Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Kiplinger's Best Cities to Live, Work and Play

We have another "Top Ten Places to Live" list to ponder, folks, and it's pretty surprising. For example, there's a city in Arkansas (!) on the list. So maybe I'm not crazy in thinking I could live there.

Kiplinger's criteria are interesting in that they skew towards "creativity" and "prosperity," and what they see as the inherent connection between the two. They write, "People in creative fields...are catalysts of vitality and livability in a city."

The full criteria include: population, population growth since 2000, percentage of workforce in the creative class, cost-of-living index, median household income and income growth since 2000. For all 2008 finalists, at least 30% of the workforce is part of the creative class.

Without further ado, here's their top 10 for 2008:

1. Houston, Texas
2. Raleigh, North Carolina
3. Omaha, Nebraska
4. Boise, Idaho
5. Colorado Springs, Colorado
6. Austin, Texas
7. Fayetteville, Arkansas
8. Sacramento, California
9. Des Moines, Iowa
10. Provo, Utah

None of these would have been obvious to me - other than Austin. That's also the only one I have an existing crush on. In fact, I felt initially repulsed by some of these choices, including Houston, their top pick.

So I'll give it to Kiplinger - they've certainly strayed from the perennial recommendations. I'll have to think about how important a large creative class is to me. As a writer, maybe it should be on my radar.

Read the full article here
, which includes virtual tours of all 10 cities.

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