Maybe it's because of the age group I'm in that I notice this stuff the most. Almost everyone my age wants to get the hell out ASAP. I'm not sure up in KW, but certainly in Cambridge. Many of the university students find it boring as hell too. While civic leaders, etc., like to brag about KW's strong economy and blah blah blah, the difficult time KW has in retaining people in their early to late 20s is a problem. The biggest obstacle our tech sector is facing right now is the shortage of workers and the fact that KW can not compete with places like Boston and San Fransisco in terms of lifestyle. It's basically families and seniors that are attracted here.
We are making respectable moves to try and accomodate ALL age demographics, but it's difficult when there's little history to work with and it will take years to catch up with most cities of similar size. Even myself, I hate suburbia and want to live somewhere a little more exciting. There are areas like Downtown Kitchener and Uptown Waterloo, which are okay (beats where I live now), but they just don't quite cut it. I'm very excited about everything going on here, but I'd rather leave to somewhere like Toronto or Montreal and come back when the city has matured to some degree.
Yes, I admit it. I don't like KW as much as I let on. But I DO
want to see it mature into something worth coming back to. Am I crazy for having any faith in this sprawling conurbation?