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Old 08-22-2017, 04:59 PM
 
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With all the gentrification happening in urban areas I have to wonder if some of that will ever make it to small towns. Some small towns in the mid-west have really great bones, the problem is with many of these towns over half the store fronts are boarded up and there's not enough jobs. Most of them are also losing population. There's a part of me that always loved the idea of living in a small town. I wonder if they will ever become relevant like they where 50 years ago.
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Old 08-22-2017, 05:37 PM
 
Location: Downtown Phoenix, AZ
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My honest answer is probably not. Everyone is congregating towards major metros because that's where the jobs are that pay more than minimum wage
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Old 08-22-2017, 06:44 PM
 
Location: Seattle WA, USA
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maybe with more and more online jobs, I think that some towns might make a comeback, but I don't think it will be a big movement any time soon, more likely to happen is for suburbs to start resembling towns/having small urban nodes.
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Old 08-22-2017, 07:02 PM
 
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Freeway interchange retail and big box retail have killed their retail cores. Walmart accelerated this, so only one town per county (more or less) even has that. None of that will turn around.

Some towns will live off tourism and retirees. Or they'll fold into major metros. Or they'll get a factory, for a while at least. The rest will continue to wither.
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Old 08-22-2017, 07:30 PM
 
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Those closer to bigger cities/metros will have a chance and are doing fine. It may be a matter of finding the right town.

Also, what is your criteria for a small town?

Last edited by ckhthankgod; 08-22-2017 at 07:51 PM..
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Old 08-22-2017, 08:39 PM
 
Location: Minneapolis (St. Louis Park)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mhays25 View Post
Freeway interchange retail and big box retail have killed their retail cores. Walmart accelerated this, so only one town per county (more or less) even has that. None of that will turn around.

Some towns will live off tourism and retirees. Or they'll fold into major metros. Or they'll get a factory, for a while at least. The rest will continue to wither.
Don't forget Amazon, which is doing as much or more to hurt small-town Ma/Pa retail than Wal-Mart has.
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Old 08-22-2017, 09:49 PM
 
Location: 352
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Imo, no. Sprawly cul de sacs won't go anywhere, and that new urbanist style development will become the new small town. In order for small towns to come back, jobs have to come back, and I can't imagine Millennial Co. opening their new HQ in Cowville, population 1,700, nearest big city - 2 hours.
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Old 08-23-2017, 12:49 AM
 
Location: Washington State desert
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I think small town america is indeed a conceptual future growth area. With on-line workers this is bound to become more of a substantial job center. That being said, I think being within a metro area will still hold some advantages as some connections will require face to face reality at times. While I see more workers in their outposts, I do think being close to the central office will still be important.
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Old 08-23-2017, 06:30 AM
 
21,188 posts, read 30,359,201 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Turnerbro View Post
With all the gentrification happening in urban areas I have to wonder if some of that will ever make it to small towns. Some small towns in the mid-west have really great bones, the problem is with many of these towns over half the store fronts are boarded up and there's not enough jobs. Most of them are also losing population. There's a part of me that always loved the idea of living in a small town. I wonder if they will ever become relevant like they where 50 years ago.
Every thing cycles it seems and as quickly as many were ready to write off the Rust Belt cities as dead/gone most have "risen from the ashes" and are attracting back new residents with major case in point everyone's favorite city to rag on, Detroit. With a global market that has evolved into digital access from anywhere, it would stand to reason as medium-sized/large cities continue to become more and more expensive that manufacturing along with tech companies consider small towns an economic benefit, especially if within easy reach of larger population centers.
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Old 08-23-2017, 08:35 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Jandrew5 View Post
In order for small towns to come back, jobs have to come back, and I can't imagine Millennial Co. opening their new HQ in Cowville, population 1,700, nearest big city - 2 hours.
I work with an organization in a community with 2010 Census population just over 2,000. It's 2 hours and 1 minute to the nearest NFL stadium. 20 minutes to Walmart.

This community used to host a Fortune 500 corporate headquarters. Though it still has some production facilities run by the multinational that took it over, the folks I deal with who are early-retired corporate folks probably don't have local replacements volunteering to run the local festival, holding seats on local government boards, etc.

I have a lot of trouble finding service providers for equipment, or contractors to bid on projects here.

Geospatial inequality should be as recognized among opinion makers as income or wealth inequality.

Based on an expectation of continued fiddling while much of the country falls apart, it's hard to escape the conclusion that small town America is doomed.
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