The survey used a new, “spatial characteristics” category, which is comprised of seven new indicators: green space, sprawl, natural assets, cultural assets, connectivity, isolation, and pollution. This was given 25% of the Vote.
Using this new criterion and compiling the composite score, Hong Kong is now the number “one” city and Sydney, the 5th best city. Sydney is the only Australian city in the list. Hong Kong’s compact nature, network of green spaces and cultural assets helped it get the top spot.
Looking and comparing the list this year with previous years, Sydney has slipped from 2nd to 5th spot.
Toronto in Canada [8th rank] is the only North American city in the top ten in a new best city ranking. Washington DC is 14th.
No surprise there that 5 out of 10 best cities are European cities.
Sydney was noted to have low pollution and high greenery, but urban sprawl dragged its score down. In the years to come, Sydney’s rank could go down further as it is growing in the outskirts which is going to have a negative impact on its ranking.
Vancouver has gone down massively in the score.
Here is the list of top 20 best cities.
1. Hong Kong
14. Washington DC
16. New York
18. San Francisco
Singapore was 22nd, Beijing 30th, Shanghai 33rd, KL 37th, New Delhi 46th, Bangkok 49th and Mumbai was 52nd out of 70 cities. Karachi was 65th and Dhaka, Lagos and Harare were at the bottom of the list.
I and Sydneysiders wouldn’t have any doubt anyway that we live in one of the best cities of the world. No city can match Sydney’s Opera House, Darling Harbour and its pristine beaches. Sydney is indeed a happening city and we love it!
Yadu Singh/Sydney/5th July, 2012