Questionable. To say the least. That’s what I’m thinking about this national roundup of the 100 best cities to live in the United States.
Now, when you think “best place to live” in Connecticut, many of us tend to think of Greenwich and/or Darien. You know, nice safe neighborhoods with great schools and quiet nights.
Well, whoever made this national roundup was clearly hitting the bottle too hard or wrote this before 1970. That, or Governor Dan Malloy is definitely running for re-election and paid them off to make him look good. Take your pick. Because, according to U.S. News & World Report, Hartford and New Haven are some of the 100 best places in America to call home.
What’s that I hear? The “I Love Lucy” laugh track? No, wait, that’s practically every Connecticut police officer. My bad.
What’s weirder is that Hartford ranked in the top 50. At #31. As for what made Hartford a dreamy place to call home? The report said the city holds “many cultural gems hidden amidst rolling hills and wooded neighborhoods.”
Yeah, if you enjoy those aforementioned perks before 5PM on a weekday.
But, on the bright side, housing costs are below the national average. Then again, that kinda evens out having nearly all other daily expenses higher than the national average.
Anyways, onto New Haven, who ranked an astounding 81st on the list. Again, it’s a shock this city came in the top 100 at all. Then again, who wants to bet Yale University slipped the study a nice crisp Benjamin… or 10?
It’s not that all surprising when the city is described as “New England charm and global cosmopolitanism [in a] livable seaside metropolitan area.” The study also happily mentioned that anyone living in New Haven pays above the national average for pretty much everything.
Look, I understand that Hartford and New Haven are BEAUTIFUL cities. They’re rich in history and architecture.
But they’re not exactly places many of us want to live. Back in the day, though? Heck yes.
Both my mom and dad grew up in New Haven. Dad’s family lived on Columbus Ave and Mom on Morris St. My parents would regale my sister and I with stories about how they’d walk to the Hummel’s factory for hot dogs and how beautiful St. Stanislaus Parish would look around Christmas with the poinsettias.
But, like many residents, they left in the 1970’s. Crime went up and and quality of life went down.
The crime endemic to those cities has been reflected in more studies than I can count, too. Hartford and New Haven consistently battle over being the most dangerous city in Connecticut. Sometimes, they’re ranked among the most dangerous in America.
Not only that, Hartford is the worst state capitol in the nation.
Plus, both New Haven and Hartford are dealing with residents fleeing at neck-break speeds. So, if they’re sincerely some of the best cities to live in America… why are so many people leaving?
Fairfield County is, arguably, the only area in Connecticut that is actually seeing some actual growth in the population. It also is home to the safest cities and towns in the state. Coincidence? I think so.
I dunno, I guess it’s because people like to feel safe walking the streets at night. And day. How about all the time?
I have a splendid idea. How about people not from Connecticut and who have never been to Connecticut… stop writing about and ranking Connecticut? Problem is, they romanticize everything and look at statistics that don’t dig into the meat of the issue.
These writers don’t see what’s broken and needs to be fixed. That, or, they’re wearing rose colored glasses tailor made by Hollywood. I mean, how can they see when their sight is blocked by our “rolling hills?”
Do I want Hartford and New Haven to be some of the best places to live in America? Oh, heck yes! But as they are now? No. Because what does that say about the rest of the list?
Story via NBC Connecticut