With the hopes of luring young, college-educated employees, and the employers who hire them, away from big cities, suburbs are undergoing development projects meant to mimic the urban aesthetic and lifestyle many young professionals seek
While some urban revival stories of late have been overblown, many people are still moving to cities to live in a higher-density area with high walkability and plenty to do. Chief among them are young workers, the same young, educated workers that suburbs are now trying to steal way from cities by creating mini downtowns of their own. In fact, as The Wall Street Journal reports, anything that can be considered urban revival is almost entirely accounted for by the rising share of college-educated individuals, according to a working paper by a pair of University of California, Berkeley and University of Pennsylvania researchers.
Suburbs all across the country are building tall apartment buildings and adding stores and restaurants to downtown areas to try and mimic the lifestyle so many young Millennials appear to want, thus, retaining talent and possibly even drawing it from taking their skills to the big city just a short trip on the highway away.
Suburbs have also found it difficult to attract new employers, as they would all head to bigger cities as well to be nearer to the pool of young talent. If all goes according to plan, it will not just be the employees that want to stay, or even come to the suburbs, but more employers, too.
For just about every suburb currently undergoing an urban facelift, it is still far too early to tell if the gamble has paid off, but that hasn’t stopped more and more suburbs across the country from beginning their own suburban redevelopment plans. They are building it, but will they come?