Census Tract Level Net Migration Patterns of Young Adults in the Largest 20 Urbanized Areas in the United States, 1980–2010

Authors: Yongsung Lee*, Georgia Institute of Technology - Atlanta, GA, Bumsoo Lee, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Md. Tanvir Hossain Shubho, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Topics: Migration, Urban and Regional Planning
Keywords: Net Migration Patterns, Millennial Generation, Sustainable Urbanism, Consumption Amenities
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/10/2018
Start / End Time: 4:40 PM / 6:20 PM
Room: Grand Chenier, Sheraton, 5th Floor
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


This research estimates and investigates neighborhood scale net migration of young (and old) adults in the twenty largest urbanized areas (UAs) in the U.S. between 1980 and 2010. By conducting census tract level analysis beyond the urban/suburban dichotomy, this project will identify the relative roles of specific location factors including sustainable urbanism, consumption amenities, and an affordable rental housing market that attract young adults, including Millennials. An analysis of the net migration of the same birth cohorts, rather than a gross population change in the same age cohorts, will better capture the location preferences of young adults by distinguishing movers from stayers. Further, analysis of the thirty-year period will reveal the differences between Millennial’s location choice and that of previous generations, including Generation X and younger Baby Boomers. It will also disclose how the influences of the location factors has shifted over time. Finally, the research will also find the spatial heterogeneity in location decisions of young adult populations.

The research will be conducted in three steps: 1) estimating census tract level net migration patterns of three age groups—25-34, 35-44, and 45-64—for the three decades, using a cohort-component model; 2) measuring neighborhood urbanism including urban form indices and consumption amenities; and 3) estimating the influences of various location factors on the net migration of different generations at different ages by a regression analysis.

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