Debate Magazine

100 Most Livable Cities in USA

By Eowyn @DrEowyn

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Livability just came out with their 2nd annual top 100 best small to mid-sized cities in the U.S.

More than 2,000 cities were ranked by the following criteria:

  • Amenities: Variety of terrain; access to water; farmers markets; golf courses; parks; a moderate climate; role of arts in the community. 
  • Demographics: Racial, ethnic, and age diversity; population growth.
  • Economy: income inequality; income growth forecasts; employment; the amount residents spend on food.
  • Education: Quality of public schools; presence of colleges and universities; education levels of the adults.
  • Health care: Presence of hospitals within the town limits; low-birth-weight rate among children; obesity rates among adults; ratio of primary care physicians per 100,000 residents.
  • Housing: Access to affordable housing; diversity of housing stock.
  • Social and civic capital: Who are the people in your neighborhood? and what do they do for your neighborhood?
  • Transportation: Access to major airports; walkability; transportation costs; percentage of the population who commute to work by some means other than driving alone.

Below are the top 100 cities:

  1. Madison, Wisconsin
  2. Rochester, Minnesota
  3. Arlington, Virginia
  4. Boulder, Colorado
  5. Palo Alto, California
  6. Berkeley, California
  7. Santa Clara, California
  8. Missoula, Montana
  9. Boise, Idaho
  10. Iowa City, Iowa
  11. Bozeman, Montana
  12. Asheville, North Carolina
  13. Ann Arbor, Michigan
  14. Bellevue, Washington
  15. San Mateo, California
  16. Santa Barbara, California
  17. Overland Park, Kansas
  18. Salt Lake City, Utah
  19. Rockeville, Maryland
  20. Eugene, Oregon
  21. Pasadena, California
  22. Fargo, North Dakota
  23. Ventura, California
  24. Fort Collins, Colorado
  25. Sunnyvale, California
  26. Mountain View, California
  27. St. Louis Park, Minnesota
  28. Santa Monica, California
  29. Durham, North Carolina
  30. Ames, Iowa
  31. San Rafael, California
  32. Frederick, Maryland
  33. Greenville, South Carolina
  34. Lakewood, Colorado
  35. Provo, Utah
  36. Sandy Springs, Georgia
  37. Lincoln, Nebraska
  38. Miami Beach, Florida
  39. Quincy, Massachusetts
  40. Cambridge, Massachusetts
  41. Sioux Falls, South Dakota
  42. Towson, Maryland
  43. Tempe, Arizona
  44. Portland, Maine
  45. Alameda, California
  46. Renton, Washington
  47. Bellingham, Washington
  48. Beaverton, Oregon
  49. Fullerton, California
  50. Columbia, Missouri
  51. Bismarck, North Dakota
  52. Helena, Montana
  53. Irvine, California
  54. Reno, Nevada
  55. Olympia, Washington
  56. Santa Cruz, California
  57. West Des Moines, Iowa
  58. Honolulu, Hawaii
  59. Eau Claire, Wisconsin
  60. Ashland, Oregon
  61. Monterey, California
  62. Chapel Hill, North Carolina
  63. Alexandria, Virginia
  64. North Bethesda, Maryland
  65. Cedar Rapids, Iowa
  66. Lexington, Kentucky
  67. White Plains, New York
  68. Costa Mesa, California
  69. Corvallis, Oregon
  70. Manhattan, Kansas
  71. Tampa, Florida
  72. Silver Spring, Maryland
  73. Kirkland, Washington
  74. Lawrence, Kansas
  75. Westminster, Colorado
  76. Bend, Oregon
  77. Redmond, Washington
  78. Santa Rosa, California
  79. Goleta, California
  80. Knoxville, Tennessee
  81. Stamford, Connecticut
  82. Des Moines, Iowa
  83. Fayetteville, Arkansas
  84. Denton, Texas
  85. Springfield, Missouri
  86. Orlando, Florida
  87. Menlo Park, California
  88. Salem, Oregon
  89. Burbank, California
  90. Hayward, California
  91. Greensboro, North Carolina
  92. Charleston, South Carolina
  93. Richardson, Texas
  94. Tysons Corner, Virginia
  95. La Crosse, Wisconsin
  96. Grand Rapids, Michigan
  97. Framingham, Massachusetts
  98. Billings, Montana
  99. Brookline, Massachusetts
  100. Coral Gables, Florida

Do you live in one of the above cities?

Do you agree with the ranking criteria? (I’m surprised crime rate isn’t a criterion.)

~Eowyn


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