Atlanta

447,841 (city), 5.5 million (metro)

Eastern

Humid subtropical (four distinct seasons and generous precipitation year-round)

Inside Tips About Atlanta

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Founded in the 1800s at the intersection of two railroad lines, Atlanta has long been a center of commerce. The railroad lines zero milepost was at a stake driven into the ground in what is now the Five Points neighborhood. The location was originally dubbed Terminus. Next came the name Thrasherville, after a local merchant. Then, it was named Marthasville in honor of the governors daughter. Later, an engineer for the Georgia Railroad suggested naming the town Atlantica-Pacifica in a glowing example of why engineers should not be allowed to name things. It was shortened to Atlanta and has stuck ever since the city was incorporated as such in 1847.

Dubbed a city too busy to hate in the 1960s, Atlanta is often thought of as a city of contradictions—a center of progressive thought acting as the hub of a conservative and structured south. Considered a model of civil rights successes and progress, its home to countless rappers, Turner Networks, the CW, Tyler Perry Studios, and lots of pro sports. Its also the transportation hub for the southeastern U.S., and Hartsfield-Jackson has the distinction of being the worlds busiest airport.

Neighborhoods

Living In and Around Atlanta

In Downtown Atlanta, Five Points is at the center of the city. Its a neighborhood of tourists, historical landmarks, old streets and brick walls preserved from the old days. Homes here sell for slightly below the average. Little Five Points, on the other hand, comes with hipster appeal. A busy neighborhood with hip boutiques, restaurants and bars, this is a place where your tattoos and piercings won’t get a second look.

The Old Fourth Ward is a formerly seedy neighborhood. You know that gentrification is happening when you can get a nickname like O4W. New restaurants, bars and businesses are moving in. If you like an eclectic neighborhood and a wide variety of people, O4W could be the place. Cabbagetown is a smaller neighborhood with older homes and lofts. It had also gone to seed, but gentrification began to happen in the 80s. Like O4W, youll find eclecticism and variety rule. Like Victorian houses? Inman Park could make you happy. Relatively expensive real estate, a neighborhood security patrol, festivals and a neighborhood flag give the place a more upscale, proud-to-call-it-my-neighborhood vibe.

Midtown is home to many Atlanta businesses, as well as the citys movers and shakers. Bordering the downtown financial district and Buckhead, Midtown also has the High Museum of Art, the Atlanta Symphony, and the 189-acre Piedmont Park.

The Streetcar Suburbs are the earliest Atlanta suburbs, so called because they date to a time when streetcars made it viable to move a little further out of the city. Kirkwood, on Atlantas east side, is one of the originals. Listed in the National Register of Historic Places, Kirkwood is filled with historic Craftsman and Victorian homes and is a prestigious and pricey neighborhood. Another is Virginia Highland. A neighborhood which had slipped into decay, it has rebounded in part because of the Beltway Project. Like Kirkwood, Virginia Highland has historic homes, mainly from the early 20th century. There are also bars, shops and restaurants. Readers of Atlantas erstwhile alternative weekly paper, Creative Loafing, voted Virginia Highland Best Overall Neighborhood, probably because of the new vibe and the artsy feel.

Grant Park is one of Atlantas most important historic neighborhoods. A Victorian-era suburb with some of Atlantas oldest parks—including 131-acre Grant Park, home to the notable Zoo Atlanta. Grant Park homes can span a range from affordable to almost a million. If you like the idea of living in history, Grant Park provides that opportunity.

Like high-end shopping? Yay, Buckhead. Like traffic congestion? Again, yay Buckhead! Affluent, uptown Buckhead has a dense financial and business district, high-rise office buildings, hotels, condos and big houses, and suburban areas with a more rural feel and plenty of trees. Buckhead is where the swells live. Forbes has called it the nations ninth wealthiest ZIP code, and the Robb Report ranks it among the nations “10 Top Affluent Communities” for its big homes, great shopping and excellent restaurants.

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