It is fundamental to understand that cities often prosper because of artists. Artists can also be more broadly defined as the creative class. Here’s how they thrive in the midst of city neighborhoods with million dollar homes:
1. Artists look for better-designed homes that are not so big, which means more light, an open floor plan/less compartmentalization and maybe higher ceilings.
2. Artists would trade off expensive front and back yards for great views and lots of nearby parks, both free.
3. As Jane Jacobs says, old buildings play an important role here. Most artists prefer older buildings with more character as well.
4. Housemates provide company and cut rent/mortgage payments in half or more.
5. Car? Don’t need one in a walkable community – which coincidentally, is what the most expensive city neighborhoods are.
If all else fails, perhaps Artspace is building an inexpensive artists’ loft near you, but you really have to be an artist!