5th - Best Downtowns in the United States.
According to livability.com, Salt Lake City places 5th in the nation for favorable downtown amenities such as walkability, entertainment options, percentage of new homeowners, vacancy rates, and arts/cultural attractions.
Longtime residents of this thriving downtown area have seen many new residential units added along with restaurants, coffee shops and places to find live music. The downtown area’s stable vacancy rate shows apartments and offices are being occupied shortly after they’re built. Among the statistics that helped Salt Lake City’s downtown land a spot on our list of the Top 10 Best Downtowns are the large percentage of new homeowners the city has (26 percent) and the high number of workers considered to be part of the “creative class,” which includes engineers, artists, scientists and those in technology fields.
— livability.com
4th – Best American Cities for Young Professionals.
Forbes ranks Salt Lake City as the fourth best American city for Young Professionals to live. Ranking criteria was based on local unemployment rates, cost of living, small and large businesses per capita, median salaries, and total population of those aged 24-34 with a bachelor’s degree or higher.



Quick Stats (2014)
  • Population: 1,140,483
  • Median Salary: $54,200
  • Unemployment rate: 3.9%
  • Population with bachelor's degree: 30.9%
  • Cost of living index: 103.2
  • Avg. Yearly Job Growth (2014-2016): 2.7%
  • Companies with 500+ employees: 1 for every 763 people
  • Companies with <500 employees: 1 for every 44.51 people
2nd – Friendliest Cities in America.
Time Magazine ranked Salt Lake City as the 2nd friendliest city in America just below Nashville, Tennessee in its latest reader survey.
These outdoorsy locals apparently treat visitors like family. In that spirit, the city also ranked near the top for being both kid-friendly and having a sense of adventure; outside of ski season, you can combine the two at Snowbird—by hiking, mountain biking or riding its twisting Alpine Slide and Mountain Coaster. If you come to ski in December, though, you can see why the city also ranked at No. 3 for Christmas lights. Year-round, readers’ favorite food in SLC was the burger, in part because the city has its own regional quirk: pastrami-topped wonders, like the originals found at Crown Burgers.
— Time Magazine
1st – Best Cities for Job Creation
According to a 2014 Gallup Poll measuring job creation through employee reports of job activity in 50 major metropolitan areas, Salt Lake City places first in job creation, beating out other booming US cities such as Austin, Houston, and San Francisco.
Many of the top-ranking metro areas are being boosted by growth in technology jobs, including traditional tech centers in San Francisco and San Jose but also emerging ones in Austin and Salt Lake City. These latter two may be increasingly attractive destinations for tech workers, given salaries that are becoming more competitive for the industry, along with a much lower cost of living than in California. Salt Lake City is also benefiting through growth in tourism and energy sector jobs. The growth in job creation in both Austin and Salt Lake City also spills over into growth in housing and construction jobs to meet the basic needs of the growing workforce in those areas.
1st – Best U.S. Hiking Cities
National Geographic ranked Salt Lake City as the best U.S. hiking city based on the quantity and accessibility of it’s hiking trails within a short distance of downtown.
With 10,000-foot peaks within 20 minutes, Salt Lake City may very well be the easiest major American city to get out of, which is why it attracts a large population of outdoor-minded folk. (Depending on the season, you’ll see skis, bikes, or kayaks on top of those Subaru’s.) One beloved local hiking area is Big Cottonwood Canyon, 30 miles from downtown
— National Geographic
Lloyd W. Lloyd is a SLC transplant from Pittsburgh, PA and six year veteran of the US Navy. He serves as the Director of Young Professional Development and Men’s Event chair for The Society of Young Professionals Salt Lake City. Lloyd also plays an active role in our Ux Club. Lloyd spends his free time enjoying outdoor activities and completing his Master’s in Business Administration at The University of Utah.

Connect with Lloyd:
  • Email: lwerner@ypslc.com
  • Instagram: @doublelld
  • LinkedIn: Lloyd Werner
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