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  #21  
Old Posted Apr 11, 2021, 11:13 AM
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Originally Posted by dimondpark View Post
oops. I meant among "Large Metro Areas".

This is the latest data from the US Labor Dept, released this week.

https://www.bls.gov/web/metro/laulrgma.htm
I’m surprised by Detroit, with one of the lowest rates in the nation. Didn’t Detroit have one of the worst till few years ago?

In general, all metro areas are doing fine, showing the US job market is recovering quickly.
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  #22  
Old Posted Apr 11, 2021, 11:45 AM
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Originally Posted by IluvATX View Post
The only reason anyone lives in Jacksonville is for work...any of those cities at the top really. I lived in Birmingham once....for my job. I think the only reason these oddball cities are at the the top is because work send them there. Also Jacksonville’s skyline.
Amelia Island and Fernandina beach are close to Jacksonville and I have heard they are nice places to visit. People can retire on the coast in Jacksonville and have a much cheaper and quieter location than either South Florida or Charleston.

I also think there is a lot of good sea kayaking and fishing in Jacksonville, if you're interested in that.

JetBlue used to (at least pre-COVID) offer a lot of cheap flights from DC - Jacksonville. It seems like this would be a good option for a weekend beach get-away.
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  #23  
Old Posted Apr 11, 2021, 6:22 PM
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Wow- I surveyed Birmingham on Google Maps as well and was pretty surprised at how large it's gridded downtown is. The metro area looks quite nice actually, was not expecting that.

I'm generally quite well informed with Geography, but also misplaced Birmingham's location prior to viewing on Google Maps, I always associated it with the hot, swampy, coastal plain- however, it is located just a few hours due west of Atlanta.

I can see this becoming another southern boom town, it just a matter of time IMO. Huntsville is also in Alabama and is growing quite quickly, so we see it is not impossible for a state like Alabama to hit its stride.
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  #24  
Old Posted Apr 11, 2021, 6:40 PM
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Birmingham boomed during the Industrial Age. Prior to that, it was a series of individual small farming towns that merged when steel became a hot commodity and shifted their economies collectively to steel manufacturing and distribution. I personally love Birmingham’s potential, and if it can overcome the stigma of being in Alabama, it could become the next boom-town. It has much of the same natural beauty that caused places like Austin and Nashville to boom with a larger urban framework (which is actually quite walkable) but it doesn’t have quite the entertainment scene (or money) yet. It has hiking, but doesn’t have any water related amenities nearby. It can’t market itself really as a steel town, Pittsburg has that market cornered. It is the most quintessentially southern city in America without a distinctive local flavor or new south edge. In other words, it’s the only true major city of the rural black/white south.
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  #25  
Old Posted Apr 11, 2021, 6:46 PM
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Originally Posted by jtown,man View Post
Thanks.

From Googlemaps it looks like the downtown to UAB core area is quite large and has a lot of potential, but are there a decent amount of older traditional neighborhoods that are booming also?
The nicer traditional neighborhoods are mostly east of downtown, separated from the urban core by a freeway. I wouldn’t say they’re booming just yet, but they are very nice and areas like Avondale and Lakeside have a solid amount of development/gentrification. There is a greenway being developed now that will connect those areas with the core, which should be awesome.

Also, Mountain Brook and Homewood are suburbs just “over the mountain” to the south of the urban core. They are *very* nice, and Homewood has a growing, mixed-use downtown.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bossabreezes View Post
Wow- I surveyed Birmingham on Google Maps as well and was pretty surprised at how large it's gridded downtown is. The metro area looks quite nice actually, was not expecting that.

I'm generally quite well informed with Geography, but also misplaced Birmingham's location prior to viewing on Google Maps, I always associated it with the hot, swampy, coastal plain- however, it is located just a few hours due west of Atlanta.

I can see this becoming another southern boom town, it just a matter of time IMO. Huntsville is also in Alabama and is growing quite quickly, so we see it is not impossible for a state like Alabama to hit its stride.
Yes, Birmingham is very different topographically from the southern coastal plains/swamps. It’s nestled in the southern extensions of the Appalachian foothills and (to me at least) has a nicer variety of vegetation. Lots of very green, leafy valleys.
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  #26  
Old Posted Apr 11, 2021, 7:14 PM
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I've never been to Birmingham, but it might have the second best bones in the South (after New Orleans) based on streeviews like https://www.google.com/maps/@33.5168...7i16384!8i8192

On the other hand, I imagine city-state relations aren't great and it has a murder rate that makes Chicago seem safe. And streetviews like https://www.google.com/maps/@33.5123...7i16384!8i8192 are quite close to downtown...
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  #27  
Old Posted Apr 11, 2021, 8:23 PM
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I've never been to Birmingham, but it might have the second best bones in the South (after New Orleans) based on streeviews like https://www.google.com/maps/@33.5168...7i16384!8i8192
Yeah, no other large southern city even comes close to touching New Orleans in that category. I'd actually probably give the second spot to Richmond, with one of Memphis, Louisville, or Birmingham coming in a close third.
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  #28  
Old Posted Apr 11, 2021, 9:00 PM
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Originally Posted by BnaBreaker View Post
Yeah, no other large southern city even comes close to touching New Orleans in that category. I'd actually probably give the second spot to Richmond, with one of Memphis, Louisville, or Birmingham coming in a close third.
Does Atlanta have enough big old bones left in the core? I was looking at Columbia SC, they have a nice set up with the old core on one side of their Capitol building and the University of SC on the other side. That's a nice urban design, certainly not as large as other cities in the area though.
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  #29  
Old Posted Apr 11, 2021, 9:07 PM
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Originally Posted by BnaBreaker View Post
Yeah, no other large southern city even comes close to touching New Orleans in that category. I'd actually probably give the second spot to Richmond, with one of Memphis, Louisville, or Birmingham coming in a close third.
Psh, Richmond and Louisville barely qualify as southern.
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  #30  
Old Posted Apr 12, 2021, 3:02 AM
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Originally Posted by bossabreezes View Post
I can see this becoming another southern boom town, it just a matter of time IMO. Huntsville is also in Alabama and is growing quite quickly, so we see it is not impossible for a state like Alabama to hit its stride.
Alabama is not that different than Tennessee which hasn’t impacted Nashville’s meteoric rise as a boom town. On the same note many of the challenges Memphis faces to growing faster and building up its economy are also present in Birmingham. In the past decade Birmingham metro has only seen 2.77% population growth similar to Memphis at 2.28%. Compare that to Nashville at 17.5% growth. Even nearby Little Rock, although smaller but with similar challenges, had 6.09% growth.
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  #31  
Old Posted Apr 13, 2021, 10:12 PM
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Salt Lake has all of the ingredients for success: state capital, big research university near downtown, good existing public transit, totally-rebuilt international hub airport with direct downtown rail connection, incredible geography, low taxes, massive green public parks, and very high numbers of college graduates and foreign language speakers.

I think what holds it back on the national scene compared to places like Austin and Nashville is its reputation as the capital of the LDS church. This is actually ironic at this point because it has a reputation among Mormons as the capital of the left-wing gentiles of Utah. Mormons definitely started SLC but they certainly lost the war for it (a story for another time!).

That's not to say SLC isn't booming right now though. The city is unrecognizable at street level compared to when it hosted the Winter Olympics in 2002. The way things are going, it will be unrecognizable again when it hosts the Olympics again in a decade.
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  #32  
Old Posted Apr 13, 2021, 10:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Atlas View Post
Salt Lake has all of the ingredients for success: state capital, big research university near downtown, good existing public transit, totally-rebuilt international hub airport with direct downtown rail connection, incredible geography, low taxes, massive green public parks, and very high numbers of college graduates and foreign language speakers.

I think what holds it back on the national scene compared to places like Austin and Nashville is its reputation as the capital of the LDS church. This is actually ironic at this point because it has a reputation among Mormons as the capital of the left-wing gentiles of Utah. Mormons definitely started SLC but they certainly lost the war for it (a story for another time!).

That's not to say SLC isn't booming right now though. The city is unrecognizable at street level compared to when it hosted the Winter Olympics in 2002. The way things are going, it will be unrecognizable again when it hosts the Olympics again in a decade.
Great food and reasonable climate too. But my impression is that SLC is geographically small and surrounded by LDSland as soon as you step a few miles from the U...
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  #33  
Old Posted Apr 13, 2021, 11:32 PM
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Originally Posted by SIGSEGV View Post
Great food and reasonable climate too. But my impression is that SLC is geographically small and surrounded by LDSland as soon as you step a few miles from the U...
The general rule is that the farther south you go, the more LDS it becomes. The northern half of the SL valley is more diverse and eccentric, the southern half is a gradient toward the modern day barycenter of LDS culture that is Utah County and Provo.
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  #34  
Old Posted Apr 15, 2021, 4:47 AM
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Originally Posted by jtown,man View Post
Thanks.

From Googlemaps it looks like the downtown to UAB core area is quite large and has a lot of potential, but are there a decent amount of older traditional neighborhoods that are booming also?
The West side of town (generally anything west of I-65) is still stuggling, but is certainly seeing a few bright spots. The West side figures promentantly along the new BRT line (if it ever begins construction), which would be a boon for the area.

Lower class areas seen the most activity are areas easy of downtown. I'd say right now, the lower class areas seeing the biggest boom are neighborhoods aroudn East Lake, Roebuck, Huffman, and Crestwood (not necessarily low class, but definitley used to be solidly blue collar). Other Magic City folk, please fill in other neighborhoods I may be leaving out.

EDIT: All of this explains the huge boom we've been seeing in home buying and commercial construction. Ever since the pandemic started, things have not quieted down.
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Last edited by SpawnOfVulcan; Apr 15, 2021 at 5:14 AM.
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  #35  
Old Posted May 1, 2021, 5:22 AM
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Originally Posted by IluvATX View Post
The only reason anyone lives in Jacksonville is for work...any of those cities at the top really. I lived in Birmingham once....for my job. I think the only reason these oddball cities are at the the top is because work send them there. Also Jacksonville’s skyline.
Six generation Floridian here! I actually work in Orlando (virtually mostly since the pandemic) but live in Jacksonville and have no desire to move back to Central Florida. I prefer Jax for it's Gullah Geechee heritage, history, diversity and culture. Great seafood, great Black community and still in Florida. Downtown could be better but I'm past the stage in life of measuring quality of life of a community on the pros and cons of the central business district. The things I can't find here that I enjoy are only a cheap, short drive or flight away these days.
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  #36  
Old Posted May 3, 2021, 12:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Nomad9 View Post
The nicer traditional neighborhoods are mostly east of downtown, separated from the urban core by a freeway. I wouldn’t say they’re booming just yet, but they are very nice and areas like Avondale and Lakeside have a solid amount of development/gentrification. There is a greenway being developed now that will connect those areas with the core, which should be awesome.

Also, Mountain Brook and Homewood are suburbs just “over the mountain” to the south of the urban core. They are *very* nice, and Homewood has a growing, mixed-use downtown.



Yes, Birmingham is very different topographically from the southern coastal plains/swamps. It’s nestled in the southern extensions of the Appalachian foothills and (to me at least) has a nicer variety of vegetation. Lots of very green, leafy valleys.
I've been paying attention to Birmingham for quite some time. It has a lot of potential and a very good, competent, good government mayor. (Who is also very progressive). The natural setting is very pretty and there are a handful of really nice close in street-car type suburbs (Mountain Brook, Homewood, Vestavia Hills). For the longest time, it was the only Southern City (other than Atlanta) with a Saks (from what I recall) only its Saks was downtown and Atlanta's was in a mall somewhere (probably Phipps Plaza). I use that as an anecdote to convey that not everyone (including Saks) thinks of it as a backwater and there is a good amount of regional wealth.

I've always thought of Richmond as the place I'd go if I tired of a really big city but still wanted some big city amenities, but increasingly I've been thinking of Birmingham in the same way.
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