Forbes.com named Dubuque the top small city to raise a family in a recent article that was released on Monday.
Our top-ranked city, Dubuque, Iowa, is much smaller than a place like New York, with a population of 92,139, but still one of the larger cities on our list (we only ranked cities with a population under 100,000). Dubuque’s size puts it in a kind of sweet spot: large enough to be a center of industry, small enough to not be overcrowded. An economy that successfully diversified after the collapse of the local manufacturing industry contributes to an unemployment rate that’s nearly half the national average, at 6.5%, and a median household income of $48,779. That means most families have the jobs they need. They also don’t have to spend a lot of time getting there: Only 2.6% of the population spends an hour or more getting to work.
Forbes looked at quality-of-life measures that could make living easier for families. They started with the most recent data available from the U.S. Census Bureau on all Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Areas with a population under 100,000. That left them with 126 cities, they then ranked with measures including, commute, education, mean income, and jobs.
The full article may be viewed here: http://www.forbes.com/2010/10/25/small-cities-family-lifestyle-real-estate-quality-of-life.html