Central Austin is not growing fast at all

Very interesting Twitter thread from Jake Wegmann, a UT professor of urban planning:

The disparity in child population growth is even greater. In Central Austin the child population grew by 3%, compared to 55% everywhere else. Furthermore, almost all of that child population growth occurred in rapidly-gentrifying Montopolis: “If it weren’t for Montopolis, Central Austin would have barely held even in its child population.”

Both sides of the development debate will view these facts as supporting their narrative. Urbanists will say that this proves that affluent Central Austin neighborhoods have walled themselves off from growth. The anti-density crowd will see the stats as vindicating their concerns that new development in the urban core is disproportionately geared towards well-to-do singles.

What is clear is that the existing housing stock in Central Austin is not serving young families. The single-family homes in central neighborhoods have become off-limits to all but the wealthy and there isn’t enough of an apartment/condo market. As a result, Central Austin neighborhoods will increasingly be dominated by older residents. When they die or leave due to high property taxes, their homes will be purchased by rich people.

The same thing is happening in San Francisco.

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