U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Urban Planning
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)
Reply Start New Thread
Old 10-05-2014, 10:06 PM
Location: Seattle, WA
2,975 posts, read 4,078,755 times
Reputation: 1208


Good question!

I'm fast coming up on this stage of my life, and plan to either:

1.) Live at the edge of the city where I can afford a larger place and have a car for child-rearing purposes, but still make trips on foot, bike, and mass transit whenever possible. My car in this case may well be a car share, which I would have to budget to use A LOT more than I do now. OR

2.) Live in a relatively walkable suburb along the new commuter rail line that's being planned. Or the existing Metro line if that commuter rail doesn't happen. I am still going to prefer Metro + bike/bus over a rush hour car commute from far out in the suburbs (even suburb-to-suburb with today's traffic...), but I'd likely be using a car for daily errands that are not in walking distance, especially off peak hours, also trips that involve bulky items like groceries.

I would NOT move to a neighbourhood where I had to drive everywhere, no matter how big the house were. I have to be able to walk to *something* useful. This would be more of a "car for convenience" lifestyle than a "car dependent" one.

Regarding schools, the way I see it, for what I would have to pay to live in the neighbourhoods with the best public schools, I could live in a more modest neighbourhood and go private.

At any rate, the lifestyle where you're constantly running out of time and fighting a loosing battle with traffic because you barely have time even if you drive everywhere, and you have no choice but to repeat this every day and it gets harder and harder because traffic keeps getting worse and worse--it simply does not appeal to me. After all, I'm probably not going to be a millionaire or anything for all that running around with elevated blood pressure and putting myself in danger driving aggressively. Can I avoid it? It's a good question, but that's life!

At any rate, I would expect that for those Millennials who do move out of the city, there will be "New Millennials" who will replace them. Traffic isn't getting any better, car ownership and gas will probably never be as cheap is it was in the later half of the 20th Century

(eventually gas will be less relevant...but that's probably getting in to the "New New Millennial" generation...based on population growth projections, today's city centers may simply be getting too crowded by then, and suburbs becoming dense more like today's city centers).
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

Old 10-05-2014, 10:10 PM
Location: Texas Hill Country
9,804 posts, read 5,476,447 times
Reputation: 8353
Let me toss another thing in there but talk on it later.

What happens when they get older..........but don't start having families?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 10-05-2014, 10:44 PM
Location: bend oregon
929 posts, read 843,383 times
Reputation: 351
then america will be like japan. we will have maid cafes, big arcades and stuff
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 10-05-2014, 11:12 PM
4,023 posts, read 3,264,546 times
Reputation: 2924
Originally Posted by TamaraSavannah View Post
Let me toss another thing in there but talk on it later.

What happens when they get older..........but don't start having families?
As long as someone is single, they'll probably want to stay in the city, because life in the (su)'burbs is pretty lonely and isolating when you're by yourself, with not much to offer a single person. Young people seem to be putting off marriage more and more (perhaps they dread the prospect of ending up like their suburban parents? lol). If you're going to be on your own, better to do it in the city where there at least are more opportunities to make social connections. At the same time, the 'rat race' of big city life also becomes less appealing as you get older. One solution might be to get an apartment or condo in an inner ring suburb, where the amenities of the city is still within relative easy reach. Then you sort of have the best of both worlds.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 10-05-2014, 11:53 PM
Location: Oakland, CA
27,165 posts, read 29,655,359 times
Reputation: 26646
I am either a young gen xer or an old millenial depending in wherre they put the break. And many if my friends have kids. The ones who value walkabilty aim for as much as they can affird. The ones that don't care about it don't put it on their short list. Unfortunately walkability is really pricey (and appreciating) in my region so it is getting much harder. But more suburban areas are also i proving walkability.

The wild card people are the ones who want walkability but find it isnt available near their job center in reasonable commuting time. They suffer with drivable suburbia and hope the situation changes.

So in a nutshell neighborhood preferences haven't changed but people are limited by available inventory near work and at the right price
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 10-05-2014, 11:58 PM
Location: Vallejo
14,061 posts, read 16,070,870 times
Reputation: 12635
Originally Posted by Hemlock140 View Post
A few years ago it made the news that Seattle had more dogs than children. The main problem with big cities is the quality of the schools. Those young parents who want the best for their kids end up moving when the oldest is 3-4 years old, looking for the best performing suburban schools. When the kids are younger they are fine with living in the quieter avenues of the city where shops and restaurants are withing a walkable distance but with much less crime than downtown areas.

Seattle Magazine | Arts & Culture/News & Features | Seattle's Dog Obsession

Seattle Magazine | Arts & Culture/News & Features | Seattle's Dog Obsession
Seattle isn't a great example of that. It actually has good schools. Although, yeah, the affluent suburbs still have better ones. Plus Seattle or San Francisco are good examples that a lot of the population doesn't have any interest in rugrats.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 10-06-2014, 12:03 AM
8,328 posts, read 14,558,119 times
Reputation: 4048
Not all the GenXers moved back to the suburbs--and not all had kids. Americans are having fewer kids and having them later in life, and many of those having kids are less interested in a suburban retreat, because cities are more comfortable and safer than they were in previous generations. Parents are the biggest advocates for good schools, and if they have already made an investment in real estate they have more reason to stick around and fight for better schools--for their own kids.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 10-06-2014, 12:03 AM
3,573 posts, read 3,803,326 times
Reputation: 3322
They're having far far less kids.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 10-06-2014, 12:38 AM
Location: Texas Hill Country
9,804 posts, read 5,476,447 times
Reputation: 8353
I think a lot of it depends on the part of the country as well.

I was talking to an old prof of mine on Friday, about the land we had, how I had a well, and at that, he commented on how important have a water source is and that they were moving too many people into this region. That this region wasn't meant to support so many people.

The I-35 corridor in Texas consists of 4 major metroplexes and then small cities in between that just keep building and building and building.

There is also a question of how much work is involved in making a home. My spread is just outside the city and one of the things I asked the realtor at the time was why hadn't anyone bought it yet? The answer was probably for the amount of time it would take to make something out of it. One thing about Texas Hill Country is it is very little dirt........and a lot of rock!

Another thing about my spread is that by car, it's about 25 minutes from the city. There were other spreads of similar costs in other locations, but further away from my work and some of lower costs and about 90 minutes from my work...............and if gasoline ever goes out of style, closer might be a better notion.

Finally, what kind of atmosphere does someone want? I didn't want to live around a lake because I didn't want to live in a party environment atmosphere......but maybe others would. Further, even if they think they do but find out that they don't, they are "young" and can try again somewhere else.........at least in theory.

Things to ponder...................
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 10-06-2014, 07:17 AM
3,492 posts, read 4,952,643 times
Reputation: 5383
Originally Posted by cisco kid View Post
Much has been written about the migration of young people to live in the cities. But what happens
when the urban young grow older and start having families? Do they start migrating back to the suburbs?
Sorry to make an example out fo your post, but this is the very essence of what is wrong with "urban planning". A well researched piece came out some time ago that thoroughly disproved the myth of young people moving into the urban areas as a demographic trend. After intense research they found that across the broad section of urban areas, rather than focusing on specific cities, the rate of increase in young population was slower than the rate of increase in that portion of the population. Basically, while more young people live in urban areas now than 20 years ago, the increase in sheer number has not kept up with the increase in population. As a percentage, more of the young generation is living with their parents rather than in the urban areas. Simply put, the urban areas are too expensive to maintain a reasonable standard of living when the college graduates are told

"Oh, that is a very nice degree. If you have that in your right hand, and toilet paper in your left hand, you can wipe twice."

Yes, there are a few cities that were able to attract young people in an urban core, but the story has been based on either those few cities or the growth in absolute numbers which failed to reflect the increase in overall population.

Since many pseudo urban planners are often misinformed about the current state of the country and cities and misinformed about the previous state, how on earth do we expect them to plan for the future state?
Reply With Quote 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

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 > General Forums > Urban Planning
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