Tags: Census | population | suburbs | Sun Belt | The Villages

Census: US Population Flocking to Suburbs, Sun Belt, Florida

Image: Census: US Population Flocking to Suburbs, Sun Belt, Florida
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By    |   Monday, 20 Apr 2015 09:56 AM

After years of remaining static, new data from the U.S. Census Bureau provides evidence that America's suburbs are experiencing a resurgence as their growth rate has increased as a result of domestic migration, according to a Brookings Institution analysis.

"The new statistics through July 2014 suggest a renewed growth in outer suburban 'exurban' counties, propelled by domestic migration. The growth is perhaps a sign that the housing market is luring young adults out of the urban core, and it raises the possibility that the attraction of cities — registered for the last three years — may not be as permanent as some assumed," asserts William Frey, a demographer at the Brookings Institution, who analyzed the new data.

Frey also found that the population growth rate in exurbs (0.87 percent) was at a higher rate than the growth rate for inner cities. Exurbs are defined as areas outside of the inner city, especially a prosperous area beyond the suburbs.

"The recession's influence on migration is diminishing. Migration patterns may be reverting to those common before the recession," Ken Johnson, a University of New Hampshire demographer, told The Wall Street Journal.

Another area of the country that is witnessing continued growth is the Sun Belt, which contains 11 of the largest migration-gaining large metropolitan areas.

According to Frey's analysis, four Texas metropolitan areas Houston, Dallas, Austin, and San Antonio – are seeing a migration revival, but all lag behind The Villages, an area located just outside of Orlando, Florida.

The Villages was the nation's fastest growing metro area from 2013 to 2014 with a 5.4 percent rate of population increase, according to the Census Bureau.

Florida is now the nation's third most populous state behind Texas and California, according to the Census Bureau.

Before the recession, the suburbs saw rapid growth due to low housing prices, but suffered the most as a consequence of the housing crash and likely will not return to those glory days, asserts Frey.

"It's not going to be reverting back to the early part of 2000s when we had this maniac exurban and suburban growth," he predicts.

The increasing pace of growth in the "exurbs" does not mean more Americans are moving to rural counties or small towns. In fact, the nation's smallest rural counties saw a decline in their population for the fourth straight year, according to data from the Department of Agriculture's Economic Research Service.

According to the University of New Hampshire's Johnson, the decline is more attributable to aging than to fewer people moving to rural areas, noting that nearly 41 percent of rural counties saw more people die than be born with the exception of areas which have amenities that appeal to retirees.

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After years of remaining static, new data from the U.S. Census Bureau provides evidence that America's suburbs are experiencing a resurgence.
Census, population, suburbs, Sun Belt, The Villages
452
2015-56-20
Monday, 20 Apr 2015 09:56 AM
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