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Houston ranked as beta-, Dallas beta, Altanta beta+ ?


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Not trying to turn this into a Houston vs. Dallas thing but how does Dallas rank higher than Houston... they should at least be at the same level. Houston is far more "international" than Dallas... Houston is the energy capitol of the world with the world's largest medical center. Don't get me wrong, Dallas has it's +'s too... they have a better rail system compared to Houston... though in a few years we will be about equal. Just think Houston should be in the same class as Dallas if not just above. Just my opinion. ^_^

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I think the rankings are based on the fact that Atlanta has a real subway and better hip-hop artists, who represent the 404 better than in Houston or Dallas.

You're joking, but the subway part I believe is true. Also the fact that Atlanta is a lot more walkable, has a variety of corporate headquarters (Coca Cola, Home Depot, UPS), is big with TV/Movies/Media (CNN,TBS, HLN, Cartoon Network, The Weather Channel, Tyler Perry Studios, etc), big with celebrities (no I'm not joking). Saying the beautiful hills, trees and scenery would be taking it too far.

Believe it or not the Atlanta's MARTA is a significant system. The trains are very long like 15-20 cars long compared to 2 with Houston's light rail. The trains also get a pretty decent amount of riders. Its pretty much an everyday way of life in Atlanta because it goes everywhere, even to the airport.

So if you think I'm wrong, why else would Atlanta rank higher than Houston?

I really don't know why it ranked higher than Dallas.

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You're joking, but the subway part I believe is true. Also the fact that Atlanta is a lot more walkable, has a variety of corporate headquarters (Coca Cola, Home Depot, UPS), is big with TV/Movies/Media (CNN,TBS, HLN, Cartoon Network, The Weather Channel, Tyler Perry Studios, etc), big with celebrities (no I'm not joking). Saying the beautiful hills, trees and scenery would be taking it too far.

Believe it or not the Atlanta's MARTA is a significant system. The trains are very long like 15-20 cars long compared to 2 with Houston's light rail. The trains also get a pretty decent amount of riders. Its pretty much an everyday way of life in Atlanta because it goes everywhere, even to the airport.

So if you think I'm wrong, why else would Atlanta rank higher than Houston?

I really don't know why it ranked higher than Dallas.

You are partly correct, and partly incorrect. The simple answer as to why Atlanta ranks higher than Dallas or Houston is that it scored higher on the criteria used by this organization, some of which are listed here.

Whether one agrees with the criteria, or how it is weighted, is another matter.

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You are partly correct, and partly incorrect. The simple answer as to why Atlanta ranks higher than Dallas or Houston is that it scored higher on the criteria used by this organization, some of which are listed here.

Whether one agrees with the criteria, or how it is weighted, is another matter.

Yes, exactly. Where these kinds of rankings tend to go off the rails is not so much with the criteria, but the weightings, which are completely arbitrary, and even slight changes to them will radically re-sort the list (especially when there are many criteria, and most especially when they are subjective rather than objectively measurable and quantifiable). This is why magazine rankings like US News colleges always get so much attention every year. It's not that anything substantially changed with universities over the course of the year, but they always slightly tweak their weightings to shake up the list so it's "news".

What they should have done, IMHO, is play with the weightings until the list at least looked roughly right to a majority of informed people - essentially matching the weightings with peoples' intuitive feel about different cities. When you look at this list and some of the cities above and below others, it doesn't pass this test, and therefore will be dismissed by most people.

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Yes, exactly. Where these kinds of rankings tend to go off the rails is not so much with the criteria, but the weightings, which are completely arbitrary, and even slight changes to them will radically re-sort the list (especially when there are many criteria, and most especially when they are subjective rather than objectively measurable and quantifiable). This is why magazine rankings like US News colleges always get so much attention every year. It's not that anything substantially changed with universities over the course of the year, but they always slightly tweak their weightings to shake up the list so it's "news".

What they should have done, IMHO, is play with the weightings until the list at least looked roughly right to a majority of informed people - essentially matching the weightings with peoples' intuitive feel about different cities. When you look at this list and some of the cities above and below others, it doesn't pass this test, and therefore will be dismissed by most people.

The problem is that "informed people" or "most people" are going to be subjective, which lends bias in another direction. For instance, obviously people are going to weight cities in their own region more heavily. From a global viewpoint cities like Dallas or Atlanta perhaps aren't considered anything special or particularly influential.

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I think this video will show why Atlanta is ranked a little higher than Houston. Its just a massively urban city at the moment compared to Houston. Hopefully H-town can catch up on them with some Atlantic Station sized/type developments in the future. I agree 100% with the city of Houston for insuring the development of Regent Square. Houston is lacking on many things that makes living in urban areas worth while. I also hope that the Astrodome movie production complex goes through also. I am disappointed that Houston missed out on a heavy rail system or at least a more urban (off the street) system. Also Houston has no real attractions. Atlanta has the World of Coke, The Georgia Aquarium, Six Flags Over Georgia, MLK historical area, CNN, the Tyler Perry Studios, etc. Houston is trying though. The new Earth Quest Theme Park (whats taking so long), NASSA. But it needs to try harder to attract visitors and have a way to get them around town without the use of a car. I see Dallas working hard with all of its rail and attractions going up, but when it comes to Houston, the people act like they just don't want the best. Even the cheapest of the cheap rail systems cost too much for Houstonians, and it seems when ever something good gets announced its canceled soon after. Houston has a lot of potential, and the people living there just don't realize it.

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Sorry, I didn't see anything all that special in that video. Nothing that couldn't also be created in Houston with the right route from Uptown to Downtown to Midtown to Rice/TMC. I'd also match up our attractions with Atlanta any day. The Museum of Natural Science is the most visited museum in the country outside of DC or NYC. Throw in the rest of the museum district, the Menil, the Theater district, Discovery Green, NASA (a unique mega-attraction - certainly beats a soda-pop museum), Kemah, Moody Gardens, Schlitterbahn, and the rest of Galveston (don't underestimate the value of beach access), I think you'd at least have a draw.

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Sorry, I didn't see anything all that special in that video. Nothing that couldn't also be created in Houston with the right route from Uptown to Downtown to Midtown to Rice/TMC. I'd also match up our attractions with Atlanta any day. The Museum of Natural Science is the most visited museum in the country outside of DC or NYC. Throw in the rest of the museum district, the Menil, the Theater district, Discovery Green, NASA (a unique mega-attraction - certainly beats a soda-pop museum), Kemah, Moody Gardens, Schlitterbahn, and the rest of Galveston (don't underestimate the value of beach access), I think you'd at least have a draw.

Well they have beautiful scenery, hills, mountains and I almost forgot, Stone Mountain.

The Beaches in and around Galveston are so dirty they don't count as an attraction. Houston and its surroundings need to do more to beautify its scenery. I like how they have planted trees along the newly redone freeways, but it seems like the trees haven't gotten any taller since they have planted them. It would have been good if they had gotten a few already developed trees to line the freeways also.

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Can someone explain to me what it means (gamma++ vs gamma, etc...)? From NY and London being Gamma++ I have a hunch but seeing Brussels (most boring city in the world) as Gamma doesn't make sense.

Brussels was alpha. It may be boring, but it is the seat of the EU and has NATO headquarters, so you could well argue it carries some weight.

I would be willing to bet that Atlanta scores beta+ because it is headquarters of CNN.

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The Wall Street Journal today reports that Atlanta is extremely overbuilt and facing a commercial real estate Armageddon. They even include a cool interactive graphic satellite map of the Buckhead area.

"Separate developers in Buckhead are building four speculative office buildings at the same time with virtually no leasing activity. The 35 recent condominium projects will help give Atlanta a 40-year supply at the current sales pace. A $600 million outdoor shopping mall under way has suspended construction to save money."

A 40-year supply of condos?! Ouch! And why would you buy one, knowing the new supply you'd be competing with whenever you try to sell?

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Yeah, Atlanta has so much speculative building. Worse than Dallas.

Ya... seems similar to Dallas (did you see Perot's group sold the Victory development to a German company?)... at least ATL got some cool looking buildings, albeit mostly empty. I wouldn't want to be sitting on any of those condos, paying ridiculous HOA fees, but I think that's the case in a lot of places.

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The Wall Street Journal today reports that Atlanta is extremely overbuilt and facing a commercial real estate Armageddon. They even include a cool interactive graphic satellite map of the Buckhead area.

A 40-year supply of condos?! Ouch! And why would you buy one, knowing the new supply you'd be competing with whenever you try to sell?

I wasn't going to mention this, but I was just in Atlanta a few days ago and I can see that its over built. Seems like they have added too many luxury hotels also, there where like 3-4 W hotles, etc. The scenery is nice, all of the trees, the MARTA is really cool, and all of the development is really nice and makes it feel more like a big city. Seems like that Atlanta club scene/rap life has calmed down and it was kind of boring. Being in Piedmont park felt like being in Central Park NYC. I was there for an interview, but I don't know for sure if I will take the job. I like Atlanta, but being there makes me miss the Houston area even more.

I just wanted to add, I did see brand new condos for under $100 thousand while I was there.

Edited by citykid09
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You know, if they expanded the scope from 'world' cities to 'galactic' cities - or even just the solar system - I think we'd move dramatically to the top of the rankings... :P

I would really like to see whats out there before I die. I wounder if the people/aliens look like us. Thats if we are not alone.

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  • 1 month later...
I wonder why Dallas and Houston rank lower than Atlanta now?

You kinda answered it yourself.

You're joking, but the subway part I believe is true. Also the fact that Atlanta is a lot more walkable, has a variety of corporate headquarters (Coca Cola, Home Depot, UPS), is big with TV/Movies/Media (CNN,TBS, HLN, Cartoon Network, The Weather Channel, Tyler Perry Studios, etc), big with celebrities (no I'm not joking). Saying the beautiful hills, trees and scenery would be taking it too far.

Believe it or not the Atlanta's MARTA is a significant system. The trains are very long like 15-20 cars long compared to 2 with Houston's light rail. The trains also get a pretty decent amount of riders. Its pretty much an everyday way of life in Atlanta because it goes everywhere, even to the airport.

So if you think I'm wrong, why else would Atlanta rank higher than Houston?

I really don't know why it ranked higher than Dallas.

Atlanta, so matter how far south of the Mason-Dixie Line, is still on the East Coast and one of the original 13. Hartsfield, CNN/Turner Broadcasting, Coke, CDC (big key here), I would say put Atlanta ahead of Houston & Dallas.

Not trying to turn this into a Houston vs. Dallas thing but how does Dallas rank higher than Houston... they should at least be at the same level. Houston is far more "international" than Dallas... Houston is the energy capitol of the world with the world's largest medical center. Don't get me wrong, Dallas has it's +'s too... they have a better rail system compared to Houston... though in a few years we will be about equal. Just think Houston should be in the same class as Dallas if not just above. Just my opinion. ^_^

I always thought Houston did an International level. Domestic would be a close dispute.

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