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Old 02-27-2008, 01:49 PM
 
Location: Near L.A.
4,114 posts, read 9,225,310 times
Reputation: 3346

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I'm 22, single, male, conservative and Christian (but not judgmental or one to shove my religion down a person's throat,) and very friendly and outgoing. I'm a new college graduate and intend to work for a couple of years either as a federal government employee (I'd quality for a G5 or G6 classification) or a retail sales manager (I know, an odd list of choices) before eventually earning my law and MBA degrees.

Just in a brief nutshell: I'm born and raised here in Kentucky. I don't think this is a case of familiarity breeding contempt. I'm ready for something different, some place where I'll actually fit in with the culture and make true friends with common interests. The ONLY people here in Ky. I'm close to are my parents.

As for what I'm looking for in a potential new home:
  • I'd rather be close to large city parks with great recreation opportunities, or state or national forests with hiking opportunities.
  • I don't want to live in cookie-cutter suburbia. Rather, I'd like to live in a neighborhood that is (or, at least close to) many ethnicities and has a variety of local shops, still safe, and still relatively close to suburban shopping should I ever want to utilize that option. (Rent anywhere from $550-700/mo.)
  • I want a city with a good balance of transplants and natives. You see, cities with huge transplant populations (i.e. Las Vegas, Phoenix) are usually so transient that it is so hard to get to know people. But, cities with a large percentage of natives (i.e. Louisville, Indianapolis) are usually very provincial and closed-minded to outsiders.
  • I'd like to live in a place where its easier to meet pretty, friendly, 20-something singles. At church, graduate school, parks, work, whatever.
  • Most importantly, I really enjoy and appreciate true SOUTHERN HOSPITALITY! It can't be beat!
Also, as a condition for Fort Worth, I chose it because it's not Dallas or Plano. If I move to the Metroplex, I'd rather live in the western half than the eastern half.

I've spent the most extensive time in Atlanta. I went there with the expectation that I wouldn't like it. I'd heard mostly bad things about it. But, I got there and was really impressed with the place.

I've spent limited time in Ft. Worth and Houston, but liked what I saw in those places, also. Texas is probably the one place in the southern tier states I like more than Atlanta. I've never been to Charlotte, but my dad has been there on business and speaks very highly of it.

As of now, my choices are, from most preferred and downward:
1. Houston
2. Atlanta
3. Fort Worth
4. Charlotte

I apologize if my post is too long, but I wanted to get out everything I had to say at one time. Thanks for taking the time to read this; most importantly, appreciation and thanks in advance for all answers.

Last edited by EclecticEars; 02-27-2008 at 02:18 PM..
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Old 02-27-2008, 02:44 PM
 
Location: LaSalle Park / St. Louis
570 posts, read 1,813,577 times
Reputation: 254
Not on your list but check out St. Louis. Great urban neighborhoods, plenty to do indoors and outdoors, very navigable and inexpensive.

Or any one of a half dozen older midwestern cities.
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Old 02-27-2008, 03:31 PM
 
Location: Chesterfield, MO
386 posts, read 1,536,409 times
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Houston is a good bet. And there are, I believe, two or three schools in the area offering law degrees. It's an amazingly vibrant, cosmopolitan town at a very affordable price.

Atlanta I felt was a little over-rated. It's filled with New Yorkers and Bostonians. And I left wondering....if you just came to recreate Boston at a lower price....why didn't you just stay in Boston and lower the taxes? *Bam* Problem solved.

Dallas is a great town. But if you're moving to the metroplex...stay in Dallas. Ft. Worth is....well....it's Ft. Worth.

Charlotte is a lot like Atlanta. You'll make plenty of money there....but it's not the sort of place you really get attached to or anything.

And I second the motion to add St. Louis. The weather is miserable and it is pretty ghetto in parts...but find a good area and you'll love it.
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Old 02-27-2008, 03:41 PM
 
11,871 posts, read 32,899,856 times
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I think all those cities are very similar.

My personal choice would be Atlanta. Not only does it have just as much to offer as Houston or Dallas (and a heck of a lot more than Charlotte) it's also in a more attractive setting, to me. I like the rolling hills and forests of North Georgia as opposed to the dry plains of Dallas and the swamps of Houston. But it is cool that Houston is close to beaches.

Plus, Atlanta has the world's busiest airport and has a pretty good public transportation system. That is, if you live in the city and not in the suburbs. And the city of Atlanta has some spectacularly beautiful urban neighborhoods built around parks and with the word "park" in their names: Adams Park, Ansley Park, Berkeley Park, Candler Park, Chastain Park, Grant Park, Grove Park, Inman Park, and others.

And with the world's largest aquarium, the new World of Coca-Cola and Centennial Olympic Park, all adjacent to Phillips Arena, downtown Atlanta is actually a fun place to visit, too.
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Old 02-27-2008, 04:51 PM
 
Location: HOUSTON
43 posts, read 209,915 times
Reputation: 53
Having lived in both Charlotte and Houston and visited Atlanta on several occasions, I'd prefer Houston the most (hence that is why I live here). Its the most international city on your list of choices. Largest in the south and 4th largest in the nation. Metro area is 6th in the nation.

Ft. Worth is the 19th biggest city in the USA and part of the DFW metroplex (the 4th largest metro area in USA). I've been to Dallas just once overnight so I really can't comment on it.

Charlotte is, well, its ok. Very Christian southern city, if you ask me. I didn't care for it too much. 20th biggest city in USA as of 2000. Unsure of metro area size.

Atlanta I liked very much. I've heard, however, that people who move there find it difficult to form friendships and to cultivate relationships. I really have heard this from at least 4 people (certainly not a time/cnn/gallup poll) who have lived there. 35th biggest city in USA as of 2005 census -- 9th largest metro area.
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Old 02-27-2008, 04:53 PM
 
Location: Cleveland Suburbs
2,554 posts, read 5,995,043 times
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All sprawling cities................. I would go with Atlanta. Best entertainment, and it seems more culturally diverse and has a lot of history. I actually like Atlanta. Charlotte and Fort Worth just make me sick.
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Old 02-27-2008, 05:50 PM
JJG
 
Location: Fort Worth
13,247 posts, read 19,171,479 times
Reputation: 7005
Quote:
Originally Posted by WestCoDude View Post
Houston is a good bet. And there are, I believe, two or three schools in the area offering law degrees. It's an amazingly vibrant, cosmopolitan town at a very affordable price.

Atlanta I felt was a little over-rated. It's filled with New Yorkers and Bostonians. And I left wondering....if you just came to recreate Boston at a lower price....why didn't you just stay in Boston and lower the taxes? *Bam* Problem solved.

Dallas is a great town. But if you're moving to the metroplex...stay in Dallas. Ft. Worth is....well....it's Ft. Worth.

Charlotte is a lot like Atlanta. You'll make plenty of money there....but it's not the sort of place you really get attached to or anything.

And I second the motion to add St. Louis. The weather is miserable and it is pretty ghetto in parts...but find a good area and you'll love it.

What's wrong with Fort Worth (which is now the 17th largest)? It's not like Dallas is THE place to live if you're going to the Metroplex.

I'd recommend Charlotte and Houston. Both great places to start out.
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Old 02-27-2008, 06:10 PM
 
11,871 posts, read 32,899,856 times
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Atlanta, DFW and Houston have metro areas that are pretty much around the same size and are growing fast. Atlanta has grown a little faster, but that could change. Each of the three metro areas has more than 5 million people. So as far as job opportunities, it's probably going to be a wash between the three. Same probably goes for cultural opportunities, night life, professional sports, eating out, etc.

So, to me, it would boil down to what kind of climate and what kind of landscape do you like. How far or close to the beaches and mountains do you want to be? Do you prefer hot, muggy weather? Do you prefer flat areas, or do you like hilly areas?

To say that all of Atlanta's 5.2 million people behave exactly the same way or that all of Houston's 5.5 million people behave exactly the same way is, of course, absurd. All three of those metro areas are large enough so that you shouldn't have any problems finding people to hang out with.

Notice I didn't mention Charlotte. Charlotte is less than 1/3 the size of those other places, although it's certainly growing rapidly and is a popular place for relocations.

Anyway, I just wanted to throw that out there. Since Atlanta, DFW and Houston are similar in size, job growth, and demographics, you might want to look at some other factors that would help you make your final decision.

Good luck!
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Old 02-27-2008, 06:12 PM
 
Location: Near L.A.
4,114 posts, read 9,225,310 times
Reputation: 3346
Thanks all for the wonderful answers so far! I'm hoping a lot more will come in, I want to make a well-informed decision...or, at least know where to start so I can be on my way to making a well-informed decision. I don't want to make a mistake.
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Old 02-27-2008, 06:21 PM
 
Location: Near L.A.
4,114 posts, read 9,225,310 times
Reputation: 3346
Quote:
Originally Posted by JMT View Post
Atlanta, DFW and Houston have metro areas that are pretty much around the same size and are growing fast. Atlanta has grown a little faster, but that could change. Each of the three metro areas has more than 5 million people. So as far as job opportunities, it's probably going to be a wash between the three. Same probably goes for cultural opportunities, night life, professional sports, eating out, etc.

Well, they will probably continue to be approximately the same size. D/FW is the largest metro, but slightly. With Atlanta Metro's pending water (almost) catastrophe, it's a wonder people are continuing to move there in droves. (Of course, if I went there, I'd be one small part of a huge drove, so anyway...)

It probably depends on the line of work that will determine which city has the "best" job market. Houston probably has the best overall job market. All three cities have diversified economic bases, but Dallas/Ft. Worth probably is the most diverse.

Cultural opportunities and eating out--symphony, opera, art museums, art festivals, eclectic neighborhoods, multiethnic "enjoyables." Houston wins out there, I think.

Nightlife and professional sports--probably Atlanta.

So, to me, it would boil down to what kind of climate and what kind of landscape do you like. How far or close to the beaches and mountains do you want to be? Do you prefer hot, muggy weather? Do you prefer flat areas, or do you like hilly areas?

I don't like to be in mountains (like, say, in Pittsburgh, Wheeling, or Roanoke.) I feel too "closed in." I could care less about humid or dry. I just don't like cold weather or extremely inconsistent weather, such as what we have in Kentucky. (Just in the past 30 days, we've had tornadoes, staight-line hurricane force winds, thunderstorms, hail, rain, floods, flash floods, snow, sleet, freezing rain, cold rain, and warm rain. I AM NOT MAKING ANY OF THIS UP!!!!) Anyway, beaches are nice, but I don't go but probably every five years. There is a part of me that likes being able to see out into the horizon. All four cities are probably flat enough for that.

Most of Houston is rather flat, but I can always venture up to Kingwood, The Woodlands, and Conroe if I want to begin seeing some hills. Now, Dallas/Fort Worth: FLAT!!! One would probably have to go below Waxahachie to even see hills.

Atlanta is a-okay in the hill regard; not too steep and hilly, but just enough to add positively to the beauty of the area. Charlotte: well, I've never been there, but North Carolina is a predominantly hilly to mountainous state, so I can only assume that Charlotte would be in the beginning of the Piedmont foothills.

To say that all of Atlanta's 5.2 million people behave exactly the same way or that all of Houston's 5.5 million people behave exactly the same way is, of course, absurd. All three of those metro areas are large enough so that you shouldn't have any problems finding people to hang out with.

Notice I didn't mention Charlotte. Charlotte is less than 1/3 the size of those other places, although it's certainly growing rapidly and is a popular place for relocations.

Anyway, I just wanted to throw that out there. Since Atlanta, DFW and Houston are similar in size, job growth, and demographics, you might want to look at some other factors that would help you make your final decision.

Good luck!
Thank you!

Oh, and one more thing: all of these cities (okay, save for Fort Worth, but this case Dallas makes up for it) have beautiful skylines. Some of the nicest and most gleaming in the world. My personal favorites of these four cities are Houston and Atlanta. Have you ever been on I-20 east coming in from Alabama, crossed in to the Chattahoochee Valley and seen that huge, panoramic view of the downtown Atlanta skyline? I LOVE that sight! Of course, I've seen Houston's skyline from 25 miles out on the Sam Houston Tollway, and that was pretty awesome, also. (I know cities are not all about their skylines, but it's a small thing of mine.)

Last edited by EclecticEars; 02-27-2008 at 06:42 PM..
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