Regular readers know that in the modern world an urban lifestyle is more sustainable than a suburban lifestyle so it’s pretty good news to see that more people in the USA are moving into urban centres. America is where the suburbs started and have had the largest cultural impact and seeing a transition away from unsustainable suburban living in America is definitely a good thing!
Even among those who are buying homes rather than renting, there is a strong preference now for close-in locations, where sales prices driven by demand have increased while those in outer suburbs have plummeted. Where home purchase prices are still recovering, the recovery has been much stronger in inner, urban locations than in outer suburbs.
Roughly 52 of the 73 US cities with population of greater than 250,000 showed faster annual growth (or slower rates of losses) in 2011 than their average growth over the last decade. Primary cities in large metropolitan areas with populations of more than one million grew by 1.1 percent last year, compared with 0.9 percent in surrounding suburbs. Cities switching from declines to gains included Pittsburgh and Milwaukee, both previously written off by some as “shrinking cities” because of what was perceived as irreversible decline because of the loss of manufacturing.