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Old 10-18-2017, 10:25 AM
 
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I'm from Indiana, been in Austin 17 years and miss the 4 seasons more and more every year. Would also love a more affordable/walkable lifestyle. I'm thinking of moving back to Midwest, but don't want somewhere completely backwards. Anyone move from Austin to Louisville and if so how did you find it? I live in South Austin now and I'd hate to lose the things I do love about Austin: Dog friendly? Nature - hiking and kayaking? Restaurants? Art/funky vibe? Jobs? Love to know what you think.
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Old 10-18-2017, 11:40 AM
 
Location: IL/IN/FL/CA/KY/FL/KY/WA
1,265 posts, read 1,426,024 times
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Originally Posted by kiacook View Post
I'm from Indiana, been in Austin 17 years and miss the 4 seasons more and more every year. Would also love a more affordable/walkable lifestyle. I'm thinking of moving back to Midwest, but don't want somewhere completely backwards. Anyone move from Austin to Louisville and if so how did you find it? I live in South Austin now and I'd hate to lose the things I do love about Austin: Dog friendly? Nature - hiking and kayaking? Restaurants? Art/funky vibe? Jobs? Love to know what you think.
I lived in Round Rock briefly about 10-12 years ago and grew up in and eventually moved back to Louisville in 2016 after being gone since 1997.

Dog Friendly? Eh. Not really in many stores, though there are 8 dog parks in the metro area. Probably wouldn't be similar to your current experience from my knowledge of Austin.

Plenty of awesome nature within about an hour-ish drive from Louisville as well as some hiking in the metro area. Wouldn't worry about the nature aspect...KY has it all from cave spelunking to hiking, and I'm sure there's kayaking on some of the lakes nearby, but I'm not a kayaker so I can't speak first hand there.

My wife and I moved back to Louisville from San Francisco and many of the restaurants here in Louisville rival that of SF - it doesn't have Michelin starred restaurants, but just about anything you're into, there's a number of high quality restaurants to fit your need. The only style I've tried here that hasn't yet been up to par with choices from other areas is Ethiopian food.

Art/funky vibe? Absolutely. Perhaps nowhere near to the same degree as Austin, but Louisville is quite a progressive city for its location and compared to the political nature of the state as a whole with a strong performing arts scene - not to mention the "Keep Louisville Weird" campaigns. Plenty of indie musicians stop here, and there are 3-5 good venues for the smaller, more intimate concerts.

Jobs? Eh. Really depends on your industry. This is really the area that has prevented Louisville from becoming like Nashville - industry is somewhat stable when you're talking about manufacturing/warehouse/more working class jobs - but if you're talking about middle management and above, those are lacking severely. Major industry with HQ's here are in Healthcare, Fast Food and Logistics/distribution. Also, the "creative employment" scene doesn't match the art scene, as the creative employment (creative agencies lack severely) and the startup scene is a little more than a blip on the radar. There are a few startups doing interesting things, but likely nothing like Austin and certainly nowhere near what we experienced in SF. My wife and I have Austin on our radar if something ever happened to my job here because I won't be able to easily find another 6-figure job in Louisville.

Affordable really depends - if you're coming here from Austin and can find a job that pays similar to what you made in Austin, you should be able to do just fine here economically. Right now the real estate market is incredibly hot - and while the cost is going to be much less than in Austin overall, the market is still about 10-20% overpriced due to lack of inventory. Record sales years with record low inventory means that anything decent is gobbled up within days, some of which end up over asking. If you're unsure of Louisville as a long-term destination, I'd highly recommend renting for the first few years until the market has a chance to increase the inventory so that you don't end up buying a house now and being under water in a few years when either the economy slows or when Louisville starts creating enough inventory to bring it back to normal levels. I would say rents are also starting to creep higher than the incomes are growing as well (due to the lack of housing inventory), so getting here sooner than later would be sensible if you were going to choose Louisville. My wife and I rent a SFH and got in before it got crazy.

Walkability really only exists here if you live in certain neighborhoods either within or just outside the downtown core like Old Louisville (probably the most affordable for the moment) , parts of St Matthews, and the Highlands, in which Bardstown Road is probably the closest thing we have to 6th St in Austin. This, like most Midwestern/southern cities are very car oriented. I wouldn't encourage people to bike here, because the overall driver base is poorly educated and poorly patrolled, so car insurance rates here are through the roof. Ours DOUBLED moving from within metro SF to suburban Louisville. CRAZY! I need more than my fingers to count people I know who have been injured biking in Louisville. It happens everywhere, but it's worse here, in my opinion. The bus system is not the worst, and is generally better in areas where it's more walkable, but getting out to the airport or to suburbia can be quite painful if you need those destinations for one reason or another. The airport is a 13 minute drive from the heart of the Highlands, but a bus ride takes an hour because of poor route structure.

Hope that helps.
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Old 10-18-2017, 12:30 PM
 
7,071 posts, read 16,766,097 times
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Originally Posted by ServoMiff View Post
I lived in Round Rock briefly about 10-12 years ago and grew up in and eventually moved back to Louisville in 2016 after being gone since 1997.

Dog Friendly? Eh. Not really in many stores, though there are 8 dog parks in the metro area. Probably wouldn't be similar to your current experience from my knowledge of Austin.

Plenty of awesome nature within about an hour-ish drive from Louisville as well as some hiking in the metro area. Wouldn't worry about the nature aspect...KY has it all from cave spelunking to hiking, and I'm sure there's kayaking on some of the lakes nearby, but I'm not a kayaker so I can't speak first hand there.

My wife and I moved back to Louisville from San Francisco and many of the restaurants here in Louisville rival that of SF - it doesn't have Michelin starred restaurants, but just about anything you're into, there's a number of high quality restaurants to fit your need. The only style I've tried here that hasn't yet been up to par with choices from other areas is Ethiopian food.

Art/funky vibe? Absolutely. Perhaps nowhere near to the same degree as Austin, but Louisville is quite a progressive city for its location and compared to the political nature of the state as a whole with a strong performing arts scene - not to mention the "Keep Louisville Weird" campaigns. Plenty of indie musicians stop here, and there are 3-5 good venues for the smaller, more intimate concerts.

Jobs? Eh. Really depends on your industry. This is really the area that has prevented Louisville from becoming like Nashville - industry is somewhat stable when you're talking about manufacturing/warehouse/more working class jobs - but if you're talking about middle management and above, those are lacking severely. Major industry with HQ's here are in Healthcare, Fast Food and Logistics/distribution. Also, the "creative employment" scene doesn't match the art scene, as the creative employment (creative agencies lack severely) and the startup scene is a little more than a blip on the radar. There are a few startups doing interesting things, but likely nothing like Austin and certainly nowhere near what we experienced in SF. My wife and I have Austin on our radar if something ever happened to my job here because I won't be able to easily find another 6-figure job in Louisville.

Affordable really depends - if you're coming here from Austin and can find a job that pays similar to what you made in Austin, you should be able to do just fine here economically. Right now the real estate market is incredibly hot - and while the cost is going to be much less than in Austin overall, the market is still about 10-20% overpriced due to lack of inventory. Record sales years with record low inventory means that anything decent is gobbled up within days, some of which end up over asking. If you're unsure of Louisville as a long-term destination, I'd highly recommend renting for the first few years until the market has a chance to increase the inventory so that you don't end up buying a house now and being under water in a few years when either the economy slows or when Louisville starts creating enough inventory to bring it back to normal levels. I would say rents are also starting to creep higher than the incomes are growing as well (due to the lack of housing inventory), so getting here sooner than later would be sensible if you were going to choose Louisville. My wife and I rent a SFH and got in before it got crazy.

Walkability really only exists here if you live in certain neighborhoods either within or just outside the downtown core like Old Louisville (probably the most affordable for the moment) , parts of St Matthews, and the Highlands, in which Bardstown Road is probably the closest thing we have to 6th St in Austin. This, like most Midwestern/southern cities are very car oriented. I wouldn't encourage people to bike here, because the overall driver base is poorly educated and poorly patrolled, so car insurance rates here are through the roof. Ours DOUBLED moving from within metro SF to suburban Louisville. CRAZY! I need more than my fingers to count people I know who have been injured biking in Louisville. It happens everywhere, but it's worse here, in my opinion. The bus system is not the worst, and is generally better in areas where it's more walkable, but getting out to the airport or to suburbia can be quite painful if you need those destinations for one reason or another. The airport is a 13 minute drive from the heart of the Highlands, but a bus ride takes an hour because of poor route structure.

Hope that helps.

Absoultely....Louisville is pretty much just like Austin when you first moved there 17 years ago. The Austin of today is overpriced, too congested, and frankly, overhyped (no offense).

Also, you will be SHOCKED at the renaissance in downtown New Albany and Jeffersonville, IN. Come spend a week in Louisville. Plan a full day in each of 6-7 urban areas to allow biking, walking, and "feeling them out." Construction and gentrification is everywhere. Since you last visited, the Parklands Park system allows you to bike and trail in a massive loop around the city, and there are trails being completed in the S Indiana side of the river too

Dogs? Are you serious Servo? Dogs are literally a must have accessory in most urban nabes. I prefer no pets and literally every renter application for my rentals in the city has dogs.

There are many stores, both chains and boutique:

http://www.barkstownroad.com/


There is even a country club that is mega luxury for pets in the suburbs:

The Pet Station Country Club | Dog Daycare, Boarding and Training


There is even a wine bar for dog owners:
https://www.yelp.com/biz/vines-and-canines-louisville-2


Louisville is seeing 11 billion in construction in the last 3 years, including dozens of hotels, several upscale.


Servo...Louisville is just as walkable as Austin. Every bit of it. You left out Crescent Hill, Clifton, Butchertown, and Nulu, all very walkable. Downtown New Albany and downtown Jeffersonville are also very walkable, each even having their own grocery store.

I agree and disagree on jobs. Louisville is not Nashville or Texas for one very simple reason: Kentucky. I love Louisville, but KY really does suck. The state has backwards, rural politicians who suck cash from Louisville and build roads to nowhere in areas which will never grow under any condition. KY is not business friendly due to high taxes, and a 6% income tax for top brackets. Louisville will never get jobs like Nashville until Ky changes her backward ways. Louisville is EXTEREMELY progressive and liberal for middle America especially (especially inside I-264 belt).

That's why I am really big on New Albany and Jeffersonville, IN. Lots of benefits locally with the amenities of the city 10 minutes away.

Last edited by Peter1948; 10-18-2017 at 12:40 PM..
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Old 10-19-2017, 09:46 AM
 
Location: IL/IN/FL/CA/KY/FL/KY/WA
1,265 posts, read 1,426,024 times
Reputation: 1645
Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter1948 View Post
Absoultely....Louisville is pretty much just like Austin when you first moved there 17 years ago. The Austin of today is overpriced, too congested, and frankly, overhyped (no offense).

Also, you will be SHOCKED at the renaissance in downtown New Albany and Jeffersonville, IN. Come spend a week in Louisville. Plan a full day in each of 6-7 urban areas to allow biking, walking, and "feeling them out." Construction and gentrification is everywhere. Since you last visited, the Parklands Park system allows you to bike and trail in a massive loop around the city, and there are trails being completed in the S Indiana side of the river too

Dogs? Are you serious Servo? Dogs are literally a must have accessory in most urban nabes. I prefer no pets and literally every renter application for my rentals in the city has dogs.

There are many stores, both chains and boutique:

Barkstown Road


There is even a country club that is mega luxury for pets in the suburbs:

The Pet Station Country Club | Dog Daycare, Boarding and Training


There is even a wine bar for dog owners:
https://www.yelp.com/biz/vines-and-canines-louisville-2


Louisville is seeing 11 billion in construction in the last 3 years, including dozens of hotels, several upscale.


Servo...Louisville is just as walkable as Austin. Every bit of it. You left out Crescent Hill, Clifton, Butchertown, and Nulu, all very walkable. Downtown New Albany and downtown Jeffersonville are also very walkable, each even having their own grocery store.

I agree and disagree on jobs. Louisville is not Nashville or Texas for one very simple reason: Kentucky. I love Louisville, but KY really does suck. The state has backwards, rural politicians who suck cash from Louisville and build roads to nowhere in areas which will never grow under any condition. KY is not business friendly due to high taxes, and a 6% income tax for top brackets. Louisville will never get jobs like Nashville until Ky changes her backward ways. Louisville is EXTEREMELY progressive and liberal for middle America especially (especially inside I-264 belt).

That's why I am really big on New Albany and Jeffersonville, IN. Lots of benefits locally with the amenities of the city 10 minutes away.
Austin is the 33rd most walkable city in the US with a score of 40 - Louisville is 43rd with a score of 33. Jeff is listed with a walk score of 24 and New Albany is 36. I didn't leave out neighborhoods - I listed a few examples and every other one you mentioned fits the broader definition that I provided.

Every city of our size has pet boutiques because pets are everywhere - that doesn't mean the city is "dog friendly" by the definition that most people accept - there are no official dog parks in the urban core, and any park you go to, you most likely have to drive to if you're living in the "urban chic" areas.

What exactly do you disagree with me on jobs about? You listed all the ways you agreed with me, but failed to provide an argument for why you disagree.

I don't disagree that New Albany and Jeff are up-and-coming. However, part of the problem with that label is that there's a lot of dirt still to be washed out as the transformation isn't complete yet. New Albany is still recovering from the meth era, and I can't tell you how many investment properties I looked at that turned out to be former meth labs. Jeff still has pockets of low-income poorly maintained multi-family housing which slows its overall growth but the part you can walk over the bridge to is really really nice these days. Floyds Knobs OTOH, is turning into a gem of a suburban area - if you can stomach actually being an Indiana resident. I prefer to reside in KY despite their overall political issues.
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Old 10-19-2017, 11:32 AM
 
7,071 posts, read 16,766,097 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ServoMiff View Post
Austin is the 33rd most walkable city in the US with a score of 40 - Louisville is 43rd with a score of 33. Jeff is listed with a walk score of 24 and New Albany is 36. I didn't leave out neighborhoods - I listed a few examples and every other one you mentioned fits the broader definition that I provided.

Every city of our size has pet boutiques because pets are everywhere - that doesn't mean the city is "dog friendly" by the definition that most people accept - there are no official dog parks in the urban core, and any park you go to, you most likely have to drive to if you're living in the "urban chic" areas.

What exactly do you disagree with me on jobs about? You listed all the ways you agreed with me, but failed to provide an argument for why you disagree.

I don't disagree that New Albany and Jeff are up-and-coming. However, part of the problem with that label is that there's a lot of dirt still to be washed out as the transformation isn't complete yet. New Albany is still recovering from the meth era, and I can't tell you how many investment properties I looked at that turned out to be former meth labs. Jeff still has pockets of low-income poorly maintained multi-family housing which slows its overall growth but the part you can walk over the bridge to is really really nice these days. Floyds Knobs OTOH, is turning into a gem of a suburban area - if you can stomach actually being an Indiana resident. I prefer to reside in KY despite their overall political issues.
Servo...I have three properties in S. Indiana. I am getting over 20% returns on each of them!

I think you need to spend more time driving the streets and walking them. Have you seen the new streetscapes in New Albany. Are you able to tell me which streets in downtown are two way? If you cannot, you have not spent enough time there recently. Get on Airbnb there....lots of people moving there from California.

That "meth lab" thing is the stereotype. It's middle America, you will see trailer type rednecks anywhere. Downtown New Albany feels like an upscale, yuppie urban neighborhood, not too different than the Highlands, just cheaper, and frankly, more walkable in ways. New Albany has probably the most commercial cross density of any urban neighborhood. This is a statistical fact.

Louisville's commercial strips are very linear....main st, E market, 4th st, bardstown Rd, Frankfort ave, etc. I saw in Nulu a wine bar is opening a half block off Market and they acted like it was odd that was happening.



You are also quite off on the startup scene...its starting to bust at the seams:

http://startuplouisville.com/

https://www.bizjournals.com/louisvil...cities-to.html


This article proves what I pointed out anecdotally a few months ago on the city vs city forum and people admonished me. I pointed out Louisville ALWAYS has more restaurant openings than any city around it, including significantly more hyped cities such as Nashville. Louisville has always held low self esteem, especially with many expats. Many move away then compare the city to mega coastal towns. I am not saying that is what you are doing Servo, but I think we agree Louisville is about like one neighborhood in SF, if that. It's just a different world. But that doesn't mean Louisville is not chock full of culture, art, and food. Those who "get" Louisville like me and utilize every corner of the metro really enjoy the high QOL without the hassle.

Louisville certainly has many problems like any city, but if you are tired of Austin and from the Midwest, this is 100% the perfect place for the OP.
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Old 10-20-2017, 07:12 AM
 
Location: IL/IN/FL/CA/KY/FL/KY/WA
1,265 posts, read 1,426,024 times
Reputation: 1645
Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter1948 View Post
Servo...I have three properties in S. Indiana. I am getting over 20% returns on each of them!

I think you need to spend more time driving the streets and walking them. Have you seen the new streetscapes in New Albany. Are you able to tell me which streets in downtown are two way? If you cannot, you have not spent enough time there recently. Get on Airbnb there....lots of people moving there from California.

That "meth lab" thing is the stereotype. It's middle America, you will see trailer type rednecks anywhere. Downtown New Albany feels like an upscale, yuppie urban neighborhood, not too different than the Highlands, just cheaper, and frankly, more walkable in ways. New Albany has probably the most commercial cross density of any urban neighborhood. This is a statistical fact.

Louisville's commercial strips are very linear....main st, E market, 4th st, bardstown Rd, Frankfort ave, etc. I saw in Nulu a wine bar is opening a half block off Market and they acted like it was odd that was happening.



You are also quite off on the startup scene...its starting to bust at the seams:

Startup Louisville

https://www.bizjournals.com/louisvil...cities-to.html


This article proves what I pointed out anecdotally a few months ago on the city vs city forum and people admonished me. I pointed out Louisville ALWAYS has more restaurant openings than any city around it, including significantly more hyped cities such as Nashville. Louisville has always held low self esteem, especially with many expats. Many move away then compare the city to mega coastal towns. I am not saying that is what you are doing Servo, but I think we agree Louisville is about like one neighborhood in SF, if that. It's just a different world. But that doesn't mean Louisville is not chock full of culture, art, and food. Those who "get" Louisville like me and utilize every corner of the metro really enjoy the high QOL without the hassle.

Louisville certainly has many problems like any city, but if you are tired of Austin and from the Midwest, this is 100% the perfect place for the OP.
I appreciate your attempt to point out the startup scene, but my wife consults for startups and has scoured the city for quality ones and has met personally with the founders of practically every one in town - those sites and articles are nothing but political fodder. I would venture that while I don't know New Albany quite as well as you, you don't know startups quite as well as I do. Very few of them have any money - compare that to venture-backed startups who have plenty of initial runway, and you can see the difference - these startups might plod along, but they're really never gaining any traction because they lack the guidance of a VC firm and startup minded board members to put them on the right path.

While Louisville might have a good base for small businesses and startups, that in no way means that the ones that are here are successful.
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Old 10-21-2017, 08:59 PM
 
7,071 posts, read 16,766,097 times
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Originally Posted by ServoMiff View Post
I appreciate your attempt to point out the startup scene, but my wife consults for startups and has scoured the city for quality ones and has met personally with the founders of practically every one in town - those sites and articles are nothing but political fodder. I would venture that while I don't know New Albany quite as well as you, you don't know startups quite as well as I do. Very few of them have any money - compare that to venture-backed startups who have plenty of initial runway, and you can see the difference - these startups might plod along, but they're really never gaining any traction because they lack the guidance of a VC firm and startup minded board members to put them on the right path.

While Louisville might have a good base for small businesses and startups, that in no way means that the ones that are here are successful.
I don't disagree. Louisville is not a top 20 startup city. But it's certainly not bad. Top 40 I'd say. Also, those lists are NOT political fodder. There is lots of startup money being thrown around here in the last 2 years. Its night and day difference from 5 years ago. It's exciting to see. 5 years ago there were virtually NO start ups in Louisville. Heck, on my block in the east end alone, myself and 4 neighbors have founded LLCs this year, and all are booming business. Sure that's an anecdote, but it helps.

Yelp ranked Louisville number 11 as top place for small business startups. We both agree the biggest thing hindering Louisville is Kentucky. More specifically, it's KY's taxing Louisville's wealthy at 6% and providing nothing in return.

You also pointed out another problem with Louisville and that is the lack of centure capital. Most the VC occuring now is occudring via out of town real estate investors. These folks have been priced out of areas like Nashville and see Louisville as the next big thing.

Don't sleep on Louisville...I am so well traveled in urban cities, both small and mid size, I have seen this before. Louisville's current growth trajectory is just how Nashville and Austin started in the 90s. If Louisville could someone shake the KY thing and KY got rid of income tax, Louisville as EVERY BIT as much potential as Austin did 20 years ago. The question is will KY every change it's tax structure....
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Old 10-24-2017, 03:15 PM
 
Location: Indiana
25 posts, read 51,699 times
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Originally Posted by ServoMiff View Post
if you can stomach actually being an Indiana resident. I prefer to reside in KY despite their overall political issues.

So why is living in Indiana such a bad thing? That's kinda of a stupid thing to say. I've lived in the Highlands, Crescent Hill and New Albany. All three have their benefits. Is New Albany like the Highlands? Not really. But I've seen a lot of younger people buying homes because it's affordable as well as how much the downtown has improved with places like Brooklyn and the Butcher, Adrienne's for breakfast, Toast and the regular farmer's market that is packed on the weekends. The commute is easy; around 10 minutes from most places in New Albany to downtown Louisville. Floyd County has some beautiful areas in Floyds Knobs, Greenville and Georgetown.

Moderator cut: Personal attack

Last edited by Oldhag1; 10-24-2017 at 07:26 PM..
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Old 10-25-2017, 02:51 AM
 
Location: IL/IN/FL/CA/KY/FL/KY/WA
1,265 posts, read 1,426,024 times
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Originally Posted by HoraceDerwent View Post
So why is living in Indiana such a bad thing? That's kinda of a stupid thing to say. I've lived in the Highlands, Crescent Hill and New Albany. All three have their benefits. Is New Albany like the Highlands? Not really. But I've seen a lot of younger people buying homes because it's affordable as well as how much the downtown has improved with places like Brooklyn and the Butcher, Adrienne's for breakfast, Toast and the regular farmer's market that is packed on the weekends. The commute is easy; around 10 minutes from most places in New Albany to downtown Louisville. Floyd County has some beautiful areas in Floyds Knobs, Greenville and Georgetown.

Moderator cut: Personal attack
For some people, Kentucky is considered the south, and Indiana is considered the North, even just over metro boundary lines. My wife, who isn't even native to the area, refuses to live in Indiana because of the cultural difference - it doesn't have the history and vibe of saying that you live in a state with a rich history and so many great parks, among other things.
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Old 10-25-2017, 05:27 AM
 
Location: Indiana
25 posts, read 51,699 times
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Originally Posted by ServoMiff View Post
For some people, Kentucky is considered the south, and Indiana is considered the North, even just over metro boundary lines. My wife, who isn't even native to the area, refuses to live in Indiana because of the cultural difference - it doesn't have the history and vibe of saying that you live in a state with a rich history and so many great parks, among other things.

I guess that does make one cooler, eh? I've lived in both. A lot of Southern Indiana is closer to the heart of Louisville than Oldham County will ever be, a county you have touted as so great. There's not much in Oldham County that is truly unique, honestly. Kentucky has cool parks. So does Southern Indiana. Clifty Falls State Park in Madison. There's a lot of wild caving in Harrison and Crawford County. Not sure what 'vibe' you get in Oldham County?

Cultural Difference? Really? Hate to break it to you, there really isn't one unless you're comparing a neighborhood in Anchorage to say one in Clarksville. No one I knows goes to Oldham County for restaurants. Or to be entertained.

I like Louisville's South Side for Iroquois Park, Vietnam Kitchen (it is the best in asian, I admit) and the multi-national grocery store next to it. And there's good mexican near Churchill Downs. But, there's also good mexican joints in Clarksville and New Albany has a good Korean place. And Jeff's Mai Thai is good as any Thai in Louisville.

But dollar-for-dollar, you get more in Southern Indiana when buying a home. And Indiana's college system of IU, Purdue, DePauw, Rose-Hulman, Notre Dame and Indiana State is on another level from Kentucky's.

All places have history. Just because you live there doesn't mean it makes one 'cooler.' Or maybe it does to some people.

I just think it's kinda funny that people who move here think there's a great 'cultural' divide when there isn't.

Last edited by HoraceDerwent; 10-25-2017 at 06:06 AM..
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