|An elevated view of John Marr Drive and Columbia Pike taken from the ferris wheel in the Kmart parking lot at the Annandale Carnival last June.|
Annandale beat out the following cities rounding out the top 10: Oakton is number five, followed by Alexandria, Chantilly and Reston (tied for seventh place), Rose Hill in Fairfax County, and Suffolk (the only city on the list not in Northern Virginia).
“Annandale came in as the most diverse city in our top 10, with just 50.4 percent of the population being one ethnicity (as opposed to McLean, for example, which is 79.3 percent Caucasian),” Movoto states. “It also scored really well in its median home value—95 percent higher than the state average.”
“Outside of the numbers though, Annandale is the perfect place to, literally, get outside. Parks like the Mason District Park, the Annandale Community Park, Kendale Woods Park, and over 20 more, are scattered throughout the area,” it states.
According to Movoto, the city rankings are based on amenities, cost of living, crime, education, median household income, and diversity.
By amenities, the company considered such factors as the number of restaurants, shops, and “five-star hiking” opportunities per person, said Movoto spokesperson Travis Sawrie. The education score is based on the percentage of the population with a high school diploma.
Movoto also uses state-specific criteria. For example, the company looked at the number of “Southern restaurants” per capita in ranking the Virginia cities, using data from Yelp, because “Virginia is in the South,” Sawrie said. He didn’t seem to know that we have more restaurants from South Korea here than “the South.”