Fayetteville makes top 5 list of best places to live for third year in a row

NWA Pride Parade on Dickson Street in Fayetteville / Photo: Todd Gill, Fayetteville Flyer

Fayetteville was once again ranked within the top five best places to live in the country by U.S. News & World Report in its annual “Best Places to Live” report.

With its No. 5 ranking, it’s the third year in a row for Fayetteville to be included near the top of the list. The city was named No. 3 in 2016 and No. 5 in 2017.

“Nestled in the Ozark Mountains, Fayetteville attracts outdoorsy types with its abundance of state parks, acres of community green space, playgrounds, parks and walking trails,” the report states. “The metro area also boasts a first-class performing arts center, an active local food movement, live music venues and a dynamic festival scene.”

Top 10 Places to Live

As reported by U.S. News & World Report in its inaugural “Best Places to Live” rankings.

1. Austin, TX
2. Colorado Springs, CO
3. Denver, CO
4. Des Moines, IA
5. Fayetteville, AR
6. Portland, OR
7. Huntsville, AL
8. Washington, DC
9. Minneapolis-St. Paul, MN
10. Seattle, WA

Topping the list for a second year in a row is Austin, Texas, which came in second place in 2016. Colorado Springs, Colorado, which was named the sixth place to live in 2017, is now listed in the second spot. Rounding out the Top 5 were Denver and Des Moines.

“People from all over the world call Fayetteville home,” the report states. “Newcomers often comment on the friendliness of Fayetteville residents. People wave and smile at each other in the street, and community events are well-attended. With dozens of volunteer organizations and nonprofits, there’s an abundance of ways to get involved in the community.”

The publication analyzed the nation’s 100 largest metro areas and ranked them based on several criteria including value and cost of living, quality of life, job market health, and desirability to live there.

“I’m thrilled that Fayetteville and the Northwest Arkansas area have maintained a spot as one of the best places to live in the country for the third year in a row,” said Mayor Lioneld Jordan in a news release. “Our region is attractive for its career opportunities, thriving outdoor culture, strong education system, cultural arts, diversity, and general quality of life. We’re continually working with partners to make Fayetteville a desirable place for people to live, work, learn, visit, and play.”

Fayetteville received a value index of 7.9 out of a possible 10, meaning the city offers a better value than similarly sized cities when comparing housing costs to median household income.