Porto is second to none, according to Monocle

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Bear in mind, before reading the entire text: "Porto is up from nine in 2020", states Monocle regarding the second annual Small Cities Index 2021 and Monocle magazine

does not shy away from listing the all true benefits of living, doing business and visiting Porto.  

The Invicta (as it is often referred too, as it remains unconquered, and withstood a siege of over a year, during the 19th century Portuguese civil war) really means "big city" benefits in a downsize city, the second largest in Portugal, but first in this world index, organised by Monocle.

This "civic spot", Porto ranks first in Monocle's second annual Small Cities Index and the city is profiled as offering the perfect "urban life" as it offers a number of opportunities business, cultural, and nature wise.

The world is battling with coronavirus and is changing, but "this index is more essential now", when "people balance the way of living and what kind of place they want to call home".

The thing to know about Porto is the Mayor factor; indeed, as of 2013 Porto is fortunate to be led by Rui Moreira, an independent that won office despite all projections stating otherwise; he is on his second mandate - which he won by majority - and Monocle spotlights the "strong leadership" and "the importance of a good, progressive mayor in these rankings by highlighting the power of those providing everything from the best urban infrastructure to reassuring leadership during hard times".

"Porto's mayor, Rui Moreira, who has been in office since 2013, is appreciated for his staunch defence of the city. He's always quick to remind politicians that, although the seat of government is in Lisbon, Portugal's northern region is the main contributor to the country's economy."

That is right, Mayor Rui Moreira is the key factor and Monocle stresses that as "civic leaders are closely connected to its people, in small cities these leading figures often enact change in a more nimble and meaningful manner than their counterparts in larger metropolises".

The other thing all visitors to Porto perceive is the welcoming population; any tripeiro (aka tripe eaters, as Porto residents are nicknamed) will show why Porto "beats to its own pulse", which means that while being hard-working and business-oriented, they still know how to "enjoy a glass of wine with colleagues over lunch".

Porto developed into a thriving creative hub, with "old tiled buildings and once-derelict mansions" being turned in "avant garde galleries" and cultural spots, both by foreigners and Tripeiros; also, many technological companies settle in Porto, creating jobs and business opportunities, fuelled by the city's closeness to Europe's main cities, good connections and accessibility, and twenty-minute drive to the Francisco Sá Carneiro International Airport.

As regards "green ambitions", just last week, Porto renewed its leading of the Eurocities Environment Chair, as access and extended green spots in the city urban space are a major concern of the Municipal Executive, as well as sustained infrastructure, regarding the city's Master Plan (whose public discussion is ongoing).

Porto is the only Portuguese city to feature this list by Monocle, which includes cities as Louvain (Belgium), Itoshima (Japan), Lucerne (Switzerland), Victoria (Canada), Lausanne (Switzerland), Basel (Switzerland), Bolzano (Italy), Aalborg (Denmark) and Bergen (Norway).

Read the full article here.