Leinberger at Atlantic.com:

The decline of places like Windy Ridge and Franklin Reserve is usually attributed to the subprime-mortgage crisis, with its wave of foreclosures. And the crisis has indeed catalyzed or intensified social problems in many communities. But the story of vacant suburban homes and declining suburban neighborhoods did not begin with the crisis, and will not end with it. A structural change is under way in the housing market—a major shift in the way many Americans want to live and work. It has shaped the current downturn, steering some of the worst problems away from the cities and toward the suburban fringes. And its effects will be felt more strongly, and more broadly, as the years pass. Its ultimate impact on the suburbs, and the cities, will be profound.

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  • You are very correct it has been happening for years well before the mortgage crisis.

    The Columbus area is a prime example. In the 80’s Hamilton Road, Brice Road, Sawmill Road, Morse Road and 161 where the happening places to live. Not just with single family homes but with the young professionals living in apartments.

    Today all those areas have declined. Most of the business have moved out, Northland Mall is gone, New Market Mall, and Scarborough Mall is empty and Eastland Mall has continuing gang issues. Empty store fronts are the norm rather then the exception.

    Where did everyone go? Further out. The young professionals are in Worthington, Dublin, and Pickerington. The retailers like Kohl’s, and Walmart and Target have followed them. The bustling areas for commercial development are Polairis, Powell and Pickerington.

    You can already see even further out communities getting prepared for their boom, like Pataskala, Canal Winchester and Delaware.

    What can be done about it? I sure don’t have an answer.

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