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October 04, 2006

How cities grow

North Carolina is a growing state, and this is especially true of the state’s big cities like Charlotte, Raleigh and Greensboro. Dr. Mike Walden, an economist at North Carolina State University, addresses the question, "Do cities grow out or up?"

"Well, initially they grow out," he says. "People are attracted to the suburbs because land is cheaper. But then as the city expands, driving costs increase -- both in terms of time and congestion. This makes more central locations more valuable. And then you start to see a movement back into the center of the city, and you start to see development there.

"And we can clearly see this in cities like Charlotte and Raleigh," he adds. "They are enjoying right now a building boom inside, in those central city cores, and again I think it’s because the level of development they’ve reached -- they’ve reached that maturation point where being in the middle of things is very valuable."

Posted by deeshore at October 4, 2006 12:10 PM