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What is the Most Underrated City in TN?


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Poll: What is the Most Underrated City in TN? (61 member(s) have cast votes)

Which City is the Most Underrated?

  1. Johnson City (14 votes [22.95%])

    Percentage of vote: 22.95%

  2. Cleveland (3 votes [4.92%])

    Percentage of vote: 4.92%

  3. Jackson (17 votes [27.87%])

    Percentage of vote: 27.87%

  4. Murfreesboro (12 votes [19.67%])

    Percentage of vote: 19.67%

  5. Clarksville (11 votes [18.03%])

    Percentage of vote: 18.03%

  6. Cookeville (4 votes [6.56%])

    Percentage of vote: 6.56%

Vote Guests cannot vote

#1 Justiceham

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Posted 22 August 2006 - 02:04 AM

Which one of these cities do you think is often overlooked? (other? please explain)

Edited by Justiceham, 22 August 2006 - 02:15 AM.


 

#2 miami1855

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Posted 22 August 2006 - 08:24 AM

It's a toss up between Clarksville and Jackson. Clarksville, to be the fifth largest city in the state, gets overlooked on these boards. Also, Jackson is a booming town as well.

#3 fieldmarshaldj

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Posted 22 August 2006 - 08:27 AM

Which one of these cities do you think is often overlooked? (other? please explain)


I went with Jackson, though I was also torn between Clarksville and Murfreesboro. Cookeville is too small to be in a category with these other towns. Johnson City is also a strong contender, but we probably overlook it even more than the other places because there isn't much representation for it on this board. I almost consider it to be Baja Virginia. :lol:

#4 Fallingwater

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Posted 22 August 2006 - 09:13 AM

Which one of these cities do you think is often overlooked? (other? please explain)


I don't think Murfreesboro is overlooked at all. Murfreesboro and its recent and rapid growth gets some major publicity and press from the Nashville media.

Quite frankly, Johnson City, Cleveland and Jackson are places outside my Middle Tennessee region and are therefore, in a sense, outside my consciousness and my ability to judge since I never venture to these towns.

Cookville only has 28,000 people. How much are we supposed to look?

I think if you want a town vastly overlooked, underestimated and vastly under-represented then Clarksville would be my choice. I do not think it resides in Nashville's collective conscience and there are many, even in Murfreesboro, who are surprised to learn Clarksville is the larger of the two. Clarksville's press tends to center on various heinous acts of criminality. What Clarksville news made the Nashville papers recently other than the Titans Training Camp? Let's see; A Clarksville man was found dead in Kentucky with multiple gunshot wounds, his body allegedly dumped there after a gang related drive-by did him in in Clarksville. Uhm, one or two people have been found dead in Hotels - foul play is suspected. A man picked up a girl at a nightclub and she asked him to drive downtown where two men dragged him out of his car and stabbed him 12 times - the girl might have been in on the crime. Clarksville is a great town but that is the press it gets. What seems to go unnoticed to many is that Clarksville is still growing rapidly and has made the rounds in all those National "Places to live; Places to do business" polls and articles. She is, arguably, the most slighted city on the list.

There is perhaps one way in which Clarksville has been recognized above at least the other Middle Tennessee choices (of course, I could be mistaken); The Interstates running through Nashville label certain cities as being the next "major" municipality on that Interstate. I-40 West mentions Memphis as being the next "major" destination. This does not recognize Jackson. I-40 East mentions Knoxville; This does not recognize Cookville. I-24 East mentions Chattanooga. This does not recognize Murfreesboro. Clarksville did manage to replace St. Louis on the I-24 West signs although it is shared in some locales.

Edited by Fallingwater, 22 August 2006 - 09:44 AM.


#5 frankliner

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Posted 22 August 2006 - 09:59 AM

I voted Clarksville. It has a nicer downtown than most people that I talk to give it credit for. And their riverfront redevelopment currently is on par Nashville's, lol. I think most people think the sprawl out on Wilma Rudolph Boulevard when they think Clarksville, not the nice downtown/riverfront.

#6 flith

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Posted 22 August 2006 - 10:21 AM

I don't think Murfreesboro is overlooked at all. Murfreesboro and its recent and rapid growth gets some major publicity and press from the Nashville media.

Quite frankly, Johnson City, Cleveland and Jackson are places outside my Middle Tennessee region and are therefore, in a sense, outside my consciousness and my ability to judge since I never venture to these towns.

Cookville only has 28,000 people. How much are we supposed to look?

I think if you want a town vastly overlooked, underestimated and vastly under-represented then Clarksville would be my choice. I do not think it resides in Nashville's collective conscience and there are many, even in Murfreesboro, who are surprised to learn Clarksville is the larger of the two. Clarksville's press tends to center on various heinous acts of criminality. What Clarksville news made the Nashville papers recently other than the Titans Training Camp? Let's see; A Clarksville man was found dead in Kentucky with multiple gunshot wounds, his body allegedly dumped there after a gang related drive-by did him in in Clarksville. Uhm, one or two people have been found dead in Hotels - foul play is suspected. A man picked up a girl at a nightclub and she asked him to drive downtown where two men dragged him out of his car and stabbed him 12 times - the girl might have been in on the crime. Clarksville is a great town but that is the press it gets. What seems to go unnoticed to many is that Clarksville is still growing rapidly and has made the rounds in all those National "Places to live; Places to do business" polls and articles. She is, arguably, the most slighted city on the list.

There is perhaps one way in which Clarksville has been recognized above at least the other Middle Tennessee choices (of course, I could be mistaken); The Interstates running through Nashville label certain cities as being the next "major" municipality on that Interstate. I-40 West mentions Memphis as being the next "major" destination. This does not recognize Jackson. I-40 East mentions Knoxville; This does not recognize Cookville. I-24 East mentions Chattanooga. This does not recognize Murfreesboro. Clarksville did manage to replace St. Louis on the I-24 West signs although it is shared in some locales.



The cities listed on interstate signs are called Control Cities. When the interstates were laid out the control cities were usually the next metro area, or where the interstate begins/ends or intersects another interstate. I think control cities are only updated to reflect major population changes.

Edited by flith, 22 August 2006 - 03:37 PM.


#7 Justiceham

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Posted 22 August 2006 - 11:39 AM

The cities listed on interstate signs are called Control Cities. When the interstates were laid out the control cities were usually the next metro area, or where the interstate begins or ends. I think control cities are only updated to reflect major population changes.

I suppose cities you can't see only till you get off the interstate could be called Exit Cities (i.e. Murfreesboro, Jackson).

#8 miami1855

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Posted 22 August 2006 - 06:30 PM

Clarksville is definitely a town of many flavors. The east side is the upscale neighborhoods. The north side/Ft. Campbell area is full of pawn shops, empty buildings and houses of ill-repute. The mall area is infill and traffic at its finest. Downtown/APSU is historic and picturesque.

Also, fallingwater is right. If its not a homicide that gets the news, its soldier returns and deployment. Clarksville's growth and progress are not something that is reported very often in the Nashville media.

#9 Fallingwater

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Posted 22 August 2006 - 08:12 PM

The north side/Ft. Campbell area is full of pawn shops, empty buildings and houses of ill-repute.


Haha, I recall so many years ago when I first got my driver's liscense my parents forbidding me to "cross the river" into the North side of town. Of course, that was one of the first places I headed since they made it into a taboo.

I actually think New Providence/Ft. Campbell look better than it did many years ago. I think they have cleaned it up quite a bit but it is still cheap, garrish and junky.

#10 HABANERO7

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Posted 23 August 2006 - 11:00 AM

I am voting ClevelandÖ

With Cleveland being in the East Tennessee region and so close to Chattanooga it tends to get overshadowed. Cleveland has been ranked either 5th or 6th in the number of manufacturing facilities located in the city over the last 20 years going back and forth with Jackson a few times during that duration. Cleveland isnít annex crazy so the city population says 37,000 when in reality itís more like 65,000.

Cleveland isnít growing at the rate of Murfreesboro right now, but not many places in the US are. The Chattanooga Times Free Press yesterday morning released some census housing starts data and Bradley County / Cleveland lead all SE Tennessee counties in housing starts and came in 2nd to Catoosa Co GA overall for the region. In percentage of growth Cleveland / Bradley County showed 686 housing starts permitted in one year. Iím going to end this post with a copy of a little data I compiled back in November 2005. The comparison is Cleveland TN vs. Jackson TN. I created the comparison to show that overall the 2 communities are very similar in size and growth rate even though most people wouldnít consider that to be the case.


The complete comparison is located at:

Cleveland vs Jackson is Post #11

Portion of the post:

Jackson TN and Cleveland TNÖ

All data below is researched mainly from these three sources plus local knowledge:
Tennessee Department of Economic and Community development
Tennessee Center for Business and Economic Research
Knoxville/ Knox County Metropolitan Planning Commission

Census population estimates:

Jackson (2004) 61,772
Madison Co. (2004) 94,397
Jackson msa (2003) 109,715
Jackson (2025) 82,442 est
Madison Co. (2025) 126,951 est
Jackson msa (2025) 150,332 est

Cleveland (2004) 37,746
Bradley Co. (2004) 91,196
Cleveland msa (2003) 106,435
Cleveland (2025) 50,381 est
Bradley Co. (2025) 130,252 est
Cleveland msa (2025) 153,985 est

Madison County land area: 561 sq miles: Pop densities per 2004 estimate 168.26 ppm
Bradley County land area: 338 sq miles: Pop densities per 2004 estimate 269.81 ppm

Labor information per 2004 data:
Madison County 46,130-labor force:
Unemployment rate 2004 avg. 5.6%
Bradley County 46,180-labor force:
Unemployment rate 2004 avg. 5.0%

2004 High School Graduates:
Madison Co 676
Bradley Co 723

2002 Per Capita income:
Madison Co $25,983.00
Bradley Co $25,733.00

Now for the differences:

One Area where the 2 communities differ is in racial makeup (2000 census)
Jackson 45% non white
Madison Co 35% non white
Cleveland 11% non white
Bradley Co 07% non white

What do these numbers have to do with anything? I donít know. Itís just one of those differences that showed up in the numbers.

The major difference you will find behind the 2 cities is this:

Distance to next closest MSA
Jackson 79 miles from Memphis
Cleveland 29 miles from Chattanooga

Clevelandís proximity to Chattanooga tends to cause a lag in certain areas when we are compared to similar cities such as Jackson.

#11 rocky top buzz

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Posted 23 August 2006 - 12:56 PM

That's like saying which is more overlooked, Cleveland or Franklin? I think due to it's proximity to Chattanooga, there's no fair comparison.

That said, I don't know who I would pick. I'd say Dyersburg is the best option, and it's not even listed,

#12 Justiceham

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Posted 23 August 2006 - 07:05 PM

That's like saying which is more overlooked, Cleveland or Franklin? I think due to it's proximity to Chattanooga, there's no fair comparison.

That said, I don't know who I would pick. I'd say Dyersburg is the best option, and it's not even listed,

Tell me more about Dyersburg, I've never heard of it before.

#13 rocky top buzz

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Posted 23 August 2006 - 08:43 PM

I don't know much about it either, so I'd say DYERSBURG wins the underrated poll!

I know there is Dyerburg State Community College; A spur of I-55 (I-155) runs straight there. Other than that, I dunno?

#14 HABANERO7

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Posted 23 August 2006 - 09:20 PM

That's like saying which is more overlooked, Cleveland or Franklin? I think due to it's proximity to Chattanooga, there's no fair comparison.


Cleveland is separated from Hamilton County and Chattanooga by White Oak Mountain which proves not only a physical barrier, but also a cultural and community barrier helping the two separate MSAís exist right beside each other while remaining autonomous. Cleveland has been around since 1843 and there has been a strong industrial base traditionally consisting of hosiery mills, stoves foundries, and clothing manufactures operating in the city for well over 100 years. The growth of Cleveland is not because of Chattanooga, itís because of the railroads, then TVA and the later the Interstate system, the same reasons many other strong communities in this state has thrived in the last 50 years.
I canít argue about some lacking areas such as certain high level medical procedures and some higher end shopping and eating options, but over all the idea that Cleveland is riding piggyback to Chattanooga is just not the case. I have no doubt that Cleveland can and does hold itís own with other similar sized towns in Tennessee and the southeast US.


I don't know much about it either, so I'd say DYERSBURG wins the underrated poll!

I know there is Dyerburg State Community College; A spur of I-55 (I-155) runs straight there. Other than that, I dunno?


RK can give the skinny on Dyersburg

#15 rocky top buzz

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Posted 25 August 2006 - 12:23 PM

Again, I'll make the Franklin to Cleveland comparison.

You could say that Franklin is not dependent on Nashville. In fact, many Nashville fans are mad that all these corporate HQ's keep going to... FRANKLIN. But would Franklin have gotten any of this noteriety without Nashville? No.

Cleveland may have a lot going on in it's own right, but I don't think anyone can say that it would be what it is today without Chattanooga and the railroad hub it once was.

Not trying to dog on Cleveland, but I just don't think it belongs in this list.

#16 HABANERO7

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Posted 25 August 2006 - 01:27 PM

Not trying to dog on Cleveland, but I just don't think it belongs in this list.


The title of this thread is:

"Which City is the Most Underrated?"

Funny, itís a good thing Cleveland is a choice on the list.

#17 Justiceham

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Posted 26 August 2006 - 10:49 PM

Well I've decided to do my own research about Dyersburg, TN and I was impressed. It is a regional hub for northwest TN and the tri-state area consiting of 300,000 people in that statistical area. It is linked to interstate 40 via U.S. 412 and interstate 55. In the future the proposed I-69 will connect here as a direct route from Mexico to Canada. This city offers ammenities of a bigger city, Dyersburg Mall, a 400 seat conference center, regional medical center, and decent housing. From a few pictures I've seen, its downtown is clean and cute.

#18 Rural King

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Posted 29 August 2006 - 03:44 PM

Well I've decided to do my own research about Dyersburg, TN and I was impressed. It is a regional hub for northwest TN and the tri-state area consiting of 300,000 people in that statistical area. It is linked to interstate 40 via U.S. 412 and interstate 55. In the future the proposed I-69 will connect here as a direct route from Mexico to Canada. This city offers ammenities of a bigger city, Dyersburg Mall, a 400 seat conference center, regional medical center, and decent housing. From a few pictures I've seen, its downtown is clean and cute.


Sorry I just checked in on this thread or I would have filled you in on Dyersburg as this is some place I am very familar with.

The city of Dyersburg is positioned IMO to become a much larger regional player in employment, commercial activity, and medical services. Its key location on I-155, US 412, US 51, and along the future I-69 corridor put it in an amazing position to grow in terms of both population, industrial base, and commercial activity. Not to mention the city will garner a lot of benefits from the new Riverport and industrial park at Cates Landing in Lake County and from the four-laning of TN 78 from Dyersburg to the port via Tiptonville.

All of those factors will be magnified and exploited to their fullest extent by the very well organized city and county governments that Dyersburg and Dyer County possess; which are pound for pound two of the best local governments to be found in West Tennessee as far as being prepared, organized, and pro-active in trying to get things done that will benefit their constituents. Seriously, Dyersburg and Dyer County have it together and appear set to do very well in the coming years. It has already done very well in retaining and expanding its industrial base.

Dyersburg is also planning to do big things with their downtown and surrounding neighborhoods. Including utilizing their riverfront, which currently is not even remotely utilized. Dyersburg's downtown is very nice for its size and has a couple of decent sized Bank buildings, some awesome street fronts, and a very nice court house.

Here are is a pics thread of Dyersburg's downtown that I took last year:

http://www.urbanplan...h...c=14846&hl=

Commercially the city is growing very steadily, but I-69 should be a huge shot in the arm, esp. to its somewhat struggling mall. Except for the mall, the city's commercial activity, medical services, amenities, etc. seem to moving forward pretty well in all areas.

I can talk more about Dyersburg later if folks are interested, but I'm short on time at the moment. Feel free to ask questions.

#19 rocky top buzz

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Posted 29 August 2006 - 07:27 PM

Again, Rural seems to prove the point that not only does Dyersburg deserve to be on this list, it deserves the most votes as underrated. How many of you knew ANY of that? We may one day be talking about Dyerburg being ahead of tri-cities in terms of economic inpact in Tennessee.

#20 Justiceham

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Posted 29 August 2006 - 08:25 PM

Thanks for the information RK, I think we'd have heard more about it if it were mentioned more in the West Tennessee forum.