Kenya's Capital Nairobi has been ranked the 2nd worst city to live in globally. East Africa's Economic hub was ranked so poorly globally based on its metropolis nature, the city's green space, natural assets in the city and its connectivity. The ranking by The Economist Intelligence Unit also rated the cities based on pollution indices and Isolation (proximity to other cities).
According to Smartplanet, the rankings combined EIU’s popular “Liveability Index” with a new measure that focuses on spatial characteristics. The “Spatially Adjusted Livability Index” takes into account seven characteristics:
Sprawl: using the”estimated relation between the metropolitan region’s surface and its total population, the overall coherence of the metropolitan form and an estimate of the extent of low density urban fabric.”
Green space: based on ”the distribution of green spaces within the metropolitan region, the number of local green spaces and the number of metropolitan scale green spaces.”
Natural assets: using “Google Earth satellite imagery and information from Open Street Map to assign points to cities based on the natural features” and the number of protected areas around a city center.
Cultural assets: counting the number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the vicinity of the cities.
Connectivity: calculating how many cities can be reached by plane from a city and the average number of flights from that city.
Isolation: based on the number of large cities near a city.
Pollution: using World Health Organisation (WHO)’s Air Pollution in Cities database to calculate air quality with a concentration of particulate matter of over 10 micrometres.
Using these criteria here are the 10 best cities to live in:
And the 10 worst:
The top ranked city in the U.S. was Washington, D.C. (14), followed by Chicago (15), New York (16), Los Angeles (17), and San Francisco (18).
Smartplanet's Tyler Falk says that no rankings or measurements are perfect, and therefore this one is no exception. Falk says only 70 of the cities on the original EIU “Liveability Index” had their spatial characteristics analyzed.
Nonetheless, spatial characteristics are important — if sometimes overlooked — aspects of livability. And it’s not just about how many parks cities have. Where cities are located and how they grow can have major impacts on the economy, health and wellness of cities and their inhabitants.
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