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Chicago Most Miserable City? Crime, Weather Make for Sad Citizens: Forbes

By DNAinfo Staff on February 21, 2013 3:59pm

CHICAGO — Bad news, Chicago: This city is miserable.

But it could be worse — Chicago ranked fourth on Forbes' "List of America's Most Miserable Cities," for 2013, coming in behind No. 1 Detroit, No. 2 Flint, Mich., and No. 3 Rockford.

Chicago ranked highly because of long commutes (an average of 31 minutes), plummeting home prices (37 percent over the past five years), "brutal winters," and high foreclosure rates.

Forbes' list also took into account violent crime, unemployment and taxes.

But it's not all doom and gloom for our desolate metropolis, Forbes says. Chicago is a world-class city, albeit an expensive one.

Chicago (and 10th-ranked New York City) "offer a myriad of opportunities and positives as the homes of financial centers, world-class culture, leading universities, sports teams galore and high-end restaurants," according to Forbes. "But it isn’t easy living in either city, particularly if you don’t earn a lot of money (even if you do it can be tough)."

Chicago moved up in the ranking from its spot as the sixth Most Miserable City in 2012, despite Forbes removing political corruption as a factor for 2013.

Sports team success was also removed from the methodology, as that and corruption can be regional, not city-specific, Forbes said.

One new factor was added for 2013: migration rates. And people are fleeing Chicago at alarming rates.

Nearly 107,000 net people have moved from the city in the past five years, the sixth highest among the nation's 200 largest metros.

"Many residents are giving up on the Windy City," Forbes said.

But at least it's not Detroit.