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Old 09-26-2016, 11:54 AM
 
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I'd never heard Chicago referred to as Rust Belt outside of this board.

On one hand, the city has lost nearly a million people, from its peak population, but that only represents a 26% population loss. Boston is about 23% off its peak population. Philly is about 25% off its peak population. No one considers those Rust Belt cities. I think Chicago's economy is too diverse, and its decline is proportionately small, compared to consensus Rust Belt cities like Pittsburgh, Detroit, Cleveland or Buffalo.
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Old 09-26-2016, 11:56 AM
 
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Traditionally, yes, it would be considered a Rust Belt city.

Chicago is historically very industrial, slow-growth, Great Lakes location, boomed during the era of industrialization, declined during post-industrialization. Chicago was, for a LONG time, the #1 industrial center in the U.S.
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Old 09-26-2016, 11:58 AM
 
Location: Arch City
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Chicago, while not as heavily dependent on manufacturing as St. Louis, Detroit, Cleveland, and Pittsburgh, had a manufacturing industry and Gary, Indiana, a Chicago suburb, is certainly part of the Rust Belt. So Chicago has elements of the Rust Belt. Whether or not it actually is Rust Belt is up for debate but there's no questioning that at one point a large portion of its economy was manufacturing.
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Old 09-26-2016, 12:21 PM
 
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no
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Old 09-26-2016, 12:58 PM
 
Location: Pittsburgh, PA (Morningside)
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Yes and no.

The problem with rust belt is it's a categorization that cities have until they don't. If you look back to when the term was first developed in the mid 1980s, it could have been used to characterize a number of then grimy cities with industrial pasts, including even Boston. But over time a lot of Northeastern cities have "graduated" out due to a mixture of gentrification and new immigrants revitalizing population growth. Chicago has mostly graduated out of the use of the term as well, as it grew during the 1990s. Admittedly it declined in the 2000s, but appears to be back to modest growth again.

At the same time, Chicago is inside what is commonly considered to be the geographic "core" of the rust belt. There are unquestionable rust belt cities to its immediate north (Waukegan, Kenosha, Racine, and Milwaukee) west (Quad Cities region of IL/IA, Cedar Rapids), and east (Northeast Indiana in general, South Bend, Eklhart). All directions really except to the south, which is corn belt country.

I guess the bottom line is I'd say Chicago is "in" the rust belt, but not "of" the rust belt. I do think it's more intimately connected to the rust belt than say Indianapolis or Columbus, which are much more akin to sun belt cities somehow dropped into rust belt states.
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Old 09-26-2016, 12:59 PM
 
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It was at one time, it's not now.
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Old 09-26-2016, 01:07 PM
 
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Yes but it's a recovered Rust Belt city...I tend to put it in the same category as Pittsburgh in this regard (minus the population loss).
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Old 09-26-2016, 02:41 PM
 
Location: Scottsdale, AZ
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I say "no". Its far too diverse and successful to be considered rust belt, despite its location and economic downturn following the fall of the Industrial Revolution. Yes, it has lost population, but its nothing like you saw in Allentown, PA, for example.
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Old 09-26-2016, 03:25 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mutiny77 View Post
Yes but it's a recovered Rust Belt city...I tend to put it in the same category as Pittsburgh in this regard (minus the population loss).
This
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Old 09-26-2016, 04:14 PM
 
Location: Lakewood OH
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I moved from Portland, OR to Lakewood, Ohio as suburb of Cleveland and couldn't be happier. It's beautiful here. So my answer would be "Yes" because I already did.
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