Washington, DC, was ranked the second-coolest city in America by Forbes. The District was lauded for its apparently recession-proof economy, its large array of cultural and recreational activities available to residents, and its young, diverse population.
To compile the top 20 “coolest cities” Forbes ranked the 65 largest metropolitan statistical areas as defined by the US Office of Management and Budget. It then used research from Sperling’s Best Places, the 2010 census, and the Bureau of Labor Statistics to calculate each city’s “cool points” based on factors including 2011 migration to the city, the number of restaurants and entertainment opportunities available, and the average age of the population.
The list of cities ranked were mostly the expected handful aside from a surprisingly strong showing of Texas towns including Fort Worth, San Antonio, and the winner, Houston. The rational behind this division is that these cities either have a strong enough economy or a low enough cost of living to attract the young artistic types usually responsible for gentrification and bolstering of all-around coolness.
See the full list here.