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Will Your City Be One of the Ones That Bounces Back?

Fantastic article in the new Atlantic, by urban theorist Richard Florida. We mentioned it the other day, but it's worth looking at again. It's...


Fantastic article in the new Atlantic, by urban theorist Richard Florida. We mentioned it the other day, but it's worth looking at again. It's about how cities will or won't bounce back from the economic crash, and should be required reading for all. Also worth looking at: The really great interactive maps that go along with it, measuring the robustness of different areas based on population, innovation, and income. (The northeast looks great; the midwest and parts of the south? Not so much.) He writes:"No place in the United States is likely to escape a long and deep recession. Nonetheless, as the crisis continues to spread outward from New York, through industrial centers like Detroit, and into the Sun Belt, it will undoubtedly settle much more heavily on some places than on others. Some cities and regions will eventually spring back stronger than before. Others may never come back at all. As the crisis deepens, it will permanently and profoundly alter the country's economic landscape. I believe it marks the end of a chapter in American economic history, and indeed, the end of a whole way of life."The accompanying interview with Florida is a great read, too. Another highlight, this one about the foreclosure crisis:If anything, our government policies should encourage renting, not buying. Homeownership occupies a central place in the American Dream primarily because decades of policy have put it there. A recent study by Grace Wong, an economist at the Wharton School of Business, shows that, controlling for income and demographics, homeowners are no happier than renters, nor do they report lower levels of stress or higher levels of self-esteem. Interesting point.
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