Vancouver Drops In Economist Rank Of Liveable Cities Due To Highway Closure On Vancouver Island

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MELBOURNE LIVEABLE CITIES
Melbourne, Australia's second city, has edged out Vancouver for the title of "world's most liveable city." | Getty

Melbourne, Australia's second city, has edged out Vancouver for the title of "world's most liveable city."

But the reason for Vancouver's demotion -- a highway closure on Vancouver Island -- has many wondering whether the survey didn't make a mistake this time around.

Vancouver had enjoyed first-place rank in the Economist Intelligence Unit's annual 140-city Global Liveability Survey since 2002, but this year fell to third place, behind Melbourne and Vienna.

According to the Economist, Vancouver suffered "a small adjustment" in its score because of the closure of the Malahat Highway on Vancouver Island. As critics have pointed out, the Malahat Highway is separated by 60 kilometres and a large body of water from the city of Vancouver.

The Malahat Highway north of Victoria was closed for 22 hours in April after the crash of a fuel tanker truck.

However, the ratings were calculated before the Vancouver hockey riot this June, so there is no way to tell how that event would have affected the city's liveability score. The EIU says the riots could affect future ratings.

Nonetheless, Canada still dominated the list, with Toronto in fourth place and Calgary in fifth. Only Australia placed more cities in the top 10, with Sydney (sixth), Perth (eighth) and Adelaide (ninth) all placing on the list.

The Global Liveability Survey scores cities on the basis of stability, health care, culture and environment, education and infrastructure.

TOP 10 MOST LIVEABLE CITIES, according to the Economist Intelligence Unit:

1: Melbourne, Australia
2: Vienna, Austria
3: Vancouver, Canada
4: Toronto, Canada
5: Calgary, Canada
6: Sydney, Australia
7: Helsinki, Finland
8: Perth, Australia
9: Adelaide, Australia
10: Auckland, New Zealand

10 LEAST LIVEABLE CITIES surveyed by the Economist Intelligence Unit:

131: Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire
132: Tehran, Iran
133. Douala, Cameroon
134. Karachi, Pakistan
135. Tripoli, Libya
136. Algiers, Algeria
137. Lagos, Nigeria
138. Port Moresby, PNG
139. Dhaka, Bangladesh
140. Harare, Zimbabwe

With files from The Canadian Press

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