The website greatist.com published their annual top 20 cities for 20-somethings. I was pleasantly surprised to see Tucson at #2. Today also marked the arrival of the first streetcar in Tucson. There is a buzz that has existed in our community in the 25 years I have lived here. The following is from the article and at the bottom I have commented on the links that they provided as reference.
“When we released last year’s list of the top 20 cities for 20-somethings, some readers were pleased and some were less so. We were looking for ultra-cool spots where young adults could find jobs they love, unwind at happy hours, join sports leagues, and make new pals. This year we’ve updated that list, and many of the cities you suggested met our new criteria. In general, it’s hard to pinpoint what qualities 20-somethings go for in picking the perfect city. There are common factors such as cleanliness, park space, and efficient transit systems, but this year we expanded our scope: Does a city provide ethnic and cultural diversity? Can you walk in peace or are the streets packed with cars? We compiled this year’s list taking into account as many factors as we could to bring you the most accurate list of healthy cities for 20-somethings. Read on for our 2013 picks, presented in reverse alphabetical order, and let us know: Did we include your favorite?
2. Tucson, AZ
Average Temp (High, Low): 82, 55
Per capita Income: $20,460
Average Rent for 1-Bedroom Apt: $669
Median Age: 33
Take a deeeeep breath. Tucson is one of the cleanest cities in the U.S., as measured by year-round particle pollution. That should come in handy when we’re panting heavily on a bike, hike, or simple jog. Surrounded by mountain ranges, this year-round sunny city is the place for outdoor activity aficionados, especially cyclists. A program called “Bicycle Boulevards” helps turn city streets into safe pathways for bikers. And unlike some of the other cities on this list (cough New York cough), Tucson’s not a place where we’ll end up blowing our whole paycheck: The city’s been rated one of the most affordable places to rent an apartment. Spend some of that extra dough at the restaurants, bars, and boutiques in the historic Fourth Avenue district.”
My thoughts on the links
On the affordability scale I feel after traveling this summer to Utah and Colorado just how good we have it. Our organic produce is less than the cheapest produce. Gasoline in Tucson is .50-.75 cheaper. Eating out, going to the bar, every time you go out in Tucson it just costs less. Rents and home prices are very low. I needed to leave Tucson to appreciate this. http://www.apartmentguide.com/blog/get-more-apartment-for-less-money-in-these-top-metros-infographic/
OK, the concept of the bike boulevards are good, but there are even better resources and examples of what is good about biking. The loop I think is better for commuters. The 6 foot shoulders that are covering hundreds of miles in Southern Arizona are better then any of the boulevards. Howe Actually, the Bike boulevard on 4th and Fontana is mostly unpleasant in terms of road quality and views. However, the concept is good, traffic calming is great, and with time and money they will improve. http://cms3.tucsonaz.gov/projects/bicycle-boulevards
Tucson is number 8 for year round Particle pollution according the American Lung Association. http://www.stateoftheair.org/2013/city-rankings/cleanest-cities.html
This is what they used to talk about the mountains. http://www.outsideonline.com/adventure-travel/best-towns/Tucson- Arizona.
As you might know, I like bikes. So when I keep seeing Tucson ranked in the top cities and the articles reference bikes as a reason, I get very excited. I wish they would say more, because there are so many incredible bike activities, commuting, races, recreation and the list goes on. The government gets it and have done an outstanding job with the pushing of a dedicated community. http://www.bicycling.com/ride-maps/featured-rides/12-tucson-az
The #2 ranking was a reverse alphabetical placement. I know, this should be at the top of the article, but it was brought to my attention after I originally published this.