So, we know Peabody is one of the most peaceful cities in the United States, and now according to Money Magazine, it is still one of the best places to live in the country.
The financial publication placed the Tanner City 100th on its list of 100 best small cities in its September issue, right behind Ann Arbor, Mich. At the top of the list is Carmel, Ind.
Back in 2009, Forbes Magazine billed Peabody as No. 14 in the nation among most livable cities, using a similar ranking system. The Forbes ranking, however, just like the Vision of Humanity one, was based on Peabody as a metropolitan area and thereby included surrounding cities and towns on the North Shore.
Money Magazine ranked Peabody solely on its own merits, such as having a 200-acre working farm (Brooksby Farm) that attracts visitors from around Boston.
Mayor Ted Bettencourt says he grew up firmly believing his hometown was special, that ‘Pride in Peabody’ was more than just a slogan, and so it turns out the editors of Money Magazine appear to agree.
“This is a great national distinction for the city of Peabody and one I feel is well deserved,” Bettencourt said. “In terms of all the attributes used to measure quality of life, Peabody stacks up extremely well. Those of us who live here already know that and now the rest of the country knows it as well.”
Money editors say they relied on statistics from Onboard Informatics to rank U.S. cities with populations of 50,000 to 300,000 on topics American families care most about, such as job opportunities, cost-of-living, quality schools, low crime, quality healthcare and arts and leisure opportunities.
Additional factors included a sense of community, traffic and average commute times. And, they said, they even visited cities on the list to interview residents and assess the various factors. You can see Peabody's statistics here.
To a certain extent, the ranking is influenced by available data from the U.S. Census and Bureau of Labor Statistics, and most data is from 2011.
“Peabody is truly an exceptional value in terms of livability,” said Bettencourt. “We offer an affordable tax rate, accessibility to all major highways, senior services, which are second to none, good public schools, outstanding shopping and dining in every corner of the city, and a youth sports and recreation program, which is the envy of the region.”
Also on the list to represent the Bay State were Newton (No. 4), Brookline (No. 31), Framingham (No. 36) and Weymouth (No. 86).