The Center for Urban Opportunity (COU) has developed a measure (the “COU Standard of Living Index”) that estimates the purchasing power of real average pay in metropolitan areas compared to that of the average employee who moves to a new residence. We have found that the places that return the most for median pay are varied. Some, like leader San Jose, Boston and Seattle come from the ranks of high-priced places that deliver even better pay. But most are decidedly in the heartland, led by Durham, North Carolina, Houston, Detroit, Atlanta and Charlotte, where lower costs meet relatively lower pay.
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Urban Reform Institute is a 501c3 Non-Profit organization that exists to promote approaches that enable cities to drive opportunity for the bulk of their citizens.