Hillsboro has — once again — been named among the best places to live in America.
The city ranked No. 7 on a list of the "2021 Top 100 Best Places to Live" in the United States by Livability.com.
The digital publication that has produced the annual rankings for the last eight years. This year's rankings were released Oct. 13.
Hillsboro outranked more than 1,000 cities with populations between 20,000 and 1 million that Livability.com analyzed to produce the list.
The next six cities ranked above Hillsboro were: Quincy, Massachusetts; Charlottesville, Virginia; Frederick, Maryland; Overland Park, Kansas; Ann Arbor, Michigan; and, at No. 1, Madison, Wisconsin.
Last year, Hillsboro ranked No. 29 out of the 50 best places to live in the United States, according to the digital publication Money.com.
Livability.com says its methods change every year, adjusting variables and data points in its algorithm based on surveys and studies.
With 42% of Americans either moving or considering moving since the beginning of the pandemic, Livability.com's rankings this year were guided by a study it conducted with the market research company Ipsos about remote working and relocation.
More than 1,000 adults across the country were surveyed about which livability characteristics they value in their future communities, Livability.com said.
They were asked if they could work from anywhere, which factors would be most heavily considered when choosing to relocate and how their housing needs and priorities have changed since the beginning of the pandemic, according to the publication.
"Right now, millions of people are reevaluating where they want to live," Livability.com says in the introduction of its list. "If you're one of them, this list is for you."
Additionally, factors such as safety, affordability, economic stability, outdoor recreation, accessibility and community engagement were used to rank the cities based on data points measuring economics, housing, amenities, infrastructure, demographics, social and civic capital, education and healthcare, according to Livability.com. The sources included public and private data available from organizations like the U.S. Census Bureau, a labor market research firm Emsi, and geographic information systems software company Esri.
While it notes Hillsboro is a suburb of Portland, Livability.com says the city has "a personality and flair all its own."
"Hillsboro is part of the 'Silicon Forest' and hosts the high-tech headquarters of companies like Intel and Genentech," the publication continues. "The region also boasts top-notch healthcare, picturesque wineries and family farms, and many arts and culture organizations, including the Hillsboro Symphony Orchestra and the Hillsboro Artists' Regional Theatre."
The city received its highest scores in the "economy," "amenities" and "remote ready" categories that were used to rank cities.
It received its lowest scores in the "education," "civics" and "demographics" categories.
Livability.com describes HiLight, the city-owned high-speed fiber broadband internet service, which first became available to the general public late last year, as "every remote worker's dream situation."
Hillsboro Mayor Steve Callaway said city officials knew HiLight would make the city a more livable place, but they couldn't have anticipated how beneficial it would be during the pandemic.
"When (publications) use different metrics and they still come to a similar conclusion, it tells me that we're doing good things here in Hillsboro," Callaway said. "We're positioned to be a highly livable, highly desirable city, not just now but in the future. The reason that that's important is because we always strive to be better."
Technology, manufacturing, healthcare, finance and insurance are listed as Hillsboro's top industries and employers.
Going to a Hillsboro Hops game or playing disc golf at Orchard Park are noted as weekend activities.
Livability.com highlights the restaurants Copper River Restaurant & Bar for its stuffed salmon and Syun Izakaya for sushi.
Under "beloved beverage," the publication says "any of the wines from local wineries," specifically noting Blizzard Wines, Oak Knoll Winery and Ruby Vineyard and Winery.
Hiking at Orenco Woods Nature Park and Noble Woods Park is highlighted among outdoor activities.
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