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There are many reasons why Richmond, VA is considered one of the best places to live in the U.S. Housing costs are just below the national average, unemployment is low, and the winters are mild.
But the city itself also attracts a lot of young people thanks to its colleges and has an entrepreneurial spirit. Here are seven reasons why moving to Richmond, VA may be just what you need to transform your life.
A River Runs Through It
The James River is definitely Richmond’s focal point, not only adding ambiance but serving as a place to kayak, swim, or fish. If you like kayaking to get adventurous, know that the James is the only river in the U.S. where whitewater rapid conditions exist within a city’s limits.
There are plenty of walking trails to explore within the James River Park System and you can picnic, sunbathe, or just people-watch.
It’s also the place to be to catch Memorial Day and Independence Day fireworks.
A Robust Economy
Richmond’s projected job growth during the next day is just over 37% which is higher than the national average of 33.5%, and its labor force hit an all-time high in 2019.
The city is home to several corporations from the manufacturing, finance, and food industries. Amazon, Tyson, Capital One, UPS, and Bank of America are among the city’s top employers.
Several employers in the Richmond region were named as top workplaces based on leadership, work-life balance, and career advancement opportunities. The city also has no shortage of small businesses, so no matter what kind of employment you seek
There’s Always Live Entertainment
Whether you love watching live music performances or auto racing, Richmond has you covered. The National is the city’s most beloved venue for live shows, often featuring up-and-coming artists and bands.
If you wish you could go back to the ’80s, don’t miss The Legwarmers, whose setlist pays homage to the decade of decadence.
Love catching live acts outdoors? You’ll definitely want to visit Innsbrook After Hours, a seasonal concert pavilion that seats 6,500. If you have a need for speed, Richmond Raceway is where NASCAR drivers compete every weekend.
It May Be the Craft Beer Capital of the World
If you like craft beer, you’ll love Richmond. The city’s first craft beer brewery, Legend Brewing Company, opened in 1994. Since then about two dozen more brought their operations to Richmond and surrounding towns.
Check out the Center of the Universe Brewing Company with its massive indoor space that houses pinball machines and red booths for a retro vibe. Or sample any of the 36 beers found at quirky Strangeways Brewing, then sample from the food trucks that regularly set up shop outside the brewery.
Then make a stop at Garden Grove Brewery Company, which incorporates herbs, fruits, and veggies cultivated from their own garden into their brews.
Anytime you get hungry, just stop into any of Richmond’s numerous restaurants and cafes. You’ll also encounter plenty of bakeries to enjoy a croissant or take home a loaf of freshly baked bread.
Unusual Architecture and Sculpture
Richmond is home to several architectural oddities unlike any found in any other American city. First, there’s the Egyptian Building found on East Marshall Street.
With its imposing double columns, it looks like an homage to King Tut and not the School of Medicine at Virginia Commonwealth University, which is what it’s used for today. The building has been on the National Registry of Historic Places since 1969.
Next, there’s the Markel Building which has the distinction of being named one of the world’s ugliest buildings. A foil-wrapped baked potato actually served as its inspiration. Architect Haig Jamgochian hand-hammered the aluminum “wrapping” himself.
If you’re craving more weirdness, check out the Grand Kugel, a spherical stone ball that moves or stops with the slightest human touch despite weighing 29 tons.
The secret is a thin layer of water that is forced into the concave cup the boulder resides in. You can find the Kugel outside The Science Museum of Virginia.
Perfect Proximity to Other Attractions
Richmond is smack middle in the state of Virginia, which means it’s located right off of Interstates 95 and 64. While there are plenty of things to do downtown, there is no shortage of attractions if you want to venture out of town.
Washington, D.C., the Blue Ridge Mountains, and Virginia Beach are all a two-hour drive away. Also, if you’re traveling for business, you can easily find corporate housing in Washington DC or in any other place nearby,
Traffic is also less congested in the area compared to other parts of the country, which gives commuters more free time to enjoy extra-curricular activities after work.
So when you hire that moving company, coming into town should be a snap. And Richmond International Airport is only ten minutes away from the downtown area.
From museums to nature trails to amusement parks, the Richmond area is a great place to raise a family. Let’s start with the amusement parks—Great Wolf Lodge, Busch Gardens, and Kings Dominion are all nearby.
For more outdoor fun, check out Riverside Outfitters which offers tubing, cycling, rafting, and a summer camp, too.
Being part of a historic area, Richmond has plenty of museums including The Science Museum of Virginia, a children’s museum, and the Virginia Museum of Fine Art.
If you like exploring more unique historical artifacts, you don’t want to miss the Poe Museum which is dedicated to Edgar Allan Poe and his works.
Then there’s the Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden where 50 acres of outdoor beauty beckons visitors year-round. During the holidays, the gardens are illuminated with thousands of festive twinkling lights.
There are also so many great places to shop, including chocolate and candy stores for the kids.
Moving to Richmond, VA Can Change Your Life
As you can see, moving to Richmond, VA may be the best life change you could make. It’s a city with a lot to offer that doesn’t feel like a congested urban area.
And once you do move there, check out our Home Improvement posts for advice on sprucing up your new Richmond home!