A life long resident of the Baltimore Washington DC area, Scott Michaels was used to bigger city living. “You never have a boring weekend in the DC area,” said Michaels. “It just has everything, from DC United soccer games to the Smithsonian, to high level theater at the Folger.” In 2009, Michaels received a job offer, seven hours to the north of his home town, in Rochester New York. “I had no idea what to do about that offer,” said Michaels. “All I knew about Rochester was that it got about five hundred feet of snow per year, haha.” He ultimately accepted the position, due in part to the difference in the cost of living. “I was looking at some Rochester apartments,” he said, “just doing due diligence, you know? I was amazed. Rents were hundreds of dollars less than the DC area, and the cost to buy was even lower.”
Michaels is one of a growing number of professionals who are currently choosing to live and work in smaller cities, like Rochester. What they lack in amenities, they make up with affordability. “It offers the perfect balance between city and country life,” said Rochester historian Bill Pickling. “Some folks think that Rochester is on the decline because of the whole Kodak bankruptcy, but the city is actually on the rise.” The medical imaging industry has taken Rochester by storm, filling the employment gap left by Kodak. This boom is drawing a newer generation of young professionals to Rochester.
Beyond work opportunities, Rochester has a vibrant arts community. For those looking to work in medical fields but live in the art world, there are plenty of Rochester apartments in places like the South Wedge and Park Avenue, home to the local Neighborhood of the Arts (NotA) and a few different Rochester art galleries. The city is also home to a number of events, like the Rochester Art Fair, and a series of Rochester festivals, including the Corn Hill Arts Festival, the Rochester Jazz Festival, and the famous Rochester Lilac Festival.
The city is also popular with people interested in the sustainability movement. Not only are there many fair trade coffee shops dotting the trendy neighborhoods, but the city is also quite well known for its regular Rochester Market (generally referred to as the Public Market). Every Saturday, the residents of the city head out to the Public Market to buy produce and crafts direct from farmers and local producers. It makes the products more affordable and increases the sense of community.
“I never thought I would want to live anywhere but the big city,” said Michaels, who found a short term place to live after searching the Rochester Craigslist for Rochester apartments. “Now, I can easily see myself buying a house here, and settling down.”
Links like this: rocville.com