More new residential construction has shifted to "urban core communities" in the last 18 years, although a large share still takes place on previously undeveloped land on the urban fringe, finds a new U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
An analysis of residential building permits issues showed that:
In more than half of the largest metropolitan regions, urban core communities dramatically increased their share of permits
The central city has more than doubled its share in 15 regions
The increase has been particularly dramatic over the past five years
Data from 2007 show the trend continuing in the wake of the real estate market downturn.
The report confirms what other studies have indicated, that the shift of residential building to urban areas is fueled by a number of factors, which include:
Lower crime rates in central cities
Increased demand for homes in walkable communities close to high-paying jobs.