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Why Knoxville?

Posted 03-01-2021 at 09:34 PM by Igor Blevin
Updated 03-02-2021 at 02:20 PM by Igor Blevin

I have decided to live near Knoxville.

Key here is that I will be renting an apartment for a few years so apartment availability is essential. The best bedroom community is useless to me and I ruled out several around the state. Had I been looking to buy a home rather than rent an apartment, I might have chosen elsewhere.

There wasn't really a lot of consideration in choosing Knoxville. Lots of shallow, knee-jerk decisions were made. I wanted to be near a reasonably sized city with low crime, good medical, and desireable amenities.

The Tri-Cities had great initial appeal until they seemed too rural, too small, with too few amenities, lacking in medical for an aging retiree, etc. None of the cities on their own really had sufficient appeal for me. I liked the area a lot, but not the cities specifically. I also wondered about winter weather and driving.

Cookeville is too small and isolated and rural, being neither here nor there to me. I admit to not giving it a fair chance.

Memphis was eliminated right off due to bad reputation. It is too big anyway.

C-D shows Memphis with a crippling crime rate. I know crime is local and reports can be deceiving, but I would have to go into the city sometime, and such a crime rate is off-putting for someone looking from 2,400 miles away. Maybe I have just watched way too many episodes of "The First 48" reality detective series on A&E with Sgt. Caroline Mason, but it caused concern that Memphis would be an "armpit". A knee-jerk exaggeration to brand an entire city of 600,000. Perception vs. reality. No doubt Memphis has its fantastic areas, but I just couldn't see risking that crime rate overall. It is just off putting. Maybe I will fall in love with it when I see it.

Nashville just seems too big, too busy, and too expensive. Brentwood and Franklin are among the top ranked places in the nation but again, very expensive, and I am not seeking a home. Franklin has a few more apartments than Brentwood -- neither prolific, and in any event city visits would all be to crowded, expensive, touristy Nashville. It was too much.

So, Chattanooga vs. Nashville. It was a tough, close decision and it could have gone either way.

The mountainous area around Chattanooga is beautiful, but when I kept looking at specific neightborhoods to rent an apartment, things quickly fell apart. I didn't care for any of the rental communities. How often would I really race to the mountains to play at 65 years old?

Process of elimination lead me to conclude that Knoxville was my best bet. But it was also positive comments on City Data forums. There is no Vanderbilt, but medical access is solid. Knoxville has the services and amenities I want. It is a growing city, which should mature and offer more of what I want in the future, but is not too large today. The surrounding area is beautiful. There is mountain access but I won't be driving down steep mountain roads. There is a lot to like about Knoxville and surrounds.

Farragut often being praised as a sweet spot of middle class peace and quiet with things to do and good proximity to town, that seemed to be the place to be.

So having decided upon Knoxville, I drew a big "X" on Farragut with intention of seeing how close I could come and meet all my needs and desires.

Next entry, "Picking an apartment".
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