Ten Trends for Cities in 2006

Posted on Friday, December 8 2006 by Heather Brandon

The Brookings Institution‘s Metropolitan Policy Program has released its “ten noteworthy trends” of 2006. Do any of these apply to the Springfield region?

1. For the first time in 2005 there are more poor residents of suburbs than central cities.

2. Six percent of the population of large U.S. metropolitan areas lives in exurbs.

3. More than one-third of the nation’s loss of manufacturing jobs between 2000 and 2005 occurred in seven Great Lakes states: Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin.

4. America’s older, inner-ring first suburbs make up 20 percent of the nation’s population and are more diverse and older than the nation as a whole.

5. The average US household spends 19 percent of its budget on transportation, rendering household location a key component of housing affordability.

6. Nationwide, more than 4.2 million lower income homeowners pay a higher than average APR for their mortgage.

7. The leading refugee destination metro areas have shifted away from traditional immigrant gateways, like New York and Los Angeles, over the past two decades to newer gateways—such as Atlanta, Seattle, and Portland.

8. The fastest growing metropolitan areas for minority populations from 2000 to 2004 now closely parallel the fastest growing areas in the nation.

9. Middle-income neighborhoods as a proportion of all metropolitan neighborhoods declined from 58 percent in 1970 to 41 percent in 2000, disappearing faster than the share of middle class households in these metro areas.

10. Of the $109 billion in federal appropriations dedicated to Gulf Coast funding in the first year after Hurricane Katrina, only $35 billion, approximately, went toward the long-term recovery of the region.

Also of note from the Brookings Institution is a recent paper delivered by scholar Bruce Katz at an international Berlin conference, Urban Age, called “An Urban Agenda for an Urban Age” (PDF). It takes a look at Shanghai, Mexico City, London, Johannesburg, and New York much more effectively than that disappointing Massachusetts cities study (PDF) released last week, which took a shallow, cursory look at Springfield.

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