The just-released Gay/Lesbian Index’s metro-area rankings provide another bit of recognition that will please both the LGBT community and creative economy watchers in Portland. The index, "developed by Gary Gates, a demographer at UCLA’s Williams Institute, the Gay/Lesbian Index value tells you how the proportion of same-sex couples among all households of a given metro area compares to the average for the entire U.S." Portland, Maine, comes in an at impressive third place with 7.4 same-sex couples per thousand households. San Francisco comes in first, of course, but some cities you might expect, like Atlanta, Austin and Boulder, don't even make the top 20 list. Richard Florida writes about the findings (that he analyzed with Garry Gates) in the Daily Beast, "Research I conducted with Charlotta Mellander revealed that metro areas with higher proportions of gay men and lesbians also have higher housing values—a finding that landed me on The Colbert Report. A study I conducted with Gates in 2001 discerned a close association between regions with higher proportions of same-sex couples and concentrations of high-tech businesses." He goes on to cite, "Soul of the Community, a study conducted by the Gallup Organization, found that more open and tolerant attitudes toward LGBT people (as well as to other groups) was one of two key factors, along with natural beauty and environmental quality, that corresponded with higher levels of satisfaction with and emotional attachment to a community." Open, tolerant, high-tech, natural beauty, environmental quality: sounds just like the Portland this blog was born to describe.