Austin is the capital of Texas and has a rich history stretching back to its founding in the 1830’s. With a population of over 750,000, Austin is the fourth largest city in Texas, the 16th largest in the U.S. and the second-fastest-growing metropolitan area in the nation. Austin is home to dozens of art galleries, museums, and independent theater companies and is one of only fourteen U.S. cities that boasts its own ballet, symphony, and opera. Austinites take pride in their eclectic and progressive lifestyle that has resulted in a number of laudable distinctions, including:
- Best Big City (Ranked #2), Money magazine, 2006
- Greenest City in America, MSN
- Best College Town (Ranked #1), Travel Channel
- Best People (personalities and attributes of citizens), Travel and Leisure magazine
- Safest City (Ranked #5), Morgan Quitno Press. 2006.
The city and surrounding area is the vibrant heart of “Silicon Hills” – the area’s nickname christened by high tech gurus because of its similarity to the Silicon Valley where new and high growth technology companies are spawned. Adding to its reputation as a technology hub, Austin also has significant operations of well established technology leaders such as Samsung, IBM, 3M, National Instruments, SEMATECH, Spansion and AMD, and is the corporate headquarters of Dell computer.
The Austin community places an emphasis on a high quality education system, with area students consistently ranking among the best in the state. The Austin area boasts seven universities and colleges, including the University of Texas and over 60 private schools. Major public school districts in the area include:
Austin compares favorably with other major metropolitan areas in real estate affordability and quality of life surveys. To find out more, click these links:
Averaging over three hundred days of sunshine a year, Austinites spend generous amounts of time in the great outdoors. The city has an extensive network of hike-and-bike trails, the crown jewel being seven mile Lady Bird Lake Hike and Bike Trail, in the heart of downtown. Zilker Park, one of the country’s great urban parks, is home to the locally famous Barton Springs. Just west of Austin are the the Highland Lakes, which offer a wide variety of parks, recreational activities and interesting central Texas weekend destinations.
Austin is known as the "Live Music Capital of the World" and is famous for the many clubs that play music ranging from rock to jazz, blues, and country. Austin is also home to South by Southwest, an annual music, film, and multimedia conference where people from all over the world come in hopes of being discovered.
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