Harrisburg, PA (WHTM) – Harrisburg and Lancaster have made US News and World Report’s annual list of best places to live in the United States. Harrisburg was named the 34th best place to live. Lancaster came in at 41.
U.S. News said it analyzed the 100 most populous metro areas to find the best places to live. The rankings are based on affordability of the city, desirability to live there, the job market, and the quality of life.
In its ranking, the magazine said Harrisburg has easy access to the great outdoors.
“The Harrisburg metropolitan area has more of a small-town atmosphere than many of the East Coast’s larger metro areas,” according to a write-up about Harrisburg’s ranking. “And with one of the country’s most affordable housing markets and a cost of living below the national average, Harrisburg provides an urban atmosphere with a manageable price tag.”
Using its ranking system, Harrisburg received an overall score of 6.7 out of 10. Value received the top ranking for Harrisburg with a 7.5. The city’s lowest score was for desirability with a 4.8.
For Lancaster, the magazine noted the balance between natural and commercial spaces.
US News did point out one possible drawback to the natural spaces. “Lancaster County’s rolling farmland may be a draw for residents, but all those farm animals do bring a specific odor to the area’s air,” the magazine said in its write-up. “Though new residents will surely take notice at first, this unique smell eventually becomes the smell of home.”
Lancaster received an overall score of 6.6 out of 10. It’s highest score came for quality of life with a 7.2. Desirability hurt Lancaster the most, with a score of 5.7.
Other Pennsylvania cities that made the list: Pittsburgh at 58, Philadelphia at 77, Allentown at 79, and Scranton at 86.
Austin, TX, was named the best place to live in the United States.