Are you planning on moving to St. Louis in your near future? Here’s everything you need to know about the vibrant Gateway City.

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From iconic structures and beautiful architecture to historic metro areas and family-friendly communities, it’s no wonder people are moving to St. Louis and loving every part of it. It’s currently home to 311,000 residents who are proud of the tight-knit community they’ve fostered. Whether you’re relocating for a job, starting a new chapter with your family or simply getting a taste of a new city, you’ll enjoy everything St. Louis has to offer.

Get To Know the Best St. Louis Neighborhoods

St. Louis Neighborhoods

Known as the “Gateway to the West,” St. Louis can be described as a big city with small-town charm. Whether you’re looking to be in the heart of downtown or settle in the suburbs, you’ll easily be able to find the perfect neighborhood for you and your family.

Here are some of the most popular St. Louis neighborhoods:

Central West End. Over a century old, the Central West End is chic and full of charm. Stop by antique shops, boutiques and restaurants after exploring the neighborhood’s visitor attractions.

The Central West End is home to the Cathedral Basilica of Saint Louis, one of the largest mosaic collections in the western hemisphere. The Cathedral offers both masses and tours to view its magnificent artistry. Throughout the year you can also visit the Taste Festival in June, the Greek Festival on Labor Day Weekend and the Central West End Art Fair.

Population: 14,473
Median income: $40,796

Lafayette Square. Lafayette Square is small, but one of the most iconic and historic neighborhoods in the city of St. Louis. As you stroll through 30 acres of greenery in the center of an urban landscape, you can try fantastic food in its quaint restaurant and taverns, stroll through specialty shops and enjoy free concerts during the summer.
Population: 2,078
Median income: $61,165

Soulard. Just five minutes from the Gateway Arch, Soulard is a historic French neighborhood that will charm you with its red brick townhouses, courtyards and blues music scene. Looking for something unique to check out here? Visit the Soulard Farmers Market, open Wednesdays through Saturdays — it has been operating since 1779!

Population: 3,440
Median income: $50,884

The Hill. If you’re looking to settle somewhere with a strong Italian heritage, you’ve come to the right place. This neighborhood is home to a large number of locally renowned Italian-American restaurants, bakeries, grocery stores and bocce gardens. And fun fact: Baseball greats Yogi Berra and Joe Garagiola, Sr., both grew up on The Hill!

Population: 2,443
Median income: $48,915

Chesterfield. Just 30 minutes west of downtown St. Louis, Chesterfield is a peaceful residential area offering beautiful homes and great schools. Known as the “City of Volunteers” due to its citizens’ involvement in helping the city, you’ll find several culture outlets, historic villages, public parks and community initiatives.

Population: 47,777
Median income: $94,263

Kirkwood. Known as the queen of the suburbs, Kirkwood’s art, nature and small-town charm make it the perfect neighborhood for families. The area offers an abundance of great schools, churches and family-friendly attractions including parks, farmers’ markets and museums.

Don’t forget about the kids! The Magic House is voted the number one children’s museum in the U.S. and offers hundreds of hands-on educational exhibits. Be sure to also check out Laumeier Sculpture Park – a 105-acre park featuring 60 pieces of large-scale outdoor sculptures (and one of the first and largest sculpture parks in the country).

Population: 27,660
Median income: $89,219

Clayton. Conveniently located less than 10 miles from downtown amenities, Clayton boasts an impressive business and financial hub as well as premium boutiques, restaurants and shopping districts. Enjoy a seasonal farmers market, a food festival and pristine art galleries. The Saint Louis Art Fair, held every September, is rated one of the best in the nation. It attracts more than 150,000 people each year!

Population: 15,882
Median income: $107,346

St. Louis Ranks Among the Best Places to Live

Moving to St. Louis

According to a U.S. News & World Report, St. Louis ranks among the best places to live in 2017, coming in at number 65 of 100 cities. The report analyzed metro areas in the U.S. to find best places to live based on quality of life and the job market in each metro area, as well as the value of living there.

We had a chance to speak with Kelly Hutchison from the Gateway Arch Riverfront. She gave us some firsthand insight into the report’s findings: “One of the most attractive aspects of living in St. Louis is the cost of living. It’s one of the lowest in the country. What’s even more amazing is the number of free and low-cost attractions the city offers. There is so much to see and do in St. Louis, and you won’t break the bank!”

With average sales price of homes well below the national average, the city is currently a buyer’s market and the cost of living in St Louis is affordable. You and your family will be able to find the perfect home in your desired neighborhood while sticking to your budget.
A few other reasons you should consider moving to St. Louis:

It’s affordable.

While St. Louis has a big-city vibe, it doesn’t come with the price tag of moving to large cities like New York, Chicago or Los Angeles. It’s listed as one of the top 20 most affordable cities in the country with a median home price of $150,000. If you’re moving to St. Louis, you’ll be able to settle in your dream home (and enjoy endless things to do) without breaking the bank.

There are four distinct seasons.

When it comes to weather, St. Louis experiences all four seasons. In July and August, it’s hot and humid, and the winter months range from 20 to 40 degrees. But beware — the region is also prone to occasional extreme weather such as flooding and tornadoes.

There’s a growing job market.

On top of affordability, St. Louis was also recently voted one of the best cities for young professionals by Forbes. The city offers growing tech, education and healthcare industries. Here are some of the best companies to work for in St. Louis in 2017:

-Emerson Electric
-Monsanto
-Reinsurance Group of America
-Edward Jones Financial
-Energizer

It’s one of the most charitable cities in America.

Any local knows that residents take pride in their city. But what makes St. Louis a true gem is its eagerness to give. In fact, an impressive one-third of residents volunteer, making St. Louis the most giving city in America. In total, St. Louis residents donated 730 million hours of service in 2016 — adding up to more than $1.6 billion dollars!

It has a family-friendly atmosphere.

If you’re looking for things to do in St. Louis with kids, you won’t have to look far. Families make up a significant portion of the community and nearly 30 percent of households include children under the age of 18. From museums and parks to baseball games, your options are endless.

St. Louis Boasts an Impressive School System

After moving to St. Louis, you’ll quickly get used to being asked, “Where did you go to high school?” And you’ll soon understand why. St. Louis residents take pride in their alma mater, and by identifying yourself by your high school, you’ll be able to spot mutual acquaintances and commonalities.

There are more than 75 schools in the St. Louis Public Schools district, which educate more than 23,000 students each year. With a number of fantastic schools of all types in the area, choosing one that’s right for you can be quite daunting. Start by establishing your priorities, finding the right area and then choose from conventional, magnet, charter or private schools.

St. Louis is also home to Saint Louis University, the oldest university west of the Mississippi, and Washington University School of Medicine ranks among the best medical schools in the country.

There Are Endless (Free) Things To Do In St. Louis

Free things to do in St. Louis

If you’re looking for adventure in your new city but also trying to stay budget-conscious, you’re in luck. St. Louis has more free major tourist attractions than any other city in the country! Whether you’re hitting the town with your entire family or headed out on a solo shopping trip, St. Louis has something to fit your every mood.

Here are just a few attractions to add to your must-see list:

  • Saint Louis Zoo. Recognized as one of the nation’s leading zoological parks, the Saint Louis Zoo has every creature you can imagine. Hop on the Emerson Zooline Railroad for a guided tour or check out the petting zoo and interactive stingray pool for an entire day of family fun.
  • St. Louis Art Museum. From classic to contemporary, St. Louis certainly has an appreciation for arts of all kinds. Stop in the St. Louis Art Museum to check out sculptures, oil paintings and photography from centuries ago or visit the Contemporary Art Museum of St. Louis to enjoy the works of newly established artists.
  • Forest Park. Spanning almost 1,400 acres (500 acres larger than New York’s Central Park), Forest Park is one of the largest urban parks in the United States. Offering biking trails, scenic walks, tennis, golf and a beautiful greenhouse, the park attracts more than 12 million visitors per year.
  • The St. Louis Science Center. Seeing as many as one million visitors per year, the St. Louis Science Center offers live demonstrations, planetarium shows and over 700 interactive exhibits. And here’s the best part: admission is always free.
  • Gateway Arch. Perhaps the most famous attraction in the city of St. Louis, the Gateway Arch offers stunning views from every angle. At 630 feet, the structure is more than twice as tall as the Statue of Liberty. On a clear day from the very top, visitors can see almost 30 miles in each direction. Fun fact: if you feel like you’re almost moving, have no fear — since the structure was built to withstand earthquakes, it’s designed to “sway” over a foot in each direction.
  • Missouri Botanical Garden. This historic landmark is one of the oldest botanical gardens in the U.S. The garden features 79 acres of horticultural display from around the world and hosts many annual cultural festivals throughout the year.

St. Louis Traffic Is a Dream

St. Louis traffic

While you may still have to deal with some sluggish rush-hour traffic, the St. Louis congestion is relatively modest compared to similar metro areas. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, St. Louis consistently ranks below the national average commute time to work. It’s also known as a 20-minute city, due to the fact that its popular spots are in the same area with little-to-no travel time needed to hop between them.

Whether you prefer to hop on the nearest public transportation or drive yourself around St. Louis, navigating around the Gateway City is a breeze.

Here’s how you can get to where you need to be:

  • MetroLink and MetroBus. As one of the best mass transit systems in the country, MetroLink’s rail system offers multiple lines and stops through St. Louis County near several St. Louis attractions: Busch Stadium, the Gateway Arch, Forest Park and more. MetroLink operates during the week and on weekends from 4 a.m. to 1 a.m. MetroBus also operates over 70 MetroBus routes in Missouri.
  • Downtown Trolley. The Downtown Trolley, a bright and vibrant bus painted to look like a trolley, links riders to many downtown St. Louis attractions such as Busch Stadium, City Museum, restaurants and more. Tickets run $2 for adults and $1 for children for all-day unlimited use.
  • Taxis. In addition to MetroLink and the Downtown Trolley, there is no shortage of taxis in St. Louis. You can even download the St. Louis Taxi Cab app so you always have a ride around town once you make the move.
  • Drive yourself. St. Louis is predominantly a driving town. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 236,000 workers commute into St. Louis County each day. While there are plenty of public transportation measures available, the city’s short commute and close proximity make it super convenient to drive to work every day. Are you planning on moving to St. Louis and prefer to walk around on foot? You’ll have no problem finding your way around neighborhoods and must-see venues. St. Louis has “Attraction Corridor” signage located along major streets that see large amounts of visitors.

Transportation tip: In St. Louis, one of the major Highways is 64. However, you’ll rarely hear a traffic report or someone’s directions mentioning Highway 64. St. Louis residents call it Highway 40 since it’s Interstate 64 and Missouri Highway 40.

If You Weren’t a Cardinals Fan, You Are Now

St. Louis cardinals

While St. Louis boasts impressive fine arts and cultural scenes, no cities exhibit baseball like this one. St. Louis is home to the St. Louis Cardinals — 11-time World Series winners — and has one of the largest and strongest fan bases in the MLB. Bleacher Report and Fox Sports have also ranked Busch Stadium as one of the top ten in the country for its views, hospitality, and ability to see a game from inside and outside.

Enjoy a home game with a view or take a tour of the stadium during the offseason where you can see the locker rooms, the press box, World Series trophies, and learn insider trivia about the Cardinals organization. But purchase your tickets early — they often sell out!Hockey is also top of discussion in St. Louis and the Blues do a great job of making sure local sports fans have something to talk about. If you’re moving to St. Louis, you can catch the St. Louis Blues in action at Scottrade Center, or visit IceZone, the rink where the team practices, which is open to the public year-round.

Hockey is also top of discussion in St. Louis and the Blues do a great job of making sure local sports fans have something to talk about. If you’re moving to St. Louis, you can catch the St. Louis Blues in action at Scottrade Center, or visit IceZone, the rink where the team practices, which is open to the public year-round.

Are You And Your Family Moving to St. Louis?

Between a historical hub, beautiful parks, a world-class zoo, one of the top botanical gardens in the world and its family-friendly charm, it’s no wonder families are planting their roots in the Gateway to the West to experience all St. Louis has to offer.Whether you’re relocating across the country or just across town, the moving process can be quite overwhelming. That’s where we come in! Life Storage offers various self storage options to make the move as seamless and stress-free as possible for you and your family.

Are you planning on moving to St. Louis? What are you most excited to see? Anything we missed? Let us know in the comments below!

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About the Author

Molli Spear

Hi! I’m Molli, and I am the Content Marketing Manager at Life Storage. Organization and thrifty DIY ideas are necessary for keeping sanity in my small Buffalo, NY apartment with my husband, our two-year-old daughter and a newborn on the way. That’s why I’m excited to share with you the latest in home organization, storage tips and DIY décor from our experts regularly on the Life+Storage blog!

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