In 2006 Fort Collins was ranked the number one place to live by cnnmoney.com, but now in 2010 Fort Collins has been ranked #6th best city to live. What has caused the change? Those of us in Fort Collins are still very proud to be in the top 10 cities to live in.
6. Fort Collins, CO Population: 141,000 Unemployment: 7.4% Pluses: Outdoor activities, steady economy Minus: School budget cuts.
Bikers and beers. In most parts of the country, those two elements may be reasons to move to a different city. But in the foothills of Colorado's Front Range, bikers mean cyclists: Fort Collins has 29 miles of well-used trails, and many work commuters. It isn't out of the ordinary to see more bikers waiting at a stop light then it is cars.
As for beers, this town has become a high-end micro-brew mecca. That has made brewery tours a favorite pastime of many Fort Collins Residents and visitors. New Belgium Brewery (maker of Fat Tire) is based in this entrepreneurial town, and competitors are moving in.
People here aren't lazy either. Bolstered by Colorado State University, which employs 7,000, "the Fort" as residents refer to this town is a center of economic activity. Hewlett-Packard, the city's second-largest employer, announced worldwide layoffs in June, but they won't affect Fort Collins. In fact, the company is adding jobs here.
This innovative town — No. 1 in 2006 — would rank even higher but for one thing. Colorado schools are making monetary adjustments. The state cut public schools' budget this year. In the Fort Collins Poudre School District 139 full-time employees were laid off.