Home to a wide variety of different industries and a massive number of successful businesses, Atlanta is actually one of the fifty largest and most successful cities in the world (ranked at 45th by Foreign Policy) with a massive, $270 Billion annual economic product.
But the city’s success has been hard-won.
Originally established back in 1837, Atlanta was burnt to the ground during the American Civil War less than 30 years later. But from those ashes, her people rebuilt a metropolis … a place that was proud of its turbulent yet triumphant past … and a culture that embodied the flattering politeness and pleasantness of Southern Hospitality.
Over the years, the romance of this unique Southern paradise has drawn all sorts of gifted individuals, groups and companies into “The Gate City.” It’s gotten to the point where nowadays, Atlanta is bursting at the seams with adventure and awe inspiring self-expression—with great food, music, sports, entertainment and activities.
In short; it’s a thriving yet small metropolis with an intensely urban-centric population, a constant cycle of downtown revitalization projects, and a relatively tiny local condo market with massive potential for growth. The city’s home to an almost everlasting appeal …
From Terminus to New Beginnings
The romance and the appeal of Atlanta started long before European settlers ever arrived—with numerous settlements of Native Americans located near the creeks and rivers that flowed through the area.
It wasn’t until 1836 that the Georgia General Assembly decided to start building railroads and the area we now know as Atlanta became a source of local interest again. Only it was called “Terminus” back then; railway lingo for “end of the line.” This wasn’t the end though, instead it was just another new beginning for the city that, in 1847, would finally be incorporated under the name of Atlanta.
Unfortunately—less than twenty years later—the city’s status as a railway capital and major supply hub made it a target in the American Civil War, when General Sherman ordered all but the city’s churches and hospitals be burnt to the ground (a scene immortalized in the iconic film Gone with the Wind).
But almost immediately, the diligent Atlantans began to rebuild. Within years, the city became the State Capital, a model of the “New South” as it was called at the time.
The city went on to play a vital role in every major event from World War II to the American Civil Rights Movement (the city was Martin Luther King Jr.’s childhood home) … all the way up to hosting the 1996 Olympic Games. And throughout the decades, Atlanta has time and time again demonstrated itself to be a progressive leader and role model for other Southern cities.
Cultural Cornucopia and World-Class Sports
Imagine starting your day with a major league football game, then spending your evening at a poignant art exhibit, before capping it all off with a few drinks at a great blues bar. Or you spend your morning having a divine brunch then breezing by the Atlanta Botanical Gardens on your way to a Broadway Show.
That’s just a glimpse at what Atlanta has to offer. For everyone from round-the-clock workaholics to lovers of the nightlife, the city always has plenty to offer.
Considered a national center for the arts, Atlanta is home to a wealth of different museums like the High Museum of Art, the Museum of Design Atlanta, and the Atlanta Contemporary Art Center. There’s also a highly-regarded Atlanta Ballet, Atlanta Opera and Atlanta Symphony Orchestra to round out your cultural experience.
But the city’s most popular art form—far and away—is music.
From Blues to classic Southern Rock to modern Hip Hop, the city’s electric venues play host to some of the most exciting and unique shows in the history of American music. Thanks in no small part to groups like the Allman Brothers and OutKast, Atlanta will forever be branded with its own distinct kind of “cool.”
But for every exciting weekend and wild night out in Atlanta, there’s a day of hard work to come back to the next morning …
Working Just as Hard as They Play
Atlanta’s local economy is simply massive—the eighth-largest in the country, and the 17th largest in the world.
This is largely thanks to the city’s heritage as a railroad town and a prime junction between the port town of Savannah and the country’s interior. In 1973, Mayor Maynard Jackson decided the city’s airport should be modernized … taking over where the railroad left off.
And while logistics still play a substantial role in the city’s success, many of its industries have grown, matured and diversified thanks to the city’s welcoming local culture, appealing cost of living, clever incentives and convenient access.
Niche industries like Information Technology—where Atlanta has earned the nickname “Silicon Peach”—and Television Media companies have all begun to call Atlanta home, and the city has won numerous awards and accolades for its business friendliness.
Atlanta’s Condo Market Briefly Back at Ground Floor
As a fast-growing, transport-centric city, Atlanta was hit particularly hard by the financial crash of 2008 and the subsequent rise in fuel prices. For years, the city’s condo market declined or tread water while the influx of new buyers struggled to outclass those retiring early or headed somewhere else.
As of mid-2015, Atlanta’s average condo is selling for $245,000 after an average of just 52 days on the market—an impressive contrast to 2010’s average price of just $180,000 and over 80 days on the market.
With just a few months’ worth of stock left on the market, the resurgent interest in Atlanta’s downtown condos could easily start driving prices up quickly as developers struggle to get new units onto the market.