November 11, 2012

A Livability Index

We’re always interested in ways to measure how Special a place is.  A website called has a Livability Index that has some interesting assumptions.

First, let’s see what it makes of some places most of us agree are Not Particularly Special (by which we mean we wouldn’t live there for free and we also wouldn’t live there unless we were paid Larry Ellison’s stock options).

Here’s areavibes on Detroit.


Detroit, MI is “Somewhat Livable.”  The only “A” grade it received was in cost of living, and that’s because the city will pay you to take one of their excess houses so they don’t have to pay to tear it down.  We can’t imagine what kind of city would merit a “Completely Out of the Question.”  Let’s move another to another Perennial of Pwnage: Stockton.


I can see the new Civic Motto over City Hall (if they have any staff capable of hanging banners): Stockton! Four Points More Livable Than Detroit!  But they are an important four points, as Stockton is considered “Very Livable.”

We now move on toward the Bay Area, but not the Good Part.


When Stockton has finer amenities than you do, and their weather is better too, plus your housing costs are unacceptably high to anyone outside the Bay Area, what’s the point of even entering the race?  Let’s try a better zip code.


Ooooo!  Exceptionally Livable!  And what’s really exceptional is that if we type in an actual zip code, the score went down.


Good luck figuring out why.  Finally, we arrive at the pinnacle of Real Bay Area Living.


We invite you to try to score higher than that, either in the Bay Area, or anywhere else.  And we don’t want you to think these “grades” are completely pulled out of Mitt Romney’s car elevator.  Here, for example, is what the housing grade is based on:


Cupertino scores higher than average in every category.  Why would they be marked down for better numbers?

This is also your Weekend Open Thread, so go crazy.

Comments (17) -- Posted by: madhaus @ 5:11 am

February 6, 2008

9br/5ba 12,800 sqft house for $899,999

Single Family Home – DETROIT, MI, 48202 –

9 Bed, 5 Bath
12,800 Sq. Ft.
Estimated Payment:
$4,532 Per Month*

MLS ID# 30573267
9 Bed, 5 Bath, 12,800 Sq. Ft.

Magnificent Landmark Historic Mansion on 1/2 City Block in Boston-Edison Historic District. Exquisite detailing T/O the 30 Room Limestone Showplace designed by Albert Kahn. Unmatched quailty of contruction and finshwork, inclu. Lavish Paneling, Marble, Pewabic Tile, Muraled Ceilings & more. Spectacular Kitchen with Granite Countertops & Marble Floors! 1100 sq. ft. Bedroom Apartment above 3 1/2 Car Garage. 24 Hour Notice to show/Pre-Approved Buyers

Did you really think this would be in the Bay Area? Of course not!

This is what Burbed reader Cesar had to say:

Thank you for your magnificent website!  I live in the Detroit area, where the economy is not the best right now, and jobs are hard to come by, but if you’re lucky to have a stable, well paying job, then it’s a magnificent place to raise a family.  With all the jokes aside about Detroit, I thought you might find this interesting

I do find it interesting indeed. Sorry Cesar , but it just goes to show how undesirable Detroit is. If a middle level engineer can afford a 9 bedroom house, would anyone really want to live there? Do 9 bedroom houses for $899k attract the best Web 2.0 developers?

Yeah. Didn’t think so.

Thanks anyway Cesar!

Comments (25) -- Posted by: burbed @ 5:53 am