Columbus, OH has a lot in common with Bloomington. For one, both cities are more than a little supportive of their Big 10 teams.
Also, both cities house top public research institutions, and the benefits from this connection are endless. But, chances are, if you’re considering IU, you already know all the wonders of the university. So I’ll focus this post on the other similarities between Columbus–a mid-sized city (often compared to Indianapolis)–and Bloomington, a small town in Indiana.
1) Target: I kid you not, the first thing I said when I visited Bloomington was, “As long as there’s a Target here, I’m good.” And that is because Target literally has everything you might possibly need. (Not to be too biased, there is also a Walmart in town). It’s one of the flagship stores of College Mall, which is more than enough for infrequent shoppers, and decent for avid shoppers like myself.
2) Another similarity that was quite comforting is that Bloomington is essentially a (far away) suburb of Indianapolis. Now, I spent 6 and a half years in Chicago, and was always amazed by the distance of cities that were technically included in the Chicagoland area. Some of these “suburbs” were more than an hour way! So even though the spread between Indy and Bloomington may be greater than your average suburb (about 45 minutes to the southern edge of Indy), it’s helpful to think of it this way. Take a trip up to Indianapolis to see a show, or for a fun night out with friends every once in a while. It’s not that far, and the drive goes by really quickly!
3) One of my favorite similarities between Columbus and Bloomington is how close together everything is. Relatedly, there’s almost never traffic in Bloomington, and when there is, it’s usually because cars are backed up to let pedestrians cross during busy class-change times. After being in Chicago, where it can take up to an hour to travel 9 miles, it was nice to be back in a place where it actually takes 1 minute to travel 1 mile. I absolutely love this!
All in all, Bloomington is quite a comfortable place to be. If you still need more convincing, come visit IU, and see all that the town has to offer!