Breathtakingly romantic—but its economy is broken. Among the world's 150 biggest cities, last in predicted GDP growth, according to PricewaterhouseCoopers.
St. Louis, Missouri
Too normal for its own good. It ranks dead last on CityVitals' "Weirdness Index," a measure of passion and engagement.
New Orleans, Louisiana
We wish it weren't so. But NOLA was slow before Katrina. The cleanup debacle has only reinforced that reality.
Last one out, shut off the manufacturing line. Tragically, inevitably bound to the U.S. auto industry's failings.
Celebrating a half-century of economic decay. Thanks, Fidel. Seemingly no cars on the road made after 1968.
A version of this article appeared in the July/August 2007 issue of Fast Company magazine.