Thursday, August 29, 2013

The New Yuppies? Millennials Returning to Urban Life

A recent article on was written about the inflow of millennials to more urban settings. The article claims this is for a variety of reasons.

For example, they posit that two-thirds of this cohort believes it is important to live in walkable neighborhoods. They also cite a Washington post article which pointed out that the nation’s "Driving Boom", which lasted six decades, is over — largely because Millennials are driving less. “Between 2001 and 2009, the average yearly number of miles driven by 16- to 34-year-olds dropped a staggering 23 percent,” wrote Brad Plumer in The Washington Post. Rising costs of driving, barriers to teenagers getting licenses, technology that makes car-free living easier, and preference toward urban living are reasons for the trend, the article explained.

Whether or not that is true nationally, it doesn't seem to be the case for us regionally. Generally speaking, our cities and villages have been losing population while our towns have grown. This isn't an absolute, but it does seem to be generally true.

Below are the populations for each twon and county in the region from 1980 to 2010. Very few show increasing populations since the Census 2000. On the other hand, the City of Utica, our largest regional urban municipality, does show and increase of more than 2% ! So maybe the jury is still out on this issue ! We'll see in 2020 !
Click to Enlarge OC Data
Click to Enlarge HC Data