Best American Cities for Design
"What makes a city great is a topic guaranteed to spark heated debate. Now architectural firm RMJM Hillier has ridden into the fray with a list of "America's Best Cities for Design," produced with the American Institute of Architecture and Zogby International. American cities with more than 500,000 inhabitants were judged according to criteria such as the quality of public transit, the number of LEED-registered buildings (indicating sustainable design) and how many of the city's employees work within creative industries such as performing arts or publishing. Interviews with residents were also used to rate a city's design factor, which takes in elements of a city's architecture as well as its appeal as a home for creative types. Large cities such as Los Angeles feature in the top 10, along with smaller ones such as Portland, Ore. But Chicago's greening efforts and architectural innovation saw it take top prize."