New research shows the 20 ‘gayest’ cities in America

Richard Florida has an article at The Daily Beast on new research from the UCLA’s Williams Institute. Based on the proportion of same-sex couples compared to the national average, they rank the 20 “gayest” cities.

New York, Los Angeles, Miami, Washington, D.C., Boston, San Diego, Denver, Seattle, and Portland, Oregon, all make the list of the 20 gayest metros. But so do Dallas, Columbus, Ohio, Santa Rosa and Sacramento, Springfield, Massachusetts, Portland, Maine, and college towns like Eugene, Oregon, Ann Arbor, Michigan and Ithaca, New York.

The full list is here, with some surprises (Portland, ME is number 3 and Miami and Los Angeles come in behind Ann Arbor and Columbus).

The article also has an interesting discussion looking at which comes first, economic prosperity or an increased gay community.

As Gates and I have pointed out elsewhere, the presence of LGBT people isn’t a sufficient condition for wealth creation in and of itself; gay men and lesbians are no more sophisticated, economically productive, innovative, or entrepreneurial than any other group on average. But places that attract gay people and lesbians tend to have the same open-minded attitudes and business styles that foster innovation. A visible LGBT community is the proverbial “canary in the coal mine,” signaling openness to new ideas, new business models, and diverse and different thinking kinds of people—precisely the characteristics of a local ecosystem that can attract cutting-edge entrepreneurs and mobilize new companies.


Born and raised in Maine, Nick Seaver moved to DC to study political communication in 2003. He began writing extensively on LGBT rights during the first ballot initiative in Maine that overturned marriage equality. He writes about a variety of issues, ranging from marriage to issues facing LGBT youth. Follow him on Twitter at @NDSeaver.

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