Big new report out now by the Center for an Urban Future titled "Reviving the City of Aspiration: A Study of the Challenges Facing New York City's Middle Class."
“The perception of New York among young people is so phenomenal,” says Alan Bell, a partner with the Hudson Companies, a real estate development company that has built housing from the East Village to the Rockaways. “It used to be that automatically you’d get married and had kids and you were out to Montclair, New Jersey or Westchester. Now they want to stay. The question is how they stay since it’s so expensive.”
Set against this picture of progress, however, are some alarming trends. Most of the people interviewed for this report told us of middle class friends, relatives or colleagues who had recently given up on the city. “I work with a lot of people who moved to Philadelphia and commute each day,” says Chris Daly, a media director at Macy’s who now lives with his wife and three kids in Tottenville, Staten Island but plans to move to New Jersey. “It’s the cost of living. You’re going to see more people moving to Philadelphia, the Poconos and commuting.”
Unless we find ways to reverse some of the trends detailed in this report, the New York of the 21st century will continue to develop into a city that is made up increasingly of the rich, the poor, immigrant newcomers and a largely nomadic population of younger people who exit once they enter their 30s and begin establishing families.