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Old 01-19-2015, 09:42 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nybbler View Post
I think the problem with attracting millennials to office parks in the burbs in the midwest is more the "midwest" part than the "burbs" part. Certainly Silicon Valley has had no trouble attracting millennials; certainly a loud minority of them prefer SF to the Valley itself, but not enough to keep housing prices in the Valley from being sky high.
Whether you're right or not, there's nothing a midwestern city can do about it. It's clear by now that the midwest is not a total turn-off. Midwestern companies are going to attract at least some top talent. The question is, how to put their absolute best foot forward.

One thing to keep in mind is that not every bright young college grad has a one-track mind that runs back and forth between work and lifestyle amenities. Some of them actually want to live affordably, too, and maybe (gasp) even purchase a home. Given those values, there are a ton of advantages to a midwestern location.
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Old 01-19-2015, 10:16 AM
 
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Different locations are attractive to different people. It's easier to attract people without kids in the city where they want to live, and easier to attract people with families in the 'burbs. In NYC there isn't much of a wage gap for equivalent entry-level jobs between the suburbs and the city itself, but the more senior positions get the bigger the wage premium for being in the city gets, in large part because the people filling those jobs are older with different location preferences.
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Old 01-19-2015, 10:25 AM
 
Location: Michigan
4,571 posts, read 7,040,568 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rwiksell View Post
This is great, thanks. Do you know where I might find the articles where recruiting is cited as a reason for the move?
Gilbertville: A Billionaire's Drive To Rebuild The Motor City - Forbes
Quote:
Quicken Loans, then based in Detroit’s suburbs, was having trouble filling jobs. “For the first time in our history, we started losing job candidates from universities like U-M and Michigan State,” Gilbert says. “People would tell us, I love your company, but I want to go to Chicago or Boston or New York.”
Fifth Third Bank bringing $85 million in charity, investments with move to Downtown Detroit | MLive.com
Quote:
"Fifth Third Bank has come to the same conclusion as many other small and large businesses: To compete for the best talent, to inspire your people in the most creative and innovative environment possible, and to be exposed to numerous close-by, exciting growth businesses who are all potential customers, it just makes sense to locate in Downtown Detroit," Gilbert said.
I don't know how much the anecdotal evidence factors into the real numbers, but downtown Detroit does seem to be improving faster than some suburban markets within the metro area.

Detroit gains on the suburbs in filling office space


I personally don't think moving to a walkable location is the sole reason for these companies to make the move, but it's certainly a factor. Part of it also has to do with name recognition of a place and visibility. Companies can better advertise their company if they're in a high profile location rather than if they're in some no-name suburb. People already have a general idea of what Chicago, or Detroit, or San Franciso's downtowns seems like, even if they have never visited any of them, but any office park in the suburbs seems homogeneous and uninteresting. Though on the financial side of things, it usually is the cheaper option for businesses to locate to.
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Old 01-19-2015, 10:25 AM
 
Location: Vallejo
14,075 posts, read 16,105,531 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rwiksell View Post
I'm looking for resources to support (or refute) the hypothesis that corporations looking to recruit top young talent must seriously consider locating their offices in walkable urban neighborhoods. Does anyone have any data, or at least anecdotal evidence, along these lines?

I see a lot of companies (especially in the midwest) re-locating to office parks in the 'burbs, and still expecting to attract lots of bright millenial college grads. However, my theory is that this type of location is a major turnoff to that generation.

What do you think?
Facebook
Apple
Microsoft
Boeing

They far outnumber Twitter or Zendesk.
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Old 01-19-2015, 10:30 AM
 
Location: Oak Park, IL
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malloric View Post
Facebook
Apple
Microsoft
Boeing

They far outnumber Twitter or Zendesk.
Boeing has been headquartered in downtown Chicago since 2001. Obviously their factories are not located in dense urban environments due to obvious space constraints.
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Old 01-19-2015, 10:44 AM
 
Location: Vallejo
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I thought they were in a suburb for some reason. Either way, pretty clear it's not a requirement. Facebook/Apple/Genetech and what not have some problems with not being in downtown locations though. They run the hated buses since nowadays many of their employees do prefer living in San Francisco. It's really not an option though. There's not enough space in San Francisco for everyone to set up shop there. Silicon Valley is Silicon Valley not because of any preference for suburban parks but because San Francisco is anti-growth. Apple's new campus alone is 2.8 million square feet, which would just about completely fill the Trans Bay Terminal at build out. Salesforce tower is set to open in 2017, but most of the others haven't gone through planning yet. Build out might be 2025 at a complete guess. Stuff in SF just moves really slow. Up until 2005, it would have been impossible to add enough room for Apple to move to the Financial District due to anti-growth zoning policies. Actual construction of the Salesforce tower won't really take any longer than Apple's campus. It's the red tape. San Francisco has been dithering about what to do. Trans Bay Terminal should have been built in the '70s or '80s. Instead they just pretended growth wouldn't occur until the mid '80s and then spent another 25 years dithering about what to do. Companies don't have 30 years to wait.

Last edited by Malloric; 01-19-2015 at 10:58 AM..
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Old 01-19-2015, 10:55 AM
 
Location: NC
6,572 posts, read 8,005,004 times
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Walkable would mean retro-fitting an already developed location. For many businesses/industries this would be prohibitively expensive. Building on the edges of a walkable area, where there is still vacant land would be a better compromise. That is why the Raleigh area is growing.
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Old 01-19-2015, 11:15 AM
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Location: Long Island / NYC
45,992 posts, read 42,026,386 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malloric View Post
There's not enough space in San Francisco for everyone to set up shop there. Silicon Valley is Silicon Valley not because of any preference for suburban parks but because San Francisco is anti-growth.
I think it was more for historical reasons. The first tech companies come from large industrial parks (that often had some manufacturing) or Stanford University. Once some started in region, more clustered in the same spot.
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Old 01-19-2015, 11:47 AM
 
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I think the effects are just barely being felt because the primary employed group right now is not millenials. So basically the elder generations (baby boomers) very much prefer the suburbs (are also in-charge and making the decisions), Gen X is being ignored, and the millenials are starting to get press because they are a really big group. But the smart (and in-charge) baby boomers are cool with moving back to downtown because they want to attract the top talent 10 years from now, and they are assuming they will be retired and not fighting traffic then.


So I think companies (and cities in their future plans, at least in my area) are discussing ways to densify and offer bicycle and mass transit options for upcoming generations. Compared to 10 years ago when office buildings were still being built stand-alone away from other things, the difference is very noticeable. You can even compare suburbs that are transit unfriendly with the amount of relocations they are getting. Showing up on a bike at the company I work for is still somewhat taboo- but future company plans involve larger bike racks and showers.
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Old 01-19-2015, 12:32 PM
 
Location: City of Atlanta
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Many companies, tech companies in particular, are returning to the city of Atlanta in droves. Coca-Cola moved 2000 of their IT employees to Downtown from suburban Cobb County in 2013. Also in 2013, Athenahealth moved its Atlanta operations from suburban Alpharetta to the massive new Ponce City Market redevelopment intown, bringing 400 jobs. Last year, Worldpay US announced it's moving its headquarters from suburban Sandy Springs to midtown Atlanta, bringing 1200 employees. And just last week, NCR announced it's moving from suburban Gwinnett County to build a new headquarters in midtown Atlanta across from Georgia Tech. This move is estimated to bring 3000-4000 jobs to the city. All cited at least one reason for moving is to attract millenial workers who prefer urban living.
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