Four Australian cities landed on top 10 list by the Economist Intelligence Unit of the Global Liveability Survey of 140 worldwide cities. However, Brisbane officials are questioning the survey because the city is only 20th on the list below Melbourne, Adelaide, Sydney and Perth.
Hot temperature threatens December weather in Brisbane, Australia.
Melbourne actually is considered the most liveable city, the second straight year it held the top spot. It was followed by Vienna in Austria and three Canadian cities, namely Vancouver, Toronto and Calgary.
The Australian city of Adelaide shared the fifth place with Calgary, followed by Sydney, Helsinki in Finland, Perth and Auckland in New Zealand.
The basis of the rankings are political and social stability, crime rates, access to quality health care, diversity and standard of cultural events and natural environment, education and standard of infrastructure, including public transport.
In questioning the results, Brisbane tourism businessman Jim Kennedy pointed out that the Queensland city offered more compared to Adelaide, citing its Outback, Sunshine and Gold Coasts, and Port Douglas.
"After all, if you want to live in a cemetery, live in Adelaide. I travelled there often while I was a board member of Santos and I couldn't want to get out of the place. It simply doesn't compare with Brisbane," The Herald Sun quoted Mr Kennedy.
He cited the better weather in Brisbane and also questioned Vienna or Toronto being ranked higher than Brisbane.
"You can play golf here 52 weeks in the year and swim most days. We have beaches and sunshine and many people are moving here. Anyone who comes up with a survey suggesting that Adelaide is more liveable than Brisbane has been living in a cave," he added.
While RBS Morgans chief economist Michael Knox, who was a resident of both Adelaide and Brisbane, pointed out that the latter has more performing arts and infrastructure, Adelaide and Melbourne were carefully planned cities in the late 19th century which Brisbane was not.
Although Economist Intelligence Unit survey editor Jon Copestake did not respond to the question of Brisbane proponents, he said Aussie cities top the list due to its natural advantages such as low population density and continuous improvement with high-profile infrastructure investments which results to low crime rates, functioning infrastructure and easy access to recreational facilities.
He cited the top three cities had murder rates of 2.7, 1.1 and 2.5 per 100,000 population in 2010-11 compared with the average of 4.8 among cities in the United States.
As a result of high crime rates, Damascus plummeted to 130th place from 117th, while London dipped to 51st place from 42nd spot. On the bottom of the list in the Bangladeshi city of Dhaka which is the cellar dweller because of its low scores for health care and infrastructure.
However, the survey excluded more unliveable cities such as Baghdad and Kabul which are definitely worse than Dhaka and other Bangladeshi cities.
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