New York City Ranked As Dirtiest, Loudest, and Rudest City In Country

New York City won the trifecta this week in a survey by Travel & Leisure magazine as the dirtiest, loudest, and rudest city in the country.  The poll of 50,000 cited rats, trash piles, and strong odors as securing the triple crown for the Big Apple.

If it is any consolation, the city received high marks for theaters and shops.

My hometown of Chicago had a predictable listing with architecture as the biggest draw and the winter as the least favorite feature.

On the top ten overall quality of visits, here is the ranking:

1 Savannah 4.45
2 Santa Fe 4.35
3 San Juan, P.R. 4.30
4 Charleston 4.27
5 Denver 4.27
6 San Diego 4.26
7 Portland, ME 4.26
8 Portland, OR 4.23
9 Seattle 4.19
10 Providence 4.19

New York can in 31st of 35 cities — only Anchorage, Baltimore, Atlanta, and (at last) Dallas/Fort Worth came in worse. Chicago was 16th.

Source: FOXNY

36 thoughts on “New York City Ranked As Dirtiest, Loudest, and Rudest City In Country

  1. The problem with this ranking is that cities are mainly judged on their “downtown” areas and not the city as a whole. The judgment is a visceral, rather than a qualitative one. For instance in NYC the judgment is no doubt made based on Manhattan where most visitors go. How many see the residential areas of Queens County and Brooklyn, which are quite clean and beautiful. Cities, even small ones, are big places and their tourist areas are usually narrow “belts”. The other problem is that in large, busy cities like NY and Chicago, the construction of infrastructure and buildings goes o constantly adding to the noise.

    I’ve spent time in all of the cities listed in the top 10 except for Portland,ME, which I’ve only driven through. They are all beautiful places, but if explored one will find just as many areas to complain about. Save for my native NYC, my favorite Cities are: Chicago, San Francisco, Seattle, Boston and Washington, D.C.. But much of that sentiment is due to who I was with and the quality of the time I had. BTW, Cleveland is a City that often gets a bad
    rap, but the two times I’ve been there I loved the place. The “Rock and Roll Hall of Fame” was the biggest surprise. I could literally spend days there. The truth is only a native, or someone who has lived there can really appreciate the qualities of any city and ratings such as this are purely subjective fluff.

  2. Mike brings up a good point about perception and experiences formed from limited areas of the city. I thought I saw a survey a few years ago that ranked NYC very well but with this it seems to have fallen out of favor. Who knows.

  3. I’ve been to every city on the top 10 list but Portland, Or. The only one I vehemently disagree w/ is Providence. Now, I’ve not been there for probably 20 years but it is a corrupt, dirty city. It does have some good Italian restaurants.

  4. I’m surprised about Anchorage. Been there twice and loved it. Great city parks, street food[Reindeer dogs!]. They do have crimes problem but not worse than most cities. I had an FBI friend we visited there and he worked w/ local police on Homeland Security issues. The ferry system was considered a target back in the early 2000’s.

  5. SwM,

    Based on my own motivated reasoning, it is obvious to me that those who compiled the list hate Rock-n-Roll and have no appreciation at all for Polish cuisine or rivers that miraculously catch fire.

  6. raff,

    Having lived in Dallas? I’m surprised Dallas scored anything above dead last. Of all the places I’ve lived, it is the only one I will categorically never return to live and it would have to be a really good very profitable reason to make me consider even visiting. But Smom is correct. Austin rocks. Traffic sucks, but the city itself and the people are fantastic.

  7. Ancient memories don’t count. Thus silence from here.

    but just in case, I appreciated the TexMex place in Dallas. Seemed they knew all the differences from Mex.
    Anybody tasted Mex chitling soup?

  8. Come on. How can Cleveland not make the top 35 with buildings like this. (It is rumored that the stonemasons were from Michigan)

    Builded By Her Citizens

  9. ID, That’s menudo, paisan. Very spicy and often eaten for breakfast to cure a hangover. most Americans are too picky to eat tripe, organ meat, etc. A wise old doc told me recently a good part of the American vitamin D deficiency problem is because organ meats have virtually vanished from our diet. Baby boomers resented having to eat liver, kidneys, etc. which are rich in Vitamin D. And being baby boomers they just did what they wanted. Rickets anyone?

  10. Blouise, It may not be, but it looks like the Federal Courthouse in Cleveland. I love old courthouses, Wi. has many great County Courthouses, I’ve testified in most of them.. However, Madsion’s new Federal Courthouse is ugly as hell. You have a good city. Been to Progressive Field, R&R Hall of Fame, Taste of Cleveland[great kielbasa] and the Air Show. Enjoyed my two visits. I even thought Toledo was ok, but mostly because I got to eat @ Tony Packos.

  11. nick spinelli,

    Public Auditorium but I posted it because of the spelling


  12. Nick,

    I did not know then (or now) what it was called. Thanks.

    But it was offered after the bars closed at 2AM, and I ate it after they let me out of the clink, agreeing to be quiet and pay my bar chit.

    Quaint place Nogales.
    Nasty bulls in the arena. Smaller than in Spain, and too wise to humans, which Spanish bulls are not allowed to be. God help those small matadors in Nogales.

  13. Blouise, HBO did a great documentary on the storied rivalry between the Buckeyes and Michigan. It seemed like most rivals, one school[Michigan] thinking they’re intellectually and culturally superior. I grew up near Yale and would go to The Game[Yale/Harvard] every other year. Harvard thinks they’re the superior one. All childish, but fun as long as it’s good natured.

    I would never be a spell checker..I missed the “builded.”

  14. The rivalry between Ohio (my original home state) and Michigan predates the college sports rivalry by many decades. The original battle was over the boundary between the states. The “Toledo Wars” involved a dispute over a 468 sq mi. area along the border claimed by both as early as 1787. The dispute was resolved when Michigan sought staehood and was forced to cede the disputed territory to Ohio in the mid-1800s.

    Regarding the naming of NYC as the “dirtiest, loudest, rudest city in the country” I am reminded that many people judge all French people by the folks they meet in Paris. Words like “rude” “dismissive” and other derogatory terms are often brought into play. I wonder how many Americans would endorse having all Americans judged by the folks foreigners meet in NYC without ever going to Des Moines or San Diego, etc?

  15. rcampbell, Good point. Like most people from NYS getting painted with the NYC brush. The city is very fast paced. The rest of the state is more laid back.

  16. rcampbell,

    I had forgotten all about that. I remember a long ago history teacher suggesting the sports rivalry was just a continuation of a border feud. He probably did so in order to help make history relevant to modern day students and here I go forgetting it. I let him down.

  17. Mayor Bloomberg stopped caring a out the quality of life in NY for nonbillionares a long tint ago. He is now focusing on how much of the City he can give away to his developer friends and policing the size of the sodas a person can buy. There is no limit on the size of a champaign glass or a bowl caviar. He is one messianic wonder who now sees himself as the infallible one, free of parties, free of the need to listen to voters or even acknowledge their existence. What he has allowed to happen to NY over the last 2 years is a disgrace but he’s a billionaire and they never have to say their sorry or guilty.

  18. Justice Holmes,

    You’ve described Bloomberg perfectly. NYC has become the Disneyland for the Plutocrat Class and Mikey B. is their Walt Disney. I had to leave the beloved City of my birth because truthfully I no longer could afford to live there.

  19. What’s the difference between NY and LA?
    Answer: In LA, you say, “phuck yoo” and they say, “have a nice day.”
    In NY you say “have a nice day” and they say, “phuck YOU.”

    Here’s Dallas:

    Oh about being dirty? The recent law against big soft drinks is probably going to solve that problem.

  20. I never say any rats or trash piles in Chicago. It didn’t stink either, but maybe I was in the wrong part of town.

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