Although Boston is one of the oldest cities in the United States, it is well known for having a very young population. Boston possesses a wealth of education and business resources which, combined with an attractive historical and cultural environment, make for a fairly appealing place for young people to live. However, these qualities were not enough to earn Boston a spot in YouthfulCities' ranking of the top 10 cities for young people for 2014, according to the Huffington Post.
“YouthfulCities is a global social venture, ranked the metropolises using 80 different indicators, including business, lifestyle and entertainment,” the Huffington Post reports. Among these international cities are Los Angeles (#8), Chicago (#6), Dallas (#4), and New York City (#3). Two of the top 10, New York and Los Angeles, are also listed in the top ten most expensive cities to live in according to Kiplinger, with New York City taking the number one spot.
In comparison to YouthfulCities’ list, Business Insider released Vocativ’s list of 35 best cities for young adults, which employs its own livability index factoring in things such as youngest population, cheapest broadband and cheapest pint of beer. Vocativ’s top 10 does not include Boston either, while Portland, OR, holds the top spot.
Lists such as these are partial and difficult to compile, but many critics are wondering: What is keeping Boston from the top ten?
Boston has one of the youngest populations in the country with a median age of 30.8, as Vocativ acknowledges, but is still only number 12 on that list of 35. Many might consider Boston to be very diverse, welcoming and energetic but it also has a high cost of living and also makes an appearance on Kiplinger’s list of top 10 most expensive cities to live.
“Despite [Boston] having one of the highest cost-of-living ranks, salaries are high to match, unemployment is low and an abundance of universities ensure a highly educated population,” Forbes reports.
The best way to understand Boston may not be through statistics, but experience. Dan Fonseca, Northeastern ’13, studied and now lives in Boston. “I've come to understand a city like NYC as a city for ‘people who have made it,’ instead of a city for people ‘trying to make it.’ Boston is for those who are ‘trying to make it,’ something the youth should gravitate towards,” Fonseca says.
“The start-up community in Boston is booming and that's great news for the city and young people who are looking to be a part of an innovative city and career [field]. Boston has as much tradition as any other city and, yet, it is constantly reinventing itself.”
Boston may not be ranked as a top 10 city, but when speaking to its inhabitants, they may tell you otherwise. It may not have the glamour of New York City or the absolute affordability of Portland, but as Fonseca puts it, “It's perpetually young, bright, and accessible…not as intimidating as NYC.”Featured photo courtesy of Amanda C. Ikard/Photo Staff.