TALLAHASSEE, FLORIDA — Four cities in Florida are among the best places to live in America, according to a new report.
Livability, a site that provides recommendations to Americans interested in moving, ranked St. Petersburg, Fort Lauderdale, Alafaya and Orlando in its list of the top 100 places to live in the U.S.
The site used an algorithm that calculated close to 100 different data points. The rankings reflect the highest averages of a city’s economy, housing and cost of living, amenities, transportation, environment, safety, education and health.
St. Pete’s “pristine beaches, a thriving arts community and a bustling downtown district” helped the Gulf Coast city secure Livability’s highest rating among the four Florida cities. The site pointed to “stellar amenities” like pickleball courts, dog parks, the 45-mile Pinellas Trail that’s built atop old railroad tracks, award-winning golf courses, and the 74-court shuffleboard and lawn bowling complex.
Fort Lauderdale scored the second highest ranking, thanks to its “vibrant arts and entertainment district” and blend of “leisure and luxury.” Livability called it “the ultimate coastal paradise, with golden beaches, year-round sunshine and easy access to water sports, offering an idyllic outdoor lifestyle.”
Alafaya, a city in Central Florida just east of Orlando, finished third among the cities due to high-performing schools and combination of “tranquility and excitement.” With a modest average commute under 30 minutes, Alafaya can access the benefits of Orlando without some of the drawbacks of big city life.
Not surprisingly, Orlando’s world-renowned theme parks helped earn the Central Florida city its place on the top 100 rankings. Livability also championed Orlando’s public and private K-12 schools as well as its 35 colleges, universities and technical schools. The city’s “premier museums, galleries and theaters, including the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts and the Orlando Museum of Art” also boosted its score.