With the large number of limestone deposits in the area, one might think that a city like Calera, Alabama, should have the stone at least mentioned in its name somewhere. That would be right. Calera is actually derived from the Spanish word for "the deposits."
With a violent crime rate nearly two and a half times lower than the rest of Alabama, Calera appears to be a safe haven within a state that traditionally has higher crime rates than America overall. This is obviously a huge draw for many people, but no one really knew just how big of a draw until 2010. Between the turn of the new millennium and 2010, Calera became the quickest growing city in all of Alabama. A quadrupled population increase can understandably garner that title.
Moving to Calera
Talking about any city in America and just how good it is is usually a subjective task. After all, one man's terrible city experience could be another one's best chance at hiding out from the cops. Don't move to that town. Fortunately, it's really difficult to argue that Calera is popular. By 2000, the population had increased by nearly 50% over the previous decade. When 2010 rolled around, however, a population growth of 268% occurred. So yeah, people want to move here. That means that you need to be prepared if you hope to snag one of the awesome places to live in Calera.
When to start looking: You could probably get away with not starting to look for a place until about a month out, but why chance it? Sure, many of the home rentals may go off the market if you look too far in advance, but at least you'll get an idea of what each area has to offer. Don't be lazy; be proactive. You're thinking of renting a place, so you've got to at least look like an adult. The great thing is that there are plenty of places to go around, and it seems as if more are being built. In fact, the overwhelming majority of the homes in Calera were built after 1999. So take your time, find an awesome place, and call it home. Or you could wait until the last minute. That actually probably wouldn't hurt either.
When to make the move: Average temperatures in Calera stay below 80 degrees until May and don't drop back below this mark until October. During that time, temperatures push into the 90s, and you really don't want to move during the midday sun in the south. Ever heard of humidity? Trust me, you haven't really heard of it until you've experienced it in the south. Move outside of summer if possible, and if it's unavoidable, start early to avoid the midday heat.
What to bring along: You're literally delusional if you think you're going to be able to just show up at a moment's notice without any supporting documents and snag one of the premier apartments in this city. You might as well head over to a motel with that. As the fastest growing and one of the safest cities in Alabama, landlords can afford to hold out for what they view as a great tenant. That means that you need to bring along references from previous landlords saying that that's the exact type of tenant you are. Bring along a credit check and proof of income as well, and you'll definitely land an awesome apartment. Well, assuming that's what you're going for, but why wouldn't you be?
Okay, we realize we sound like we're gushing now, but in reality, there's not much to say bad about any area within Calera's city limits. The large influx of new residents and constant new construction doesn't happen if a place has nothing to offer; and regardless of which neighborhood you finally settle on, you're not likely to care when your fellow city dwellers across town claim they live in the best area. Heck, you probably won't believe them.
Highway 42: Before emptying out on Highway 70, Highway 42 cuts through a section of the city that's actually removed from the rest of Calera. This area has immaculate homes and is even adjacent to Mitchell Lake. Oh, and you could use a history lesson, so head over to Shelby Springs Confederate Cemetery.
Southern Calera: Want culture? Check out the Heart of Dixie Railroad Museum. Want safety? Of course, that's why you moved here. Better yet, the Calera City Police Department is here as well. It's a nice place to ride your bike around, and you can even do a few laps around old circular railroad tracks.
Central Calera: Home of the Emerald Ridge Subdivision. That little tidbit of information is enough for locals to know this place is great, but you probably need a bit more info as a soon-to-be-former outsider. You're also near the NAPA Auto Parts store, in case your car ever fails you; and the U-Haul is nearby as well, so you can easily drop off your moving truck once you load up that apartment for rent. That's no longer for rent.
Northern Calera: Calera's strange shape strikes again. Northern Calera is actually divided into three parts. You definitely wouldn't want to have to walk into other areas of town from here, but simply looking at the homes lets you know you're going to be living in style. Whether you snag a one bedroom apartment or a large home, and regardless of whether you're around the Village Drive area or Stonecreek Place, you'll love it here.
Living in Calera
Okay, it's obvious that you're already ready to pack up and head to Calera. I mean, why wouldn't you be? First, though, slow down and check out these other perks of being a Caleran. You don't want to have to find out about these other great features of living here by luck. Oh, and if you're one of those high maintenance new tenants who still needs a bit more convincing, this should do it.
Huge Community Events: Even though Calera's population is right under 12,000 at the time of the 2010 U. S. Census, the Thomas the Tank Engine can manage to bring in over 20,000 people to the area. Yeah, time to get to know your neighbors. All of them.
Get off the Grid: Okay, it's almost impossible to get off the grid these days, and this is especially the case in a city as popular as Calera. But hey, you can drop those apartments with paid utilities for a day and rough it out at Rolling Hills RV Park.
Learn the History of Real Heroes: Why are you going to watch whatever Avengers or Captain America movie happens to be coming out on any given week? You can head over to the Alabama Firefighters Museum to learn the history of real American heroes.
Ease of Travel: Calera is basically situated around Highway 31 and Interstate 65, and this can get you to Birmingham quickly. Once there, you've got Interstates 459, 59, and 20. You might not know it, but these roads can nearly take you across the entire country.