What’s your Urban Habitat? Ranking Cities Across the US

A new study conducted by WalletHub ranks America’s best and worst metropolis to live in. Researchers compared the attractiveness of all the large cities in the U.S. in terms of “livability, the quality of their health and education systems, economic growth and tax rates”.

Overall Austin, Raleigh and Colorado Springs sit at the top of the list while Detroit, Memphis and Philadelphia, sit at the bottom.

To paint the clearest image of America’s urban landscape today, WalletHub compared all cities in the U.S. with a population of more than 300,000 each, across four key dimensions. Researchers compiled 31 relevant metrics and came up with an accurate ranking of the quality of life we find in metropolises across the country.

For instance Seattle, Dallas and San Francisco were found to host the best job markets, while New York, Philadelphia and Detroit had the lowest household income adjusted by cost of living. See the full methodology and ranking here.

What’s your Urban Habitat? Ranking Cities Across the U.S. - Clapway

The world goes to cities

Although the nation’s most populous urban centers are experiencing growth slowdowns, research shows that big cities continue to grow considerably faster than in the previous decade and earlier. This provides fuel to those who believe that increased city living could be a signature trend for the decades ahead, according to a recent Brookings Institute analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data.

WalletHub’s report argues that more and more citizens are falling in love with urban agglomerations and the “energetic pulse” of the large city. For the first time in nearly a century, the year 2011 witnessed the rate of urban population growth outpacing that within suburbs.

Where in the U.S. would you rather live?

“Large cities owe this growing interest to several major trends: downtown areas are becoming increasingly livable, lifestyle preferences are changing and demographics are shifting,” the authors of the study suggest.

So what makes massive urban centers so attractive? For many of us, it’s all about “being in the center of the action.” Others are motivated by the promise of economic and social opportunities.

“The tradeoff, of course, is limited square footage.” But most city dwellers are fine with micro-space as long as basic amenities are available. Several studies have emerged recently ranking cities to help those itching for a change of scenery. To determine the best U.S. cities for millennials – our 35-and-under generation – analysts at news site Vocativ started with the 100 most populous urban agglomerations in the country and came up with a vibrant lineup of 35 ultra-livable cities.

The World Health Organization foretold that by 2017, even in less developed countries, a majority of people will be living in urban areas.

Which American cities are the most livable? Share your experiences in the comments section below.

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