Ask most people in which city they would most want to live and usually their answer would be shaped by such realities as proximity to their jobs and what they can afford. But suppose you could choose to live anywhere you wanted regardless of cost? What if you could live in a city that offered a wealth of culture, entertainment, good schools, low crime and plenty of green space? Many people might opt for the obvious choices, such as New York or San Francisco, but, great as they are, data reveals there are other cities that are even better.
Businessweek.com spent months working with data that would help us to identify the best cities in the U.S. We looked at a range of positive metrics around quality of life, counted up restaurants, evaluated school scores, and considered the number of colleges and pro sports teams. All these factors and more add up to a city that would seem to offer it all. When we began the process we had no idea which cities would come out on top.
A wealthy Phoenix suburb, Scottsdale has the second best schools among cities we ranked, low unemployment, and a high number of park acres per person. More than half of the population has a college degree. Like many other Arizona cities, there is a high foreclosure rate, but Scottsdale bucks the trend with low unemployment.
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