Thursday, August 27, 2015

Howard County comes out poorly in this measurement


     We all have become used to Columbia and Howard County being on lists for all the good attributes of our community.  However thanks to Jesse Newburn I recently learned that on the "natural amenities" ranking our community below average at 2334 out of 3111 communities ranked.  Here is a description of how that scale came up with their rankings.

     "The natural amenities scale is a measure of the physical characteristics of a county area that enhance the location as a place to live. The scale was constructed by combining six measures of climate, topography, and water area that reflect environmental qualities most people prefer. These measures are warm winter, winter sun, temperate summer, low summer humidity, topographic variation, and water area. The data are available for counties in the lower 48 States. The file contains the original measures and standardized scores for each county as well as the amenities scale."

    As an article in the Washington Post noted :
"........Sun Belt counties fare pretty well -- especially ones in California and Colorado. In fact, every single one of the 10 highest-ranked counties is located in California. After Ventura County, Humboldt, Santa Barbara, Mendocino and Del Norte counties round out the top five."

    I guess we shouldn't be surprised that our landlocked county the summers of heat and humidity would hurt us on our score in this survey's scaling.  There is not much any of us can do about these two factors.  I would have an opposite view however on the beauty of our County when you realize how much open green space we have.   And this is before you include the lakes (OK so they are man made), local parks, biking and hiking trails and two rivers.  We may not be Ventura, California or the Big Sur but it doesn't take much to get out and see the beautiful surroundings of our County.


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