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Quality of Life

Low Cost of Living, High Quality of Life and Unlimited Opportunities

The Rio South Texas region is one of the most exciting places to work, and play. From semi-pro sports teams to a thriving arts and music scene, there is much to see and do here. Rio South Texas boasts beautiful beaches and international travel opportunities, plus more than a dozen museums, a nationally-reknowned zoo and even a waterpark, making this region a family-friendly destination. Many outdoor adventures await you -- kayaking, canoeing, biking, birding, running, hiking, golfing, or exploring our many wildlife sanctuaries -- and heritage tourism attracts those who want to take a stroll down memory lane. Combined with a low cost-of-living, some of the best public and private primary and secondary schools in the state and nation, moderate weather and affordable housing, the Rio South Texas region shines brightly.  

                  

Cost of Living

This index compares the relative cost of living in different locations. Using the United States as the base location (i.e. a  value of 100), an index value of 120 means that the cost of living in that particular community is 20 percent higher than in  the base location; a value of 94 indicates a more affordable location.

Location

Cost of Living Index

Lubbock, TX

75

Wichita, KS

76

Laredo, TX

77

Fort Worth, TX

78

Tulsa, OK

78

Oklahoma City, OK

79

Rio South Texas

80

El Paso, TX

80

Little Rock, AR

80

Houston, TX

86

New Orleans, LA

91

Dallas, TX

93

Albuquerque, NM

96

U.S.

100

Source: Sperling's BestPlaces (www.bestplaces.net), August 2009; the total of all cost of living categories is weighted as follows: 30%  housing, 15% groceries, 10% transportation, 6% utilities, 7% health care, and 32% miscellaneous (clothing, services, entertainment);  state and local taxes are not included.

 

 

 

Climate

January
Low / High

July
Low/High

Prevailing  Wind / Speed

Annual
Precipitation

Elevation

Relative
Humidity

51° / 70° F

76° / 93° F

SE / 12 knots

28.8 in rainfall

121 feet

59%

Source:  www.bestplaces.net  (as of Oct 2010)

Median Housing Cost by County

Hidalgo

Cameron

Starr

Willacy

$96,230

$89,500

$50,000

$45,240

Source:  www.bestplaces.net  (as of 2010)

 

Median Value of Owner-Occupied Homes

Region

State

U.S.

$ 61,237

$ 112,010

$ 172,352

Source: Claritas, 2009 estimates

 

Quality Education

When it comes to educating the next generation, the Rio South Texas region is prepared.

We are home to several exemplary school districts.

  • In 2010, IDEA Frontier College Prep has been named on the TBEC Honor Roll. Also, IDEA Public Schools recently received the Texas Education Agency’s highest rating of Exemplary — both as a district and for all its schools — including IDEA Frontier Academy and IDEA Frontier College Preparatory.
  • IDEA College Preparatory has been named to the US News and World Report list of America’s best high schools. Part of the flagship campus in Donna, IDEA College Preparatory was placed on the Gold list and ranked 19th in the country.
  • South Texas High School for Health Professions (Med High) and The Science Academy of South Texas (Sci Tech), both located in Mercedes, are among the best high schools in the nation according to Newsweek magazine.As of June 8, 2009, Newsweek’s “America’s Best High Schools: The Top 100” list ranks Med High at 32 and Sci Tech at 70. Rankings are based on the total number of students who took the Advanced Placement or International Baccalaureate test in April 2008. To see the top 1,500 public high schools, go to www.newsweek.com/id/201160/GT1=43002.