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Richard Florida: 'The Urban Revival Is Over'

The author of the "The Rise of the Creative Class" and the "New Urban Crisis" says cities have had their moment.
September 5, 2017, 5am PDT | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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[Updated September 5, 2017] "As it turns out, the much-ballyhooed new age of the city might be giving way to a great urban stall-out," according to an opinion piece written by Richard Florida.

While many, if not most, large cities grew faster than their suburbs between 2000 and 2015, in the last two years the suburbs outgrew cities in two-thirds of America’s large metropolitan areas, according to a detailed analysis of the latest census data by the demographer William Frey of the Brookings Institution. Fourteen big cities lost population in 2015-16 compared with just five in 2011-12, with Chicago, the nation’s third-largest city, hemorrhaging the most people.

Florida presents more data to support this depiction of urban areas before examining some of the causes of this reversal of fortune. "Foremost is a recent uptick in violent crime," according to Florida, and then there's the fact that "the most desirable cities have become incredibly expensive places to live."

"Finally, the anti-urban mood in Washington and many state legislatures is making things worse for cities at the worst possible time," writes Florida to end the argument about the causes of the urban malaise. The opinion piece, however, is concluded with an appeal to the importance of cities in the national economy.

Florida's take on the national zeitgeist is echoed in another recent article from Bloomberg that pins much of the current demographic trends on choices made by the Millennial generation.

[Post updated with the correct title of The Rise of the Creative Class.]

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Published on Friday, September 1, 2017 in The New York Times
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