Danbury Ranked #2 for Livability Nationwide
Low unemployment and crime rates, an educated population, relative affordability, good schools and convenient access to numerous diverse amenities led 24/7 Wall Street to name Danbury the second most livable city in America in 2015.
The website reviewed data from 550 American cities with populations over 65,000. Reviewers ranked livability based on nine categories: crime, demography, economy, education, environment, health, housing, infrastructure and leisure, according to 247WallSt.com. In addition, reviewers considered other factors such as rate of population growth, median household income and poverty rate.
Job growth and income weighed most heavily in the rankings, since access to employment is the key driver that leads many families to choose a new home. Bureau of Labor Statistics data helped reviewers identify cities that workers and business owners would most likely find appealing.
Proximity to employment was also important. Western Connecticut’s diverse and resilient economy makes it attractive for a wide range of businesses across several sectors, including advanced manufacturing, financial services, healthcare and pharmaceuticals, aerospace and defense, and digital media. That means the city’s residents are better able to find employment. They’re also less likely to rely on the more fickle economy in lower Fairfield County, and better able to withstand economic downturns.
Housing expenses in Danbury are higher than the state average but more affordable than other cities and towns in the New York City metropolitan region. With a value of $283,400, Danbury’s typical home is slightly more expensive than the state median of $267,200, but far more affordable than comparable cities in lower Fairfield and Westchester counties.
Area developers and city leadership recognize that affordable housing will make Danbury and the surrounding towns more appealing for millennials, families and other key population demographics in the region. Elected officials expect the Kennedy Flats housing complex, designed to attract market-rate tenants with disposable income, to lead to service businesses opening on Danbury’s Main Street.
National developer Greystar expects the first Kennedy Flats units to become available in January 2016. Greystar plans a mix of 374 apartments and 3-bedroom townhomes ranging in price from $1,500 to $3,000 per month. Greystar also plans to develop a luxury condo complex on the west side of Danbury.
“What’s going on today on Main Street is monumental,” downtown Danbury landowner Joseph DaSilva Jr. tells the Danbury News-Times.
Yet Danbury residents trade a higher cost of living for the wealth of regional amenities, which includes parks, marinas, trails, shopping, and easy access to New York City. These leisure activities play a huge role in residents’ appreciation for the Western Connecticut city.
24/7 Wall St. considered activities within and nearby Danbury when ranking livability.
Danbury enjoys a wealth of amenities within and outside its city limits, including restaurants, museums and cultural activities, salons and spas, nature parks, public golf and tennis, access to professional sporting events, libraries, skiing and waterways.