Which cities offer the best combination of affordability, good jobs, and quality schools?
Kiplinger’s crunched the numbers and is out with "10 Great Places to Live." “This list is a nice representation of Americana,” says Marc Wojno, Kiplinger’s Senior Associate Editor, “and what’s so interesting about these cities is that they each, in their own unique way, offer opportunities for their residents and visitors alike.”
Topping off the list, #10: Dubuque, Iowa; #9: Anchorage, Alaska; #8 Ithaca, New York; #7 Morgantown, West Virginia; #6: Billings, Montana.
These cities have what Kiplinger’s calls, “EDS and MEDS” -- robust education and healthcare sectors that provide not only solid job growth, but also critical services for aging baby boomers. “You don’t have to travel to cities like Pittsburgh if you live in Morgantown, for example; these cities each have significant facilities and offer quality medical care,” says Wojno. As for the top five...
#5: Columbia, South Carolina
In this "Famously Hot" college and military town, you can cool down in local rivers and lakes. The city is also home to seven major hospitals and offers ample job opportunities in health care and government.
#4: Santa Fe, New Mexico
With an unemployment rate of just 5%, its economy is bolstered by the tourism industry and government jobs, including the Los Alamos National Laboratory. Just 45 minutes away, it’s one of the largest research labs in the nation.
#3: Bryan-College Station, Texas
These twin cities, known as “Aggieland,” are the home of Texas A&M University and the George Bush Presidential Library and Museum. College spirit fuels the region’s economic growth.
#2: Burlington, Vermont
A hub for green technology, its vibrant economy boasts an impressive three and a half percent unemployment rate. As for the scenery? Gorgeous!
#1: Little Rock, Arkansas
This city of 200,000 offers sophisticated amenities with a small-town feel. Residents of this state capital can take in a concert by the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra or go boating on the Arkansas River. The Clinton Presidential Library--a big draw for tourists--also attracts world-class lecturers for the locals to enjoy.