Maybe we should be used to it , and maybe we are, but it is still nice to realize that people around the country and the world are continuing to recognize Madison for being a great place. Add Livability.com and BBC Travel as the two latest organizations appreciating the City of Madison.
Livability.com researches and develops monthly top 10 lists of small to mid-sized cities along with an annual ranking of Livable Cities. Madison is ranked #5 on their just released list of 100 Best Places to Live.
With a livability score of 639, Madison only trailed the top ranked city of Palo Alto, California by seven points. Cities were ranked in a number of areas including economics, health care, education, infrastructure, and others. Other communities in the top ten include Boulder, Colorado; Durham, North Carolina; and Berkeley, California.
"Interestingly," said Mayor Paul Soglin, "we were initially ranked 79th but an AASPIRE Intern in our City Planning Department took a closer look at the numbers and realized Livablity made a mistake. We contacted them with questions and it turns out they had erroneously substitiuted some of our scores with those from Madison Heights, Michigan. Number five is great, but of course, we are still shooting for number one."
BBC Travel also just released Top Five College Towns. This list is international in scope, and Madison is the only American city on the list, which included Cambridge, England; Valparaiso, Chile; Uppsala, Sweden; and Kingston, Ontario.
The BBC story referred to Madison as "...one of the loveliest college towns in the US Midwest. It is also one of the healthiest, with pedestrianised streets, miles of dedicated bike lanes, four lakes and numerous parks."
We know we live in a great city but we also know we face many challenges. We will continue to face those challenges and make Madison and even better place to live, work, raise a family and go to college. Just for a few moments though, we can appreciate the recognition.