Overview of Bradenton
Situated at the mouth of the Manatee River, on the southern end of Florida’s Tampa Bay, Bradenton has been a sunny Gulf Coast landing point for years, offering both a relaxing climate for visitors and a diverse local economy.
With beautiful weather year round, scenic river views, easy access to many renowned area beaches and plenty of activities in town, it’s easy to see why Bradenton apartments for rent are such a popular draw.
Living in Bradenton, FL
Bradenton has been attracting visitors since 1539, when Spanish conquistador Hernando De Soto landed in the area to begin his exploration of North America. His expedition did not establish a settlement, however, and the area remained the rural domain of Seminole Indians and the occasional Spanish settler until pioneers including town namesake Joseph Braden arrived in 1842, establishing sugar plantations. Bradenton grew in the 20th century as the home to orange juice company Tropicana and as a destination for vacationers and retirees drawn to the nearby beaches of the Florida coast.
According to 2011 census estimates, approximately 50,200 people live in Bradenton. Although not far from the major cities of Tampa and St. Petersburg, or the popular tourism hub of Sarasota, Bradenton maintains its own distinct culture and easygoing pace of life as the county seat of Manatee County. With the natural beauty and recreation provided by the Manatee River, as well as the cultural offerings downtown, people looking for apartments in Bradenton will have many reasons to enjoy the area.
Bradenton Work and Study
With easy access to the University of South Florida Sarasota-Manatee just to the south, Bradenton is a great place for local students. Campuses of the State College of Florida, Sarasota-Manatee and Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine are located in Bradenton, and the Manatee Technical Institute adds to the local educational options.
Although Tropicana has moved its corporate operations out of Bradenton, its legacy still holds sway, and many residents still work at a remaining local facility. As the county seat, several of Bradenton’s top employers are part of the government, including the Manatee County School Board. Light manufacturing and tourism are major industries due to the climate, and the department store Beall’s is also locally headquartered.
Rentals in Bradenton, FL and Cost of Living
Nearly half of Bradenton’s residents choose to rent, and the local housing stock is robust. The area’s popularity as a vacation destination tends to drive up the cost of living, and many residents may find it difficult to rely on public transportation. Nonetheless, it’s still possible to snag a deal.
According to data from the U.S. Census Bureau, the median gross rent from 2008-2010 was $891. Additional research showed one bedroom apartments renting from $550 to $1000 per month.
Bradenton Attractions and Special Events
With a climate that is pleasant year-round, Bradenton is a great place for sports and recreation. The Pittsburgh Pirates hold their spring training at nearby McKechnie Field, which also serves as the regular season home to the team’s local minor league affiliate, the Bradenton Marauders. Bradenton’s IMG Academy, particularly known for its Nick Bollettieri Tennis Academy, has trained many of the world’s top amateur and professional athletes in sports ranging from football to tennis. Manatee High School’s football team is consistently ranked among the best in the state and nation.
For more casual athletes, the Manatee River and nearby ocean offer excellent boating, fishing and water sports opportunities, as well as the beautiful beaches of Anna Maria Island and Longboat Key. Golfers can also head to many local courses.
Wildlife enthusiasts can spot local fauna including a range of birds, alligators, fish, dolphins and manatees. The town’s Parker Manatee Aquarium is home to Snooty, the oldest known living manatee. It also forms part of the South Florida Museum complex, the largest natural and cultural history museum on Florida’s gulf coast. The De Soto National Memorial is another great historical resource, while the Village of the Arts south of downtown is Florida’s largest art community. And with the cultural and nightlife options St. Petersburg, Tampa and Sarasota all nearby as well, there is never a lack of something to do.
If you are looking for an apartment for rent or a house rental in Bradenton, Fla., search for rental properties at Rent.com®.