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Why are you here?

Seabishop

Cyburbian
Messages
3,838
Points
25
People live near their hometown or move away for various reasons – job opportunities, family, quality of life, etc. Everybody’s story is different. Leaving home completely for a job is almost a rite of passage now for young professionals.

Wherever you are, why are you there? Do you intend on staying where you are now? What are the pros and cons of your decision to leave or stay?
 

donk

Cyburbian
Messages
6,970
Points
30
Reason I am where I am it seemed like a logical career decison and I was sold a bill of goods about the community.

I hope to leave shortly.

Only Con I can see is that I will have to cary the cost of my house for a year or so until it sells. Fortunately, that won't be too much $$$.

Pros of leaving, bookstores, restaurants, culture (the list is endless)
 

Zoning Goddess

Cyburbian
Messages
13,852
Points
39
I grew up around 10 miles from where I now live. I had lived in New England and Gainesvill FL in college, and then in a FL town about 2 hours from here. I moved back 8 years ago for a better job and to ditch the ex-.

Pros: no ex- around; better schools for kid; mall/bookstore/decent restaurants close by (not an hour away as before), better medical facilities, job advancement, fun stuff to do, closer to good beach, elderly mom just around the corner

Cons: My mom lives around the corner
 

NHPlanner

A shadow of my former self
Staff member
Moderator
Messages
9,945
Points
40
I live in Concord because it sits in relative easy driving distance to anything (job, entertainment, family, vacation spots) that I need. It's also on the northern cusp of where affordable housing is in NH, and any further south I would be spending well over 30% of my income on housing.

It's a small city, but still a city with a pretty vibrant downtown, it's walkable for the most part, and I grew up here.....and love it here....always have.
 

Planner Groupie

Cyburbian
Messages
173
Points
7
I'm still in the same state as I grew up in, just further north. I'm not sure why I'm still here. I have family here, and while saying they are the reason, just wouldn't be the truth. I'm here because there are no clear cut signs that I should be elsewhere.
 

otterpop

Cyburbian
Messages
6,655
Points
28
The path that led me to Helena, Montana was long, circuitous and in the end rewarding. I grew up in the Deep South, but wanted to live in the West for a long time. One day a friend decided to go on a car trip of the West. I told him I would tag along until we got to Montana.

I find a place in East Helena and loved Montana. Moved to Bozeman for a job. Moved to Missoula to go to cooking school. Cooked in Missoula for awhile, then went back to college. My second internship took me to Helena, Montana. Eventually I got a job in Ketchikan Alaska, but hated it there. I bided my time until I had some planning experience and found a job in Montana. So here I am again, in the Helena Valley. For the third time and loving it. Pretty soon we will have a house. Life is good.
 

SkeLeton

Cyburbian
Messages
4,853
Points
26
I am here... because I was born here, and have spent most of my life here (except 2 years when I went to the US), and I still live with my family.
Pros: I get free food and bed. I can live with my family. I like forests and here we have plenty.
Cons: It rains waaaay too much. I have to get outta here to study what I want (geography) and there aren't any decent cinemas here (yet)

Considering I'll probably end up in Santiago next year here goes the pro/con of it:
Pros: Good commerce, universities that have the career I want, certain places that are more like the "Developed world", Dunkin Donuts :p, It doesn't rain too much, and it's warmer.
Cons: I'm far from my family, Lots of crime, lots of shrubs instead of forests. The heat is too much in the summer, when it rains many parts get flooded.
 

SlaveToTheGrind

Cyburbian
Messages
1,446
Points
27
Because the wife wants to live here and be by her parents (7 miles away). I like it in Utah for the most part, but I would MUCH rather live in the Northwest or Alaska.

Pros:
The outdoor recreation, the mountains, mild winters compared to Minnesota.

Fly fishing 5 minutes from work.

Skiing 7 resorts within an hours drive. 283 inches this year with a 105 inch base at Brighton.

Excellent co-workers.

Clean communities with a relatively safe feeling.

Deserts to alpine geography.

Gambling at Wendover, NV, a few hours away.


Cons:
The 5% of the Mormon population who make living here almost unbearable.

Seperation of church and state? Ha! Good for a laugh.
 
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mendelman

Unfrozen Caveman Planner
Staff member
Moderator
Messages
13,915
Points
57
My wife and I moved to Chicago, because I just finished my MUP and she was starting law school at Depaul U.

Plus, in the Great Lakes region, if you want to be in the midst of real dynamic planning and have access to every type of built environment Metro Chicago is the place to be, IMHO.

The culutral amenities are endless, the access to the northern Great Lakes is easy, but it is still comfortably 'Middle America'.
 

BKM

Cyburbian
Messages
6,463
Points
29
I moved out here for job opportunities, the "California dream" thing. Planning jobs definitely pay more than Tennessee (sorry, Volunteers), even given the cost of living.

PROS:

Mild climate (usually-we got 2 inches of rain yesterday :(),

Landscape (I love the California landscapes)

Love the proximity to San Francisco, Berkeley, Sacramento, and the Napa Valley

Great cycling country

Fantastic urban parks system in the Bay Area.

My siblings have followed me out to California, so I now have family here, too!

CONS:

Vacaville is very "family-oriented" which is nice, but not "me."

I'd rather live in San Francisco or Berkeley (a more "urban" setting).

Population (and traffic) growth means many roads I used to enjoy bicycling on are now unusable.

Fairfield is one of THE traffic bottlenecks for the northern Bay Area now.

I am an easterner originally, and I get tired of the brown by August (a little bit of green would be nice)
 

GeogPlanner

Cyburbian
Messages
1,433
Points
25
...I'm still in my hometown because I just can't seem to leave. Everytime I have an opportunity to leave, something else sweeter entices me to stay. In college, I was dead set on going to archie school in New England when I got into RPI near home. When I transferred out of RPI b/c I hated architorture, I planned on spending a semester at UAlbany but then I took a great urban planning class :) When grad school came around, I was planning on going away again but I was offered a spot in a program without having to do GREs. I landed interships and jobs in town. And this job is good and that's why I am still here.

Although, I'd love to get away to New England if the right job came around...

Plus, I like it around here! It's not bad, but 25+ years and I am ready for change...
 

H

Cyburbian
Messages
2,850
Points
24
I am in Miami because when applying for entry-level planning jobs out of planning school this seemed to be the most interesting of the offers (both in terms of job description and place to live). I don’t want to say the other places I considered, but they were all in the southeastern US.

I do not plan on staying here and moved here with the intention of only staying 2 years (which is ¾ up). The reasons to move are simply the high cost of living and the low ceiling at my current small consulting firm whom I work for (I knew this coming in so it has been fine thus far). Of course there are other planning jobs here, but there is another realm of planning I am looking to get into of which I don’t want to broadcast on the forum at the present time. Plus, this is not where I want to raise my family. I am too much of a southern boy and my wife is too much of a southern gal so we need to move north, back to the south. :)

Luckily, my wife is an elementary school teacher and can find work practically anywhere we move. She doesn’t mind moving either, as long as it is during the summer between classes (so if something were to arise I would have to move in front of her while she finished up). I am lucky in this regard to my flexibility to move. Plus there are no kids yet.

Although, we both have completely loved living in Miami this past year in half!! :-D
 

Gedunker

Moderating
Staff member
Moderator
Messages
11,491
Points
41
A Jersey native, this job opened up just as I completed my thesis at BSU. Seeing it was a stone's throw across the river from Louisville, I figured it wasn't some Hoosier outpost and I'd have at least some access to culture and recreation. My plan was to get my ticket punched here in 3-4 years then head out west to Western Montana, Idaho, or eastern Oregon or Washington to settle in.

Then I met the future Mrs. Gedunker and in-laws (crazy -- but lovely -- Hoosier natives); the car payments; the mortgage; the little legacies (a/k/a tax deductions); the Catholic-school tuition payments; the 4 cats; and, the great old American Foursquare on Main Street that they'll carry me out of someday (in the distant future, I hope).

The job's generalist nature usually keeps me satisfied and not key-holed doing some repetitive task. I guess I'll be staying.
 

martini

Cyburbian
Messages
678
Points
19
I'm in the town I grew up in. I've managed to escape a few times(Colorado, Utah, South Dakota, Minneapolis), but somewhere, I've got a rubber band tied to me. I keep bouncing back. I went to school here 'cause it was free undergrad(mom works there), and grad school was na easy, no GRE entry. I've landed this job/internship, but it won't be able to keep me here. I'm looking to get out. My wife works as an OT with 10+ yrs of experience, so she can find work literally anywhere, and we're both more than willing to move.

Where? Anyplace with a nice topography. I NEED hills. We're looking in the northeast, and the rocky west(Black HIlls are included there too). Maybe even the St. Louis area, but that's really as far south as I wanna get.
 
Messages
3,690
Points
27
Ooh - good thread, Seabishop.

Rob and I met in Grad School at Clemson, lived and worked down there for a while, but then moved back to upstate NY to be closer to our families, especially since we were getting ready to start our own family. We were both lucky enough to find planning jobs in the same market, and will very likely be here till retirement.

Pros: Close to family, we love our jobs, Albany is really very nicely geographically located - close to Boston, NYC and the Adirondacks.

Cons: We live in the most stereotypical suburban sprawl town. No walking anywhere, no downtown, giant suburban school system - the antithesis of where i ever wanted to live before we moved here. but the things you do for family.
 

Cardinal

Cyburbian
Messages
10,080
Points
34
I grew up in the Chicago suburbs and spent my summers in southern Wisconsin. When I first went off to college in a town of 50,000 I did not like it, but after a time began to appreciate that it was much like the nice suburb I grew up in before growth swallowed it whole. Moving around with the Army finished severing any ties to Chicago. After grad school I moved back for less than a year and hated it. Madison and Wisconsin always appealed to me so I found a job there. Two years later I was offered a much better position with the stipulation that I move to the community. It is not bad. I feel as if I live in the country. Heavy traffic means more than three cars in a row, you can appreciate the night skies, it is quiet and pleasant all around. On the other hand, any shopping usually means Wal-Mart or a long drive, my social life is still in Madison, and the opportunities here are pretty limiting. There are plenty of good opportunities left in the job, but I feel it is getting to be time for me to move on.
 

Rumpy Tunanator

Cyburbian
Messages
4,473
Points
25
Lets see, I was born here, lived in the sticks not to far from here as kid, moved to Picksberg PA after high school, dropped out of school there and delivered pizzas and worked in bars and restaurants for 3 years and then decided to go back to school in Buffalo.

Pros- Great Arcitecture, cool summers with the lake breeze, mild winters with some snow, low cost of living and great housing prices, close to some family members I like, lots of ammenities, close to canadian cities and east coast cities, as well as other great lakes cities, bars close at 4 am, great potential for adaptive reuse of buildings, no traffic problems (10 minutes to the falls), 5 second rule when traffic signals turn red, etc....

Cons- Politicians are inept, state taxes are highest in the country, job prospects are few (unless somebody dies), Mad Crow Disease;), NYS smoking ban (although not all bars comply), declining population while sprawl continues in the suburbs, etc...

Probally stick around if I can get my plan off the ground. I've lived in and visited other cities and for some strange reason I am stuck on this city.
 

steveanne

Member
Messages
176
Points
7
Born and raised in Rochester, NY. Left the city (like many others my age) due to lack of jobs in my field. Moved to Orlando, FL. Loved the weather, but not so fond of the roaches and lizards. Met a Chicago girl. Moved in with her, yadda yadda yadda, I move to the suburbs of Chicago.

Pros: Gorgeous Chicago skyline, nice public transportation, lots of jobs, tons of stuff to do, great pizza

Cons: Any expressway or toll road, home prices are steep, abundance of freight trains clogging main roads, suburban NIMBY (but that's everywhere).
 

michaelskis

Cyburbian
Messages
20,175
Points
51
Hmmm lets see. I am here because I hated where I lived for the last year for almost every reason possible. I did not grow up there, nor where I live now. I am here because the people in the Mid West are my kind of people (I have always been one of them). As for the City and Area I live, I make good money, work with great people, enjoy the freedom and guidance that is offered to me with my job. My apartment right now has a fireplace, balcony, lake, state game land surrounding, and I could still walk to work in the summer. Although much of Portage is Older, or Younger, the city of Kalamazoo just to the north makes up for that with an abundance of Young Professionals, (aka Creative Class). I have almost every cultural, environmental, social, economic, educational, and physical incentive that I might need, at this point in my life with in 2 hours drive. (Portage is 2 hours from Detroit and Chicago!) Best part is I am with in 7 hours of my parents… not too close, yet not too far.

Oh and there a just a few beautiful women in the area… now, just to find a single one that catches my eye.

cons... we could get half a foot of snow one day, and it is gone the next.
 

Plannerbabs

Cyburbian
Messages
1,037
Points
23
I'm here because I grew up here, and some of my family and all of my husband's family are still here. I wanted to move away when I was a teenager (what teenager doesn't want to?), and probably will at some point years down the road to get a PhD, but for now it's interesting to be a part of the city's growth and development.
Pros: I know this city like the back of my hand, but it still surprises me with little nooks and crannies of interesting architecture or parks or funky strip malls. The museums are second to none. We have an excellent trail system. It's pretty easy to get around. Lots of older neighborhoods are revitalizing really well. We have some great restaurants and good places to hear music, and some pretty good independent book and music stores.
Cons: Humidity. Sprawl. Chain stores. But then, you get that anywhere, or at least the sprawl and the stores.
 

boiker

Cyburbian
Messages
3,889
Points
26
I am where I am because I needed a job after my layoff in Fall 2002. I'm excited to return to peoria, a real gritty mid-west town.

Anyway, Hoffman Estates, IL is a nice subruban community.. But not one I'd want to live in.

It's sprawling, there seems to be no long-term goals or focus for the community as a whole. It basically wants to be schaumburg. Everything schaumburg does we tend to follow with, only with less committment.

my job offered me great opportunities to explore commerical strip redevelopment, and a greater knowledge of plan approval and variance/special use process. Which was all great, but I'm extremely interested in completing the work put on hold by the layoff.

Hoffman Estates:

Pros: 45 min to Chicago, Top rated Library, schools, park districts, forest preserves, very little crime.

Cons: Cost of Living, subruban development, lack of destination or on the route attractions when walking., somewhat homogenous racial/economic make-up

Peoria:

Pros: Community center, recovering downtown, riverfront area, culture, minor league (read: affordable) sports, continued north side residential/commerical development., potential for redevelopment, historic housing stock., affordbale living, large peripherial parks

Cons: Questionable public school system, crime pockets, inner city stigmas, poor elected officials, lack of neighborhood/community parks.
 

Rem

Cyburbian
Messages
1,523
Points
23
I took a big jump in my career to come here 10 years ago. Kept getting new opportunities so haven't needed to move for career reasons. The family love it here. I'm staying.

Pros - great recreation facilities (beaches, lake, mountains, vineyards), all education through to University available, no traffic, close to Sydney but not too close (yet), plenty to achieve professionally. Lifestyle.

Cons - employment variety for the kids when they need it, immature development community, political monopoly taken for granted by other levels of government, car based urban area becoming worse (the town next door wants to pull up heavy rail into their centre and replace it with buses).

Downtown said:
Ooh - good thread, Seabishop.....but the things you do for family.
Welcome back Downtown. Did I miss the baby photo thread or are you still preparing it? I want the full story:-}.
 
Messages
7,649
Points
29
I am here because hubby is career military and, well, they sent us here. :)

I do intend to stay and there are many things I love about exactly where I am. I have had fantasies of getting rich, buying my apartment complex, and replacing the carpet with hard wood floors. Then it would be nigh Perfect.

However, Solano county is "The Asthma Capital of Northern California". (according to BKM and backed up by someone else I know, although I haven't done the research) For that reason alone, I sometimes wonder at the wisdom of staying in this exact spot, given that I and my oldest son both have respiratory problems. Sigh. I have thought of moving to either Marin County or Contra Costa county. But Marin County is out becaus of the mysteriously high incidence of breast cancer there. I have a very strong family history of breast cancer and taking care of my sister following her mastectomy in her early 40's makes me very much NOT want to go through that myself, thanks. (If you are curious, mom had it at age 50, her mom died of uterine cancer, mom has 3 sisters that I know of who had either breast or uterine cancer and one of them died from it, dad had colon cancer which is a risk factor for female relatives for uterine cancer, and my brother -- who was born paler than me and smokes and has a dark tan -- had skin cancer in his 30's. Can you say "cancer gene"?)

Also, if we moved to either Marin or Contra Costa, it would be a much longer drive to our doctors in Sacramento. And the military hospital here is a regional facility, serving 8 states, and a teaching hospital and one of the reasons I am actually alive to whine about this stuff. :) So living about 3 miles from it has been really critical to my life these past 3 years. Now that I have been "gifted a new body for xmas", I am optimistic that some of this stuff will be less critical some decade down the road. So I will keep an open mind. But, for now, Solano's The Word.

I have commented before on some of the things I like and dislike, etc, about Fairfield and Solano County. But as far as "the decision" (should I stay or should I go?), my health and the medical stuff is The Biggie. I can go to college from just about anywhere because I am in an online program. I chose a Master's degree program (for the future, after I finish my bachelor's) that also allows me flexibility on where to live because of the weekend condensed class format. I homeschool my kids and did so originally from an isolated military base. My husband is military and we move a lot and that caused me many personal obstacles to having the life I wanted. I did many years of research and planning to find a degree program, etc, that worked with our "have uniform, will travel" lifestyle. It is ironic that I have now adapted so well -- and now expect to put down roots after all those years of living like a gypsy and not really knowing how to make that a success for me, as an individual (I did well making it a success for the family, but I suffered).

My laptop is my life. If I can BREATHE and have electricity and internet service, hey, I can live "anywhere". Solano County is uniquely equipped to keep me breathing. Unless and until it becomes possible to keep breathing while living elsewhere, "The asthma capital of Northern California" is where you will continue to find me. Sigh. (Ever heard the phrase "catch-22"?)
 

octa girl

Member
Messages
20
Points
2
since going to college i have been on a constant journey through american and european cities. In the past ten years I have lived in 7 different cities. but the last moved was calculated to be somewhat more permenant. I picked an urban area that had a lot of diversity, near beautiful outdoors, and a fairly good climate. the hope is that all these factors will keep me settled for a longer period. i'd love to keep moving but it is hard to be a good planner (or neighbor) when so transient.
 

Floridays

Cyburbian
Messages
769
Points
21
I am here for a variety of reasons. Mainly, because I've always wanted to live in Florida, and when I earned my masters, I was married and had no choice as to my location. So...
1. proximity to beach
2. good pay/benefits
3. planning mecca here! Plus diversity of issues that I've experienced in planning that I may not have learned about elsewhere.
4. great people that I work with (I could tell that during my interview)
5. distance from family (and ex-husband). I love them, I miss them, but I also appreciate the miles apart. And that's why God invented the airplane.
 

Tranplanner

maudit anglais
Messages
7,918
Points
37
I'm in the city I grew up in, and couldn't be happier. My wife and I have talked about moving to another city - Ottawa would be the only other place in Canada that would fit the bill for the both of us (French enough for her, large enough for me). However, as time goes on I think that it looks less likely we'll be moving.
 

PlannerByDay

Cyburbian
Messages
1,827
Points
24
I am where I am because this is where I wantta be right now.

Work in the same city where I grew up, although I did work in a different city for a while.

Plan on moving out sometime in the future although no date or plan just yet, just that desire to move on to a new and different place.

Current location
PROS:
Good cultural events, easy access (within 1 hr) to the just about any outdoors/wilderness aras for all types of recreation, affordable living, lots of entertainment for someone my age, traffic is not bad,

CONS:
Cant think of to many, I really really like it here.
 

tsc

Cyburbian
Messages
1,905
Points
23
I live in my current area..first,, because I got a job here.. and continue to do so becuase I love the area. It is expensive, but planners are paid a lot more than other areas of the state. The area is also so lovely quasi rural but close enough to feel the beat of NYC. I am also close to the shore, the mountains, and the great Hudson River.
 

Bangorian

Member
Messages
198
Points
7
I left the endless sprawl and farmland development of Michigan and headed straight for maine - a place that looks, feels, and acts like much of America 50 years ago!
 

Bangorian

Member
Messages
198
Points
7
tsc said:
I live in my current area..first,, because I got a job here.. and continue to do so becuase I love the area. It is expensive, but planners are paid a lot more than other areas of the state. The area is also so lovely quasi rural but close enough to feel the beat of NYC. I am also close to the shore, the mountains, and the great Hudson River.
Whereabouts is that?

I lived in Beacon for a short time - an interesting experience to say the least.
 
Messages
3,690
Points
27
GeogPlanner said:
but what about...The Crossings ?? ;-) i need to go drive my ambulance through there sometime...
Ok, I maybe have exaggerated a bit about not being able to walk anywhere - the Crossings is actually .3 miles from my house and we walk there all the time in good weather (Jack and I just got back from a walk there with my mom actually.)

Rem - Thanks - good to be back. Check your mailbox.
 

Queen B

Cyburbian
Messages
3,178
Points
25
I tried to leave

My husband and I were both born and raised in KS.
A couple of years ago we were both unemployed and decided we were going to move away to a different state. we really had our hearts set on NW Ark. But try as we did we just couldn't seem to find jobs that would pay us to move.
And things got worse..
There was an opening in the very middle of the state, I had lived most of my life in the eastern half of KS so the thought of going where there were even fewer trees was a far cry from the hills of Arkansas.
So here I am planning in a huge flat floodplain.

Cons:
Lack of trees
Middle of nowhere
Not many people come to visit ( we love to entertain and have a huge home) but nobody we know comes this way!

Pros:
We both have great jobs
Our kids are within driving distance
But none of our relatives live to close.
The town is a great size and has alot of shopping and eating
We think our new old home is terrific and is 8 blocks from my work.
It's great for now, we may decide to retire somewhere else, but we are planning on settling in for now.
 

DecaturHawk

Cyburbian
Messages
880
Points
22
I came here because I wanted to lead a planning department in a stand-alone, non-suburban central city that wasn't too large or too small and that had some diversity in population, some history and a real downtown. I spent most of the first 10 years of my career in suburbs, and my last job before coming here was in a rural city of 10,000, so I was ready for this challenge. We've been here just over 3 years now. It (like so many other things) is not all it's cracked up to be, but it's not too bad. Central Illinois is not exactly the garden spot of the Midwest, but it's fairly close to my wife's family in the Chicago suburbs and not too far from my family in Iowa. I don't see myself staying more than a few more years, however; but if I move I will probably try to get a job with another Illinois city so I can finally get vested in the state retirement system (you need 8 consecutive years).

Pros: close to family, big enough to be interesting, relatively short drives to Chicago, St. Louis and Indy, short drives to nearby larger cities (Springfield, Bloomington/Normal, Champaign/Urbana, Peoria), good family town, nice library, fairly good arts scene for a small city, some nice bike trails, cheap but good quality housing.

Cons: negative attitude amongst the natives, lots of citizen whining (but that's everywhere, right?), not a lot of great restaurants or retail choices, lack of Volvo dealers or mechanics, flat, flat, flat.
 

biscuit

Cyburbian
Messages
3,904
Points
25
Not suprisingly I'm here for a girl.
We starting dating our senior year in college but had to seperate not to long after graduation becuase she had to move back home to SW Pennsylvania. I spent the rest of the summer surfing, partying and making trips up to see her. That fall I took a job in Virginia where we took turns visiting each other every other weekend. After a year of this long distance mess I decided I wanted to make a go at a REAL relationship and moved up here. Almost two years later I'm engaged and enjoying my life amongst the Yankees.

Pros and Cons of where I live...

Pros:
-Great job with unbeatable benefits
-Wonderful city with great neighborhoods friendly people and excellent entertainment opportunities. I can't tell if it's a small big city of really big small town.
-Relative low cost of living compared to other places as large
-Fiancees family is only ab hour away.

Cons:
-Fiancee's family is only an hour away ;-)
-Too far from my old friends and family, especially now that any day now I'm going to be an uncle for the first time.
- I've never before lived in a community or city where the biggest civic boosters are the transplants, not the locals.
-Byzantine government structure
 

Seabishop

Cyburbian
Messages
3,838
Points
25
I've started to look longingly at out of state job ads but such a move would be bad in pretty much every aspect but my own job satisfaction.
 
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