The Best (New) City Flags! NAVA's 2022 US City Flag Survey Results

Posted by Michael Green on

Since Roman Mars' famous TED talk in 2015 which opened the world's eyes to bad flag design, many cities across the US have redesigned their city flag. In late 2022, the North American Vexillological Association (NAVA) (of which we are a member) decided to rank the best new city flags in the US!

Out of 312 known flags 308 NAVA members and 2,544 public voters ranked the new flags using a 0-10 scale. Those scores were averaged and assigned a grade. 

Here are the best new city flags since 2015:

1. Tulsa, Oklahoma

Flag of Tulsa, Oklahoma
We all knew. It wasn't a contest. Tulsa, Oklahoma's flag is so freaking good and deserves the top spot on this list. I'd love to see how it stacks up with not just new city flags but with all US city flags. It's chef's kiss flag. 

2. Reno, Nevada

Reno, Nevada FLag
Another well deserved entrant on this list is the flag of Reno, Nevada. It's biggest critique is that it seems to take notes from the people's flag of Milwaukee. But since Milwaukee can't get it's sh*t together and adopt it officially, Reno takes the cake. A beautifully rendered mountain-scape with a silver star representing Nevada, 10/10. 

3. Salem, Oregon

Salem, Oregon Flag
One of the newest flags on the list is Salem, Oregon. Emerging in 2022 (though its been in the works far longer), Salem's flag is incredibly beautiful, simple, and packed with symbolism. The star represents Salem as the capital, the blue representing the Willamette River, and the cherry blossom representing the city. I love that it harkens to the beautiful Japanese Prefecture flags and I'm glad it was recognized as one of the best flags of the lot. Well deserved. 

4. Norman, Oklahoma

Norman, Oklahoma Flag
The first flag on this list that we DON'T sell on FlagsForGood.com is Norman, Oklahoma. I'm surprised to see this flag at #4. I am not a fan of the thin lines coming out of the star as well as how close to the hoist edge the elements are. With some simple design tweaks, this could be among the greats (IMHO). Should we sell this flag? Let me know in the comments.

5. Salt Lake City

Salt Lake City Flag
Ugh. Behind Tulsa, I think this is the best new city flag, period. If it were me, this would be a clear #2 but alas, it comes in at #5. Salt Lake City's flag is simple, clean, and perfectly representational of SLC. 

6. West Plains, Missouri

West Plains, Missouri Flag
I mean, what a beautiful flag. But when I see it, I definitely don't think of a small town in Missouri. On first glance, it harkens to a much larger world city or a Swedish NATO contingent. West Plains is definitely shooting above it's weight class here. I'd love to see how well adopted this flag is. Maybe a road trip to Missouri is in the cards for our Youtube Channel?

7. Wheeling, West Virginia

Wheeling, West Virginia Flag

This is my biggest disappointment in the top 10. These compasses are clearly a clipart or stock image. It feels uninspired and (again, in my humble opinion) should be further down the list. Sure, it doesn't break any rules and is a fine flag, but it shouldn't be in the top 10 when you have Madison and Topeka down in the bottom of the A group. 

8. Lincoln, Nebraska

Lincoln, Nebraska Flag

I'm so glad Lincoln got into the top 10. We've been on the new Lincoln, Nebraska Flag beat since the contest and loved what came out of it. Sure, could the lines be a bit thicker? Yeah. But in the modern usage of flags, its seen far more in digital applications than IRL. It's been well adopted by Lincoln-ites and stands strong in this list. 

Buy a Lincoln, Nebraska Flag Here

9. Kingman, Kansas

Kingman, Kansas Flag

My first reaction was "WHERE?" This flag has no business being this good. It's definitely brings to mind Caribbean or African nation flag families, but that isn't to say it's a detractor from it's merits. Not every flag of the US has to include red white and blue and I love that this flag made the list. It pops from the rest and shows that diversity in color can really make a statement. 

10. Springfield, Missouri

Springfield, Missouri Flag

This flag is one of the most interesting stories of this list. As well designed as it is (and it's a beaut), it had some pushback from locals claiming it was...wait for it...demonic. Par for the course in the bible belt I guess. Nevertheless, it is a beautiful modern design that has very smart symbolism and shows how much you can do with so little; the hallmark of flag design.

Buy a Springfield, Missouri Flag Here

Flags 11 - 25 (Best of the rest)

Flags 11-25

The rest of the group includes some real bangers! Riverside, California is one of my new favorite flags and we're definitely going to be putting some up on FlagsForGood.com very soon. Madison, Wisconsin and Topeka, Kansas are vastly underrated here. Madison has all the beautiful symbolism, geography nods, and looks damn good on a flag pole.

Buy a Madison, Wisconsin Flag Here

Buy a Topeka, Kansas Flag Here

Buy a South Bend, Indiana Flag Here

Buy a Cedar Rapids, Iowa Flag Here

Final Thoughts

I agree with the top 25 of this list, just not the order per-se. But I think we can all agree, Sunnyvale Texas should definitely be on the bottom...

 

Coming soon to FlagsForGood.com:

Pocatello, Idaho

Duluth, Minnesota

Riverside, California

Sioux Falls, South Dakota

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Comments


  • Please do a flag for Coronado, Ca!! Or I will pay for a custom one!! Ty!!
    PS ty for being a brave, creative and wonderful little flag company. You all ROCK!!

    anne mazzola on
  • Did the same artist design the Sunnyvale TX and Yorba Linda CA flags? They both have dark blue at the hoist with a yellow star and white and yellow at the fly (all in the same shades). Yorba Linda’s flag looks like what Sunnyvale’s would look like in a moderate breeze.

    Ray Wells on
  • What are your thoughts on the Newton flag? I saw it hanging in a friend’s house recently and I immediately thought of you and was curious your take.

    Cody on

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