Trenton ranks last for capital city quality of life, Dover and Harrisburg not much better

(Alan Tu/WHYY)

(Alan Tu/WHYY)

New Jersey’s capital is the worst, and those in Pennsylvania and Delaware are not too much better when it comes to quality of life as ranked by

“Trenton was 50th — dead last. Harrisburg and Dover are not too far up, 40th and 41st respectively,” said Jill Gonzalez of Wallethub.

Why so low? Trenton doesn’t have a movie theater, has few private sector jobs and only recently got its first Starbucks.

Gonzalez says all three capitals struggle economically.

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“That all again stems back to its economic well-being, especially when it comes to Harrisburg, we see numbers that are close to Trenton. Dover does a little bit better because so many companies around the country tend to be incorporated in Delaware,” she said.

“Trenton has seen better days, especially when it comes to its unemployment rate, which is one of the highest as far as state capitals are concerned,” Gonzales added, citing the city’s struggles with foreclosures and bankruptcies.

Trenton celebrated last month when the coffee chain Starbucks opened up a shop in the heart of downtown. But even that only happened because U.S. Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman lobbied the company to open up through its “opportunity cafe” program that tries to bring employment to financially struggling urban areas. Trenton’s only hotel has been struggling to stay open for economic and other reasons.

Austin, Texas is at the top of the list, followed by Madison, Wisconsin and Boise, Idaho.

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