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View Poll Results: Roanoke v. Lynchburg
Roanoke 10 47.62%
Lynchburg 5 23.81%
Neither 6 28.57%
Voters: 21. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 12-26-2013, 09:58 PM
 
4 posts, read 4,408 times
Reputation: 11
Question Roanoke v. Lynchburg

In the never-ending quest to find my own personal utopia, I'm considering moving to Virginia, particularly the Lynchburg/Roanoke area. I've heard from many people that the state is beautiful and the people are friendly. Sounds like a good enough recommendation to me.

My question is which city to live in. I've heard that Roanoke has a wider selection of nightlife, but Lynchburg is relatively safer. Roanoke is very scenic but Lynchburg has Amtrak.

Things I'm considering:

1) Education. I recently graduated with a BA and would like to eventually pursue a teacher's certificate. I'd like to know which area has better schools or even just better teaching opportunities.

2) Culture. I've lived in a lot of different places, most notably Chicago, and have really come to enjoy the fine arts. I'd like to know which area has better museums, art galleries, availability of concerts, etc.

3) Transportation. I know the Amtrak stops in Lynchburg but how is the rest of the transit system in both areas? Are buses a viable means or should I stick to a car? Also, which city is more bike-friendly?

4) Cost of living. I'm an unmarried, child-free, recent college graduate with no aspirations of make gobs of money. That being said, knowing which city will not leave me bankrupt would be good. Average cost of rent, a general idea of the taxes I'll be charged, etc.

5) Economy. This seems obvious. What are the job scenes like in both cities? I have a lot of experience in secretarial work; is one city better than the other for this? In general, is one city more blue-collar than the other?

6) Weather. I'm currently residing in Milwaukee and have had enough experience with snow to last me a lifetime. Is the weather nice in both places? What about natural disasters? Any flooding, snowstorms, earthquakes, hurricanes, random houses falling from the sky?

7) Crime. Seems like there's a fair amount of disagreement about this. I've read that Roanoke has a decent amount of gang activity, but I can't find anything about the crime rates in Lynchburg. Any (first-hand) input?

8) People. I assume there's a reason why people talk of "southern hospitality". What I'm wondering is what the people are like in each area. Am I more likely to be called a "damn Yankee" or "Nawthener" in a certain city? Does personal space exist? I'm also part of the LGBT community, so it'd be nice to know what kind of reaction to expect. Is one city more tolerant than the other?

9) Resources. Looking up, this seems like a lot of questions, so if anyone can point me in the direction of a previous post that covers this or another resource of equal help, please and thank you.

 
Old 12-27-2013, 11:52 AM
 
83 posts, read 40,724 times
Reputation: 54
I would lean toward Roanoke just because it is near the interstate while Lynchburg is a good bit away from any interstate.

Roanoke probably has more of the chain retail and restaurant options.

Roanoke has a more built up "big city" downtown with some highrises compared to Lychburg. I think there is probably more energy downtown Roanoke than Lynchburg.

Lynchburg is where Jerry Falwell's university Liberty is , I don't think that would be a problem but if you don't like social conservatives you'll probably find less of them in Roanoke. Lynchburg does have several engineering firms like AREVA that brings in some people from other parts of the country.

I would guess Roanoke is better than L'burg for the arts although L'burg isn't too far from Charlottesville where UVA is and there is probably a lot of arts stuff going on there.

Roanoke probably has more crime just b/c it is more urban than L'burg. I think it pretty self contained around Orange Avenue.

Weather is going to be about the same, they aren't that far away from each other.

Rent in Roanoke is surprisely expensive, I think it was like around 900 for a nicer apartment. Lynchburg should be more affordable as far as rents go.
 
Old 12-31-2013, 10:49 AM
 
44 posts, read 27,652 times
Reputation: 18
Currently, Roanoke is ahead of Lynchburg but Lynchburg is catching up in every area throughout the years.
 
Old 12-31-2013, 11:21 AM
 
12 posts, read 13,788 times
Reputation: 13
I would move to Charlottesville over both areas. Great area for a young professional. MANY more dining, shopping, cultural amenities (AWESOME music scene with several notable venues that attract a wide variety of big time acts, many museums, tons of history), MUCH more economically vibrant (Cville is constantly growing, while Roanoke and Lynchburg are somewhat stagnant), and less crime than both areas (although a bit pricier, but worth it). Cville is also centrally located...only 2 hours to DC, 2.5 to the beach, 1 hour to the mountains.

Don't be misguided by the population numbers either, as the bulk of Charlottesville's residents live outside of the city limits in the urban ring of Albemarle County (where the school system is great, by the way). In fact, Cville's official city limits are only about 10 square miles, but truly, the area is much, much larger than that. Aside from Roanoke's high rises, Charlottesville feels much larger than both Roanoke and Lynchburg.

The downside with Cville, as I mentioned, however, is that it is more expensive, but certainly not unmanageable. Also, while in general the people in Charlottesville are great, they are not going to be as friendly as those in Roanoke and Lynchburg. Some say Charlottesville is "uppity and arrogant", but having lived there for 26 years, I don't fully agree. However, there is definitely more of that vibe in Cville rather than in Roanoke/Lynchburg. I won't deny the folks in Roanoke are more "down to earth" and less pretentious.

In general, Roanoke/Lynchburg will feel more southern/blue collar/older, while Cville feels more mid-atlantic/white collar/newer.

Of the two options you explicitly mention, definitely go with Roanoke over Lynchburg. I'm very knowledgable when it comes to both Cville and Roanoke so if you have more specific questions about either, I would be more than happy to help!

Last edited by Cville2RoanokeWahoo; 12-31-2013 at 11:46 AM..
 
Old 12-31-2013, 11:39 AM
 
467 posts, read 168,635 times
Reputation: 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cville2RoanokeWahoo View Post
I would move to Charlottesville over both areas. Great area for a young professional. MANY more dining, shopping, cultural amenities (AWESOME music scene with several notable venues that attract a wide variety of big time acts, many museums, tons of history), MUCH more economically vibrant (Cville is constantly growing, while Roanoke and Lynchburg are somewhat stagnant), and less crime than both areas (although a bit pricier, but worth it). Cville is also centrally located...only 2 hours to DC, 2.5 to the beach, 1 hour to the mountains.

Of the two options you explicitly mention, definitely go with Roanoke over Lynchburg.
I doubt Charlottesville is better economically than Roanoke, it is just a university town with a lot of retirees moving in.
 
Old 12-31-2013, 12:50 PM
 
Location: Roanoke, VA
117 posts, read 56,376 times
Reputation: 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cville2RoanokeWahoo View Post
I would move to Charlottesville over both areas. Great area for a young professional. MANY more dining, shopping, cultural amenities (AWESOME music scene with several notable venues that attract a wide variety of big time acts, many museums, tons of history), MUCH more economically vibrant (Cville is constantly growing, while Roanoke and Lynchburg are somewhat stagnant), and less crime than both areas (although a bit pricier, but worth it). Cville is also centrally located...only 2 hours to DC, 2.5 to the beach, 1 hour to the mountains.

Don't be misguided by the population numbers either, as the bulk of Charlottesville's residents live outside of the city limits in the urban ring of Albemarle County (where the school system is great, by the way). In fact, Cville's official city limits are only about 10 square miles, but truly, the area is much, much larger than that. Aside from Roanoke's high rises, Charlottesville feels much larger than both Roanoke and Lynchburg.

The downside with Cville, as I mentioned, however, is that it is more expensive, but certainly not unmanageable. Also, while in general the people in Charlottesville are great, they are not going to be as friendly as those in Roanoke and Lynchburg. Some say Charlottesville is "uppity and arrogant", but having lived there for 26 years, I don't fully agree. However, there is definitely more of that vibe in Cville rather than in Roanoke/Lynchburg. I won't deny the folks in Roanoke are more "down to earth" and less pretentious.

In general, Roanoke/Lynchburg will feel more southern/blue collar/older, while Cville feels more mid-atlantic/white collar/newer.

Of the two options you explicitly mention, definitely go with Roanoke over Lynchburg. I'm very knowledgable when it comes to both Cville and Roanoke so if you have more specific questions about either, I would be more than happy to help!
Cville is a wonderful place with great shopping and a good arts scene. I have been there several times for work and have enjoyed the city every time. However, Cville does not feel bigger than roanoke IMO. If you say Cville feels bigger because of albemarle county then you have to figure in Roanoke county with Roanoke city which is in one central area.. In fact the valley that uses roanoke is over 300,000 and growing. Neither is a chicago and the OP I'm sure understands that. Roanoke used to be slowly growing, but lately is taking off like they should have been awhile ago. Medical seems to be the big thing as of now, but transportation is still going strong and because roanoke is closely working with VT in blacksburg technology is on the way up.


In the end Roanoke, Lynchburg, and Cville are all in the same boat. Up and coming cities in a growing state. It all comes down to what the OP feels is the best fit for them.. Silly as it may sound it will probably come down to which one feels like home.
 
Old 12-31-2013, 03:48 PM
 
12 posts, read 13,788 times
Reputation: 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by cam4vt View Post
Cville is a wonderful place with great shopping and a good arts scene. I have been there several times for work and have enjoyed the city every time. However, Cville does not feel bigger than roanoke IMO. If you say Cville feels bigger because of albemarle county then you have to figure in Roanoke county with Roanoke city which is in one central area.. In fact the valley that uses roanoke is over 300,000 and growing. Neither is a chicago and the OP I'm sure understands that. Roanoke used to be slowly growing, but lately is taking off like they should have been awhile ago. Medical seems to be the big thing as of now, but transportation is still going strong and because roanoke is closely working with VT in blacksburg technology is on the way up.


In the end Roanoke, Lynchburg, and Cville are all in the same boat. Up and coming cities in a growing state. It all comes down to what the OP feels is the best fit for them.. Silly as it may sound it will probably come down to which one feels like home.
I certainly don't mean this as a slight to Roanoke, as I currently live in Roanoke and love the area, but Charlottesville definitely feels larger due to its more modern metropolitan amenities.

-Charlottesville boasts a large outdoor concert pavilion, a state of the art 15,000 seat arena, and countless smaller venues that attract top of the line concerts/theater. Roanoke has a small, outdated civic center. Which seems more "big city-esque"?

-Charlottesville's downtown has a renowned several block long, outdoor pedestrian mall complete with an ice rink, movie theater, hotels, and countless restaurants, bars, museums, concert venues, and shopping options that attracts 1000's of people on a regular basis. Roanoke's downtown is awesome, but much more limited to the market/center in the square area. Charlottesville's downtown has 3x the entertainment options. Which seems larger? Charlottesville.

-Charlottesville has Whole Foods, Trader Joe's, a HUGE Fresh Market, several Krogers, Food Lions, Harris Teeters, and soon a Wegmans. Roanoke has Kroger, a small Fresh Market, and some run down Food Lions. This makes Charlottesville seem larger.

-Charlottesville has a brand new 14-screen IMAX theater, Roanoke does not.

-Charlottesville has designer stores and shopping variety usually found in larger cities. Roanoke does not. In fact, Charlottesville probably has 2-3x the shopping options Roanoke has.

I don't mean to hijack the thread, and certainly, once again, do not mean to put down Roanoke, as it is a wonderful city, I'm just outlining why I, and many others I've spoken with, believe Charlottesville feels larger.

Last edited by Cville2RoanokeWahoo; 12-31-2013 at 04:14 PM..
 
Old 12-31-2013, 03:52 PM
 
Location: Roanoke, VA
796 posts, read 1,128,220 times
Reputation: 352
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cville2RoanokeWahoo View Post
-Charlottesville has Whole Foods, Trader Joe's, a HUGE Fresh Market, several Krogers, Food Lions, Harris Teeters, and soon a Wegmans. Roanoke has Kroger, a small Fresh Market, and some run down Food Lions. This makes Charlottesville seem larger.
Not only that, if you hold Charlottesville up to a mirror it looks TWICE as big!!

Seriously, Charlottesville is a great college town...however I think the OP asked for input re Roanoke v. Lynchburg. So yeah...

(Maybe Roanoke looks smaller because it is surrounded by mountains ha!) (all in fun Cv2RW)
 
Old 12-31-2013, 03:52 PM
 
12 posts, read 13,788 times
Reputation: 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Francis. View Post
I doubt Charlottesville is better economically than Roanoke, it is just a university town with a lot of retirees moving in.
This isn't at all accurate, on any level. Young professionals are constantly flocking to the Charlottesville area, whereas Roanoke is generally known to have an older population. Also, a quick look at income numbers, population trends, and a simple drive through both areas clearly tell the tale of which is more economically vibrant.

Albemarle County is one of the quickest growing, most prosperous counties in VA, whereas the Roanoke area's population isn't changing. Every time I go to Charlottesville, a new neighborhood is being constructed. The same can't be said for the Roanoke valley. Also, Roanoke is struggling with a "brain drain" in which young, educated professionals (outside of the medical field) are being forced to leave the area due to a lack of white collar jobs. This isn't an issue in Charlottesville.

Last edited by Cville2RoanokeWahoo; 12-31-2013 at 04:03 PM..
 
Old 12-31-2013, 03:57 PM
 
12 posts, read 13,788 times
Reputation: 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Watchful View Post
Not only that, if you hold Charlottesville up to a mirror it looks TWICE as big!!

Seriously, Charlottesville is a great college town...however I think the OP asked for input re Roanoke v. Lynchburg. So yeah...

(Maybe Roanoke looks smaller because it is surrounded by mountains ha!) (all in fun Cv2RW)
Touche, my friend. And I sincerely hope I'm not coming off as a jerk, as I will reiterate: Roanoke is a wonderful place to be. Roanoke has far more outdoorsy options/activities integrated within the immediate city-center than Charlottesville. Its countless parks and greenways cannot be rivaled. Its mountain vistas are unparalleled in VA, IMO. There is surely a rich culture here. There are so many reasons to love Roanoke, yet I just feel C'ville, in general, is a better place for a young professional.

With that said, I think the Roanoke County school system is highly regarded. So I don't think the OP could go wrong in the Roanoke area, either.

Last edited by Cville2RoanokeWahoo; 12-31-2013 at 04:08 PM..
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