Suburbs Have Gotten A Bad Rap, But Is It Time For A Second Opinion?

Perhaps there's something to be said for these somewhat boring communities. Suburbs Have Gotten A Bad Rap, But Is It Time For A Second Opinion? Giphy

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When automobiles started becoming more readily available, suburbs began sprouting up far and wide. And it made sense at the time, with families having an opportunity to enjoy life outside of the densely packed cities while relying on cars to get them to and from their daily errands.

But these days, it’s hard to tell one suburb from the next … and that has resulted in a revolt of sorts. Many people are rediscovering their appreciation for eclectic urban neighborhoods or opting to move even further out for a more rustic life. And even though plenty of people still live a suburban life, they often do so grudgingly.

Maybe it’s not that bad

Sure, suburbs have become relatively homogenized, but if you take an objective look at the concept, you might find that there’s a lot to love about these places.

Strip malls, chain restaurants, cookie-cutter homes, and busy streets are all par for the course. Nevertheless, millions of American families make the suburbs their home.

Part of it is convenience, but The Atlantic’s Julie Beck drew from her own experiences to determine that there’s also a dose of nostalgia associated with these familiar locales.

One recent survey found that more than half of all respondents said they lived in a suburban neighborhood. And think what you will of these places, but demographics show that they’re more diverse than ever before.

Turning “nowhere” in to somewhere

Writer James Howard Kunstler broadly described these suburban areas as “nowhere,” since they’re often nondescript. However, if you ask those who live there, they’ll often be able to tell you many things that make their hometowns unique.

And there’s something to be said for the ability to travel to another suburb and feel strangely at home … even if you’ve never been there before.

Chris Agee
Chris Agee April 4th, 2024
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