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Old 04-26-2010, 04:04 PM
38 posts, read 68,814 times
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I spent lots of time in just about every part of Florida back in the early 90s. My last visit was in 1999 at Anna Maria Island. My wife and I both like a laid back (boring) place to live. But with plenty of opportunity around us since we have 3 small kids. This website seems to have many people huffing and puffing over the changes that have occurred in Florida since the early 2000s. I haven't witnessed the changes because I haven't been there. I live in KY where I was born and I consider it a worthless place lacking any opportunity other than to feel trapped in a hopeless problem filled state.

I live in Kissimmee when I was a kid in 1985 and liked it a lot. But I have heard since then it became full of crime and population. I mostly prefer the Gulf side around Tampa and Bradenton.

What would be a realistic view of the "quality of life" in moving to these areas in Florida? Sometimes paying a little more to live is worth it considering you're getting a million things the old home doesn't offer.
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Old 04-27-2010, 09:25 AM
1,500 posts, read 2,911,071 times
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Quality of life is often a matter of personal taste so not easy to comment on that. My niece prefers hanging out at my brother's ranch so probably she might think better of Kentucky than someone who craves the night life of Ybor.

For me the big changes to Florida has been more an issue of quantity of life which has brought both positive and negative changes in what I perceive as the quality of life here. Since my grandfather settled in Coral Gables in the 1940s, the population here has doubled three times over. And since I've been visiting Florida from when I was a baby in the late 50s, the population has grown about 4 times. Even since I moved to Florida in the 70s, population almost tripled from just over 6 million to almost 19 million people.

During that time Florida has gotten more amenities (parks, museums, etc) but less of other things like beach access (though I use it less the older I get anyway). As I was deciding to leave south Florida for Tampa, my local beach started charging to park for the first time since I lived there. I used to take my five mile walk along the beach in the mornings, but after living there for over 30 years, parking for free, suddenly it was costing me $80/month at $4 day just to walk on the beach five days a week.

The air quality has also suffered. It used to be you could wash your car and it would stay clean for the week. Now within three days the car is covered in soot from all the other cars on the highways and, where I lived in south Florida, I think a lot was from all the cruise ships which spew out tons of soot. And traffic, of course, has become an issue it never was. We used to only complain about traffic during tourist season. But each year, as more people who used to vacation here move here instead, there seems less of a difference between season and out of season traffic.

Not that population hasn't exploded everywhere (to qualify my statements on this, politically, I'm a zero population growth proponent) as my last time in Jersey, driving RT46 I couldn't believe how tightly my hands were gripping the steering wheel. But as Florida is a growth state and as Florida's concurrency requirements have been so often loopholed, I'm not convinced that benefits have outweighed the detriments of population growth with regard to the quality of life here, at least not as I knew it to be. I'd move to a deserted island but they've all been taken over by the major hotel chains by now. So I guess Florida will just have to do.

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