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View Poll Results: Small town or big city?
Small town 32 42.67%
Big city 43 57.33%
Voters: 75. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 10-30-2018, 08:51 AM
 
Location: Wonderland
44,946 posts, read 36,237,009 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ColdAilment View Post
I feel exactly the same way. I live about 90 miles from Chicago. My city is about 330k metro. There are definitely perks to living in a smaller city, vs a far flung suburb of a major city. I like being just close enough that I can drive to Chicago if I want. However, my small city offers more in a tightly packed area than a lot of suburbs of a major city do, and at a lower cost, and with less congestion.
I like a city that size - it's my favorite size of small city in fact. My daughter lives in Dayton, OH and I really like the size of her small city. We recently visited Chattanooga,TN and it's another small city of about the same size and I liked it too. I spent about ten years living in Columbus, GA and that's another small city of around 300,000 people. Like Tyler, TX and Dallas, it's not that far from Atlanta, and neither is Chattanooga (about two hours from both Atlanta and Nashville).

I like the proximity of anemities without the expense and overall hassle of having to live right in the middle of all the congestion and traffic and fast pace of life in general. I like being able to have a shorter commute, and one that's also less stressful. I like a lower cost of living. I like having the convenience of a county seat, government offices, daily shopping and good restaurants and quality medical care - but I also like that if someone in our family needed specialty care, like a burn center, Dallas is close by - but not too close.
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Old 10-30-2018, 09:04 AM
 
3,228 posts, read 1,560,833 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KathrynAragon View Post
I still don't get what you're saying - sorry.

No, I don't live in a "giant suburb." The small city I live in (Tyler, TX) is an MSA with a population of about 250,000 an hour and a half outside of Dallas. We are our own medical and shopping hub of NE Texas. It takes an hour and a half of interstate driving to get to the eastern edge of the Dallas area. It takes longer to get to Fort Worth obviously.

Look up Tyler, Texas. It is definitely a "small city" and it's own MSA.

Here, I'll do your work for you:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tyler,_Texas



We actually live in a "bedroom community" on the southwest side of Tyler but only about 8 miles outside of Tyler - and about 92 miles east of Dallas. So no, we're not a GIANT SUBURB in any way, shape or form, whatever that means.

The OP said "small city" in the title, and "small town" in the poll. And there is a difference. For starters, small towns are not generally their own MSA but a small city such as Tyler sometimes is.
Like i said as my opinion. I do not see a city of 100 or 200,000 as a typical vision of small city/town like-style. Being in the East where you go from one small city to townships to villages to next small city. Has clearly a small city to me these examples. Once I get to a city the size of yours ..... it is a mid-sized city and not reminiscent of typical small city/town life.

I also think we all know what suburban living and lifestyle is more like. There can certainly be older small cities with still a nice downtown area walkable etc. But point it grew by proximity or a major city or industry..... that creates a much bigger kind of city.

Do people in a true small city of 10,000 and less in Texas ..... see Tyler, TX as a small city too? Guess it comes down to perspectives if one lived or lives in a true small city and town.

But no use me arguing opinion. I'f 250,000 is a small city/town and life-style to most posting here? Who am I to think otherwise. No offense meant.

I don't think of Naperville IL with a nice older core to it. Still a small city. It grew from a small city into a giant suburb too. Still can have small town/city perks for sure.
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Old 10-30-2018, 09:41 AM
 
Location: Wonderland
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DavePa View Post
Like i said as my opinion. I do not see a city of 100 or 200,000 as a typical vision of small city/town like-style. Being in the East where you go from one small city to townships to villages to next small city. Has clearly a small city to me these examples. Once I get to a city the size of yours ..... it is a mid-sized city and not reminiscent of typical small city/town life.

I also think we all know what suburban living and lifestyle is more like. There can certainly be older small cities with still a nice downtown area walkable etc. But point it grew by proximity or a major city or industry..... that creates a much bigger kind of city.

Do people in a true small city of 10,000 and less in Texas ..... see Tyler, TX as a small city too? Guess it comes down to perspectives if one lived or lives in a true small city and town.

But no use me arguing opinion. I'f 250,000 is a small city/town and life-style to most posting here? Who am I to think otherwise. No offense meant.

I don't think of Naperville IL with a nice older core to it. Still a small city. It grew from a small city into a giant suburb too. Still can have small town/city perks for sure.
OK. I don't think of a town/small city of 100K to feel much like a "small town." To me, a "small town - and there are plenty of them throughout the US - is well under 100K in population. So no, Tyler TX doesn't feel like "small town living" to me, but Kilgore TX (population around 12K) does if that makes sense - or Henderson, TX for that matter (population around 30k). These towns rely on the amenities of larger towns and cities nearby - generally Tyler - which is less than an hour away though Dallas is more than two hours away from both those small towns.

To me, the terms "small city" and "small town" are very different. But the US Census Bureau defines any settlement that's incorporated and has more than 2500 residents as a "city." So apparently this is a matter of opinion. https://www.census.gov/population/censusdata/urdef.txt


To me, if you have to travel to another town or city for amenities beyond the most basic, you don't live in a city. For instance, the "city" I really live in (which most people around here would call a "bedroom community" of Tyler), is only about 3000 people, and while it has basic amenities, they are very limited. For instance, there is not a single clothing store in this very small town, though there are tons 8 miles down the road in Tyler. There's a small grocery store, and two small pharmacies, but there's no specialty grocery store, or anything offering much in the way or organic foods, unique cheeses, that sort of thing. There are no Asian markets though Tyler has several, and then Dallas has TONS and some of them are really huge.

There's one tiny furniture store - I can't imagine how they even stay in business. But Tyler has many large furniture stores.

And yet, we recently bought some Amish dining room furniture from Dallas, TX because while there was a wide selection of dining room furniture in Tyler, there was not a smidgen of Amish dining room furniture and that's what we wanted. So to me those are sort of indications of small town, small city, and big city - though of course there might be some random Amish furniture in a small town, or a large city somewhere without any Amish furniture, but you get my drift. A breadth and depth of amenities.

We can go see Lyle Lovett in Tyler, but George Strait doesn't stop here, if that makes sense. And neither of them will ever play in my "bedroom community!"
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Old 10-30-2018, 11:37 AM
 
3,228 posts, read 1,560,833 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KathrynAragon View Post
OK. I don't think of a town/small city of 100K to feel much like a "small town." To me, a "small town - and there are plenty of them throughout the US - is well under 100K in population. So no, Tyler TX doesn't feel like "small town living" to me, but Kilgore TX (population around 12K) does if that makes sense - or Henderson, TX for that matter (population around 30k). These towns rely on the amenities of larger towns and cities nearby - generally Tyler - which is less than an hour away though Dallas is more than two hours away from both those small towns. You might hear mostly classic rock to country music on the internet juke-box. To others newer and older.

To me, the terms "small city" and "small town" are very different. But the US Census Bureau defines any settlement that's incorporated and has more than 2500 residents as a "city." So apparently this is a matter of opinion. https://www.census.gov/population/censusdata/urdef.txt

To me, if you have to travel to another town or city for amenities beyond the most basic, you don't live in a city. For instance, the "city" I really live in (which most people around here would call a "bedroom community" of Tyler), is only about 3000 people, and while it has basic amenities, they are very limited. For instance, there is not a single clothing store in this very small town, though there are tons 8 miles down the road in Tyler. There's a small grocery store, and two small pharmacies, but there's no specialty grocery store, or anything offering much in the way or organic foods, unique cheeses, that sort of thing. There are no Asian markets though Tyler has several, and then Dallas has TONS and some of them are really huge.

There's one tiny furniture store - I can't imagine how they even stay in business. But Tyler has many large furniture stores.

And yet, we recently bought some Amish dining room furniture from Dallas, TX because while there was a wide selection of dining room furniture in Tyler, there was not a smidgen of Amish dining room furniture and that's what we wanted. So to me those are sort of indications of small town, small city, and big city - though of course there might be some random Amish furniture in a small town, or a large city somewhere without any Amish furniture, but you get my drift. A breadth and depth of amenities.

We can go see Lyle Lovett in Tyler, but George Strait doesn't stop here, if that makes sense. And neither of them will ever play in my "bedroom community!"
OK I shouldn't but it's just opinions.

A small city long enough established to have a traditional downtown is generally what one thinks of in a basic to a small city/town .... but not only in todays versions.

My hometown. I can walk to the downtown. Just nothing like it when i was young with men's and women's individual clothing stores, theaters, 5 and 10-cent stores (called then) like Woolworth's long gone, the Penny's/Sears/Montgomery Wards type department stores gone and much more. Today much less and theaters gone two burnt sadly. But Drug stores, Eateries, bars, craft beer place, wine bar, dollar stores and other shops, Dentist, Optometrist, Podiatrist, Insurance, Lawyers, Banks, Furniture store etc..... keep it a tradition downtown. All types of Church denominations and different ethnicities founding them with a large Catholic influence.

But I can walk the entire city and surrounding township till it becomes suburban and rural. I have clubs and bars. Old standards of past eras survive like Clubs, lodges as bars/restaurants like
- the old Legion, Moose Knights of Columbus and others.
- the ALL VOLUNTEER 5 Firehouses w/bars and one a full restaurant in the daytime.
They pay no taxes and are clubs open to all who join. Profits support fire protection to the city. Tap beer in the firehouse bar is $1.25 a mug (they are not dives). I like one if I take a walk on a day-off in the daytime. Mostly retired folk then and very chatty locals. One in the evening I chose with older to younger mix that can change with the time of night. They serve till 2 am and no entry after, but can remain open for those in as a club till 3-am and after till the Bartenders clean-up ended. You just order extra drinks at last call if you choose.

Not a wealthy area by far and more blue-collar. More of what I think of as small city/town life. Even for those that drive into the city from nearby who grew up there, but built newer homes outside the city. The Walmart is outside of the city and additional shopping plazas. The nearest mall (what's left of its stores)and more Chain restaurants like Texas Roadhouse, Applebees, etc. and other Shopping is 12-miles away. My work is in a Industrial Park literally on top of a mountain off a interstate. 15-miles I commute.... a two-lane only road all the way. From me .... my area is just one small village to next small city after another with areas farms in-between and most highways lined with more suburban living between them.

I'm 3-hours to NYC or Philly. But rarely go. Concerts of course I need the larger regions and generally more wealthy. Mostly to a Concert Center in the Hershey (chocolate town) area or more in the rural area of State College PA (with Penn State U main campus) Others too but all these still 50-miles or so for any.

Of course not like the suburban reaches of NYC or Philly or even Mid-sized cities. But more typical of small city/town life to me. Some more depressed small cities in the Coal region and some more affluent and College towns especially. Most more blue-collar with big city folk (poor mostly) moving in for cheaper living and good schools .... changing aspects some do not like. Cost of living matches which one it is more like. Old stock-row-housing by far the cheapest.

But guess we all are entitled to what is seen as small city life or a more suburban like-style living. My idea is more typical ..... but perhaps a outdated perception. I doubt a area of 100,000. Would be typical small city/town America to many, or I should just speak for myself as I never was there. 300 generally isn't going to have a typical downtown area. Everything might be bigger in Texas .... but still plenty of small cities/towns to me there with a more typical small city/town WITH a downtown core. Everyone still has cars everywhere in America today by far. But if one can walk to many and grocery store even, to a traditional downtown or close facsimile of aspects in very short drive ..... more typical to me. But then even when I lived in Chicago I could walk to these in the neighborhood.

Last edited by DavePa; 10-30-2018 at 12:38 PM..
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Old 10-30-2018, 02:24 PM
 
Location: Wonderland
44,946 posts, read 36,237,009 times
Reputation: 63613
Quote:
Originally Posted by DavePa View Post
OK I shouldn't but it's just opinions.

A small city long enough established to have a traditional downtown is generally what one thinks of in a basic to a small city/town .... but not only in todays versions.

My hometown. I can walk to the downtown. Just nothing like it when i was young with men's and women's individual clothing stores, theaters, 5 and 10-cent stores (called then) like Woolworth's long gone, the Penny's/Sears/Montgomery Wards type department stores gone and much more. Today much less and theaters gone two burnt sadly. But Drug stores, Eateries, bars, craft beer place, wine bar, dollar stores and other shops, Dentist, Optometrist, Podiatrist, Insurance, Lawyers, Banks, Furniture store etc..... keep it a tradition downtown. All types of Church denominations and different ethnicities founding them with a large Catholic influence.

But I can walk the entire city and surrounding township till it becomes suburban and rural. I have clubs and bars. Old standards of past eras survive like Clubs, lodges as bars/restaurants like
- the old Legion, Moose Knights of Columbus and others.
- the ALL VOLUNTEER 5 Firehouses w/bars and one a full restaurant in the daytime.
They pay no taxes and are clubs open to all who join. Profits support fire protection to the city. Tap beer in the firehouse bar is $1.25 a mug (they are not dives). I like one if I take a walk on a day-off in the daytime. Mostly retired folk then and very chatty locals. One in the evening I chose with older to younger mix that can change with the time of night. They serve till 2 am and no entry after, but can remain open for those in as a club till 3-am and after till the Bartenders clean-up ended. You just order extra drinks at last call if you choose.

Not a wealthy area by far and more blue-collar. More of what I think of as small city/town life. Even for those that drive into the city from nearby who grew up there, but built newer homes outside the city. The Walmart is outside of the city and additional shopping plazas. The nearest mall (what's left of its stores)and more Chain restaurants like Texas Roadhouse, Applebees, etc. and other Shopping is 12-miles away. My work is in a Industrial Park literally on top of a mountain off a interstate. 15-miles I commute.... a two-lane only road all the way. From me .... my area is just one small village to next small city after another with areas farms in-between and most highways lined with more suburban living between them.

I'm 3-hours to NYC or Philly. But rarely go. Concerts of course I need the larger regions and generally more wealthy. Mostly to a Concert Center in the Hershey (chocolate town) area or more in the rural area of State College PA (with Penn State U main campus) Others too but all these still 50-miles or so for any.

Of course not like the suburban reaches of NYC or Philly or even Mid-sized cities. But more typical of small city/town life to me. Some more depressed small cities in the Coal region and some more affluent and College towns especially. Most more blue-collar with big city folk (poor mostly) moving in for cheaper living and good schools .... changing aspects some do not like. Cost of living matches which one it is more like. Old stock-row-housing by far the cheapest.

But guess we all are entitled to what is seen as small city life or a more suburban like-style living. My idea is more typical ..... but perhaps a outdated perception. I doubt a area of 100,000. Would be typical small city/town America to many, or I should just speak for myself as I never was there. 300 generally isn't going to have a typical downtown area. Everything might be bigger in Texas .... but still plenty of small cities/towns to me there with a more typical small city/town WITH a downtown core. Everyone still has cars everywhere in America today by far. But if one can walk to many and grocery store even, to a traditional downtown or close facsimile of aspects in very short drive ..... more typical to me. But then even when I lived in Chicago I could walk to these in the neighborhood.

Interesting. Thanks for all the detail.

Tyler, TX has a traditional downtown much as you describe - many cities roughly the same size in Texas do as well (Waco, for instance). I mean, we have a town square and a courthouse, and Tyler is the county seat for a well populated county (Smith County). The eateries, shops, churches, etc are much as you describe. We have clubs but they are probably different from yours - but they're still largely headquartered downtown - the Chamber of Commerce (huge here), Lions Club, lodges, Knights of Columbus, etc. They're here and are well attended, along with other types of business, professional, and philanthropic clubs. Several meet regularly downtown and several rotate out their meeting places.

We have a good number of bars/clubs/restaurants downtown, several right on the square as well. Oddly, one of our downtown theaters also burned down many years ago, but it's marquee has been saved and they use it for...well, something I don't know what.

We have blocks and blocks and blocks around the downtown core, with well laid out sidewalks which pass by homes, businesses, clubs, bars, restaurants, coffee shops, offices, etc. We have what is called "the loop" with the town center in the middle of it, and suburbs emanating outside the loop. You can walk all over the place "inside the loop" on sidewalks, but once you get "outside the loop" and off the major arteries, you tend to run out of sidewalk and things are more spread out.

One difference between your town and mine from what it sounds like is that my small city/town/whatever you want to call it is mostly white collar. It's a medical/financial/legal hub for NE Texas. So that does change the vibe a bit, but it's still not a big metropolis and doesn't attract and keep people looking for a big city vibe.

We have I think three Walmarts (I said I think because I do all I can to avoid ever actually going into a Walmart) and they are all located "outside the loop" - one south, one east and one west. Also, the industrial parks are all outside the loop as well. We have a mall and then we have a huge outdoor shopping area as well - both seem to be thriving well with between 80 and 100 or more stores. This doesn't include other shopping areas. We have a good mix of chains as well as independently locally owned restaurants and shops.

Twenty five years ago when I moved here, Tyler only had a population of around 60,000 and the MSA was about 100,000. Now we've roughly doubled in size in Tyler and more than doubled the MSA population. So in twenty five years we've grown a lot, but the "small town" feel is still there in some ways, for instance, the town square, the courthouse, the older neighborhoods, etc.

It feels a LOT more "small town" than Dallas, but with much better amenities and greater shopping/eating out/entertainment options than a smaller town. Also a lot less congestion.

I really like it but it's definitely a small city that caters to families, not so much singles.
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Old 10-30-2018, 03:07 PM
 
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Definitely big city/big metro.
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Old 10-30-2018, 03:38 PM
 
Location: Inland FL
1,255 posts, read 722,708 times
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Small town within 30 minutes of a big city is best.

Pace of living is slower in small towns but big cities offer better medical health than rural areas do. If anything were to go wrong and you're close to a major city, you can drive to a clinic in the big city. But if you live in a small town not close to a big city, then you'll lack any urgent care especially on the weekend.

Last edited by floridarebel; 10-30-2018 at 03:47 PM..
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Old 10-31-2018, 12:57 PM
 
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I like booming southern cities that have a lot of spread out areas to them along with a decent urban downtown/core area. Raleigh, Charlotte, Atlanta, Wilmington NC even.
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Old 10-31-2018, 06:46 PM
 
Location: Tupelo, Ms
1,053 posts, read 635,378 times
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There's a consistent theme here on CD forum in regards to Small City & Small Town. Small non metro doesn't always equate to a rural. That's why there's micropolitan stastical areas , offer the similar themes of a large city metros bit scale down obviously. Those born and raised in micro cities ( in my opinion) are truly small cities. Therefore below 10K will be small towns.

I notice that people often overlook the average pop of a U.S city which is 6K or so. Therefore majority of Americans live in small towns vs large cities collectively.
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Old 10-31-2018, 10:15 PM
 
Location: Majestic Wyoming
790 posts, read 372,251 times
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Small town 100% all the way. We did the big city thing for 38 years. I always wanted out, I wanted country living. I hated the traffic, the crowds, the rat race, trying to make ends meet and barely scraping by, not feeling safe enough to let my kids ride their bikes down the street unsupervised.

Moved to a rural town. It's everything I wanted and more. Quiet, peaceful, safe, zero stoplights, no traffic except for maybe cows. You can see the stars at night, tons of them because there isn't any light pollution to obscure them. Friendly people who know you by your first name. A community that cares about each other and goes out of their way to help one another.

I will never live the big city life again, it is not for me..
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