Top 10 U.S. Cities for Young People

June 1, 2011 47 comments Open printer friendly version of this article Print Article

What do these cities have that Jacksonville doesn't and is Jacksonville willing to invest in substaining these urban characteristics in order to create long-term job and economic growth?

Where The Young Are Moving

10. Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington (MN-WI)

 9. Nashville-Davidson-Murfreesboro (TN)

 8. Denver-Aurora (CO-IL)

 7. New York-White Plains-Wayne (NY-NJ)

 6. Boston-Quincy (MA)

 5. Portland-Vancouver –Beaverton (OR-WA)

 4. Salt Lake City (UT)

 3. Seattle-Bellvue-Everett (WA)

 2. San Francisco-San Mateo-Redwood City (CA)

 1. Austin (TX)


Why Attracting The Young Is Economically Important to Jacksonville's Future

Cities have long competed over job growth, struggling to revive their downtowns and improve their image. But the latest population trends have forced them to fight for college-educated 25- to 34-year-olds, a demographic group increasingly viewed as the key to an economic future.

Mobile but not flighty, fresh but technologically savvy, “the young and restless,” as demographers call them, are at their most desirable age, particularly because their chances of relocating drop precipitously when they turn 35. Cities that do not attract them now will be hurting in a decade.

What Makes A City Attractive To Young People?

What makes a city attractive to young people?

Well, first and foremost, it’s that there will be other young people there.

“You need other young people around to bounce ideas off of -- to get excited with. That’s No. 1 most important,” said Bert Sperling of Sperling’s Best Places .

There has to be a strong indie culture – a lot of bands, artists and other creative types. To gauge that, Sperling checked in with Bandcamp , which helps artists sell their music and merchandise to fans, ReverbNation , a site that offers tools for musicians and shares their music, and Kickstarter , a grassroots-fundraising site for creative projects and inventions.

Plus, it has to be a fairly green, fairly diverse city. And, while young people don’t always make money a priority, there have to be jobs there and the city has to be somewhat affordable.

Sperling took all those criteria and came up with a list of the top 10 cities for young people.

Are we ready to take this step in Jacksonville?

Article by Ennis Davis