New York City, "Luxury Product" Or "Net Loser"?
February 13th, 2007
Writing in the Wall Street Journal, Joel Kotkin (author of “The City: A Global History”) begins an essay by quoting Mayor Michael Bloomberg calling New York City “a high-end product, maybe even a luxury product” — and then spends the rest of his article arguing why he thinks that New York cannot remain a “superstar” city without a shift in attention away from the affluent and towards the needs of the middle class.
“Economic and demographic trends suggest that the future of American urbanism lies not in the elite cities but in younger, more affordable and less self-regarding places,” Kotkin writes. He cites Gotham Gazette demographics columnist Andrew Beveridge as expressing skepticism over Bloomberg’s projection of a gain in New York City’s population of a million people over the next 25 years, and claims that the city might actually face a decline in population unless it pays attention to “basic issues that affect the middle class — high housing costs, taxes, regulation, schools and lack of support for diverse small businesses, particularly in the outer boroughs.”
Kotkin says that “true progressives like Harry Truman or Fiorella La Guardia …understood that great cities become so, in large part, due to the strivings of the upwardly mobile middle class and families, not the elites of any stripe.”By Jonathan Mandell on February 13, 2007, 9:16 am
In category: Community Development, Demographics, Gotham City, Public Finance | 3 Comments »