The study also showcases the dramatic gain of millennials in Downtown Cleveland – a 76 percent increase in 25- to 34-year-old residents from 2000 to 2012. As of 2012, 63 percent of Downtown Cleveland residents were millennials – compared to 20 percent in the Greater Cleveland metro area and 23 percent of the overall U.S. population. Additionally, the study illustrates the density of millennials in the inner-ring suburb of Lakewood, whose millennial population makes up 31 percent of the city’s population, compared to 23 percent nationally.
“We are on the early edge of this fifth migration – and our explosive millennial population growth is changing the face and trajectory of Cleveland,” said Lillian Kuri, Program Director for Arts and Urban Design at the Cleveland Foundation. “We need to understand its impact on the city and the neighborhoods and rapidly harness the local and regional resources to sustain this momentum.”
“Cleveland is converging with national trends when it comes to gains in educated young adults,” said Richey Piiparinen, Director of The Center for Population Dynamics at Cleveland State University’s Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs. “It is important to understand why this is occurring, particularly from macroeconomic standpoints. This analysis attempts to paint a fuller picture of what is driving this ‘brain gain,’ as opposed to simply documenting it. One factor discussed is the opportunities in Cleveland regarding lower barrier of entry related to cost.”
To reinforce that point, in examining the net migration into Cleveland, the study reveals Cuyahoga County drew the most migrants from Kings County, New York (including Brooklyn). The average millennial income in Kings County was $40,440 in 2013, versus $34,597 in Cuyahoga County during the same time period, but when adjusted for cost of living, the New York salary is actually $5,590 less. And the median rent in Kings County is $2,583 versus $1,088 locally.
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