has written 1 SperlingViews. Currently, DrZ is living in Blacksburg, VA and has a little something to say:
Blacksburg pros & cons Posted On: 11/21/2011 7:32:02 AM
Blacksburg is a very nice place overall, but like others has its pros and cons. It's a small, clean, quaint college town amid rural farmland and forested mountains. The downtown blocks recently received a nice face lift with brick paving, trees, and streetlamps, and are now a bit more pedestrian friendly. The town revolves around Virginia Tech. The university unabashedly invests heavily nowadays in name branding, marketing, and appearances, building a lavish new Visitor Center to impress parents and other investors. Hokie football also commands heavy money, attention, and traffic. In the fall and spring, town is full of mostly white privileged college students, their vehicles, and their driving habits. Holidays and summer are quieter. Arts and festivals are fairly well represented, considering the town size and tech bias of the university, and nearby Floyd county has excellent bluegrass. Townspeople in Blacksburg are generally liberal, friendly, and educated. Things get rural and poor quickly beyond town. Blacksburg lacks the cultural and ethnic diversity and urban vibe of larger towns and cities. Downtown has a handful of interesting local stores, but national franchises (Moes, Chipotle, Ritas, McD's, Coldwater Creek, Ann Taylor, Talbots, etc.) are gradually turning Blacksburg like the rest of the country into Anytown USA. Nearby Christiansburg (10 min away) already sold out to all the big box stores. About 45 minutes drive, Roanoke is the nearest larger town (not quite a city) and has an airport. Blacksburg is a good place to raise kids at was rated #1 in the nation in 2012 by Businessweek.com for Best Places to Raise Kids. However, it can be hard to find good daycare, with long waiting lists at the better university affiliated centers, and lots of turnover with college student sitters and daycare helpers. Other daycares in the region are being bought out by a profit-oriented CEO. There are lots of fitness centers and parks with plenty of outdoor recreation opportunities, a bit of a local green movement, and little pollution or crime.