31 July 2008

Has anybody else...

...heard about "demographic inversion"?

In the past three decades, Chicago has undergone changes that are routinely described as gentrification, but are in fact more complicated and more profound than the process that term suggests.

A better description would be "demographic inversion." Chicago is gradually coming to resemble a traditional European city--Vienna or Paris in the nineteenth century, or, for that matter, Paris today.

The poor and the newcomers are living on the outskirts. The people who live near the center--some of them black or Hispanic but most of them white--are those who can afford to do so.
And Canada gets a star turn here as well.
If you want to see this sort of thing writ large, you can venture just across the Canadian border to Vancouver, a city roughly the size of Washington, D.C.

What makes it unusual--indeed, at this point unique in all of North America--is that roughly 20 percent of its residents live within a couple of square miles of each other in the city's center.
This seems to be the opposite of what has been happening to large metropolitan cities in recent memory.

Anybody remember, for instance, Buffalo in the eighties?

An interesting development.

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RELATED: Of course, there's the obvious benefits
-- VANCOUVER -- When a guy dressed in a beaver suit can arrive on a Vancouver street corner and score some heroin within minutes, it highlights a serious problem in the city. So says the program director of a local radio station whose morning show performed the bit live on the air.
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FROM THE COMMENTS:
"It's not just a demographic shift, it's a family/non-family shift. Very dangerous for the future of liberal western democracies."
Curiouser and curiouser.

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7 comments:

Frank Hilliard said...

I've got a post up today that relates to this; the flight from the suburbs is also a flight from the nuclear family. Most of the new residents of the inner city are singles, non-child families and same sex couples. The suburbs they are leaving, beautifully illustrated by Brian Howell in his #5 portfolio on Surrey, were filled with families. So it's not just a demographic shift, it's a family/non-family shift. Very dangerous for the future of liberal western democracies.

Neo Conservative said...

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this so-called shift is the exact opposite tack of what mrs. neo and i have done... and i have to confess... i just don't get it.

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Doubtful said...

Neo you are confusing the issue by comparing some-one acting logically by fleeing crime and filth with those that think living in the city should be edgy. Edgy meaning - You need to watch where you step to avoid the human feces, employ others to maintain the landscaping to avoid the needles and condoms, have multiple vehicle break-ins in the "secure" car park, preferably live above the twentieth floor so that the constant sound of emergency vehicles throughout the night does not disturb your sleep too badly. Of course if you think this is fun you can always buy into the new Woodwards development downtown Vancouver or others.
The deranged lefties and brain washed greens who think that they are reducing their carbon footprint are lapping up this idiocy, abetted by a PC mayor, council and police force who believe provision of drug shooting galleries is a great idea.

Anonymous said...

What a bunch of baloney.

You move to the downtown of a city for the night life. You go because you are single and have a larger pool of potential partners. You find someone, get married, have a kid. Then you move to the burbs so the kid will have a yard to play in, and so you will live in an area where most people are raising kids.

Are you claiming there is something new going on?

Neo Conservative said...

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"nonny-mouse indignantly asks... Are you claiming there is something new going on?"

alan ehrenhalt is.

fess up, nonny... you didn't actually read this piece, did you?

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Anonymous said...

I read it, but I was most amused at how you tried to twist it to serve your far right views. You tried to apply it to Canadian cities. When did Toronto have this huge inner city where people were frightened to go? The demographic of younger people in the cities and people raising families in the suburbs has not changed.

Neo Conservative said...

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"anon says... I read it... You tried to apply it to Canadian cities."

oh, nonny... maybe you need to read slower...

"If you want to see this sort of thing writ large, you can venture just across the Canadian border to Vancouver, a city roughly the size of Washington, D.C."

see... that would be the author, alan ehrenhalt, not me.

but, hey... thanks for playing.

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