The data say otherwise. Wall Street Journal:
Big cities may be getting all the attention, but the suburbs are holding their own in the battle for population and young earners.They're starting families later than earlier generations due to a number of factors including the Great Recession, student debt, and changing priorities. But once they settle down and have a family, they want the same thing prior generations did: a nice house in a family-friendly neighborhood with good schools, and a yard with space for the kids and a dog to run around.
That is the thrust of a study of population trends and housing set to be released Monday by the Urban Land Institute’s Terwilliger Center for Housing, a nonprofit real-estate research group.
Property developers and urban-policy experts have trumpeted the influx of young, affluent professionals into big central cities in recent years. The shift has transformed downtown areas, sparking a historic boom in luxury-apartment construction and retail development.
But research shows that suburbs are continuing to outstrip downtowns in overall population growth, diversity and even younger residents.
The suburban areas surrounding the 50 largest metropolitan areas make up 79% of the population of those areas but accounted for 91% of population growth over the past 15 years, according to the study. What’s more, three-quarters of people age 25 to 34 in these metro areas live in suburbs.