The first thing a native resident of Pittsburgh might tell a newcomer about his or her city is that it was rated America's Most Livable City in 2007 by Places Rated Almanac. The criteria categories include affordability of housing, transportation, jobs, education, climate, crime, health care, recreation, and ambience (cultural and entertainment options).

Pittsburgh is an ethnically and culturally diverse city that continues to evolve. Once a steel and iron city, Pittsburgh's former industrial-based economy is now focused on high technology and growth in the service areas that include health care, education, and finance. The air- and water-quality issues that were a product of traditional city industries have been eased as old industrial sites are being replaced with new, modern office buildings and there are continuing plans to revitalize the downtown area. Its location where the Allegheny and Monongahela Rivers, once so critical to the industry-driven economy, now is utilized in tourism brochures showing the city's glowing skyline reflected in the water.

The crime rate is relatively low and the quality of life is high. There is an abundance of recreation, culture, and professional and collegiate sports.