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Bellevue ranked one of the best cities in the country to live
The city of Bellevue was recently ranked 12th on Livability.com's "Top 100 Places to Live," and touted on the website as a park-like city with nationally-recognized schools and fueled by cultural diversity.
"Two things (Bellevue) performed really well on were amenities and demographic diversity," said Zara Matheson, a researcher with the Martin Prosperity Institute, which collected and analyzed data from more than 1,700 cities for Livability's study. "People are kind of drawn to areas that are more tolerant than others."
Bellevue was one of six Washington cities to make Livability's list, along with Bellingham (25), Tacoma (41), Redmond (62), Everett (73) and Vancouver (96).
Matheson said Bellevue scored high for amenities based on its arts, entertainment offerings and restaurants, and also ranked 26th out of 100 for housing based on a comparison of rentals versus owned homes, the age of Bellevue's housing options and affordability when compared to the average income for city residents.
Livability ranked Bellevue low on healthcare - the worst category ranking for the city - at 93 out of 100. The city was scored 31, below the national average of 44 based on all cities measured.
"That's probably a place for improvement, especially compared to the other cities," Matheson said. "It's ranked with that based mainly on the number of hospitals and the affordability of healthcare."
St. Louis, Mo., scored highest in healthcare at 97, but was ranked last out of the top 100 places to live. Palo Alto, Calif., ranked No. 1 overall as Livability.com's Best Place to Live.
"Even in the top 10 or so, none of them performed the best at anything," Matheson said, "but performing well at everything is what makes them one of the top places."