In the decades ahead more people will be living in urban areas than anywhere else. This is a global phenomena. There has been a shift to city life for multiple reasons besides the obvious which is access to medical, food, arts, education and work but also the amplified desire for real human connections. Even if you live alone in a city and spend all the time on your phone you still have interactions with people everyday.
Major cities such as NYC and SF have become so incredibly expensive that we have begun to see urban migration to other urban cities such as Austin, Charleston, Nashville, Atlanta and Denver to name a few. These secondary cities are seeing major growth in developments, businesses and housing.
What happens when secondary cities become too expensive to live in? Will developers or city Government learn anything from the primary cities who have found themselves short of affordable housing? Where do the police, teachers, retail workers, Government employees live when it becomes too expensive to live where they work?
The urban shifts are happening but what we are truly missing to create larger urban areas where affordable housing is available is mass transportation changes. Each car purchased should have a transportation tax. That capital would be put directly into the rebuilding of above ground rail, high speed trains and cleaning up the subways for every city. Each developer should have to pay the same tax on every apartment sold or even a small amount of each months rent. Each bank that loans the developers money should have to pay into that tax too. Added up that could be a huge number. We need to start thinking differently about how to rebuild our cities both primary and secondary and how to fund it
The biggest problem is mismanaged funds. Maybe fixed costs contracts with a thorough bidding process to build transportation? How does the graft, overages and incompetence cease in the building of our Government infrastructures? That’s a whole problem.
I went to Detroit awhile ago and was fascinated with the redevelopment of that city. They appear to be thinking about how to keep a balance of housing and multiple neighborhoods inside the cities where everyone can live. I plan on returning to Detroit this fall and am so curious to see if they were able to keep that promise.
You should be able to afford to live in an urban area, step in clean efficient public transportation that is 30 minutes from your home or even an hour with ease.