Fort Smith, Arkansas
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+2.7% since 2010
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Fort Smith is a small town with old-west flavor located in a flat valley along the Arkansas River. Major industries include light manufacturing and natural gas, and major employers include the nearby Fort Chaffee military installation. The economy is steady with somewhat above average job-growth prospects, and the low Cost of living and median home price are probably among the biggest attractions.
The downtown has some historic sites and districts. However, there isn’t much to do. The town, like many in the region, mixes a Southern and Western feel and culture. Aside from outdoor recreation in the Ozarks just to the north, most amenities and city services are available in Tulsa, 120 miles to the west. A variety of services and activities are also available in the Fayetteville-Springdale-Rogers area 50 miles north.
Local terrain is hilly with flat, fertile rivers and creek bottoms. The Ozarks rise to 1,500 feet in the north and 3,000 feet in the south with areas of national forest and mountain lakes. The climate is continental with four seasons. The warm summers are suitable for growing fruit and wine grapes. Winters are mild with average daytime temperatures above freezing.
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