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Old 03-19-2019, 09:11 AM
 
Location: San Diego, CA
1,228 posts, read 505,216 times
Reputation: 1770

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Quote:
Originally Posted by TomC23 View Post
Upstate NY is stuffed with small towns. (Which in itself may be a problem as each town has itís own government and taxes). But if you are looking for small town living, itís available and thriving in Upstate NY. I would say that you have the benefits of small town living, and if itís important to you, the small towns are never more than 30-40 minutes from a large city center. If you can put up with the higher than normal tax burden, and the higher than normal bureaucracy of NYS, Bedford Falls from ďItís a Wonderful LifeĒ is alive in well in Upstate NY.
Thereís a huge difference between being a small town within a reasonable reach of major job centers, and those several hours removed. Thereís no shortage of small towns in the foothills and mountains here in Southern California that thrive, but they have year round tourism, weekend residents, and those willing to commute over an hour to work. You are right though about those upstate NY towns. My wife has family throughout the state and several of them live in and around some of the coolest little towns around. I also know many of their residents are commuting to Albany and NYC for work though.
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Old 03-19-2019, 09:28 AM
 
Location: Tennessee
23,556 posts, read 17,535,380 times
Reputation: 27596
One thing that I think people are missing is that many small towns that developed a result of industry were founded or developed specifically around the industry in question.

I'm from Kingsport, TN. The city, as currently chartered, was planned by John Nolen from Massachusetts, with sections of the original city plan being dedicated for specific purposes.

While the town has grown through annexation and organic growth, vestiges of the old "model city" remain. Kingsport really didn't develop organically like many other cities in the area. The heavy industry in town is located along rivers that allow shipping going farther down into Tennessee, cooling for equipment, waste product discharge, etc.

The short answer is no - I don't think many small towns are going to make a come back. Many industrial jobs required lots of space or availability of natural resources. Today's best jobs are consolidating into what seems like ever-fewer metros and are mostly office/knowledge driven.
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Old 03-19-2019, 09:53 AM
 
Location: Shelby County ,Tn
776 posts, read 708,163 times
Reputation: 623
Memphis
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Old 03-19-2019, 09:53 AM
 
56,528 posts, read 80,824,285 times
Reputation: 12482
Quote:
Originally Posted by ckhthankgod View Post
^This and what some people may not know about some of the smaller towns(villages) is that some have low utility costs due to getting their power through the New York Power Authority. This is a map of places in the state that are a part of NYPA: https://goo.gl/images/jfnKGt

Some places like Seneca Falls(which is what Bedford Falls is based off of; ITT/Gould Pumps is a big employee), Ticonderoga(International Paper is there) and a few others dissolved their villages, but you still have the small town walkability in those location. Dissolution helps to lower taxes by getting rid of a layer of government/services to pay for.

street view of the bolded community: https://www.google.com/maps/@42.9105...6!9m2!1b1!2i37
Just to add to this, some smaller towns with some industry in NY, among others, are: Village of East Aurora, NY
https://www.google.com/maps/@42.7678...6!9m2!1b1!2i37
https://www.fisher-price.com/en_US/index.html

https://www.villageofowego.com/
https://www.google.com/maps/@42.1025...7i13312!8i6656
https://www.lockheedmartin.com/en-us...est-owego.html

Greene, New York: City and Village Government
https://www.google.com/maps/@42.3295...7i13312!8i6656
https://www.raymondcorp.com/
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Old 03-19-2019, 10:21 AM
 
Location: Atlanta metro (Cobb County)
1,558 posts, read 743,963 times
Reputation: 1668
In general, small town America is not a strong environment for career opportunities and the widest selection of modern amenities, but there are exceptions. I think there is a continuum where communities tend to get more desirable with increased size, up to a certain point. Isolated towns of a few hundred have far bleaker prospects than micropolitan places in the 50K range, for instance.

Demographic trends in the US are leading towards an increasingly larger share of senior citizens, and many people in these oldest age groups prefer to move away from the congested, expensive environments of large metropolitan areas. Job markets are less of a concern to the senior population, but adequate health care options and other features they utilize on a regular basis are important, in addition to the cost of living. Some of the mature population (which I'm sure includes a few forum members who may read this thread at some point) can attest that their criteria for the best place to live evolves as they pass through different life stages. Small towns with a good package of amenities for a low cost should definitely have a role in 21st century America, even if they aren't a good match for everyone.
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Old 03-19-2019, 10:25 AM
 
Location: New Mexico
6,550 posts, read 3,653,233 times
Reputation: 12301
It seems that when a town area reaches 50,000 people it suddenly appears on the corporate map for big box stores and a certain level of attention and investment. For some, that is considered progress and for others, it is an invasion that threatens local mom & pop businesses. Both perceptions are probably true and the locals have to decide what they want to preserve while moving ahead. Getting to that 50k population benchmark takes decades or centuries. More often than not the town residents are loosely related or are members of a handful of families. There are alliances and holes in the local fabric that are not readily apparent. There might be just a couple of churches and one high school and things are relatively stable. I was a (junior-level) city planner in a town that was going through this transition and it was a bit chaotic for some people. Some folks see dollar signs and greed replaces civic consciousness. There is a heightened sense of preservation with some folks. The growing pains are difficult to overcome.
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Old 03-19-2019, 11:34 PM
 
107 posts, read 40,561 times
Reputation: 121
Small town america is alive and well in the Mountain West. In the Mid-west and Northeast, not so much.
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Old 03-20-2019, 05:26 AM
 
Location: Brew City
4,214 posts, read 2,501,359 times
Reputation: 5648
Quote:
Originally Posted by Roanoke2 View Post
Small town america is alive and well in the Mountain West. In the Mid-west and Northeast, not so much.
That's a bit of an overstatement.

Some small towns are alive and well in the Mountain West. Mostly because there are a lot fewer and much farther between large cities. Small to midsize cities offer more amenities because the next town is just so damn far away.

The west is also the epitome of forgotten towns. Riddle me this, which region has the most ghost towns?
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Old 03-20-2019, 09:03 AM
 
107 posts, read 40,561 times
Reputation: 121
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vegabern View Post
That's a bit of an overstatement.

Some small towns are alive and well in the Mountain West. Mostly because there are a lot fewer and much farther between large cities. Small to midsize cities offer more amenities because the next town is just so damn far away.

The west is also the epitome of forgotten towns. Riddle me this, which region has the most ghost towns?
Most of the ghost towns in the west are former Cowboys towns from the old west. Many small towns are thriving out there. Fredonia AZ, Telluride CO, Elko NV, and Moscow ID just to name a few.
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Old 03-20-2019, 11:40 AM
 
Location: New Mexico
6,550 posts, read 3,653,233 times
Reputation: 12301
I remember pulling into Colby Kansas on I-70 a few years ago and registering at a motel where we asked what there was to do for fun in town. The answer from the clerk was to drive forty miles back to the town we just passed on the highway or crash a wedding reception that was scheduled for that evening. He said that we would be welcome at the reception and we probably would have been but we decided to miss it and the other option wasn't any better. Instead, we went to a local restaurant, ate some complimentary bull fries, and watched a big screen TV broadcast of a discussion of osteoporosis along with the other restaurant patrons. Who says small towns can't be fun?
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