I loved growing up in Atlanta. But it's a completely different place now. All the really cool places in the ATL have now become the "cool" places, and thus are no longer cool. The hipsters have ruined all the truly hip areas, and the things once authentic have become caricatures of themselves.
Contemporary carpetbaggers infiltrated Atlanta because they wanted a piece of our Southern charm, but in the process they destroyed all that was truly charming about our city. I've never understood why people from big cities up North felt the need to come down South and ruin all that was great about Atlanta. But such is the way of the world, and the cost of "progress."
It's been 20 years since I've lived in Atlanta, so I have no advice for you, other than to say be prepared for some truly hellish traffic. If you want to spend four hours of your daily life driving to and from work, then be my guest. I hope the job is worth it. But there's no way I'd want to raise my family in that city today. It makes me sad to say that. My heart will always be attached to Atlanta in many ways. But I just don't recognize the place anymore.
Anyway, I wish you great success with your move. I hope you find a lot of happiness there. I'm sure those who still live in the area can steer you to many of the positive things I'm sure the city still has to offer. If you want to know about some good restaurants, I can give you some recommendations. That's one thing Atlanta definitely still has going for it. Some terrific food, of all types.
Sad to hear you say that. I actually disagree. I think the city is actually getting better. At least the "in town" neighborhoods are. Sure, there are plenty of hipsters, but there is a huge wave of young, creative entrepreneurs who are turning some of the rundown "ghetto" neighborhoods, particularly on the south/east side of town, into areas that are worth being around again. Im not talking about suburbs, but rather Grant Park, East Atlanta Village, etc.
If anyone is destroying the charm, its the bigger developers who are putting new shopping malls (Kroger, Target, American Deli, Ross, etc.) into these neighborhoods. Those types of places do suck a lot of the charm of the city, but thats far from the hipsters fault. I'd throw Atlantic Station into this category as well. That place belongs in the suburbs.
The flip side is the newer Krog Street market development. It is full of small/local businesses and has turned a completely useless, dangerous area into something thats actually cool, bringing jobs and increasing property value to the surrounding area. There is a similar project soon to be underway on Memorial Drive.
Anyways, maybe we just have different opinions about whats "cool." While the suburbs have always flourished, the city itself was mostly known for traffic, crime, and poverty, unless you were a fortune 500 company like coca cola. Now, that is changing. Even the traffic ranks far lower than it ever has in recent years, and there is a chance that projects like the Beltline will continue to help with that. Crime has dropped over the last decade as well.
I say all that to say, as a current resident, who grew up only 20 minutes away from downtown, I have to say that we are in a pretty good spot. I say its an exciting time to be a resident!