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  #41  
Old Posted Jun 12, 2019, 2:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Chef View Post
The Midwest has the same phenomenon as the south but the proportions are reversed so the media focus is on the rust belt. Minneapolis, Columbus, Indianapolis, Grand Rapids, Omaha, Des Moines, Madison, Fargo, Sioux Falls, Bismarck and Rapid City are all healthy urban areas with robust growth but most people outside of the region associate the Midwest with the post industrial cities of the Rust Belt. There is a new and old Midwest, just as there is with the south; and really what is going on in both regions is that the modern cities are still doing well while those that have economies that are rooted in the previous era have greater challenges. The difference is that the less dynamic parts of the south are just entering their decline while in the Midwest it has been an issue since 1980 or so.
That's actually a really astute observation, one that we all know intuitively, but kind of smacks you in the face when you read it in relation to what is now happening in the south and in the context of their "narratives."
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  #42  
Old Posted Jun 12, 2019, 3:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Crawford View Post
Rural Mass is mostly college towns and second-home/weekend country. There are no substantial deprived areas because there's nowhere too far from Boston or NYC, or lacking colleges.

Once you get more than 2-3 hours from Boston or NYC, there are deprived areas (Upstate NY and parts of Vermont and NH). There are areas of NY and NE that are basically colder, less religious West Virginia.
Rural northern New England and Upstate NY (and much of the rural upper midwest, for that matter) have many issues, such as a lack of non-tourist jobs, declining/aging population, heroin, high suicide rates, etc.

However, it's not fair to say it's just like the rural south in terms of social outcomes. There tends to be higher levels of education, lower levels of chronic health issues, and higher life expectancy. This is true even if you only compare the rural northern population to the rural southern white population.

Basically, rural areas everywhere in the country are doing poorly, but they tend to be doing worse the further south you go.
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  #43  
Old Posted Jun 12, 2019, 4:39 PM
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I lived in New Hampshire and spent a lot of time in Vermont and I am from Upstate NY...these areas are absolute ground zero for opiate and heroin and entire towns being are decimated. Along with W. VA. Read about Barre, VT....
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  #44  
Old Posted Jun 12, 2019, 8:26 PM
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A good illustration why Western Mass isn't a typical rural backwater. It's now getting train service from NYC:

https://boston.curbed.com/2019/6/12/...rak-pittsfield

Rural areas connected to nearby metropolitan centers are kind of a different typology. They may be green and sparse, but they have remote workers living part-time, sustainable restaurants, high culture and the like. The Berkshires have Tanglewood, MassMoca, Williams and other heavyweights.
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  #45  
Old Posted Jun 12, 2019, 8:42 PM
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And the Berkshires have been a desirable area for over 100 years. It was an area that the stupendously rich would go to, especially after Newport but before returning to the city. They poured money not only into their county houses but also into the institutions around them.
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  #46  
Old Posted Jun 12, 2019, 9:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Crawford View Post
Rural areas connected to nearby metropolitan centers are kind of a different typology. They may be green and sparse, but they have remote workers living part-time, sustainable restaurants, high culture and the like.
Not that I disagree with you, but I swear to God two months ago you were challenging me on a comment I made in a discussion on secondary markets about a close friend working remotely in the tech industry in Traverse City as being an odd decision.
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  #47  
Old Posted Jun 12, 2019, 9:50 PM
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^ but traverse city isn't really connected to a nearby major metropolitan center.

it's a 4 hour drive to detroit and a 5 hour drive to chicago, and has no rail links to anywhere.

it's a lovely place in a lovely region; if you're gonna live in a small and remote US city, you can certainly do FAR worse than traverse city.

but it's definitely "out there", at least in the context of the eastern half of the nation.
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  #48  
Old Posted Jun 12, 2019, 11:36 PM
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I’m not dying on any crosses for TC or the Berkshires, but the reality is that there isn’t much difference between 3 and 5 hours. TC may get it’s own rail line to Ann Arbor/Detroit and GR has rail to Chicago. People aren’t commuting to NYC from the Berkshires any more than people from TC or Grand Rapids are commuting to Chicago. Chicago money is all up and down the Western Michigan coast, though, just like NYC money is in Western Mass.
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  #49  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2019, 12:56 AM
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Originally Posted by subterranean View Post
I’m not dying on any crosses for TC or the Berkshires, but the reality is that there isn’t much difference between 3 and 5 hours.
TC is twice the distance from Detroit as the Berkshires are from NYC and Boston. To me, that's a pretty sizable difference. The NYC CSA already extends to the Litchfields, in CT, on the Mass line. They're also basically next door to Hartford and Albany. There are about 40 million people in the NE corridor within a few hours of the Berkshires. In contrast, there are very few people living within the equivalent distance from TC. And the Berkshires have the Boston Symphony in the summer, one of the best art museums in America, one of the best colleges in America, etc.

But the previous conversation was a bit different. I recall you were saying TC was a great deal, and a good option for folks who like to travel. I disagreed (and would say the same about the Berkshires; too isolated, horrible for flights, and could never live there full-time).

The Berkshires are functionally different because they're filled with weekenders, and people who part-time telecommute. Lots of folks will work in NYC or Stamford a few days a week, then work the other half in their country house, whether on the East End of LI, the Hudson Valley, the Berkshires, etc. I seriously doubt that large numbers of Detroiters or Chicagoans are splitting their summer work weeks between TC and primary home. Now somewhere like St. Joseph (for Chicagoans) or Port Sanillac (for Detroiters), that I could see.

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Originally Posted by subterranean View Post
TC may get it’s own rail line to Ann Arbor/Detroit and GR has rail to Chicago. People aren’t commuting to NYC from the Berkshires any more than people from TC or Grand Rapids are commuting to Chicago. Chicago money is all up and down the Western Michigan coast, though, just like NYC money is in Western Mass.
There is no weekender rail line planned for TC. GR has nothing to do with TC. And no, the Berkshires line is strictly planned for weekenders. TC is at least as much Detroit as Chicago money; Chicago dominates everything south of Ludington, but NW Lower Peninsula is very Detroit-heavy.

And, yeah, if you're saying TC isn't like WV like the Berkshires aren't like WV, I agree, obviously. TC isn't poor, neglected and dying.
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  #50  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2019, 2:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Pedestrian View Post
Indeed, long term I'd put my money here rather than on Charlotte. I think Charlotte got a transient boost from the success of one company--Bank of America--and time is now moving on.
I get what you're saying about the Triangle, but what you're saying about Charlotte simply doesn't jibe with reality. You say "time is now moving on" as if Charlotte is getting left behind or something which is the exact opposite of what's happening.

Bank of America certainly played a big role in Charlotte's ascendancy but you're grossly oversimplifying the issue. Much of the Southern banking industry overall has consolidated in Charlotte. First Union was the other big Charlotte bank that grew rapidly after interstate banking was permitted and it acquired another big regional NC-based bank, Wachovia. It fell victim to the recession and was acquired by Wells Fargo but now WF has its largest workforce in Charlotte. And of course more recently, NC-based BB&T merged with GA-based SunTrust and is moving the new bank headquarters to Charlotte. Ally Bank is growing its presence in the city and is currently constructing a new office tower in the city and there are rumors that its headquarters could relocate there as well. Aside from banking, you have other companies that have moved their headquarters to the region or established major operations there. It's quite obvious that the rise of BOA wasn't some isolated event but rather a catalyst for rapid economic growth that continues until this day with very little signs of slowing down. If the boost that Charlotte got from BOA's ascendancy was truly transient, the recession should have ended it, and indeed many wrote Charlotte off around the time. Instead it recovered much more quickly than folks thought it would and the city is undergoing its biggest building boom right now. So yeah, this talk about a "transient boost" and "time is now moving on" is beyond perplexing.
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  #51  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2019, 4:15 AM
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Ally is not building a tower in Charlotte they're leasing space to consolidate operations.
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  #52  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2019, 6:39 AM
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Ally is not building a tower in Charlotte they're leasing space to consolidate operations.
They will be taking up over half of the office space (400K sq ft) in a 26-story office tower currently under construction named Ally Charlotte Center which will have their logo at the top. Same difference.
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  #53  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2019, 1:20 PM
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Originally Posted by JManc View Post
I lived in New Hampshire and spent a lot of time in Vermont and I am from Upstate NY...these areas are absolute ground zero for opiate and heroin and entire towns being are decimated. Along with W. VA. Read about Barre, VT....
This discussion can be summed up with this map:


The South and the West are the growth winners. The midwest and Northeast regions are stagnant, low growth. Are there some winners in those regions? Yes, of course, as there should be. I don't think anybody expects to see an across the board decline.
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  #54  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2019, 2:01 PM
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Population growth has basically nothing to do with wealth, health or mobility.
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  #55  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2019, 4:22 PM
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Population growth has basically nothing to do with wealth, health or mobility.
Nah man, Oman = The World's Sun Belt.
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  #56  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2019, 4:39 PM
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Originally Posted by eschaton View Post
Rural northern New England and Upstate NY (and much of the rural upper midwest, for that matter) have many issues, such as a lack of non-tourist jobs, declining/aging population, heroin, high suicide rates, etc.

However, it's not fair to say it's just like the rural south in terms of social outcomes. There tends to be higher levels of education, lower levels of chronic health issues, and higher life expectancy. This is true even if you only compare the rural northern population to the rural southern white population.

Basically, rural areas everywhere in the country are doing poorly, but they tend to be doing worse the further south you go.
I think that's a really good synopsis. While there's never a "perfect" measure, I think the Distressed Community Index (DCI) is at least the most scientific/comprehensive in trying to amalgamate all of those kinds of variables at the local level. Here's the DCI by zip code: https://eig.org/dci/2018-dci-map-national-zip-code-map

I think it's clear that the rural South unfortunately bears the brunt of the starkest distress. But the rural West, rural Midwest and rural Northeast/New England (even with its precious Northeast Corridor-weekender money and college town anchors) have definitely not been unscathed by economic decline and other critical demographic/social challenges.

Last edited by UrbanRevival; Jun 13, 2019 at 4:55 PM.
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  #57  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2019, 7:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Sun Belt View Post
This discussion can be summed up with this map:


The South and the West are the growth winners. The midwest and Northeast regions are stagnant, low growth. Are there some winners in those regions? Yes, of course, as there should be. I don't think anybody expects to see an across the board decline.
This reminds me of those electoral maps that conservatives like to share. So much of the west is barely populated, so it takes a small amount of people to represent a large percentage gain. A lot of those counties in Idaho probably went from 5 people to 10 people lol (I am exaggerating).
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  #58  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2019, 7:46 PM
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Related to the OP:

That map shows "conservative" areas have the biggest gains and the biggest loses in population. There's very little in the middle.
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  #59  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2019, 8:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Sun Belt View Post
The South and the West are the growth winners. The midwest and Northeast regions are stagnant, low growth. Are there some winners in those regions? Yes, of course, as there should be. I don't think anybody expects to see an across the board decline.
Percent change in income per capita or gdp per capita will show us which places are winning. Iraq runs circles around the United States in population growth but in no way is Iraq winning anything. Population is not an indicator of success.

And as a reminder, those slow growth parts of the country were #1 in population growth at one point in their history. Things change, who knows what population patterns will be a few decades from now. We had our lowest rate of population growth on record in California last year, and it might very well be heading negative soon looking at the tends. A complete turnaround from just a few decades ago.

Last edited by YSL; Jun 13, 2019 at 8:56 PM.
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  #60  
Old Posted Jun 13, 2019, 10:36 PM
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Looking at the Texas map, it's clear that Texas is moving towards the center (politically) as the deep red counties are losing population and influence and the urban centers (shown prominently as a triangular blotchy area) are growing. Texas will be a huge swing state soon and will be bombarded with annoying political ads whoring for our vote soon.

New York State might look sad but 10 years ago, that map would have been a deeper red all over. The one "red" county (Hamilton) is in the ADK's and only had like 8 people in the woods anyway.
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