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Urbs and Burbs
Young Americans Still Want the Suburbs

Despite the steady urbanist drumbeat from many elites, a new survey from the National Association of Homebuilders suggests that the American suburban dream is still attractive to millennial respondents. WSJ:

The survey, which was released at the association’s convention in Las Vegas, found that 66% want to live in the suburbs, 24% want to live in rural areas and 10% want to live in a city center. One of the main reasons people want to relocate from the city center, she said, is that they “want to live in more space than they have now.” The survey showed 81% want three or more bedrooms in their home.

Of course, the National Association of Homebuilders is hardly a neutral observer here, but these results accord with what other surveys have found. Even when younger Americans do choose cities over suburbs, it tends to be urban areas of a more sprawly sort, with less density and lower costs-of-living. Given this apparent trend, it might be time for the Obama Administration to stop pursuing failed policies at the intersection of new urbanism and the green agenda. Luckily in an age of teleworking and Amazon deliveries, living in the suburbs or less dense cities doesn’t have to mean painful commuting rituals and sky-high emissions. Whatever you think about Americans’ continued suburban tendencies, that’s something to celebrate.

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  • Boritz

    This is just a public relations and advertising issue.  Need more sitcoms where the cool, in-people live in apartments (think Seinfeld, and Friends).

  • FriendlyGoat

    Absolutely. People who prefer a suburban house tend not to care whether sea levels rise or whether forest fires are harder to contain out west. The National Association of Homebuilders just proved it with a survey at a convention. (Or, was that a TAI spin?)

  • teapartydoc

    Funny how trying to create an ownership society almost destroyed the one that already existed.

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