Ideally located in the center of the Hampton Roads metropolitan area, Portsmouth, Virginia is a vibrant waterfront city that has enjoyed a remarkable renaissance over the last decade.

It serves as a prime example of how innovative programs backed by a hardworking local government and an engaged citizenry can help build a community that’s committed to excellence.

A variety of affordable housing, a bustling business environment and safe neighborhoods are just a few more reasons why more 95,000 people are proud to call Portsmouth home. Its close proximity to the soft sand and roaring waves of Virginia Beach only adds to its appeal.

Portsmouth is Committed to Safety

A commitment to safety is the cornerstone of any flourishing city. Portsmouth is no different. In fact, Portsmouth boasts a handful of particularly creative programs that have successfully lowered crime.

Portsmouth’s Crime Line brings citizens, police and the media together to solve, as well as deter, crime. Operated by up to 18 Portsmouth residents and a police coordinator, the community based project does not receive any government funding. Instead, it’s supported by individual and corporate donations.

Another way the citizens of Portsmouth keep safe is the Safe Ride Home Program sponsored by the Portsmouth Sheriff’s Office. The program operates on New Year’s Eve and provides transportation to anyone needing a ride within a ten mile radius of the City of Portsmouth- no questions asked. Last year, more than 70 citizens took advantage of the pioneering program.

Portsmouth is especially focused on the safety of its youngest citizens. Launched in 1975, the Portsmouth Safety Town Committee provides nearly 4,000 children each year with valuable safety training. From bicycle safety to stranger danger, citizen volunteers work closely with the Portsmouth Police Department, Portsmouth Sheriff’s Office and Portsmouth Fire Department to deliver professionally developed classroom instruction as well as practical exercises that help children become aware of their surroundings and stay safe.

The citizens and law enforcement officers of Portsmouth deserve kudos for working hand-in hand to lower crime in recent years. When comparing Portsmouth’s 2011 crime statistics with its 2010 crime statistics, overall crime was reduced by 260 incidents, violent crime was down 22 incidents and property crime was reduced by 247 incidents.

Business and Career Opportunities Abound in Portsmouth

Portsmouth is a city that’s dedicated to supporting small business and concerned about supplying its citizens with a solid selection of quality jobs. The Hampton Roads Chamber of Commerce provides professionals with more than 125 networking opportunities annually and offers an array of rich programs. One that’s particularly innovative is Sync757, the “voice” of promising leaders. In an effort to ensure the economy of the region continues to grow, Sync757 focuses on connecting emerging young professionals to the wealth of resources the Hampton Roads region offers. Founded less than 10 years ago, this forward thinking group is already 500 members strong.

As we’ve noted, the Portsmouth business community believes in cultivating leaders, but it also believes in celebrating small business success. Twenty of the area’s fastest-growing companies are recognized annually by Hampton Road’s business journal, “Inside Business” as one of the “Roaring 20.”  In addition to being financially successful, the winners impart stories of fortitude, ambition and steadfastness that inspire leaders of local up and coming small businesses. From medical device company Soluble Systems, LLC, to digital media and advertising business Grow, the “Roaring 20” is an impressively diverse group.

Portsmouth’s proactive government and involved citizenry have created a quality of life that’s hard to come by. If you’re interested in learning more about the benefits of charming Portsmouth, we encourage you to explore the city’s official website.

Written by Alexia Chianis

Wanderlust junky and mom of two, Alexia is a former police officer and U.S. Army Captain who draws on her experiences to write about a myriad of safety topics. Learn more

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