Lovely Terrain & Climate, Slow Pace w/ High Crime
Tulsa is a lovely city in a beautiful setting with attractive qualities, but lacks the economic and cultural progress it desperately needs. Once the oil capital of the US, residual traces of the growth spurt it experienced during the oil boom still exist. Highlights of Tulsa worth mentioning are wonderful Art Deco architecture located in the heart of downtown, and the historical and famous Route 66 traverses the city allowing visitors a glimpse into the past.
If you enjoy casinos and a slow-paced lifestyle, and can tolerate menacing crime, then Tulsa is okay. Clapton's song "Living on Tulsa Time" still applies today... not much has changed in Tulsa as it has experienced little growth.
Not progressive... backward. I am not referring to political progressivism, but literally progressive advancement. Tattoo Art just became legal. They just now are beginning to sell wine in grocery stores. Highest proportion of young, unwed women impregnated to obtain government assistance. Methamphetamine and other drug abuse is rampant. However, QT (Quick Trip) is everywhere :) This is good.
Beautiful terrain is made up of small rolling hills. The region is known as "Green Country" within the state and to locals due to lush green landscape. Steady annual rainfall. Climate is highly conducive to outdoor recreation and scenic retreats. Summers get hot, but not unbearable. The wind blows offering a cool breeze, and relief can be found in the shade... unlike in hot subtropical climates. Actually experience four seasons. Moderate to severe winters include snow and occasional ice. Downside is area is prone to tornadoes and strong, threatening thunderstorms which often wreak havoc causing damage to homes, and homeowners repeatedly suffer inconvenient and bothersome power outages.
Route 66 remains a historic landmark and offers nostalgia. Native American culture is refreshingly prominent and historically preserved.
Culture can be found in the downtown art district, which has been recently renovated to include Guthrie Green - a park and music venue - and at the famous Cain's Ballroom where legendary musicians/artists perform.
The Philbrook Museum is a desirable destination for European art lovers. Villa Philbrook (Philips Oil) is a 72-room Mediterranean style mansion which revisits the wealth Tulsa once accrued. Nearby are both the Linnaeus and Rose Gardens.
The Gilcrease Museum of Native American Art and Western History is located in Osage Hills, west of downtown Tulsa. The Gilcrease Museum truly is a treasure. It is home to numerous works - most notably CM Russell, Frederic Remington (paintings and bronze statues) and Central & South American artifacts. Currently, the largest Native American art collection in the United States is housed here. The Gilcrease also partnered with the University of Tulsa (TU) to create an elite Masters of Museum Science and Studies program.
Quaint and charming Utica Square offers sophisticated and high-end retail shops and eateries in a refreshingly beautiful setting.
Higher Education institutions are reputable, accredited and
No professional sports reside in Tulsa, therefore college sports rule. (Good luck ignoring this one!)
No shortage of medical physicians in the region. Healthcare is mediocre although it improves within the University Healthcare System.
Tulsa is a good place for retirees and/or you have the luxury of traveling.
Slow and backward/Lacks fast economic growth.
Highways and roadways are absolutely awful. The roads are littered with pot holes... two lanes instead of four. No central loop around the city makes getting to a destination impossible without treading through stop light after stop light (stoplights just now became synchronized), or jumping from one tiny, small stretch of highway to another connecting highway (poor ergonomics). Poor ergonomics creates an impediment to attracting travelers and tourists and it will cost you thousands in car repairs - a giant nuisance.
Sales Tax is relatively intrusive. In this respect, the sales tax may potentially exceed affordability in the long run. Substantial amount of tax revenue comes from Sales Tax, not Property Tax.
Small town mentality... cliquesh. Difficult to penetrate established social circles.
Professional opportunity is limited, as it lacks versatility and opportunities for growth. Competition is stiff for moderately skilled workers and blue collar jobs.
*(socioeconomic classes are not integrated well, as the city is extremely segregated).
Last, but not least, CRIME...
Gangs and gang activity have infiltrated the entire community. Gangs are around every corner. Residents in living further south of town experience less of this criminal element, but they still exist - do not kid yourself. Unfortunately, immigrants who call Tulsa home are innocent targets for gangs, perpetuating unreported crime. Still,Tulsa hosts dangerous crime statistics - Burglary, assault, narcotics, rape, murder you got it. Fear it all in Tulsa. Sadly, law enforcement in Tulsa is losing their battle with criminals, as well as the rampant illicit drug trade and abuse. On a personal note and as an animal lover, I would be remiss to not include the poor animal welfare and education. Irresponsible breeders and puppy mills are prevalent in surrounding rural areas. It's ignorance at its best.
Most alarming, there is a large police presence, yet crime is increasing. Tulsa's crime rate is disproportionately high for its size and population. BEWARE! Protect yourself and don't get complacent in Tulsa. No joke! Please do consider investing in an alarm system and exterior lighting for your home.