Bossier City is a growing city of more than 56,000 in northwest Louisiana. It lies just to the east of Shreveport, across the Red River. The metro area is part of the "Ark-La-Tex" region, where Arkansas, Louisiana, Texas, and Oklahoma meet.
Residents pride themselves on having a distinct culture; there is less of a Cajun influence in the area and more of what residents describe as an "east Texas cowboy influence." The climate in northwest Louisiana is milder than in the sweltering hot and humid southern part of the state, and there are fewer bayous and more forests. Bossier City is best known for its riverboat casinos and horse-racing track, the Barksdale Air Force Base, and a vibrant new boardwalk along the Red River. The metro area suffers from a high crime rate, which is lower in Bossier City than in nearby Shreveport-and one of the main reasons for the migration eastward.
The economy of Bossier City and the surrounding metro area has remained relatively strong despite the economic downturn around the country. The area is no longer the center of the petroleum industry that it was in the mid-20th century, but the economy has diversified successfully.
Barksdale Air Force Base is the largest employer in Bossier City. Many residents are employed by the casinos and the city's many call centers. Other major employers are the General Motors plant in Shreveport, along with businesses related to the busy Shreveport-Bossier City port.
Much of the growth in Bossier City has come from Shreveport residents moving across the river in search of better schools and less crime; some of the influx of new residents has also come from people displaced by Hurricane Katrina.
Bossier City accommodates approximately 22,900 houses, with an occupancy ratio of 93 percent. About 55 percent of houses are owner-occupied.
North Bossier City has the lowest crime in the city and offers the most commercial development and easy access to major highways. Far south Bossier is also a nice area, but not as developed or accessible as the north.
The Bossier City Waterfront boasts the state's largest lifestyle center at the Louisiana Boardwalk. This area also features the Horseshoe Casino, Boomtown Casino, and DiamondJacks Casino Resort.
In booming Bossier City, there are eight public high schools. The city is also home to Bossier Parish Community College.
There are several institutions of higher education in nearby Shreveport:
Bossier City is within a five-hour drive of the University of Texas at Austin, Texas & University, Tulane University, the University of New Orleans, and the main Louisiana State University campus in Baton Rouge.
Bossier City has a minor league arena football team called the Bossier-Shreveport Battle Wings and a Central League hockey team called the Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs. In addition, sports fans root for the Louisiana State University Pilots and Lady Pilots teams.