25 May 2007

Why young families leave the city

Join host Carol Coletta for a look at the trends and ideas shaping our cities. Only on public radio.

Smart City, an NPR type radio show out of Memphis, had a show today on Kids in Cities. The guests first stated that their study was limited to parents who are middle class (those who had choices on where to live). Then, they divided this group into 4 types of parents:

1. Parents dedicated to the city who would never live in the suburbs.
2. Parents dedicated to the suburbs who would never live in the city.
3. Parents in the city who may move to suburbs as they grow a family.
4. Parents in the suburbs who are dissatisfied and may move to the city.

They continued to discuss how to attract those in the latter 2 groups, especially #3, (retaining those already here). They believe the key issues are:

1. Safety
2. Space
3. Schools

I might also list:

4. Herd mentality: Regularity, homogeneity, dependability of suburbs.
5. Cars: People cannot disconnect from the necessity for all activities to involve driving. Also: cars are still required in most cities and keeping a car here is more difficult.

I think the three main issues are extremely important for retaining families, and I plan on discussing each one in successive posts.

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