Seoul 92nd in Quality of Living StudySeoul, which is 5th in the world in population, is 92nd in quality of living, according to a study by William Mercer, a multinational consulting firm.
Out of 218 cities, Seoul shares 92nd with Panama City, Panama and Istanbul, Turkey. Vancouver, Canada; Wien, Austria; and Switzerland's Chur and Bern, shared top spot.
In Asia, Tokyo recieved the highest rating (24), with eight other cities in Japan ranking higher than Seoul. Other high-ranking major cities were Singapore (44), Hong Kong (69), Kuala Lumpur (69), and Taipei (80).
The study weighed 39 items, such as crime rate, medical services, pollution, and recreational facilities, with New York as a benchmark of 100 points.
In related news, in a Korea Research Institute survey of 600 people in Seoul, Chung-gu was ranked as the best residential district in Metropolitan Seoul. It had the lowest crime rate and traffic congestion.
Chongno-gu was next, leading the city in green space and the number of cultural facilities. Sungdong-gu ranked last, with only 5.4 percent of the district designated for parks.
Lee Byung-chul, a resident of Sungdong-gu for 40 years, says, "Though residents want to go to a park or a mountain, there are none around here."
Kangbuk-gu had the most area for parks at 55 percent, followed by Dobong-gu (52 percent), Eunpyung-gu (49 percent), and Chongno-gu (41 percent).
by Ko Su-seok