Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Are People in the Midwest Stuck?

Richard Florida is one of the more influential thinkers about the trends in City development, having penned such influential books as, "The Creative Class" and "Who's Your City".  His premise is usually that the creative class of people are driving city growth and when creative people have a choice, they want to be in a place with more opportunity and a lot of other creative people.

A recent Florida article posits that folks in places that aren't trendy are stuck, and are falling behind because of it.  Julie Zimmerman, Editor of Cincinnati Magazine had a few things to say in response to Florida's assumptions.

She starts out by providing her bona fides, namely that she lived in the more 'creative' and desirable markets before ending up in Cincinnati, and that she has remained there, not because she is stuck, but because she found the quality of life she was looking for.  The low cost-of-living, ability to have your parents take your kids for the night, and ability to reconnect with childhood friends are true of many Midwestern cities like St. Louis, Milwaukee, and Indianapolis.

While her view is likely shared by many of her age cohort, it is undeniable that many younger adults, unburdened by mortgage or child care costs, find major markets to be a draw.  The real question for the future of 'stuck' cities is whether these young adults will return from the 'creative' cities to their places of birth to raise their own children.

If you've recently made a move, or are thinking about moving home, what is motivating you?  Is it the sex appeal of a New York, Chicago, or Austin, or the affordability and pace of a Cincinnati, Kansas City, or Tulsa? Read More......