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Idaho Falls makes list of best places to live and retire now in America

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IDAHO FALLS — The city of Idaho Falls has made it on a list as one of the best places to live and retire, citing attractive amenities such as parks, trails and overall cost of living. AARP listed the nine cities, including Idaho Falls, in an article titled, “Best Places to Live Then and Now.”

“Of course we are pleased whenever people recognize how special Idaho Falls is,” Idaho Falls Mayor Rebecca Casper said. “We work very hard to provide the best quality of life to people who choose to live and work and recreate here.”

The cities that made the list include the following:

  • Cedar Falls, Iowa
  • Idaho Falls, Idaho
  • Jackson, Tennessee
  • Anderson, South Carolina
  • Fort Worth, Texas
  • Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Lansing, Michigan
  • Provo, Utah
  • Sioux Falls, South Dakota

“We’ve been recognized as one of the best run small cities in America and one of the best places to live in the country, so it makes sense that we are attracting attention for other good things like this as well,” Casper told EastIdahoNews.com Friday.

AARP based its criteria on a comparatively low cost of living, great access to nature and recreation, relative ease of getting around, quality health care systems and a strong sense of community.

Idaho Falls is known for the Snake River that runs through downtown alongside a river walk, a floating bridge, the falls, and trees that surround it. There are over 30 miles of trails throughout the city for biking and walking.

A scene of Idaho Falls temple
The Snake River and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints Temple | EastIdahoNews.com
A scene of Idaho Falls
The Snake River | EastIdahoNews.com

The article said, “Outdoor lovers can also get their American West fix at nearby areas popular for camping, hiking and fishing. With winter come snowmobiling, snowshoeing and skiing. Two ski resorts are roughly within an hour’s drive, and famous Jackson Hole, Wyoming, is about two hours away.”

The article points out that while Idaho Falls does have issues like the rest of the nation in terms of housing and affordability, the city of Idaho Falls is addressing housing costs by loosening zoning codes to allow for more one-level, no-basement homes, which is attractive to retirees. It adds that median home prices are below $350,00, and the overall cost of living is about 11 percent lower than the national average. 

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“With the thoughtful way we manage our growth, coupled with good, high paying jobs, great location, outstanding recreational and cultural amenities and high quality of life, Idaho Falls is really an amazing place and it’s nice when others recognize that as well,” Casper said.

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