New Urban Dream Stalled by Employers' Move to the Suburbs

new urban dream
new urban dream

In the comments on my earlier post on Gen-Y and the housing market, Travis Robertson makes a number of excellent points. One of them I've heard time and time again when it comes to the Millennials and the new urban dream.

Travis writes, "I think we'll see a rise in smaller, urban-style, walkable communities. Lower-income families will move outward toward the suburbs that once signified the American dream post-war. We'll see many cities shift focus to urban renewal (many already are)."

This is very much in line with the New Urbanism movement sweeping through certain circles of urban planning and architecture communities. The vision of cities of the future, powered by renewable energy, widely available public transportation, and a variety of mixed-use buildings to create smaller, more intimate neighborhoods inside a large metropolis is an attractive one. I should know; I spent ten years in New York City, where walkability, public transportation, and intimate neighborhoods (SoHo, Tribeca, Hell's Kitchen, etc.) all reside inside the largest city in America. It was a great place to live as a young man.

Unfortunately, actual evidence suggests that the New Urbanism vision of the future is not likely to be reality.