24/7 Wall Street

Chicago Suburb Named 2nd Best US City to Live in

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A Chicago suburb has been named the second best city in which to live in the U.S., according to a new ranking released Tuesday.

24/7 Wall Street ranked Winnetka near the top of the list, coming in second only to Manhattan Beach in California.

The publication noted that the North Shore community "boasts a high per capita concentration of restaurants, bars and theater companies as well as a total of 27 parks that span nearly 250 acres."

Winnetka also has a median household income of $220,577 - more than three times the national median of $60,293, 24/7 Wall Street said. With a population of 12,481, the city has also grown 1.7% in the last five years. Over that same time period, the average unemployment has been 2.4%, well below the national level.

The only other city in Illinois that made the cut was Mahomet, just outside Champaign in central Illinois, which ranked at 38th on the list. 24/7 Wall Street says residents benefit from a "healthy job market," where employment grew nearly four times more quickly than it did nationwide in the last five years. Mahomet also boasts a median household income of $115,619, according to the ranking, and just 2.2% of its residents live below the poverty line.

Several other Midwestern cities made the cut as well. Plover and Whitefish Bay in Wisconsin came in at 46th and 14th on the list, respectively. In Indiana, Kendallville ranked 33rd, with its affordability - goods and services costing about 14.5% less than they do nationwide - mentioned as its best attribute.

How exactly did 24/7 Wall Street determine its ranking? Based on 25 measures across four categories, the publication said: affordability, economy, quality of life and community.

Those measures included things like the ratio of home value to household income, the cost of living, the share of the population living near a grocery store, the incidences of disease and drug fatalities, percentages of workers commuting without a car, the number of attractions - libraries, movie theaters, museums, parks, restaurants - and more.

Don't live in Winnetka? That doesn't mean your city isn't fantastic. In order to ensure geographic diversity, i.e. cities from all across the country, 24/7 Wall Street only put the top-ranking city in each county on the list.

This isn't the first time Winnetka has topped the charts. In November, 24/7 Wall Street named it the best suburb in Illinois in its ranking of suburbs in each state across the U.S.

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