U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > General U.S.
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
 
 
Old 12-06-2018, 11:58 AM
 
Location: Chicago
5,926 posts, read 6,557,658 times
Reputation: 5400

Advertisements

Our love of college towns, here on C/D and off of it, is legendary. But it seems to me there is definitely more to love as the traditional American college town goes through changes in this era of real growth for them.

The major college towns thrive, no matter where they are located. And among rural areas in many states, they are the leading growth center.

I see two trends in college town: the growth of retail/entertainment/dining in their core downtowns. This might, in part, be fueled by my second (and more important) point: college towns are generating more and more (and often high rise) private resident halls. There have always been apartments that catered to the college students, but the actual private resident halls is more of a new thing and....even though these structures have been around for some time....the idea of building them in the downtown area is a more recent thread.

We all have our lists of iconic college towns that, of course, boom today as they did in the past: Charlottesville, Chapel Hill, Athens, Oxford, Ann Arbor, Iowa City, Madison, Lawrence, Austin, Boulder, etc.

With the current "building boom", do you see other college towns "rising" to new heights and becoming great college towns.

Last edited by JMT; 12-06-2018 at 12:43 PM.. Reason: Skyline discussions are not allowed.
Quick reply to this message

 
Old 12-06-2018, 12:53 PM
 
Location: Maryland
4,270 posts, read 5,493,345 times
Reputation: 4600
Quote:
Originally Posted by edsg25 View Post
Our love of college towns, here on C/D and off of it, is legendary. But it seems to me there is definitely more to love as the traditional American college town goes through changes in this era of real growth for them.

The major college towns thrive, no matter where they are located. And among rural areas in many states, they are the leading growth center.

I see two trends in college town: the growth of retail/entertainment/dining in their core downtowns. This might, in part, be fueled by my second (and more important) point: college towns are generating more and more (and often high rise) private resident halls. There have always been apartments that catered to the college students, but the actual private resident halls is more of a new thing and....even though these structures have been around for some time....the idea of building them in the downtown area is a more recent thread.

We all have our lists of iconic college towns that, of course, boom today as they did in the past: Charlottesville, Chapel Hill, Athens, Oxford, Ann Arbor, Iowa City, Madison, Lawrence, Austin, Boulder, etc.

With the current "building boom", do you see other college towns "rising" to new heights and becoming great college towns.
Hmm, you'll undoubtedly get pushback on your list of "iconic" college towns: e.g., Iowa City is in the same league as Bloomington/Champaign/E. Lansing (not Ann Arbor or Madison) IMO; Austin (like Columbus) is nearly a million people and isn't what I'd consider a quintessential college town, despite how large of a presence UT has there.

Other college towns rising to new heights? I suppose Evanston is becoming a bigger destination than it used to be with its downtown expanding and building upwards, but it's also very quintessential suburban Chicago making it an unusual mix. I think Northampton, MA is an oft overlooked college town, but I'm not sure I'd argue it is rising to new heights. Same with La Crosse, WI.

Not sure whether I know of a good example of a town ascending to the big leagues that doesn't have something else also going for it (insurance mecca/industry/government).
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-06-2018, 01:18 PM
 
Location: Chicago
5,926 posts, read 6,557,658 times
Reputation: 5400
Quote:
Originally Posted by Maintainschaos View Post
Hmm, you'll undoubtedly get pushback on your list of "iconic" college towns: e.g., Iowa City is in the same league as Bloomington/Champaign/E. Lansing (not Ann Arbor or Madison) IMO; Austin (like Columbus) is nearly a million people and isn't what I'd consider a quintessential college town, despite how large of a presence UT has there.

Other college towns rising to new heights? I suppose Evanston is becoming a bigger destination than it used to be with its downtown expanding and building upwards, but it's also very quintessential suburban Chicago making it an unusual mix. I think Northampton, MA is an oft overlooked college town, but I'm not sure I'd argue it is rising to new heights. Same with La Crosse, WI.

Not sure whether I know of a good example of a town ascending to the big leagues that doesn't have something else also going for it (insurance mecca/industry/government).
I have a bit of Iowa City bias, I admit. I also have a helluva lot of Evanston bias....sure it is suburban, right next door to Chicago, but it really is its own place and when NU and Evanston put down their dukes to do something they never did.....work together.....it transformed DT Evanston into a pretty great place, to the real benefit of Northwestern students.

For the record.....Ann Arbor and Madison on top, of course...but after that, I go with Iowa City and Bloomington being the heart of the next tier.....Champaign and East Lansing come after that.

Yes...you're right about towns that got too big to remain college towns. They come in many forms but one of the most common is when the state capital is in the same town as the flagship public university, those types of cities seem to grow well enough past the "college town" status and become more just plain "cities".....Austin, Madison, Columbus.

and one last word on my Iowa bias (started college there...went on to UIC): for all the credit I give Iowa City, I may not be fair to the state's other major college town, Ames, which is actually a pretty darned good college town (even though its DT is removed from ISU while IC's downtown is right next to the Iowa campus. Ames and IC both have growing college related skylines.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-06-2018, 01:27 PM
 
56,747 posts, read 81,061,259 times
Reputation: 12549
Quote:
Originally Posted by edsg25 View Post
Our love of college towns, here on C/D and off of it, is legendary. But it seems to me there is definitely more to love as the traditional American college town goes through changes in this era of real growth for them.

The major college towns thrive, no matter where they are located. And among rural areas in many states, they are the leading growth center.

I see two trends in college town: the growth of retail/entertainment/dining in their core downtowns. This might, in part, be fueled by my second (and more important) point: college towns are generating more and more (and often high rise) private resident halls. There have always been apartments that catered to the college students, but the actual private resident halls is more of a new thing and....even though these structures have been around for some time....the idea of building them in the downtown area is a more recent thread.

We all have our lists of iconic college towns that, of course, boom today as they did in the past: Charlottesville, Chapel Hill, Athens, Oxford, Ann Arbor, Iowa City, Madison, Lawrence, Austin, Boulder, etc.

With the current "building boom", do you see other college towns "rising" to new heights and becoming great college towns
.
I think Ithaca NY is a place to keep an eye on. Plenty of development and steady growth. Here's a great thread about development in the city/area: For Those Interested in Developments in Ithaca
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-06-2018, 08:03 PM
 
Location: Greenville SC 'Waterfall City'
7,595 posts, read 4,023,295 times
Reputation: 2933
I think it is a stretch to call Austin a college town. It's a big city.

I think all the big universities are seeing new stuff pop up near campus.

Clemson has a bunch of new student housing downtown and/or near campus, and a few miles off campus including out next to the lake.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-11-2018, 06:14 AM
 
21,209 posts, read 30,427,905 times
Reputation: 19657
Quote:
Originally Posted by edsg25 View Post
For the record.....Ann Arbor and Madison on top, of course...but after that, I go with Iowa City and Bloomington being the heart of the next tier.....Champaign and East Lansing come after that.
I would disagree given Madison is also a state capital and already a much larger city, so not exactly a fair comparison. Also neither Iowa City or Bloomington is seeing the kind of tech growth now seen in Champaign/Urbana, which led both Madison and Iowa City in venture capital dollars in 2017.

Why Silicon Prairie communities need to be thinking about where they should be, not just where others are - Silicon Prairie News
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-11-2018, 06:25 AM
 
98 posts, read 37,631 times
Reputation: 115
Y’all haven’t even mentioned Lincoln, Nebraska?
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-11-2018, 06:26 AM
 
21,209 posts, read 30,427,905 times
Reputation: 19657
Quote:
Originally Posted by edsg25 View Post
With the current "building boom", do you see other college towns "rising" to new heights and becoming great college towns.
I would venture a place like Columbia SC (U of South Carolina) in that category if already including hybrids like Madison WI or Lansing/East Lansing MI.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-11-2018, 07:36 AM
 
Location: Chicago
5,926 posts, read 6,557,658 times
Reputation: 5400
Quote:
Originally Posted by berger12345 View Post
Y’all haven’t even mentioned Lincoln, Nebraska?
wait a minute. Don't they say "There is no place called Nebraska"?
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-11-2018, 07:54 AM
 
11,179 posts, read 22,397,366 times
Reputation: 10933
Quote:
Originally Posted by edsg25 View Post
I have a bit of Iowa City bias, I admit. I also have a helluva lot of Evanston bias....sure it is suburban, right next door to Chicago, but it really is its own place and when NU and Evanston put down their dukes to do something they never did.....work together.....it transformed DT Evanston into a pretty great place, to the real benefit of Northwestern students.

For the record.....Ann Arbor and Madison on top, of course...but after that, I go with Iowa City and Bloomington being the heart of the next tier.....Champaign and East Lansing come after that.

Yes...you're right about towns that got too big to remain college towns. They come in many forms but one of the most common is when the state capital is in the same town as the flagship public university, those types of cities seem to grow well enough past the "college town" status and become more just plain "cities".....Austin, Madison, Columbus.

and one last word on my Iowa bias (started college there...went on to UIC): for all the credit I give Iowa City, I may not be fair to the state's other major college town, Ames, which is actually a pretty darned good college town (even though its DT is removed from ISU while IC's downtown is right next to the Iowa campus. Ames and IC both have growing college related skylines.
I'm in Iowa City, Madison and Ann Arbor quite a bit. Iowa City is certainly a bit more out of the way and is smaller than the other two, but it's definitely is up there on the list. Not the top but it stands out and is getting much better.
Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


 
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:
Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > General U.S.
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top