I've been reading the local Vegas forums lately, and somebody always says that Vegas is a great place to visit, but they would not necessarily ( or they would "definitely not" ) want to live here. Just Google for "bad areas in Las Vegas" or something, to get the flavor of it all.
The short answer is Vegas can most definitely be a good place to live. (Lord knows, enough people are moving here!) So if that satisfies you, read no further. Honestly, I owe no homage to the Tourism Bureau, they spend millions developing mere slogans and are more interested in attracting tourists than making Vegas a better place to live. That would be the Mayor's and City Council's job, and since I am not a political blogger, no comment.
Vegas Is An "Island Oasis" In The Desert
Let me start with this biggie downer: when gas prices go into the 5 to 10 dollar a gallon range (see Life After The Oil Crash) Vegas will no longer be Vegas as we know it. We depend on over 90% of our goods (food, materials,etc..) being shipped here, mostly via trucks. If those trucks stop rolling, the supermarket shelves become empty in a few days. Even at the current three dollars a gallon, I see a trend where the hotels are offering rebates to their customers who drive here. A large portion of Vegas' revenues are from Southern Californians who drive to Vegas. Next, as prices keep going up, the casinos will have to subsidize the truckers to keep those buffet lines moving!
Is It Safe?
No place is absolutely safe to live. But Vegas can be relatively safe if you carefully chose where you live. Sound simplistic, but this is true in any large city - we all know that the crime rate is rising everywhere. So live in the area with the lowest rates, like much of Henderson and all of Summerlin, for example. The safest areas are always in the more affluent suburbs. But if you can't afford to live there, there are good alternatives if you just do your homework. Contact a competent realtor and check the local crimes stats. Learn how to protect yourself and be alert to what is happening around you. Good advice anywhere, not just in Vegas. 'Nuff said.
Vegas is actually in an earthquake zone, but I don't remember there ever being a major quake here. (we had a 2+ a few days ago). Even the Nevada Test Site has stopped shaking the tall buildings with their occasional underground nuclear bomb tests. Vegas gets no tsunamis (unless you count Wayne Newton constantly washing on our shores), hurricanes, or tornadoes. We do get the occasional dust storm and flash floods. ( Please, don't drive through rushing water. ) Heat waves occur every year (It's called Summer) and kill about 30 to 40 people annually. Remember to drink plenty of water and stay indoors in air conditioned comfort, if at all possible. Rev. Mercurial Mike's sermon is over, pass the collection plate, please. (Oh, I forgot, OK to party here but please don't drink and drive!)
Click here for recent earthquakes near Las Vegas.
There are currently over 300 unique gangs in the Las Vegas Valley and the number is rising. There are over 8,000 gang members residing here. The gangs are mostly originating from Southern California, and the police are not quite on top of the situation, having to create more and more task forces and special anti-gang units. The number of gang bangers and wannabee gang bangers swells during Vegas events like boxing matches, certain concerts, and the Final Four games.
This trend can only get worse and hopefully won't be in your neighborhood soon. I have lived in other cities where I had to move to get away from the effects of the spread of gangs. Support your local police by reporting any and all gang activity.
As the modern Gomorrah, sin city will always be in the top ten list of potential target cities. Be alert! Report suspicious activities. 'Nuff said.
"In order to prevent terrorist attacks and other crime in London, the government installed cameras to watch the streets. Metro police want to do the same..."
In light of the recent car bombing attacks in Great Britain, maybe this is a good idea?
See the entire article from Las Vegas Channel 8 Eyewitness News.
Is Vegas on the list of cities that are targeted by terrorists?
Is Vegas Family Friendly?
In some suburbs of Vegas, it is no different than any other typical Southwestern city. When I raised a family here, it was in the late eighties. The schools were great then. Can't really say for sure what is going on now. I would rather not comment on the state of the educational system today (a complete failure?) but like I said, this is not a political blog. Maybe somebody can volunteer their opinion. I see kids walking home from school, and I wonder who is caring for them.
If You Live Here, You Can't Gamble Here
Not true. I see plenty of people who live here gambling. :)
It does take some control and recognition of when it is becoming an addiction - no different than drinking. There is the social drinker and there is the alcoholic. There are enough nickel and penny slots to keep me busy for hours on a very small, affordable "investment". Costs less than a hour with a good shrink. It's supposed to be entertainment, folks. Each person should judge when it no longer is fun and when gambling becomes a problem.
Perhaps the greatest advantage of living in the "open all day and night" town known as Las Vegas is this: if I want to visit Vegas, all I have to do is roll out of bed and jump into my car! (Uh, shame on you, you know what I meant! Yes! I would get dressed first! )
Related: Las Vegas Tries to Prevent a Water Shortage - article from Popular Mechanics.
Related: LAS VEGAS - A survival kit for when good times go badfrom The Chicago Tribune.
Oh, I Forgot To Mention...
The other kind of heat that can get you in Vegas... Please co-operate with the local authorities. They have to deal with all kinds of people, especially in Vegas, and 99% of the time they are only doing their job. If you really are innocent, then what do you have to fear, just listen and do what they tell you to do. The police are following a play book and procedure to protect both you and them, and they don't know who you are if they approach you for any reason. And they must always have a good reason.
The video below clearly demonstrates what happens when someone decides not to listen to what the police are saying to them:
Cops-Las Vegas Heat - More bloopers are a click away
And this little item just came in from Lew Rockwell's Blog:
July 06, 2007
Four Wounded in Vegas ShootingPosted by Casey Khan at July 6, 2007 09:14 AM
At 1am, a local man came into the casino and began opening fire, shooting 4 until tackled to the ground by "officers and patrons." Were these "officers" private security guards or cops? In any case the casino is already up and running this morning performing "business as usual." Maybe they should move the New Stock Exchange down to Vegas, they mind find better security and capability to keep their operations open.
City Data Forum Discussion Thread: "Is Living In Las Vegas Overrated?"
City Data Forum Discussion Thread: "Las Vegas Is A Cesspool"