…and the flipside to Richard Florida…

The last two days focused on Richard Florida, so let’s look at seemingly contrasting research. People like Joel Kotkin, author of the The New Geography, and Jack Schultz, author of BoomTown USA, say more people are migrating to small towns that aren’t nearly as ‘creative’ as the cities on Florida’s list. In fact, Schutz just commented on this yesterday.

Well, they’re kind of all right. Young people are still moving to creative centers (if you’re young and single, you know why), but they’re looking for alternatives because the Manhattans and Seattles are simply too expensive. Sure, job choice is vaster and it’s much easier to find or be asked out on a date in these cities, but there’s a point where you’d like to live in a home larger than 600 s.f.

So, thanks to ‘home shoring’ and because many are attached to where they grew up, they are indeed staying in/moving to/returning to small towns in droves where office space and homes are truly affordable and city leaders are at least trying to make the place ‘cooler’. I can’t emphasize that last point enough, and that’s where our associates invest. Choice matters. No one wants to settle when it comes to their significant other. Timing matters. The excitement about starting a risky new business drastically wanes once they start a family. Why is this important? How old were Steve Jobs and Bill Gates were when they started their companies? No older than 21.

Painting by Irving Norman

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