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Posted on Mon, Aug 20, 2012 : 8:03 p.m.

Ann Arbor squeaks onto Money's list of best places to live

By Cindy Heflin


Ann Arbor comes in at 100 on Money's list of best places to live this year.

File photo

After not making Money magazine’s list of the 100 best places to live in America last year, Ann Arbor is back on it in 2012. Barely, that is.

Ann Arbor comes in at No. 100 on this year’s list. In recent years, the city has been ranked as high as 25 in 2006. It was 27 in 2008 and 46 in 2010.

The magazine cited job opportunities as one reason for Ann Arbor’s place on the list this year, though it apparently fared much worse in that category than the competition. Money said Ann Arbor had job growth of negative 12.6 percent from 2009 to 2011, whereas the average for cities on the list was 25 percent.

Four other Michigan communities made the list: Troy, 26; West Bloomfield Township, 37; Shelby Township, 78; and Macomb Township, 84.



Wed, Aug 22, 2012 : 4:53 a.m.

The best place to live is the place where you are happy.


Wed, Aug 22, 2012 : 11:44 a.m.

I agree with you Alan.


Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 5:39 p.m.

To all the Obama Haters and Obama Blamers. Does George Bush get any of the blame for ruining our countries reputation throughout the world by invading countries with false truths and allowing our environment to be contaminated while his bretheren make huge amounts of money of all of the above?


Wed, Aug 22, 2012 : 11:43 a.m.

You tell me what it has to do with the article. Everytime something negative hits the news Obamas name is brought up, including this article where it mentions negative job growth in Ann Arbor and other comments related to this article.


Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 6:09 p.m.

And this has what to do with the article..?


Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 4:43 p.m.

A2 is becoming increasingly dominated by the student population, making is less desirable for anyone to live here who is not a student. Housing prices are high due to high property taxes, rents are way overpriced for the space and value, and crime continues to be an issue along with pan handling and constant retail turnover downtown. If you are a student, then it is probably viewed as a good place to live. Students are a transient population and don't invest in the city for the long term. They will put up with high rents and really don't care about issues that long term residents are concerned with, such as the city politics, public schools, condition of streets, graffiti vandalism, lack of snow removal, etc. For anyone else, there are plenty of reasons that A2 was listed as number 100 on the list beyond the employment issues cited in the article.

Jojo B

Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 3 p.m.

I just love all of the cranky crusty comments! They make me smile for some reason.


Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 2:31 p.m.

Ha ha. The title of the magazine perfectly describes the folks who can live in A2.


Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 2:05 p.m.

We can look at job growth through a different lens because the Ann Arbor unemployment rate already hovers around 5%.


Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 7:42 p.m.

While that sounds nice and Ann Arbor is likely still very good compared to most of the U.S. the real U.S. unemployment rate (NOT what is reported on any week) is likely nothing less than 20-30%. Particularly if talking about living-wage employment with health care Ann Arbor is like too many other places in that the people I know there who are doing the best are too often those who qualified for public assistance. Too many I know in Ann Arbor who are employed are so under-employed that they technically are unemployed. I know plenty who continue to leave for a chance and a possible job elsewhere, but outside of the normal student influx do not know people moving to Ann Arbor....


Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 11:48 a.m.

I'll bet this breaks a lot of hearts and bends quite a few noses out of shape.

David Paris

Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 11:14 a.m.

Note to pan-handelers: There are four other cities in Michigan that are in far better shape than Ann Arbor, all within a few hours thumb-ride.


Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 6:07 p.m.

If Money cited the panhandlers, it would drop Ann Arbors ranking to 130.


Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 10:36 a.m.

It seems that Ann Arbor's desirability as a place to live is decreasing of late. This is understandable based on the priorities of our city government.


Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 5:31 p.m.

Unless you are a retired AA city employee with your 'golden parachute style' retirement and benefits.


Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 3:54 p.m.

Right!?!? too bad they dont see it that way.

mike gatti

Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 4:25 a.m.

Who cares what MONEY magazine says? We do as long as A2 is in the hot 100. Had we been 103 this piece would not have ran.


Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 9:09 p.m.

a2miguy, well said!


Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 4:04 p.m.

Wonder if 'quality of education' is on the list of criteria...


Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 3:37 a.m.

Regardless what you think of Whoville-on-the-Huron, there is a lesson here... don't try to pick a place to hang your hat based on what some damned survey-taker conjures up.


Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 2:23 a.m.

From the source 1] Start with all U.S. towns with populations of 50,000 to 300,000. 2] Screen out places with a median family income of more than 200% or less than 85% of the state average; those with more than 95% of one race; and those with poor education and crime scores. 3] Exclude retirement communities and towns with major job losses. Rank the rest based on job growth, home affordability, safety, school quality, health care, arts and leisure, diversity, and several ease-of-living criteria. 4] Factor in more data on the economy (including the fiscal strength of state and local governments), plus jobs, housing, health care, and happiness. Give the most weight to economic data. 5] Visit towns and interview residents; assess traffic, parks, and gathering places; and consider intangibles like community spirit. 6] Select the winner based on the data and reporting. And the winner is...CARMEL No, not the famous one in California, This one has wider bike lanes. CARMEL INDIANA (pleasant suburb of Indianapolis. (Not that the big city became an undesireable place to live and people fled to start over 20 miles away while keeping their big city amenities or anything like Brighton, Chelsea, Dexter, Howell, Milan, Saline, Whitmore Lake or even Ypsilanti).

Dog Guy

Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 1:24 a.m.

I've lived in Ann Arbor for fifty years and I like Ann Arbor, but it's certainly no Shelby Township.


Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 5:03 p.m.

LOL! I see what you're doing there, Dog Guy. Very funny.


Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 3:53 p.m.

thankfully it isnt! Shelby isnt what it used to be... its being overrun.

John B.

Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 1:17 a.m.

What on earth does this have to do with the President? You gotta be kidding me. Sad.

Michigan Man

Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 12:46 a.m.

Negative job growth of 12.6% and A2 is still in the top 100? Team Obama needs to pick it up real fast. Obama sure is bringing America back to the rest of the pack. I thought the purpose was to wear the yellow shirt and lead the world? I guess this Obama concept of leading from behind stuff is making more sense to millions of clear thinking Americans.


Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 9:07 p.m.

Topic hijack. Please. There's a clue. Get it.

David Paris

Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 11:10 a.m.

Really? So when a publicly held corporation decides to pull out of town for no reason, other than because they can, it's the presidents fault? Only in a Republicans mind!


Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 3:06 a.m.

Wait, is Obama president over the #1 city on the list too? Man, now I'm really confused as to how this all relates...


Tue, Aug 21, 2012 : 2:58 a.m.

Keep going, really. What other great wisdoms do you have to bestow upon us regarding this magazine list of the week?