Earlier this week, Zipcar published its Future Metropolis Index. To develop the Index, the company teamed up with KRC Research to rank the top 36 most populated U.S. cities on five factors: sustainability, innovation, vibrancy, efficiency, and livability. See the top 10 cities and their corresponding scores below.

Here’s how the cities break down in the five sub-categories:

  • In the innovation category, Atlanta, Pittsburgh, and Boston top the list.
  • Tuscon, Arizona, Portland, Oregon, and San Francisco are best in sustainability.                Cities_136x60_transparent
  • San Francisco, Seattle, and Washington, D.C., lead in vibrancy/creativity.
  • The most efficient cities are Washington, D.C., New York, and Boston.
  • For livability, El Paso, Texas, New York, and San Diego take top honors.

The study also found that Americans who live in metro areas are more optimistic about job opportunities than those living outside them.

The ranking and survey make sense for Zipcar, a company that provides car-sharing services to urban dwellers.

“The results of our Future Metropolis Index make a powerful statement about an urban renaissance that we see is clearly underway,” Scott Griffith, chairman and CEO of Zipcar, said in a press release. “U.S. cities are growing and evolving and are more dynamic than ever before. This rebirth of our cities is being powered by technology and innovation coupled with smart urban policy which together work to enhance the lives of their residents.”san francisco

1. San Francisco, California

Innovation: #7
Sustainability: #3
Vibrancy/Creativity: #1
Efficiency: #5 (tie)
Livability/Optimism: #4

Image courtesy of Flickr user Laughing Squidseattle space needle park

2. Seattle, Washington

Innovation: #8
Sustainability: #5 (tie)
Vibrancy/Creativity: #2 (tie)
Efficiency: #8
Livability/Optimism: #6 (tie)

Image courtesy of Flickr user mediafurywashington dc buildings

3. Washington, D.C.

Innovation: #4
Sustainability: #7 (tie)
Vibrancy/Creativity: #2 (tie)
Efficiency: #1
Livability/Optimism: #24 (tie)

Image courtesy of Flickr user dannyfowlerportland airtransit

4. Portland, Oregon

Innovation: #6
Sustainability: #2
Vibrancy/Creativity: #4
Efficiency: #11
Livability/Optimism: #10

Image courtesy of Flickr user C.M. Keinerboston downtown skyline

5. Boston, Massachusetts

Innovation: #3
Sustainability: #15
Vibrancy/Creativity: #9 (tie)
Efficiency: #3
Livability/Optimism: #6 (tie)

Image courtesy of Flickr user Werner Kunznew york city tower

6. New York City

Innovation: #15
Sustainability: #11
Vibrancy/Creativity: #7
Efficiency: #2
Livability/Optimism: #2

Image courtesy of Flickr user andrew c maceatlanta downtown

7. Atlanta, Georgia

Innovation: #1
Sustainability: #17 (tie)
Vibrancy/Creativity: #5 (tie)
Efficiency: #4
Livability/Optimism: #32

Image courtesy of Flickr user Stuck in Customsdenver downtown

8. Denver, Colorado

Innovation: #5
Sustainability: #14
Vibrancy/Creativity: #13
Efficiency: #13
Livability/Optimism: #6 (tie)

Image courtesy of Flickr user mattsantomarcopittsburgh downtown bridge

9. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Innovation: #2
Sustainability: #23 (tie)
Vibrancy/Creativity: #14 (tie)
Efficiency: #9
Livability/Optimism: #13 (tie)

Image courtesy of Flickr user jiuguangwaustin downtown skylinezip

10. (Tie) Austin, Texas

Innovation: #19
Sustainability: #5 (tie)
Vibrancy/Creativity: #9 (tie)
Efficiency: #18 (tie)
Livability/Optimism: #5

Image courtesy of Flickr user joshpattensan diego skyline

10. (Tie) San Diego, California

Innovation: #16 (tie)
Sustainability: #9
Vibrancy/Creativity: #8
Efficiency: #17
Livability/Optimism: #3

Image courtesy of Flickr user Nick Chill Photography

Reprinted with permission from The Atlantic Cities. Copyright 2012 by The Atlantic Monthly Group.