Top city lists for creatives – fall 2009

There’s really no way to provide a top ten list of cities for creatives, but here’s a series of city rankings on their interests. It goes to show the top cities aren’t leaders in a few categories, but many of them, with a common characteristic of diversity.

The Next Hot Youth-Magnet Cities” (The Wall Street Journal)
1. (Tie) Washington DC and Seattle, WA; 3. New York City; 4. Portland, OR; 5. Austin, TX; 6. San Jose; CA 7. Denver, CO; 8. Durham, NC; 9. Dallas, TX; 10. Chicago, IL; 11. Boston, MA.
“…today’s recession-scarred young people are more pragmatic, placing greater emphasis on where high-quality, high-paying jobs are created.”

Top 10 Cities for Live Music (Society of American Travel Writers)
1. New Orleans, LA; 2. New York City; 3. Austin, TX; 4. Nashville, TN; 5. Chicago, IL; 6. Memphis, TN; 7. Montreal, Canada; 8. Las Vegas; NV; 9. Branson, MO; 10. Denver, CO.
“…listening to live music in the places where it originated or in spectacular settings.” Also, Top Music-Producing Cities.

Best Cities for Gen Y (Richard Florida and Kevin Stolarick)
1. Boulder, CO; 2. San Francisco, CA; 3. Washington DC; 4. Madison, WI; 5. Boston, MA; 6. Los Angeles; CA; 7. New York City; 8. Santa Barbara, CA; 9. Worcester, MA; 10. (Tie) Bridgeport, CT; Trenton, NJ; 12. Ann Arbor, MI; 13. Austin, TX; 14. Santa Rosa; CA; 15. New Haven, CT; 16. San Jose, CA; 17. San Diego, CA; 18. Raleigh, NC; 19. Honolulu, HI; 20. Albany, NY; 21. Seattle, WA; 22. Portland, ME; 23. Colorado Springs, CO; 24. Providence, RI; 25. Minneapolis, MN
“Young singles between the ages of 20 and 29 are looking for a few key ingredients: cities with diverse job opportunities, an abundance of potential life partners, and many universities.

The 15 Most Sustainable Cities (National Resources Defense Council)
1. Seattle; 2. San Francisco; 3. Portland, OR; 4. Oakland, CA; 5. San Jose; 6. Austin; 7. Sacramento, CA; 8. Boston; 9. Denver, CO; 10. Chicago; 11. San Diego; 12. New York City; 13. Los Angeles (yes, I know); 14. Dallas (ditto); 15. Columbus, OH
“…the project identified the top 15 large, medium, and small cities according to 10 different environmental criteria, from air quality to recycling to transportation.

America’s Best Cities (Outside magazine)
1. Colorado Springs; 2. Seattle; 3. Atlanta, GA; 4. Austin; 5. Boston; 6. Albuquerque, NM; 7. Portland, OR; 8. Minneapolis, MN; 9. Cincinnati, OH; 10. Charlotte, OH
“The wild card? Our own multisport factor, which rated quality and proximity to biking, running, paddling, hiking, and skiing.”

Top 10 Eco Compact Cities (Eco Compact City Network, based in Europe)
1. Paris, France; 2. San Francisco, U.S.; 3. Edinburgh, Scotland 4. Munich, Germany 5. Barcelona, Spain; 6. Boston, U.S. 7. Stockholm, Sweden; 8. New York City, U.S. 9. Bilbao; 10. Rome, Italy
“An Eco Compact City (ECC) is a city built and developed in balance with the natural environment. It is a city with clear boundaries, with an optimun ratio between density and network of open public spaces defined by urban mixed-use blocks. It is a city made of a federation of organic urban neighborhoods and districts, but it can also be a metropolis. The optimum density that caracterizes the Eco Compact City allows the existence of a rich system of small retail, while allowing the creation of an efficient public transit system.”