Melbourne won the 2011 title of most livable city, according to the Economist Intelligence Unit’s annual survey. (See BBC’s Melbourne edges out Vancouver to top liveable city list)
The result came as a bit of a surprise. Since my university days, I have always known Melbourne to be a great place to live – an open, lively, diverse, sporty and cultural society, access to good quality fresh produce, decent infrastructure, a decent rate of economic growth, a variety of connections to the rest of the world by plane.
However, over the years, my impression that this great city was slipping down the ranks because of the huge population increase, lack of affordable housing, overstretched public health system, overcrowded public transport and ageing infrastructure and the exceptional rising cost of living. Unfortunately, there have been a lack of real political leadership (from both sides of politics) at the state/ federal level after years of white paper churning. Just asked any average Melbournian about the state of the city? Australia has become a really unaffordable place to live or visit.
The only explanation that I could thought of to why these worsening issues did not affect the city’s overall rating is probably because their target audiences are those really affluent people who don’t really depend on the city’s crumbling public, over-utilised infrastructure or services.