Boulder heads a list of 10 smaller cities making a name for themselves in 2020, says global media platform Worth.com.
The top 10 are attracting new businesses, investments, and residents by providing a high quality of life, even as they don’t have the advantage of dominating the national narrative as so called “supercities” do.
“Boulder seems to have it all – at 100,000 people more or less, it’s not too big, but neither is it tiny, and it’s just a half an hour from Denver if you need the amenities of a bigger city,” reports Worth.com.
Boulder is noted for great restaurants, vibrant arts and culture, plentiful free-spirited young people, and LGBTQ-friendliness. The area’s desirability is punctuated by close-by outdoor activities set in a beautiful mountain backdrop.
All this goodness has resulted in long-standing popularity. People want to live in this happy community, resulting in increasing traffic, rising housing prices, and relentless growth pressures – testaments to a strong economy and high quality of life. It’s these types of issues that make an area feel vibrant and relevant, but many say they need to be managed. “Boulder’s future will depend on how it responds,” Worth.com concludes.
Here are the Worth.com top 10 cities to watch in 2020:
- Boulder, CO
- Charlotte, NC
- Greenville, SC
- Little Rock, AK
- Milwaukee, WI
- Montgomery, AL
- Philadelphia, PA
- Providence, RI
- Richmond, VA
- Sacramento, CA
Denver ranks as a superstar city
On the other end of the spectrum, just up the road sits Denver, named one of America’s top 20 supercities.
In a ranking by Reuters of 378 metropolitan areas, the top 20 superstar metros got the biggest share of increase in national employment from 2010 to 2017. Forty percent of the new jobs and a similar share of additional wages generated during that time went to the top supercities, even though they represent only about a quarter of the country’s population, according to the Reuters analysis of federal data. The analysis shows the recovery from the 2007-2009 recession and the longest economic expansion on record have been felt positively by some cities far more than others.
“The superstar cities have pulled so far away,” said MIT economist Simon Johnson.
Common traits for the top 20 cities include:
- A higher concentration of well-educated knowledge workers
- A concentration of companies in a single industry, like Denver’s outdoor industry with companies such as North Face now headquartered in Denver
- Younger workers moving into the area, confirmed by a Bloomberg analysis of the top destinations for millennials, which shows each of these cities is also on the top 20 list from Reuters
Most of the top 20 including Seattle, Portland, Nashville and Atlanta are in fast-growing coastal and southern states. None were in the northeast, and only two were in the region known as the “rust belt” – Grand Rapids, Michigan, and a rebounding Detroit.
These superstar cities will thrive and show resilience compared with other metro markets through economic cycles.
See the full reports at: Worth.com: worth.com/10-cities-to-watch-in-2020. Colorado Biz Magazine: cobizmag.com/trends/denver-makes-top-20-list-of-us-superstar-cities. Reuters: reuters.com/article/us-usa-economy-nashville-insight/as-superstar-cities-thrive-poorer-ones-get-left-behind-idUSKCN1UE13B
By Tom Kalinski. Tom is the broker/owner of RE/MAX of Boulder, the local residential real estate company he established in 1977. He was inducted into Boulder County’s Business Hall of Fame in 2016 and has a 40-year background in commercial and residential real estate. For questions, e-mail Tom at [email protected], call 303.441.5620 or visit boulderco.com.