Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Pensacola overview

Pensacola and the Panhandle
Blessed with 40 miles of sugar white beaches and aquamarine water, a low cost of living, affordable housing and good jobs, Pensacola has a promising future

Pensacola is often referred to as, “Old Florida”, but it’s also very much the Gateway City to the Sunshine State, offering the visitor, homebuyer, or investor many opportunities that are similar to the rest of the State.

Regardless of what you call it, Pensacola and it’s neighboring Panhandle communities of Ft Walton Beach, Panama City and the numerous other beach communities lying along more than 100 miles of northern Gulf of Mexico coastline between the Alabama border and Apalachicola comprise a vibrant and growing linear coastal community.

Inland there are large tracts of farm and forest land up along the Blackwater River, as well as the developing communities of Crestview and De Funiak Springs. Eglin Air Force Base also calls this area home. At the eastern end of the Panhandle, just beyond the area we are concerned with here, is the State Capitol of Tallahassee. Not far to the West along I-10 is Mobile Bay, the casinos, and coastal Mississippi.
But it is really the beaches that bring people here from all over the Southeast, the rest of Florida, and around the world.

Beaches in the rest of Florida are sand-colored, just what you would expect, but here in the Panhandle they are white and wide and picture postcard perfect. Places like Destin, Santa Rosa Beach, Seaside, Ft. Walton Beach and Pensacola Beach, and Gulf Islands National Seashore have come to define this beautiful area to the outside world. Lots of sun and great weather.

The Pensacola area is divided into several diverse regions -- from historic areas like old town, to the beach communities, and from urban living to beachside to the Northern farm country. Cotton, corn and cattle are a few of the crops and livestock that reside in the hills around this northwestern Florida community
General Information.
• Located in the northwest corner of Florida, 196 miles west of Tallahassee and 453 miles NW of Orlando.
• Pensacola is ranked 122nd in metropolitan areas in the country and in the top 100 fastest growing cities.
• Population 400,000 plus
• Area in Square Miles 1679
• Average High Temperature 77°F
• Average Low Temperature 60°F
• 340 days of sunshine
• Average home cost-June 2005-$169,000
• Cost of Living index of 97.1
• Median age-25-44 years old or on average 38

Major Jobs Employment By Industry in order of numbers
• Educational, health and social services
• Retail Trade
• Leisure and hospitality
• Professional and business services
• Construction
• Manufacturing
• Public administration

Pensacola and its wider area have tended over the past 30 years to be hit more frequently than the rest of Florida by major hurricanes, but in the 30-40 years prior to that the situation was exactly reversed:

Pensacola was less frequently hit than peninsular Florida. Or to put it a different way, the area has been “hit” by just 6 storms Category 3 or higher since 1940, and peninsular Florida suffered 10 such storms during that same period

So, if you’re interested in life in a Medium size town, with growth possibilities mixed in with great weather, you should check out Pensacola.

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