Pleasanton in top 100 of Money Magazine 'best cities' survey

City gains a ranking of 63rd as only Bay Area city to earn annual national honors

Money Magazine, in its annual survey of the best places to live in the U.S., ranks Pleasanton 63rd nationally and third in California, citing the city's good climate, low crime, excellent schools and superb recreational programs and facilities.

Only Irvine, with a population of 208,000, and Yorba Linda, with 66,000 residents, ranked higher among California cities, scoring 22nd and 38th, respectively. The only other California city among the country's top 100 is Rocklin, with 53,000 residents, which ranked 65th. Pleasanton, based on preliminary estimates of the 2010 census, has about 68,000 residents.

Pleasanton has often scored among top U.S. cities in various surveys. Recently, it was graded first in personal income among cities its size with an average income level of more than $125,000, although the Money Magazine survey lists the median income here today as $134,282.

Money Magazine calls Pleasanton "a family-oriented town an hour from both San Francisco and Monterey (with) one of the strongest school districts in California.

"It also boasts 40 parks peppered with sports fields, picnic areas, 22 miles of scenic trails and public art displays," the magazine reports.

It adds: "Art lovers will soon have even more to enjoy: The Firehouse Arts Center, scheduled to open before the end of 2010, will house a new theatre, several art galleries, and classrooms."

In fact the only drawback to moving here is the high price of homes, but Livermore Realtor Toni Dalrymple said that even so, Pleasanton stacks up pretty well when comparing to other top cities.

"It's touted as a family centered town with parks, golf courses and the article comments on the higher than average reading and math scores for the local schools," she said.

Statistics listed by Money Magazine that give Pleasanton an edge over most other American cities include:

* Median family income: $134,282 compared to an average of $90,957for other "best places to live in America cities."

* Median home price: $465,000 vs. $239,391.

* Reading test scores in public schools: 63.6% vs. 22.9%

* Math test scores in public schools: 45.8% vs. 22.9%.

* Annual air quality index average: 72.0% vs. 77.8%.

* Personal crime risk (per 1,000): 1 vs. 2.

* Annual precipitation (inches): 22 vs. 37.4

* Annual number of clear days: 44 vs. 29.

* Median age: 38.7 vs. 35.3.

* Completed at least some college: 79.2% vs. 71.5%.

Also, we tend to spend a bit more time on the road with a median commute time of 25.8 minutes vs. 21.4 average for best places.

By the way, Money Magazine's choice for the very best all-around city in America is Eden Prairie, Minn. While its population is about the same as Pleasanton's, its housing prices average $235,000 with almost no commute time required.

Even Eden Prairie has its drawbacks, though. Low temperatures in January tumble down to 3.7 degrees above zero.


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Posted by SteveP
a resident of Parkside
on Jul 13, 2010 at 9:01 am

SteveP is a registered user.

Great news and hardly surprising to those of us who have lived here for years.
On another note, this has really got to stick in the craw of posters like chola who are constantly running down Pleasanton. I didn't see Livermore listed anywhere near the top 100...maybe now we know why.

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Posted by Tim
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 13, 2010 at 9:15 am

It also said in the magazine article that our sales tax was 8.25% and the high temperature in July was 75.8. Makes you wonder about their data collection techniques.

Like this comment
Posted by Tim
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jul 13, 2010 at 9:17 am

SteveP: The Valley Times said in todays paper that Livermore was picked a few years ago.

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Posted by Kim
a resident of Ruby Hill
on Jul 13, 2010 at 9:20 am

Yea for p-town!

Like this comment
Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Jul 13, 2010 at 9:43 am


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Posted by Buford
a resident of Birdland
on Jul 13, 2010 at 7:58 pm

We need to knock down all these sissy liberal historic buildings downtown including Veteran's Memorial Hall, the Museum Building and build a SUPER WALMART. I want low prices now! I want parking! Don't stand in the way of good old Reagan-American progress! AMERICA!!

Like this comment
Posted by Educated
a resident of Foothill High School
on Jul 13, 2010 at 9:46 pm

Hey case you hadn't noticed, Pleasanton has a Walmart AND a charming, historic downtown. It IS possible to have both. And they BOTH benefit our community.

Like this comment
Posted by steve
a resident of Parkside
on Jul 14, 2010 at 8:36 am

Sounds like buford could benefit from our wonderful Pleasanton schools as well.
While he may think his sarcasm will serve him well to entertain his liberal, elitist buddies, it only further serves to display how vacuous and devoid of knowledge those of his ilk really are. Buford, leave town while you can.....this is not where you want to be. Try berserkely instead.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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