Odessa is hailed as "the right place in Texas" with the right people, right time and right opportunities for everyone. The city is home to numerous parks that add to the natural beauty found in western Texas. With more than 102,000 local residents, this large community is accessible to people of all ages and backgrounds. Look for Odessa apartments for rent, and find a vibrant community in the American South.
The Texas & Pacific Railroad brought settlers and commerce to western Texas in 1881. Odessa was originally a stop and cattle shipping point on the line connecting Marshall, Texas, to El Paso, and remained a sleepy town until oil was discovered in the area. When Penn Field and Cowden Field opened in the early 1900s, the population grew exponentially as many new workers flooded to the area to take advantage of new opportunities. The Petrochemical Complex began operations in 1957 and, along with other companies in town, revolutionized the technology that used waste products from gas and oil production to make rubber. Odessa has been a major distribution and processing center for the petrochemical industry for decades, and when industry officials realized that petroleum is a nonrenewable resource, city officials started new initiatives to support the local economy. Today, the town is a thriving community with many obscure local attractions that keep life interesting for local
Odessa is home to Odessa College and more than 5,000 students who attend classes there each year. Odessa College is open to all high school graduates, students with GED certifications and transfer students who have completed the Texas Higher Education Assessment, making college accessible for most local residents. With college-prep programs, career and technical tracks, continuing education, adult basic education, workforce training and community recreation programs, Odessa College has something to offer to everyone. Courses taken here are guaranteed to transfer to a Texas public four-year university, leading many students to begin their education at Odessa College for an easier transition into college. OC is joined by the University of Texas of the Permian Basin and others to offer higher education opportunities in western Texas.
For those seeking work, Odessa is home to many important companies in the energy industry. The city's proximity to the Permian Basin has led to a local economy built on oil, gas and energy production. The top energy employers in Odessa are Saulsbury Companies, Haliburton Services, Weatherford CPS and Holloman Construction. The Odessa Regional Medical Center is also in town and employs more than 900 local residents with a range of hospital jobs. Other top employers include Walmart, Nurses Unlimited, Investment Corporation of America and Bobby Cox Companies. Fifty-four percent of Odessa residents work in management, sales and office occupations and are joined by 17 percent in the production, transportation and material moving industries to make up the majority of the local workforce.
With all of the acclaimed aspects of the Texas lifestyle, residents in Odessa pay relatively low rent prices. United States Census Bureau statistics indicate that the average apartment here costs $641 a month, which is $160 less than the Texas state average. Everyday living expenses are also very affordable in Odessa. The city received a cost of living index of 83, which is significantly below the United States average of 100.
Odessa is home to many regional attractions that create a unique cultural landscape in town. The Globe of the Great Southwest, Odessa Meteor Crater and Odessa Stonehenge have historical significance and bring a worldly feeling to local residents.
Every September, the streets of Odessa are filled with Trans-Pecos American Indian heritage during the annual Permian Basin Intertribal Powwow. The event features native dancers in traditional dress, vendors selling native jewelry and other crafts, singing and drumming and samplings of traditional foods. The Fall Festival also brings families together in Odessa with many carnival style attractions including face painting, live music, inflatable jumpers, a balloon ride, and much more. Other local favorites include the Taste of the Permian Basin, Permian Basin International Oil Show and the annual Harvest Fair.
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