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Best-Performing Cities 2024: Focus on Sustainable Growth and Resilience

The Best-Performing Cities (BPC) 2024 rankings evaluate the performance of 403 metropolitan areas across the US based on 13 indicators that cover labor market conditions, high-tech impact, and access to economic opportunities.

As the post-pandemic economy reaches a new status quo, metropolitan areas remain at the heart of the nation’s growth. Almost 6 million new jobs were created across US metro areas during 2022. Simultaneously, interest rates on mortgages more than doubled, adding to the attractiveness of locations offering jobs with higher wages and lower costs of living. 

Along with affordability, sustainability of growth is a matter of increased importance when ranking the Best-Performing Cities. The COVID-19 pandemic, coupled with recent weather-related events such as storms and floods, has focused attention on cities’ resilience to natural and economic disasters. Recognizing the importance of sustainable and equitable growth, this year’s BPC ranking incorporates a community resilience metric that summarizes the ability of a metropolitan area to recover from various kinds of disasters. Also incorporated into this year’s index is a new measure of income inequality that accounts for the social sustainability of growth (with cities with lower inequality ranked higher).

The Best-Performing Cities (BPC) 2024 ranking provides a comprehensive assessment of cities’ performance.

2024 Best-Performing Cities Rankings Highlights

• Austin–Round Rock, TX, gains one position, becoming the best-performing large city for the first time since 2013. 

• After its remarkable three-year run as the top-ranked large metropolitan area, Provo–Orem, UT, forfeits the number one position due to declines in its labor market.

• Most of this year’s top-ranking metropolitan areas are in landlocked states, with only one top-tier city (Charleston–North Charleston, SC) along a coastline. 

• Top-ranking small cities display a particular geographic concentration, with four of the seven top-tier small metros (Idaho Falls, Coeur d’Alene, Twin Falls, and Pocatello) located in Idaho.