Boulder, Colo., named best place to live for second year in a row
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Boulder, Colo., has been named the top place to live in America for the second year in a row by U.S. News & World Report.

U.S. News said in a report published Tuesday that it examines housing affordability, net migration, desirability, the job market and quality of life, including access to quality health care, college readiness among high school students, crime, average commute and overall well-being among residents, when determining overall scores for cities.

It ranked 150 of the most populous metro areas in the U.S.


Boulder secured an overall score of 7.6 out of 10, one-tenth of a percentage point higher than runner-up Raleigh-Durham, N.C.

Huntsville, Ala. ranked third, with an overall score of 7.4, followed by Fayetteville, Ark. with a 7.3 overall score and Austin, Texas with an overall score of 7.3.

San Juan, Puerto Rico, ranked last in the U.S. News list, with an overall score of 3.8 out of 10.

Boulder ranked second for best for quality of life, bested only by Ann Arbor, Mich. The city also scored particularly well when it came to categories for desirability and job market.

Boulder had the third-highest performing job market in 2020, according to U.S. News, behind only Washington, D.C. and San Jose, Calif.

The Colorado metro area's average monthly unemployment rate remained relatively steady at 6.2 percent in 2020, amid the COVID-19 pandemic, which was lower than the monthly national average of 8.1 percent.

“No metro area is perfect, and while Boulder is a key destination for the expanding tech industry in the metro area and is widely hailed by residents for its easy access to hiking and biking trails, it's also an expensive place to live, even compared to the rising cost of living in the neighboring Denver metro area, which has seen rapid population growth and development in the last couple decades,” U.S. News wrote when unveiling the rankings.

Boulder came in tenth, tied with New York, when more than 3,600 people in the U.S. were asked where they would prefer to live if they had the choice.