Moving to cheaper, innovative cities

Big cities are well-suited for young professionals fresh out of college, but rising property prices in cities such as New York, Washington D.C., and San Francisco make it difficult to buy a home, let alone make monthly payments on an apartment. A two bedroom apartment in New York would cost nearly triple what it would cost in Denver. With a millennial population, which happens to be greater than the baby boomer population, that prefers renting over homeownership, living in smaller cities is becoming a more affordable and practical option. While “24-hour cities” have their appeals, “18-hour cities” seem to be luring in more millennials because of lower prices and other attractions.

Cities like Denver are starting to attract millennials not only with their more affordable prices, but with an urban feel that also features outdoor activities. Young professionals in Denver enjoy rock climbing and skiing, but they also enjoy combining their work life with their everyday life. Developers in the area are starting to gear their choices to millennial preferences, with open floor plans, flexible workspaces, and loft apartments. With a city that has everything in one area, it is hard for a millennial to refuse an “18-hour city” like Denver. Denver also features a growing bike culture, with Denver commuters biking to work at 11 times the national average rate. A healthy city culture is starting to lure millennials in, but Denver is not the only growing city to attract millennials.

Pittsburgh is another burgeoning city, and has shifted their focus from steel and manufacturing to healthcare, technology, and finance, making the city more appealing to the younger generation. Since Pittsburgh already contains a great work sector, developers in the area are working more on areas outside of work. Pittsburgh’s Strip District is a mixed-use complex that will contain 300 apartments, offices, retail, and restaurants. The main caveat is pleasing the current residents just as much as the people the city is trying to attract. After “18-hour cities” start attracting more millennials, the cities will want to cater to the next generation, so the city has the potential to become a “24-hour city”.

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Virginia MacKoul

Virginia is a graduate from the University of Florida's College of Design Construction and Planning with a degree in Sustainability and the Built Environment, and a minor in Urban Regional Planning. Virginia joined the Front Street team in 2011, as an intern. Upon graduation, Virginia joined the Front Street team full-time as the Director of Client Services. Ms. MacKoul’s addition furthers Front Street’s continued growth and expansion within Gainesville and other North Central Florida markets. She was promoted to Director of Marketing in 2014 and now manages the firm’s team of interns and oversees all marketing and branding activity. Virginia was born in Boston and moved to Lee County, Florida in 1997. Virginia graduated her high school's International Baccalaureate program and started at the University of Florida with a focus on Architecture. Virginia shares Front Street's passion of giving back to the community and those in need. Virginia's hobbies include photography, cooking, football, movies, music, and spending time with her dog, Brinkley.

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