At one time Cary neighborhoods made a sleepy little town far from everything. And then, in a ten year period that began in 1970, the town of Cary tripled in size—from 7600 residents to 21,000. Census figures for 2015 placed the population at over 150,000, making it the largest town in North Carolina.
The creation of Research Triangle Park had begun attracting businesses like SAS Institute, IBM, and Siemens, transforming Cary into a carefully planned city that consistently ranks as one of the best places to work and live in North Carolina. During 2016, over 2000 single family homes were sold in Cary ranging in price from $74,000 to $2,250,000. The median sales price of homes in 2016 was $400,000.
Jim Goodnight, founder and CEO of SAS and a former UNC graduate, bankrolled the development of many new neighborhoods, giving Cary a large inventory of newer homes. These upscale Cary neighborhoods all have a similar feel, with most homes built in a Colonial style with two stories that have five windows across the top, two windows on either side of the front door, and a front facing two-car garage. Most have a neighborhood pool and/or tennis courts. Some of the popular neighborhoods in Cary are Twin Lakes, Amberly, Trafalgar, and the more upscale Preston.
Cary Greenways and Trails maintains a network of sidewalks and paved trails connecting many of these neighborhoods throughout the town, making it a very pedestrian and bike friendly community. Cary neighborhoods are located in what has been rated as one of the safest cities of its size in the United States.
There are now over thirty public parks, seventy miles of trails, and the Koka Booth Ampitheatre, a state of the art performance center. William B. Umstead State Park covers 5,599 acres, offering hiking, bridle, and bike trails, boat rentals, camping, picnic areas, and educational programs.
Locals jokingly refer to Cary as an acronym for “Concentrated Area Of
Relocated Yankees” due to the large percentage of residents who have
relocated there from the North. There is also a large percentage of the
population who relocated there from all over the world.