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Money.com: Meridian one of best places to live in U.S.

Shoppers at the Village at Meridian development. Photo by Sharon Fisher

Meridian already boasts a first-rate medical college, a growing employment sector, and (soon) a new Trader Joe’s store, but now it can add another accolade: it’s one of the best places to live in America.

Money.com, the website of the defunct Money magazine, recently released its 2019 Best Places to Live list, and Boise’s neighbor to the west claimed the No. 9 spot out of 100 on the roster.

Meridian, a fast-growing city where 72% of its residents are homeowners, received applause for its $282,662 median home price, good schools boasting an 84.2% graduation rate and quality of life thanks to amenities like Roaring Springs Water Park and the Children’s Museum of Idaho, as well as an average of 210 sunny days per year.

“Meridian is one of the fastest-growing cities in the nation – and for good reason,” said Money.com. “Ada County’s job growth has increased by over 32% in the last decade and the unemployment rate is a low 2.5%. People seem to settle down here.”

The only other Idaho burg that landed on this year’s list was Idaho Falls, which ranked No. 93.

Topping the list this year is Clarksville, Tennessee, located about 45 miles northwest of Nashville. Rounding out the rest of the top 10 is Round Rock, Texas (No. 2); Fishers, Indiana (No. 3); Chicago’s Fulton River District (No. 4); Charlotte, North Carolina’s Country Club Heights (No. 5); Draper, Utah (No. 6); Bentonville, Arkansas (No. 7); Madison, Wisconsin (No. 8); Meridian; and Winter Garden, Florida (No. 10).

To build the list, Money.com looked at places with populations of at least 50,000, and split larger areas into neighborhoods. Eliminated were places with more than double the national crime risk or under 85% of the state’s median household income. The website examined each area’s cost of living, ease of living and amenities.

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