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What’s Living in Gastonia NC Like? 🦌🌲 | What to Know Before Moving to Gastonia North Carolina

Last Updated on: 12th October 2023, 02:55 pm

Gastonia is a city in North Carolina located just a few miles north of the South Carolina border. Gastonia is historically known as being the site of the 1929 Loray Mill Strike, which helped to spark the labor movement in the late 1920s. Today Gastonia is known for its beautiful parks and landscapes, top-rated schools, and affordable cost of living. Moving to Gastonia is a great opportunity for people of all ages. As such, Gastonia is a good place to live. 

Where Is Gastonia?

Gastonia is in Gaston County, North Carolina. It is the county seat and is the second-largest satellite city in the Charlotte area. Gastonia is part of the Charlotte metropolitan area and is the 13th most populous city in the state of North Carolina.

Crowders Mountain State Park sits just on the outskirts of Gastonia, offering incredible views and outdoor activities for the citizens of the city. Gastonia is popular for commuters, as it is only 22.9 miles from Gastonia NC to Charlotte NC. When living in Gastonia, there are many day trip opportunities. It is 110 miles from Gastonia NC to Greensboro NC, and 183 miles from Gastonia NC to Raleigh NC.

When living in Gastonia NC, you will be served by the Gastonia Transit bus system, which can transport you all over the city. You can also catch an Amtrak train at Gastonia Station, which has trains running to many major cities, including New York, Philadelphia, New Orleans, and Atlanta.

Gastonia NC Population & Demographics

The Gastonia, NC population is 80,411, which gives the city a population density of 1,546 people per square mile. This is a 12.1% increase over the past decade! Gastonia is one of the principal cities in the Charlotte metropolitan area, along with Concord, Huntersville, and Rock Hill. Combined, this area has a population of 2,595,027.

There are many notable people from the Gastonia area, including NBA player Darrell Armstrong, author Wiley Cash, and NASCAR drivers Glenn and Harold Dunaway.

Gastonia NC Demographics

  • Sex ratio: 52% female, 48% male
  • Median age: 38.8
  • Racial and ethnic composition: 55.6% White, 29.6% Black or African American, 10.0% Hispanic or Latino, 4.8% two or more races, 1.4% Asian, 0.3% American Indian
  • Median household income: $52,990 (compared to the North Carolina average of $60,515)
  • Educational attainment: 86.2% high school degree (or higher), 24.9 bachelor’s degree (or higher)
  • Foreign-born population: 6.1%

Is Gastonia NC safe? The Gastonia crime rate is 4,995 crimes per 100,000 people. This is 88.8% higher than the state average and 112.9% higher than the national average. Although the crime rate is high, Gastonia is a safe place to live. Most of the crime is concentrated in neighborhoods where there is gang activity or an active nightlife scene where alcohol may play a part.

After moving to Gastonia, you will be served by the Gastonia Police Department, where there are currently 166 officers on the force.

Cost of Living in Gastonia NC

Gastonia NC is an affordable place to live. The Cost of Living Index in Gastonia is 94.8, which means that living in Gastonia is 5.2% more affordable than the national average of 100. According to the Economic Policy Institute, a family of four would need to earn $85,510 per year to afford to live in Gastonia. This averages out to about $7,126 per month.

Typical Gastonia Living Expenses

  • Average Gastonia utilities per month: $205.50
  • Cappuccino: $4.62
  • Gym membership: $50.00
  • A pound of apples: $2.99
  • Movie ticket: $12.00
  • Child care: $1,275 per month

Source: Numbeo

Looking for homes for sale in Gastonia NC? According to Redfin, the Gastonia median home price is $249,500. This is much lower than the national average of $388,310. The Gastonia NC real estate market is slowing down, with homes sitting on the market for an average of 52 days compared to 38 days last year.

Graph of the median sale price in Gastonia, NC

Thinking about searching for apartments in Gastonia NC? According to RentCafe, the average rent in Gastonia is $1,263 per month for a 955 square foot apartment. This is much cheaper compared to nearby cities such as Charlotte, where the average rent is $1,667, and Raleigh, where rent is about $1,630 on average.

Gastonia Neighborhoods | Where to Live in Gastonia

Some of the most popular areas in the Gastonia area include Southeast Gastonia, Downtown Gastonia, and the Village at Parkside.

Southeast Gastonia – Family-Friendly Neighborhood Close to Elementary Schools

If you are moving to Gastonia with your family, look no further than Southeast Gastonia. This area is full of parks and walking trails to get your family up and moving. It is also home to some of the city’s best schools, such as Brookside Elementary School and Webb Street School. The median home sale price in Southeast Gastonia is $318,958.

Downtown Gastonia – Bustling Area Great for Couples and Young Professionals

If you want to be in the middle of the action when living in Gastonia, then you should consider the downtown area. Downtown Gastonia mostly consists of small apartments and townhomes that are within walking distance to some of the city’s best dining and shopping options.


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Village at Parkside – Gorgeous New-Construction Homes in Safe Area

The Village at Parkside is a beautiful community of new construction homes ranging from 1,500 to 2,721 square feet. This area is perfect for anyone who is looking for a quieter setting, as it is far from the downtown area as well as major freeways.

Gastonia NC Weather & Climate

According to the Köppen Classification, Gastonia has a humid subtropical climate. This means that the weather in Gastonia NC is characterized by hot and humid summers and cool to mild winters.

Gastonia NC weather is perfect for those who love to experience all four seasons. The hottest month of the year in Gastonia is July, with an average high of 88ºF. The coldest month is January, with an average low of 33ºF. Gastonia does typically see some snow each year, but it is usually under 3 inches, and the snowy period only lasts around two months.

Things to Do in Gastonia NC

When living in Gastonia, NC, you have a wide variety of grocery stores to choose from, such as Lidl and Food Lion. You can also enjoy retail shopping at the Eastridge Mall and Franklin Square. Here are a few fun things to do in Gastonia, NC.

Rankin Lake Park

Rankin Lake Park is one of the best free things to do in Gastonia. This beautiful park will provide you and your family with many fun activities, like boating, fishing, hiking, and picnicking. 

Rankin Lake Park, 1750 Rankin Lake Rd, Gastonia, NC 28052, (704) 866-6849

The Schiele Museum of Natural History

The whole family is sure to enjoy the Schiele Museum of Natural History. This museum consists of rotating exhibits and features a planetarium and nature trail. 

Schiele Museum of Natural History, 1500 E Garrison Blvd, Gastonia, NC 28054, (704) 866-6900


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George Pappas’ Liberty Lanes

George Pappas’ Liberty Lanes is one of the best Gastonia attractions. This family-owned, 32-lane bowling center is open 7 days a week and offers open bowling, league bowling, and birthday party rentals.

George Pappas’ Liberty Lanes, 2501 S York Rd, Gastonia, NC 28052, (704) 868-2695

Additional Attractions in Gastonia

Looking for more things to do in Gastonia, NC? The City of Gastonia Parks and Recreation manages dozens of parks in the area. You can also check out the Gastonia Event Calendar for any upcoming activities.

Gastonia Restaurants

There is no shortage of wonderful restaurants in Gastonia NC. When it comes to food in Gastonia, NC, you can find anything your heart desires. Here are a few of the best Gastonia restaurants.

Webb Custom Kitchen

Webb Custom Kitchen is one of the most unique restaurants in Gastonia NC. This restaurant serves upscale American dishes and craft cocktails and is located inside an old theater.

Webb Custom Kitchen, 182 S South St, Gastonia, NC 28052, (704) 864-8385

The Smoke Pit

The Smoke Pit serves some of the Best BBQ in Gastonia NC. The meat served at The Smoke Pit is roasted for up to 18 hours a day by expertly trained Pitmasters. This casual joint is perfect for any fun night out.

The Smoke Pit, 421 Cox Rd, Gastonia, NC 28054, (980) 289-1941

Viva Chicken Gastonia

If you are on the hunt for exotic food in Gastonia NC, then check out Viva Chicken. Viva Chicken serves affordable Peruvian Cuisine in the form of healthy bowls, salads, and sandwiches.

Viva Chicken, 2205 E Franklin Blvd #100, Gastonia, NC 28054, (704) 603-6135


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Jobs in Gastonia NC

Gastonia is known for its textile manufacturing and was the location of the historic Loray Mill Strike in 1929. Manufacturing is still a large part of Gastonia’s economy, along with healthcare, education, and government. Some top employers in Gastonia include Parkdale Mills, CaroMont Health, and US Cotton.

According to PayScale, the average salary in Gastonia is $46,000. If you are searching for jobs in Gastonia NC, take a look at the city job board or search for ‘Gastonia jobs’ on Indeed.

Gastonia Schools

When living in Gastonia, you will be a part of the Gaston County Schools system. This is the 10th largest school district in North Carolina and serves nearly 31,000 students. There are four Gastonia NC high schools: Ashbrook, Forestview, Hunter Huss, and Highland.

There are a few private schools in Gastonia, including the Gaston Day School and Gaston Christian School. Although there are no colleges or universities in the Gastonia area, many are nearby. Some of the closest options include Gaston College (3.7 miles away) and Cleveland Community College (19.4 miles away).

Students and residents living in Gastonia have access to the Gaston County Public Library system.

Gastonia Statistics & Information

  • County: Gaston
  • Gastonia Area: 52.22 square miles
  • Gastonia Zip Code: 28052-28056
  • Gastonia Area Code(s): 704, 980
  • Gastonia Elevation: 797 feet
  • Gastonia Time Zone: Eastern Time Zone (EST)
  • Closest airport to Gastonia: Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CLT), 15.6 miles away

Gastonia NC Map

Explore more things to do, restaurants, and amenities with this map of Gastonia.

Ready to make the move to Gastonia NC? The moving experts at Make a Move can help you every step of the way. For a free estimate regarding your upcoming move, give the best movers in Gastonia a call today at (704) 378-8588!


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