The 27th Congress for the New Urbanism, held this summer in Louisville, KY, provides the AE staff with an opportunity to explore living patterns. Terms like new urbanism and gentrification become synonymous with one of America’s most misunderstood and misrepresented groups: millennials.
To unpack these terms, let’s start with gentrification. Gentrification is a revitalization effort. Typically, it involves more affluent members of society moving into less affluent areas. Home values and incomes rise, more singles or childless couples move in, and crime decreases. These changes come at the expense of the marginalization of the long-term residents who can no longer afford to live in the neighborhood post-gentrification. These neighborhoods also witness the loss of diversity and cultural uniqueness (Saunders, 2016). Understandably, resentment can build amongst displaced groups. It can be an unfortunate side effect of new urbanism if not executed in a thoughtful manner.
New urbanism is a conscientious effort to combat urban sprawl, improve walkability, and establish a greater sense of community through mixed zoning (Congress for the New Urbanism, 2019). New urbanism can take place in many different types of communities. Its champions highlight increasingly long commute times as reason enough to abandon the post-WWII American urban sprawl.
The oft maligned millennial is caught somewhere in between. Seeking affordable housing, amenities, and environmentally friendly services, millennials can be enticed to live in revitalized downtowns or redesigned suburbs (Graves, 2018). True in Austin, the United States, and abroad, living patterns change rapidly. At AngelouEconomics, we analyze these changes and the nuanced decision-making of millennials. We evaluate the short- and long-term effects of urban and rural economic development, providing our clients with personalized resources and courses of action.
Congress for the New Urbanism. (2019). What is New Urbanism? Retrieved from https://www.cnu.org/resources/what-new-urbanism.
Graves, L. (2018). Welcome to suburbia: the millennials done with city life – and city prices. Retrieved from https://www.theguardian.com/society/2018/jul/26/millennials-moving-suburbs-america-housing-crisis-urban-exodus
Saunders, P. (2016). How to Understand Gentrification. Retrieved from https://www.forbes.com/sites/petesaunders1/2016/08/29/understanding-gentrification/#37489e5f35ec
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