VIRGINIA BEACH — What makes a city livable?
Different people will likely have different opinions, ranging from things like jobs to shopping to housing to schools.
For many city-dwellers, the amount of outdoor spaces and the ease at which they can be accessed is also important.
The folks at Pots, Planters and More, a “premiere provider of high-quality indoor and outdoor planters for use in restaurants, hotels, retail locations, office buildings, campuses, luxury landscapes and stately homes,” based in Skokie, Illinois complied a ranking of the best U.S. cities for outdoor spaces.
Virginia Beach came in at No. 14 on the list of the Top 25:
- Using data from the Trust for Public Land they looked at the number of public park acres per 1,000 residents (55 in Virginia Beach. Scottsdale, Arizona is top with 124);
- The percentage of residents who were within walking distance (one mile or less) of a park (.58 in Virginia Beach, with Philadelphia No. 1 at .93);
- How much residents spend on parks each year ($189 in Virginia Beach, which was the most in the Top 25. New Orleans, which came in at No. 1 overall, was second at $156. NOTE: The rankings didn’t cite where this data came from);
- Air quality (6.7 in Virginia Beach, which was fourth best in the Top 25 cities. Honolulu was No. 1 at 4.8);
- Average annual temperature (61 degrees in Virginia Beach, with the other cities in the Top 25 ranging from 46 degrees in Madison, Wisconsin, to 78 in Honolulu).
The rankings also took into consideration data from Zillow on median home prices ($258,206) and an average cost of rent ($1,450).
Virginia Beach’s overall score was 58.0 (tied with Lincoln, Nebraska), just ahead of Greensboro, North Carolina (57.6) and just behind Tulsa, Okahoma (58.3).