Downtown reminiscent of the Old West, very pretty suburbs like El Dorado Hills, and is in close proximity to most of the natural and manmade attractions of Northern California without having to deal with the crowded nature of the Bay Area. In addition, the metropolitan area is politically moderate, so you can actually see and hear both sides of a political debate without having to always plays 'devil's advocate'.

Like the rest of California, the Sacramento area and city is also very diverse, but residents of the city don't seem to put it in your face as much as people in SF or LA would.
Sacramento city, California - ACS Demographic and Housing Estimates: 2006-2008
Sacramento, CA
38.4% White
24.6% Hispanic
18.5% Asian and Pacific Islander
13.7% Black

Sacramento--Arden-Arcade--Yuba City, CA-NV CSA - ACS Demographic and Housing Estimates: 2006-2008
Sacramento, CA CSA
60.4% White
18.4% Hispanic
11.1% Asian and Pacific Islander
6.2% Black

I can forsee in 10-20 years having many of the same problems as the larger metros of the state, but I can also see it improving a lot in the coming years.

Sacramento has the unfortunate position of both competing with Los Angeles AND San Francisco AND San Diego for attention on the national stage. I think when people think of California, they rarely think of anything outside of LA and SF, so anything in comparison would fall short (including San Diego). However, I do think that Sacramento has a charm that is hard to describe.

Here's a map of Sacramento's ever-expanding light rail:
http://www.myfolsom.com/images/sacrtmap.gif


Here's what the transit numbers look like between all the cities in question (source: List of United States light rail systems by ridership - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia) (http://www.apta.com/resources/statis...rship_APTA.pdf)

Sacramento: 56,800/weekday (Light Rail); 50,800 (Bus) = 107,600/weekday
Austin: 114,200 (Bus); 3,600 (other) = 117,800/weekday

Here's what the density figures look like:
Sacramento: 4,813 ppsmAustin: 2,557 ppsm


In terms of the densest zip codes (3 most dense zip codes):
Sacramento Densest Zip Codes (95842: http://www.city-data.com/zipmaps/Sac...lifornia.htmll) 8,376 ppsm
(
95820) 7,996 ppsm
(95824) 7,938 ppsm

Austin Densest Zip Codes (78705; http://www.city-data.com/zipmaps/Austin-Texas.html) 12,486 ppsm
(78751) 6,603 ppsm
(78752) 6,193


However, I think for the purposes for this thread, I think people are beating down on Sacramento a bit too hard. Even though Sacramento doesn't have a large university within its borders aside from Sacramento State, UC Davis is 10 minutes away in Davis. Within a few years, that will be connected to the rest of Sacramento via light rail.

I think its a totally underrated city just because of its location in California. If it were in another state, I do think it would be held to a bit higher esteem.

I don't know if Austin has many of the same handicaps as Sacramento does, despite it being smaller than DFW, Houston, and San Antonio. Maybe someone from Texas can enlighten me? I do hear a lot about Austin's liberalism, and I was interested in going to UT: Austin for a time.

If you ask most California residents what they think about Sacramento, they'll either give you a blank stare, talk about how boring it is, or about how hot it is during the summer (even though most parts of the LA metro not facing the coast are hotter than Sacramento).
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Old 05-31-2010, 12:41 PM
 
Location: Zurich, Switzerland/ Piedmont, CA
31,587 posts, read 53,140,492 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lifeshadower View Post

If you ask most California residents what they think about Sacramento, they'll either give you a blank stare, talk about how boring it is, or about how hot it is during the summer (even though most parts of the LA metro not facing the coast are hotter than Sacramento).
Yes true.

Coastalites are quite harsh when it comes to Sacramento-before I moved there I was the same way to be honest. After living there for 3 years, I have a very favorable impression of it.

The only real gripe I have is the hellacious summers...SO HOT.

At least its not humid tho.

Anyway, excellent post with lots of great info.
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Old 05-31-2010, 01:15 PM
 
Location: Austin, TX/Chicago, IL/Houston, TX/Washington, DC
10,171 posts, read 12,195,623 times
Reputation: 4047
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lifeshadower View Post
Being an admitted California homer, I would be happy in either place. With that being said, I do think that Sacramento is one of the most underrated cities in the country simply because its located in a state where you have 2 world cities (LA and SF) + 1 major vacation city (SD). Compared to that, Sacramento on the surface seems like "Anyplace, America" that probably should be out in the Midwest instead of California.

I've posted my thoughts about Sacramento a few times in threads around City Data.

http://www.city-data.com/forum/13813648-post78.html


In terms of being underrated out of the larger metros in the state, I vote for Sacramento. Yeah, there may not be that many cultural attractions and its mostly surrounded on its north and south sides by farmland, but its really trying to become a decent urban center (source: . Sacramento already has light rail, which serves nearly 50,000 daily, has more decent weather than most of the country (yeah, hot summers but really good winters), nice riverfront that you can go boating or water skiing in (which is very fun), has a lively Uptown and very historic Old Downtown reminiscent of the Old West, very pretty suburbs like El Dorado Hills, and is in close proximity to most of the natural and manmade attractions of Northern California without having to deal with the crowded nature of the Bay Area. In addition, the metropolitan area is politically moderate, so you can actually see and hear both sides of a political debate without having to always plays 'devil's advocate'.

Like the rest of California, the Sacramento area and city is also very diverse, but residents of the city don't seem to put it in your face as much as people in SF or LA would.
Sacramento city, California - ACS Demographic and Housing Estimates: 2006-2008
Sacramento, CA
38.4% White
24.6% Hispanic
18.5% Asian and Pacific Islander
13.7% Black

Sacramento--Arden-Arcade--Yuba City, CA-NV CSA - ACS Demographic and Housing Estimates: 2006-2008
Sacramento, CA CSA
60.4% White
18.4% Hispanic
11.1% Asian and Pacific Islander
6.2% Black

I can forsee in 10-20 years having many of the same problems as the larger metros of the state, but I can also see it improving a lot in the coming years.

Sacramento has the unfortunate position of both competing with Los Angeles AND San Francisco AND San Diego for attention on the national stage. I think when people think of California, they rarely think of anything outside of LA and SF, so anything in comparison would fall short (including San Diego). However, I do think that Sacramento has a charm that is hard to describe.

Here's a map of Sacramento's ever-expanding light rail:
http://www.myfolsom.com/images/sacrtmap.gif


Here's what the transit numbers look like between all the cities in question (source: List of United States light rail systems by ridership - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia) (http://www.apta.com/resources/statis...rship_APTA.pdf)

Sacramento: 56,800/weekday (Light Rail); 50,800 (Bus) = 107,600/weekday
Austin: 114,200 (Bus); 3,600 (other) = 117,800/weekday

Here's what the density figures look like:
Sacramento: 4,813 ppsmAustin: 2,557 ppsm


In terms of the densest zip codes (3 most dense zip codes):
Sacramento Densest Zip Codes (95842: http://www.city-data.com/zipmaps/Sac...lifornia.htmll) 8,376 ppsm
(
95820) 7,996 ppsm
(95824) 7,938 ppsm

Austin Densest Zip Codes (78705; http://www.city-data.com/zipmaps/Austin-Texas.html) 12,486 ppsm
(78751) 6,603 ppsm
(78752) 6,193


However, I think for the purposes for this thread, I think people are beating down on Sacramento a bit too hard. Even though Sacramento doesn't have a large university within its borders aside from Sacramento State, UC Davis is 10 minutes away in Davis. Within a few years, that will be connected to the rest of Sacramento via light rail.

I think its a totally underrated city just because of its location in California. If it were in another state, I do think it would be held to a bit higher esteem.

I don't know if Austin has many of the same handicaps as Sacramento does, despite it being smaller than DFW, Houston, and San Antonio. Maybe someone from Texas can enlighten me? I do hear a lot about Austin's liberalism, and I was interested in going to UT: Austin for a time.

If you ask most California residents what they think about Sacramento, they'll either give you a blank stare, talk about how boring it is, or about how hot it is during the summer (even though most parts of the LA metro not facing the coast are hotter than Sacramento).
I feel you on that, I go to school in Austin, so I kind of default my pick there haha, but both cities literally are identical.

I think both cities are very comparable, they go toe to toe, IMHO.

Austin is the media hog for Texas, so it would technically be the opposite of Sacramento's situation. Austin gets more media coverage than San Antonio, a little bit less than Dallas and about the same as Houston. Our most underrated city would probably be either El Paso, Corpus Christi, or Fort Worth. Two of those being larger cities.

UT is a nice school, I really like school here, and I can't say that it's better than my experience in Ann Arbor, but it's a nice location, so much to do. I enjoy going to school at UT.

I'm excited for school next year, they finally opened up the commuter rail system in Austin on March 22, 2010. It's great, 32 miles. It's already better than Houston's. Keep in mind, the ridership is low right now, it's summer, and the commuter rail just opened up in the end of March. It's only about 1,000 people per day so far.

http://impactnews.com/images/stories/CTA/2009/12/11-map.jpg (broken link)


Quote:
Originally Posted by 18Montclair View Post
Yes true.

Coastalites are quite harsh when it comes to Sacramento-before I moved there I was the same way to be honest. After living there for 3 years, I have a very favorable impression of it.

The only real gripe I have is the hellacious summers...SO HOT.

At least its not humid tho.

Anyway, excellent post with lots of great info.
Agreed, he's always got great info to share.

It does get pretty hot in Austin, but it's not nearly as bad as Houston or even San Antonio. Which is a plus side if you want to live in Texas.
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