The fourth annual project from U.S. News & World Report assessed nearly 3,000 communities nationwide across dozens of metrics, exploring the critical role location plays in the well-being of hundreds of millions of Americans. In the ranking, Howard County placed first and Anne Arundel County placed fourth among Maryland jurisdictions listed.

Overall, Maryland’s 15 highest-scoring communities performed best in the economy, population health and public safety categories. On average, they achieved their worst scores in the housing, environment and community vitality categories.

Metrics such as a community’s crime rates, access to parks, high school graduation and poverty rates, and household income are grouped into 10 categories ranging from the economy, equity and population health to the environment, food and nutrition, and community vitality.

Communities are scored on a 100-point scale tied to how they perform relative to one another, and receive a ranking based on their performance as well.

  1. Kent County
  2. Prince George’s County
  3. Garrett County
  4. St. Mary’s County
  5. Baltimore County
  6. Talbot County
  7. Charles County
  8. Queen Anne’s County
    7. Harford County
  9. Frederick County
  10. Carroll County
  11. Anne Arundel County
  12. Calvert County
  13. Montgomery County
  14. Howard County