City named No. 1 in Americas for quality of living, No. 4 in the world

Wednesday, April 29th, 2009

Vancouver tops cities survey


Vancouver is No. 1 in the Americas on Mercer’s 2009 Quality of Living survey of cities, and No. 4 worldwide. It shares fourth place in the world with Auckland, N.Z. Photograph by: Mark van Manen, Vancouver Sun

Vancouver has been ranked the top city in the Americas and the fourth best city in the world in Mercer’s 2009 Quality of Living survey released Tuesday.

The survey conducted by a New York-based human resources company is intended to be used by governments and multinational corporations that send employees on international assignments. It covers 215 cities. It uses a point scoring index with New York as its base city.

The survey gave the top five spots in the Americas to Canadian cities, with Toronto taking second place (15th worldwide), then Ottawa (16th), Montreal (22nd) and Calgary (26th). Seattle was ranked 50th in the Americas.

Vancouver also was tops when it came to comparing infrastructure in the Americas, followed by Atlanta, Ga. Infrastructure rankings are based on electricity supply, water availability, telephone and mail service, public transport, traffic congestion and the range of international flights from local airports.

When it comes to worldwide rankings, Vancouver shared fourth place with Auckland, N.Z., behind Zurich — the top city — then Vienna and Geneva. The least enticing city in the world was Baghdad.

Last year, Vancouver also finished fourth in world rankings, a drop from 2006 and 2007 when it was ranked third.

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