The Livin’ is Good in Utah:’s 2014 Top 100 Places to Live

How great is Utah? So great that the Beehive State landed three spots in’s 2014 Top 100 Places to Live: Salt Lake City (#8), Provo (#17) and Murray (#97).

Each city selected excelled on a list of criteria, including amenities, economics, education and healthcare. All three cities were acknowledged for the exceptional outdoor recreation that is plentiful in Utah. Other key factors highlighted were the keen education system, entrepreneurial spirit and low crime.

Keep reading for more about what makes Salt Lake City, Provo and Murray top places to live. For full rankings, click here.

Salt Lake City, Utah
Population: 193,470
Median household income: $44,639
Median Home Price: $206,623
Median Travel Time To Work: 17 Minutes
Salt Lake City Homes for Sale

Why Salt Lake City is a “Best Place to Live”

Utah’s capital city, originally named “Great Salt Lake City,” certainly lives up to its billing. Urban amenities, a stunning mountain backdrop, a thriving performing arts community, an abundance of outdoor sports and an emphasis on family living all make Salt Lake City a great place to live and work.

Residents of Salt Lake and its surrounding cities enjoy the benefits of living in a bustling metropolis that also offers quiet neighborhoods and easy living. And don’t forget about the boundless beauty of the nearby mountains – the Wasatch Mountains to the east and north and the Oquirrh Mountains to the west. Only 15 minutes from downtown, they offer everything from skiing, snowmobiling and ice climbing in the winter to hiking, boating and biking in the summer.

Some interesting facts that unveiled: in recent years the region has added 150 miles of light and commuter rail, reducing commute time (only 17 minutes to work!), congestion and pollution. Additionally, the University of Utah spins off more businesses than any other university in the nation – yes, more than business heavyweights MIT, Harvard and Stanford. Also of interest, the majority of public school students are minorities and Salt Lake City was named the “Gayest City in America” by Advocate magazine.

Provo, Utah
Population: 120,901
Median Household Income: $39,415
Median Home Price: $167,625
Average Work Commute: 13 minutes
Provo Homes for Sale

Why Provo is a “Best Place to Live”

Spectacular scenery, outdoor recreation, a growing arts and culture scene and a revitalized downtown just barely scratch the surface of why Provo is an excellent place to live. Provo also ranks best-in-class for education from preschool through college, affordable housing, and also for having some of the nation’s lowest crime rates and the region’s best health-care facilities.

Provo is located 49 miles south of Salt Lake City in Utah Valley and is set amongst the scenic Wasatch Range. Home to Brigham Young University, the university town has a hip entertainment scene with restaurants and attractions. Museums and cultural opportunities are abundant, from theater and art shows at the Covey Center for the Arts to the many facilities on the BYU campus.

The city also enjoys a highly educated workforce and thriving economy. In fact, Forbes magazine says is the best place in America to do business thanks to low tax rates, high job growth, low crime and an extraordinary entrepreneurial spirit.

As for recreation, Provo has that in spades. Robert Redford’s Sundance Resort is 20 minutes from downtown Provo and Uinta National Forest, Utah’s first national forest, is the go-to spot for camping, horseback riding, snowshoeing and hiking.

Murray, Utah
Population: 48,495
Median household income: $55,813
Median Home Price: $193,562
Median Travel Time To Work: 19 Minutes
Murray Homes for Sale

Why Murray is a “Best Place to Live”

Murray is a city situated on the Wasatch Front in the core of Salt Lake Valley and is a mere 12 minutes from Salt Lake City.

Murray has historically been a community of the working class, however, recently the area has seen an influx of young professionals and families due to its more affordable nature. Today, the demographics trend is younger and the majority of the residents are homeowners and single.

As with most cities in Northern Utah, outdoor recreation is never very far away. Thousands of people each year visit Murray City Park for organized sports and its wooded areas, the Murray Parkway Golf Course has been rated among the top 25 golf courses in Utah and boating, water skiing, biking, hiking and fishing are all easily accessible.

To assess Utah cities, Livability focused on small to mid-sized cities (populations between 25,000 and 350,000), and worked with leading researchers as well as public and private data sources. For more about the methodology behind the rankings, click here.

It’s no secret that WE love Utah! Let us know why you choose to live, work and play in Utah…the comment section is waiting.

By |2018-11-15T12:42:42-07:00June 3, 2014|

About the Author:

Gina Uriarte is an avid traveler and enjoys rock climbing, hiking, sporting events and live music. Gina has been in the marketing field for the real estate industry since 2005 and most enjoys the creative side of her craft. When not working or planning her next trip, Gina can be found sharing her musings on music, design and sports 140 characters at a time over on Twitter. Feel free to tweet her, as she is quick to respond.

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