Three Upstate New York cities are among the 30 best cities to live in after the coronavirus pandemic, according to the financial and business news website Business Insider.
Syracuse, along with Ithaca and Rochester, were compared with 380 metro areas and referred to in a story by news website Axios, which reported a Harris Poll that found nearly one-third of Americans are looking to move to less densely populated areas.
Population density is considered a major contributing factor to high infection rates of COVID-19 in big cities like New York City, which have more people concentrated per square mile. And because NYC is so crowded, with 28,000 people per square mile according to the New York Times, the virus easily spread from person to person causing a surge of infected cases.
In citing Syracuse as one of the top 30 best cities to live in, Business Insider examined nine factors including:
- Unemployment rates prior to the pandemic
- Ability to work remotely,
- Population density
- Housing affordability
- Monthly household costs
- Cost of living
- Weekly work commute
- Per student spending on elementary and secondary school
- Number of residents who have at least a bachelor’s degree.
These factors could help a city recover faster from the economic effects of the pandemic. Business Insider noted one of the benefits in Syracuse was its pre-pandemic unemployment rate at 3.4 percent in February. That rate was close to the national rate. Syracuse also had one of the highest number of jobs that could be performed from home.
One Syracuse native recently returned to the area after the pandemic hit and businesses in New York City started to close. Brooke and her husband came to Central New York to escape the pandemic temporarily, but fell in love with the area and decided to stay.
“My husband and I came in March with our two children,” said Brooke, who is originally from Central New York. “We planned on staying as long as the shelter in place order was in effect. But after being here a few months we realized how great it is – the nature, the beauty, the space. It’s a great place to raise our kids,” she said.