Salient to Investors:
More than half of the 20 municipalities with the fastest-growing populations between 2010 and 2012 were suburbs, meaning growing suburban communities will continue to get their share of the $400 billion in funds the federal government annually spends based on population data provided by the Census Bureau.
Author James Howard Kunstler says suburbia is so deeply embedded in the cultural DNA of America that it is nearly impossible to organize our life on the landscape otherwise.
Large suburbs in the South and Southwest and on the West Coast recorded some of the highest population growth rates, but less than the increases of the early and mid-2000s.
William Frey at Brookings Institution said Las Vegas is an example where the suburbs are leading the way back, though well below the heyday of the past.
8 of the 15 fastest-growing cities in the US between 2011 and 2012 were in Texas, 6 of which were suburbs, with 3 – San Marcos, Cedar Park and Georgetown – located close to Austin. McKinney and Frisco, both near Dallas, and Midland and Odessa in west Texas and Conroe, north of Houston, all made the top 15.
San Marcos was the fastest-growing city in America between 2011 and 2012, adding 4.9 percent to 50,001 people.
Irvine,California, was the largest fast-growing city, adding 4.2 percent to boost its 2012 population to almost 230,000.
Flint, Michigan lost 18 percent of its total residents during the decade, and another 1.9 percent between 2010 and 2012, the most, followed by Detroit which lost 25 percent of its population between 2000 and 2010, and another 1.7 percent since the last census – down to less than half its 1930 size.
Arthur Nelson at the University of Utah predicted in 2007 paper that there would be 22 million surplus homes on large lots in the suburbs by 2025, while RCLCO in 2010 found 77 percent of people born between 1982 and 2000 wanted to live in an urban core.
Between 2010 and 2011, the number of people living in inner cities climbed 0.8 percent, twice as fast as the exurban growth rate.
Brookings reports 3 million more poor people in the suburbs than in cities, and suburban poverty up 64 percent between 2000 and 2011, and urban poverty up 29 percent.
Smart Growth America says roads, sewerage lines and other infrastructure cost 38 percent more for typical suburban neighborhoods than for high-density areas. The Washington-based neighborhood-advocacy coalition said high-density developments yield 10 times more revenue on a per-acre basis in tax revenue than suburbs produce.
John Logan at Brown University said suburbs remain attractive because of concerns about school quality and crime in cities, and the revival of suburban growth may be the smallest hint of recovery for the US economy.
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