Living in a city is an idea about which people share differing opinions. Some are attracted to the bright lights and hustle and bustle offered by a major metropolitan area, while others would just as soon keep their distance from such an environment. Living in a city can offer residents an array of benefits, but it also comes with some disadvantages.
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Living in a city can provide easy access to work, shopping and entertainment. In some cases, city dwellers might not even own an automobile, as they can get to most destinations by using public transportation or on foot. Some cities provide pedestrian paths that enable walkers and bicyclists to get around safely.
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Since cities contain large clusters of people in a relatively small area, there are more opportunities to meet people than in the suburbs. For a single person, this means that he or she could increase the chances of finding a spouse. People who are starting a business or looking for that one "big break" may have a better chance of making a valuable contact.
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Cities also present more opportunities for people who enjoy cultural activities. For example, New York City is known for its abundance of museums, art galleries, theatres and fine restaurants. Residents can also experience the unique cultures of the different ethnic groups and nationalities that often make up a large portion of a city's population.
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On the downside, housing is often at a premium and is typically more expensive in the city. Instead of having a house with a yard and room for the kids to roam, residents may have to resort to living in a tiny apartment that is several stories high, making it inconvenient to transport items such as groceries.
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Cities are more congested than the suburbs or the country. Residents may be forced to live in tight quarters near noisy or inconsiderate neighbours. Congestion can result in more pollution and difficulty in getting from one place to another in a timely fashion.
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The fast pace of city life is not for everyone. A faster pace can increase levels of stress and make people more hostile to one another, which can contribute to increased levels of violence and crime. People who enjoy a leisurely stroll in the fresh air or a friendly greeting from a stranger may find city life incompatible with their values. They may also experience the lonely feeling of being just a face in a crowd instead of part of a community.