Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

largeTexas

Most livable large city?

Recommended Posts

I know it's a loaded question, but which of North America's cities is most livable? This includes attractiveness, price of living, crime rate, transit options, restaurants, etc.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


Weather is a big factor for me in the liveability of a place. Long cold dark winters are not my cup of tea so that would rule out any non-sunbelt city.

I would vote for DC as a great place to live. Its Metro is the best subway in North America and the height restrictions keep everything on a nice human scale.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I know it's a loaded question, but which of North America's cities is most livable? This includes attractiveness, price of living, crime rate, transit options, restaurants, etc.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I would say:

Seattle

Portland

Minneapolis

Many don't like but I will say Houston. You simply can not ignore its affordable housing options. Probably the only large city of the top ten where I can actually afford to live in downtown or midtown. Plus downtown is on the rise with so many new things. Definately a rising star imo.

Austin

Chicago

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Weather is a big factor for me in the liveability of a place.  Long cold dark winters are not my cup of tea so that would rule out any non-sunbelt city. 

I would vote for DC as a great place to live.  Its Metro is the best subway in North America and the height restrictions keep everything on a nice human scale.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I lived in D.C. most of my life. To become a homeowner inside the city is almost impossible for many. Real estate prices have gone up dramatically lately. Totally overpriced imo. Crime is another issue. Nearly 200 homicides somewhere inside of 62 sq miles, in a city of 570,000. Doesn't mean much to some but in cities of comparable size, no downtown shopping scene either like Boston, San Francisco or Seattle.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Vancouver- named second most livable city in the world, was first on either one or two occasions in the past

Toronto- was in the top ten i beleive.

Montreal

San Fransisco

Seattle

Portland

New York

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If only price weren't a consideration, New York (especially Manhattan) would be by far the most livable city. The best restaurants in North America, historically low crime rates, great shopping, jobs, a massive public transit system, culture, etc. Yeah, it's loosing some of its mystique and it can sometimes get a bit loud, but nothing beats walking to work or anywhere else you may want to go. But, the cost of housing is completely ridiculous.

Comparatively, I think Chicago may be the answer. Housing is relatively cheap, and it's good everything else on the list. Plus, the lake doesn't hurt...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It may not be as big as you are thinking of, but I would say Pittsburgh. It's consistently ranked by Rand McNally in the top 10 liveable cities in the US. Any years it didn't make top 10 it was still pretty high up.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

under those criteria, probably Chicago.  The coasts will cost you more.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

They will cost you more if you want to live right on the beach. However, you can find reasonable affordability about 3-4 miles inland. I'd go with coastal cities that have lower housing costs and higher income averages such as Jacksonville and Tampa (do NOT include Clearwater or St. Pete in that part!). As far as "landlubber" cities, I'd say Charlotte, Birmingham, and Denver.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Chicago easily takes this prize.

It is relatively inexpensive

Not a lot of stress

nice neighborhoods of all types from bungalows to the highest of the high rise apartments

Lake Michigan beaches right in the city

great architecture

great economy

unpretentious people

great sports

great culture

Drawbacks

the midwest lanscape is bland

the tribune is not as good of a paper as it should be for a city this size

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Major worldwide studies (like HR Mercer) almost always have several Canadian cities in the worldwide top 10, and almost never have American cities in the top 10.

Mercer's rankings are the most famous. It's a couple years out of date (I couldn't find more recent), but here are the wordwide 2003 rankings:

Overall rankings

Rank

2003 Rank

2002 City Country Index

2003 Index

2002

1 1 Zurich Switzerland 106.5 106.5

2 2 Vancouver Canada 106 106

2 2 Vienna Austria 106 106

2 4 Geneva Switzerland 106 105.5

5 4 Sydney Australia 105 105.5

5 6 Auckland N.Z. 105 105

5 6 Copenhagen Denmark 105 105

5 6 Frankfurt Germany 105 105

5 10 Bern Switzerland 105 104.5

10 10 Munich Germany 104.5 104.5

10 12 Amsterdam Netherlands 104.5 104

12 15 Brussels Belgium 104 103.5

12 15 D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'd say New York. Some of you may think the cost of living is too high, but consider this. In New York, no car. That means no car payment, car insurance, gas, maintainance, taxes, etc. I personally spend app. $750 per month on owning and operating my car and I live in Midtown Atlanta and only put about 8K miles a year on my car...people in the burbs spend much more on gas and maintainance then I do. Take that money and move it over to the rent or mortgage category. Now you can get yourself a place in Manhattan. I have lived in Manhattan and you can definately find places to eat for $5 or $6...you just have to know where to go. Granted Manhattan is not the cheapest place t live in the world, but you need to look at the entire cost of living. You can;t just compare rent in one city to rent in another.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I find it problematic to include cost of living as a criteria in comparing cities' livability. Affordable housing certainly makes life easier, but:

You could use housing costs as a basic measure of how desirable a place is to live. I would, for example, love to live in Manhattan. So would many other people. If many fewer people wanted in live there, it wouldn't be nearly as expensive.

Money Magazine has rated Nashua, NH two seperate years as the best place to live in America. They factored in Nashua's low cost of housing (along with such nice things as its low crime rate and proximity to Boston). So Nashua is indeed a desirable place to live, if you factor in the fact that it is so undesirable a place to live that there is no great demand for housing there, keeping prices low.

Desirablity and affordablility are contradicting features of urban areas. Consider how in metropolitan areas it is generally quite costly to live near a subway station. And cities with enviable public transportation are generally costly places to live.

I am, however, interested in the idea that it is zoning restrictions that keep housing costs particularly high in metro areas. I'd like to crack that code.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.