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Old 01-24-2008, 07:00 PM
Status: "Nobody's right if everybody's wrong" (set 25 days ago)
 
Location: New Albany, Indiana (Greater Louisville)
9,830 posts, read 21,138,014 times
Reputation: 9419

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It seems that after 50 years of constant decline in most of America's Central Cities and Downtowns that these areas are recovering to become what they once were.

It seems that nearly any city I go to there are new condominiums and business high rises going up. It also seems that many urban universities, which were once commuter schools, are drawing more traditional students and having greater effects on their surrounding areas.

Have we, as a country, finally turned a corner?
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Old 01-24-2008, 07:06 PM
 
Location: Iowa, Des Moines Metro
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I would say so, being in the suburbs isn't as popular as it was maybe 7 or 8 years ago, while I would still say it is the number one place for families to go. But people are wanting to live in an urban community where they are able to walk to the store, etc... which is also why you are seeing 'new urbanist' communities being built in the suburbs and cities alike.
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Old 01-24-2008, 07:06 PM
 
Location: yeah
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I'd say it's balancing out, not shifting the other way. Sprawl will still continue, but there's a growing contingent of people actively seeking the opposite.
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Old 01-24-2008, 07:52 PM
 
Location: Arlington, VA
349 posts, read 1,292,844 times
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I agree it's kinda of balancing out. The only way that cities will overtake the suburbs is if the inner city schools improve enough. There are too many urbanites that move to the suburbs as soon as they have little ones for that reason alone. It shouldn't be that way, but as of now that's reality.
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Old 01-24-2008, 08:18 PM
Status: "Nobody's right if everybody's wrong" (set 25 days ago)
 
Location: New Albany, Indiana (Greater Louisville)
9,830 posts, read 21,138,014 times
Reputation: 9419
Obviously, suburban areas are and will continue to grow, but at least most CBDs are now also growing in population.

I've noticed a lot of 'inner ring suburbs' (areas built in the 1940s-60s) are declining and losing population. Many of these areas have very bland architecture and no sidewalks. Often suburban style strip malls sit abandoned or underused.

As an example, Shively KY (an inner ring suburb of Louisville) was once one of the wealthiest cities (in terms of tax revenue) in the US, with three large distilleries and many factories in its city limits. Shivley never took this money to add sidewalks, street lighting, or pedestrian friendly neighborhood stores.

Today. the distilleries and factories are gone and the city is littered with abandoned buildings and shopping centers, and crime is rampant.
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Old 01-24-2008, 08:38 PM
 
Location: Polish Hill, Pittsburgh, PA
30,191 posts, read 67,332,997 times
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I think this is indeed a nationwide trend. Here in Scranton, PA the city's downtown is just starting to round a corner after decades of steep decline. There are several new residential/commercial mixed-use projects on the horizon, and I hope to pursue living in a Victorian home in the city's "Lower Hill" neighborhood on the fringes of Downtown and the University of Scranton campus someday. People take the benefits of urban living for granted. As someone who has thus far spent the first 21 years of his life in a sterile suburban housing development I will be the first to tell you that the suburbs are BORING!
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Old 01-24-2008, 08:43 PM
 
Location: Tijuana Exurbs
4,000 posts, read 10,444,771 times
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For the last 4 or 5 years, DC, yes DC! has been growing in population after 50+ years of nearly uninterrupted population decline. Clearly, something is happening there. It could be that the suburban fringe has finally reached the furthest extent of it's commutability, or it could be the new Urbanist trend is liking those DC rowhouses, but something is happening in the District. DC is a city that is having some kind of turnaround.

Downtown San Diego has been booming in population for the past decade. Part of that has been that commutes have become untenable, part if it has been deliberate planning decisions by government that have brought in a thriving entertainment district but also remembered to bring things like full-sized grocery stores that make Downtown living doable. Also, part of it has been Downtown's proximity to San Diego's attractive bayfront area, and the views that come with that.

The suburbs of San Diego, are still growing so there isn't a wholesale move back to the center, but the days of the "hollowing out" are over.... at least in this city.
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Old 01-24-2008, 08:49 PM
 
Location: Maryland not Murlin
8,193 posts, read 22,325,233 times
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There is almost a bohemian renaissance going on. More and more people are beginning to view the suburbs as bland, boring, and a little too conformist so they are turning back to city life-where the action is; especially if a person/couple is childless.

The suburbs are not shrinking, though. Some have slowed down but others are growing faster now then they ever where.
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Old 01-24-2008, 09:25 PM
 
11,879 posts, read 32,908,658 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by K-Luv View Post
There is almost a bohemian renaissance going on. More and more people are beginning to view the suburbs as bland, boring, and a little too conformist so they are turning back to city life-where the action is; especially if a person/couple is childless.

The suburbs are not shrinking, though. Some have slowed down but others are growing faster now then they ever where.
I agree, and I think this is one reason why inner city populations aren't increasing nearly as quickly as their exurbs; the people who are moving in to the downtown condo high rises and converted lofts tend to be single or couples with no children. Or, interestingly enough, retirees.

While I don't live in my city's downtown area, I would dearly love to if it weren't so dang expensive.

I think more Americans are discovering what most of the world has known for years: it's ok to live in a neighborhood that also has businesses and industries. In fact, it's often desirable, particularly if you happen to work at one of those businesses or industries.
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Old 01-24-2008, 09:30 PM
Status: "Summer!" (set 17 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
86,996 posts, read 102,568,112 times
Reputation: 33059
Quote:
I think more Americans are discovering what most of the world has known for years: it's ok to live in a neighborhood that also has businesses and industries. In fact, it's often desirable, particularly if you happen to work at one of those businesses or industries.
This was the case in the US no more than 50 yrs ago, much less in some cases. We lived 2 blocks from a steel mill when I was small. My mom used to tie my brother and I up on the front porch so we wouldn't get run over by a semi driving up our residential street to/from the mill. No thanks!
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