Monday, June 16, 2008

Monocle Quality of Life Survey

Monocle, a magazine focused on design and culture, has just released the top 20 international cities based on their global quality of life survey. Here is what the Financial Times had to say:
There's nothing quite like a global city ranking that mixes the scientific (hard data on crime, education and healthcare) with the more subjective (quality of housing, urban scale and the availability of a good cocktail in the wee hours) to make people consider uprooting. In Monocle's 2007 top 20 cities survey, a healthy combination of an exceptional airport, good urban transport links, low crime, inviting neighbourhoods and a heart of Europe location made Munich number onecity.

Here are the top 20, plus five extra:
1. Copenhagen
2. Munich
3. Tokyo
4. Zurich
5. Helsinki
6. Vienna
7. Stockholm
8. Vancouver
9. Melbourne
10. Paris
11. Sydney
12. Honolulu
13. Madrid
14. Berlin
15. Barcelona
16. Montreal
17. Fukuoka
18. Amsterdam
19. Minneapolis
20. Kyoto
21. Hamburg
22. Singapore
23. Geneva
24. Lisbon
25. Portland

Only four North American Cities made the cut and three US cities. What is even more interesting is which US cities are not on list. Where is New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Austin, Toronto, and Chicago? Here is what the article had to say about Toronto and NYC:
Toronto doesn't qualify because it has allowed its suburbs to become unconnected, ugly sprawls of hideous houses (garages bolted on to the front of houses are far better suited to southern California than to southern Ontario) and has done little of merit to deal with its derelict railway lands. New York continues to grind to a halt under the weight of automobile traffic, has no coherent scheme to get more people on to bicycles and still no sign of a high-speed, non-stop rail link to any of its airports.

Honesty hurts in regards to why some did not make it onto the list. Here is a short video from Monocle about the survey.

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