First off, this is an opinion piece - my opinion only - so keep that in mind while reading.

From an article on KXXV Channel 25's website, I saw that Austin Texas was named the 3rd best place to live in America. The list was put together by US News and World Report, a new media company that is mostly known for its rankings of various things, like Best Colleges in America, Best Cars, Best Hospitals and really just any "Best Of" they can think of.

Their most recent "Best of" was announced today, and it listed the "Best Places to Live". It's interesting to note that Austin, which placed 3rd on the list, was the only city in the top 5 that's outside of Colorado. Boulder, Denver at 1 and 2 and Colorado Springs and Fort Collins at 4 and 5.

So what were the "Best Place to Live" parameters? US News looked at several things to base their list on, including job market, housing affordability, quality of life, desirability, net migration ratings, surveys, crime data and school quality. So with those things in mind, Austin placed third.

Here's where I strongly disagree. Austin is expensive - very expensive, in fact. According to Value Penguin, the median home price in Austin is $347,000. In the rest of Texas, it's $185,000, so Austin's price is almost twice as much. As for quality of life, working 50+-hour work weeks to pay off the mortgage is not what I think of when it comes to quality of life. And, correct me if I'm wrong here, but didn't the Austin City Council vote to defund the police? Nobody can convince me that that's a good idea. Reform the policies is a better approach, but to defund the police? Give me a break.

Driving through Austin is also a big problem. Just try it sometime during morning or afternoon commute times. No quality of life there.

It sounds like I'm picking on Austin alone, but Boulder, Denver and Colorado Springs are also very expensive places to live, and are traffic nightmares for anybody driving to and from work.

As for me, I like the Temple/Belton area. Easy to get around, housing is affordable, and the school districts are pretty good too. Maybe the folks at US News and World Report should stop in for a visit sometime.

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