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Living a College Town Lifestyle in Salt Lake City, Utah

Salt Lake City is a very popular college town near the Wasatch Mountains of Utah and the Great Salt Lake. The population was 182,000 in 2008, with more than 1 million people in the Metro. Salt Lake is home to the main religious institutions of the Mormon faith, in addition to one university (University of Utah) and several colleges. Brigham Young and the Mormons settled here in 1847; today the Mormon population is estimated at 54%. The area is not only a tourist area but home to a booming high tech, banking, and software development industry.

The advantage of living in Salt Lake City becomes very clear on a short drive through the city's freeways (nicely expanded for the Winter Olympics held here).   It can be snowing in the mountains and warm and sunny in downtown Salt Lake. Some people will be playing golf in beautiful sunshine. Yet others have skis and snowboards on their cars and are taking a short drive to one of a dozen of the country's top recreational mountains.  Utah's powder snow is a legend among fans of winter sports.  The city is big enough to have professional sports teams and plenty of cultural outlets.

Photo of downtown Salt Lake City against the mountains courtesy of Wikipedia and Skyguy414

Where to Retire in Salt Lake City and Home Prices

The Avenues and Federal Heights are 2 desirable residential areas on the northeast side of town near the University. The eastern side of town generally has higher property values due to its better mountain views and no industrialization. There are a great number of active adult and 55+ communities in the Salt Lake area (see Active Adult Communities link at top left). According to the National Association of Realtors, the median home price during the first quarter of 2018, was $322,000, up over 13% from a year earlier.  Prices will obviously vary by neighborhood.

What is special about Salt Lake City

Host to the 2002 Winter Olympics. Outstanding 4 season recreation both within and by a short drive. Great Salt Lake. Wasatch Mountains. Home of the Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. The University of Utah. A prosperous and growing city.

What is not special about Salt Lake City

Some people might have trouble living in an environment dominated by people of one faith (Mormons).  Crime is high in certain parts of the city.

Climate and Physical Environment

Salt Lake City is at an average altitude of about 4,000 ft. The climate is characterized as that of the steppe, with cold winters and dry summers. Frequent snow storms come from the Pacific, combining with the Lake Effect from the Great Salt Lake to the city's west.  Summers are hot and dry, the sun shines more often than not. The average January temp is in the low 30s whereas the average July temp is in the high 70s.

Restaurants & Cultural Scene

A two-block section of downtown is being turned into the City Creek Center as a new hub for the arts. There are a number of performing arts companies for plays and dance. Music and the Spoken Word is the very popular weekly program of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. The University of Utah has the Utah Museum of Fine Arts and the Utah Museum of Natural History.

Crime

The crime rate index is in the mid 400's compared to the national average in the low 300's.

Medical facilities

Salt Lake City has several major hospitals including the University of Utah Hospital.

Transportation

Salt Lake City International is a very large and convenient airport. Interstates 80 and 15. There is an extensive bus system, light rail, and a commuter rail line.  There are also popular bike trails within the city.

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