Ruston : Louisiana


What It Is Like to Retire in Ruston

Ruston is a small city and the parish seat of Lincoln Parish, Louisiana. During the Reconstruction era following the Civil War, railroads began to run through Louisiana and the town began to take shape due to its location on the trains' routes, and the 640 acres donated by Robert Edwin Russ, for whom it is named. Ruston grew to become both an economic and eduction center, and Louisiana Tech University, known earlier as Ruston College, has been an integral part of that growth.  As a college town, Ruston has a lot to offer with many cultural and sporting events at the university, along with outdoor parks and trails.  Recently, Where To Retire Magazine featured Ruston as one of “8 Tax-Friendly Towns” as it is considerd to be easy on taxation, and offers many other amenities important to retirees.

With a population of just over 22,000, the median age here is only 24 years, due to a student population of over 12,000. Many notable people attended Louisiana Tech including Terry Bradshaw, member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame,  Karl Malone, a pro basketball Hall of Famer and famous country music singers Kix Brooks and Trace Adkins. Photo of Keeny Hall on the campus of Louisiana Tech Administrative building dates to the middle 1930s, courtesy of Wikipedia and Stirlingrb (public domain). Photo of Ruston City Hall courtesy of Wikipedia and Billy Hathorn, Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0/


Where to Retire in Ruston and Home Prices

Zillow reports the median home value to be $163,248 in early 2020. There are many type of housing and apartments, but with such a large college population you'll want to pick your area carefully.


What Is Special about Ruston

Ruston is a small town with a historical district and is a Louisiana Main Street Community.  The downtown has restaurants and shops, and the town hosts many events and festivals.  Louisiana Tech University works collaboratively with Ruston in many aspect of the town's development and quality of life, and provides the residents with many cultural events.


What Is Not Special about Ruston

College students make up the largest percentage of the population.


Who Will Like Retirement in Ruston

Retirees looking for a vibrant college town with a low cost of living would enjoy living here.  The downtown is walkable and a greenway for walkers and bikers connects neighborhoods and parks. The town has a medical center, library, farmers market and volunteer opportunities. The University provides many cultural activities with art galleries, sporting events and programs at the School of Performing Arts.


Local Economy Is Driven by

Ruston is still known for great peaches, but the economy is driven by Louisiana Tech University.


Climate and Physical Environment

January's average temperature is 45 degrees, with July's average 80 degrees.


Restaurants & Cultural Scene

Ruston offers a variety of restaurants and many are located in the downtown area, the heart of the city, which is considered a Louisiana Historic District. The community hosts many events throughout year including the popular Peach Festival, an annual event with music, art, and various entertainment, and the Railroad Makers and Music Fest is held downtown in Railroad Park. Ruston is also home to the Louisiana Military Museum, the Dixie Center for the Arts, and has a farmers market.  Many of the cultural aspects come from the college where Stone Theater presents many music and theater productions, and there are sporting events, a popular arboretum, and a planetarium.  



Ruston's crime rate is above the national average, with most incidents involving theft.


Medical Facilities

Northern Louisiana Medical Center is located here.



Ruston has a regional airport for private planes and Monroe Regional Airport is about 40 miles away;  The nearest large international airport is 300 miles away in Houston,Texas;  Ruston offers some public transportation; and the Rock Island Greenway, named after a railroad that used this right-of-way, is a six mile shared-use path for bikes and walkers which runs through the city connecting neighborhoods, parks, downtown and the Louisiana Tech campus.


Valuable Links

Ruston in Lincoln Parish

Ruston Lincoln Chamber of Commerce


What people are saying about Ruston

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