Money, the news and personal-finance site, is out with its 35th annual list of the "Best Places to Live in the U.S.," and Centennial and Castle Rock both landed in the top 50.
Centennial comes in at No. 8 on the list, and Castle Rock ranks No. 28. They are the only Colorado cities on Money's list of 50 places.
Money says its list "highlights the places where job growth is rising, home prices are affordable, and the quality of life shines."
The outlet notes that Centennial children "attend Cherry Creek and Littleton Public Schools, two of the mostly highly regarded school districts in the state. The city is also conveniently located by two major highways. Alternatively, you can hop on the region’s light rail at Dry Creek station and be at Denver Union Station in 37 minutes."
“Seeing Centennial recognized in the top 10 on Money’s best place to live list fills me with so much pride," Centennial Mayor Stephanie Piko said in a statement in response to Money's report.
"As we’ve been celebrating Centennial’s 20th anniversary this year, it has been so much fun to reminisce about the extraordinary aspects of our founding," Piko added. "Our community has achieved so much and should be very proud of what we have created. Centennial was formed by its citizens so thank you to our residents, businesses and partners for making Centennial a best place to live."
Castle Rock, meanwhile, "boasts 6,000 acres of open space, award-winning public schools and easy access to both Denver and Colorado Springs. Outdoor enthusiasts have no shortage of activities to choose from here, including 95 miles of trails and 53 planned parks," Money says. It also cites the Douglas County seat's street festivals and outdoor summer concerts.
Money said it evaluated U.S. cities and towns ranging from 25,000 to 500,000 people. It said it excluded places with a crime risk more than 1.5 times the national average, a median income level lower than its state’s median, a declining population, and with "effectively no ethnic diversity," narrowing its candidates to about 1,300 locations.
From that list, Money said it evaluated nearly 100 metrics in the categories of cost of living, economic opportunity and housing affordability (which it said were given "extra weight") along with diversity, education, "fun," health and safety, income and personal finances, and quality of life, with help from research firm Witlytic.
Parker came in at No. 2 on last year's list, but Money said that it excluded 2020'stop five finishers from this year's list. (Broomfield ranked No. 18 last year.)
At No. 1 on this year's list: Chanhassen, Minnesota, which Money describes as "a Minneapolis suburb brimming with gorgeous outdoors, musical history and an appealing growth trajectory."
Rouning out the top 10:No. 2: Carmel, IndianaNo. 3: Franklin, TennesseeNo. 4: Flower Mound, TexasNo. 5: Ashburn, VirginiaNo. 6: Syracuse, UtahNo. 7: Overland Park, KansasNo. 8: Centennial, ColoradoNo. 9: Scottsdale, ArizonaNo. 10: Ellicott City, Maryland
Money — formerly a print magazine, now a digital outlet — has compiled some version of a Best Places to Live list sinced 1987.
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