Friday, December 09, 2011

Proximity And Migration: Pittsburgh Over Portland

Most moves are over short distances. For Pittsburgh, one expects a lot of churn with nearby metros. Generally, the data back up that law of migration. I'm interested in relocation that defies expectation. More migration analysis from Pitt's University Center for Social & Urban Research:

Here are a few additional maps that did not make it into the report itself. Below is a comparison of the pattern of regions in the US that were generating net migration into the Pittsburgh Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) over the period 2009-2010 and a comparable period 5 years earlier.

Click on the above link if you want to see the maps. The proximity effect is evident in both maps, particularly the one detailing inmigration to Pittsburgh for 2004-2005 (a peak of net outmigration for the Pittsburgh MSA). For 2009-2010, the striking feature is the substantial long-distance migration to Pittsburgh.

As a result of the relatively low rate of unemployment, Pittsburgh is attracting migrants on a national scale. Portland doesn't seem cooler than Pittsburgh at 8.4% (not seasonally adjusted). Portland is more Rust Belt than Pittsburgh.


BrianTH said...

I see at least four dynamics in those maps--housing-bust job-seekers, auto-bust job-seekers, Marcellus/Utica, and maybe a little "The Rent Is Too Damn High!".

I would guess that along with the auto-bust job-seekers, that last possible dynamic would continue to follow your Law of Migration. The issue is whether TRITDH East Coasties are starting to look just a little ways into "flyover country" and spotting Pittsburgh.

Or as I think of it, Western PA/NY could easily become the Oregon to the East Coast's California, if TRITDH East Coasties start to Go West! just a bit.

Paul Wittibschlager said...

Its not all about jobs. Perception of a clean environment matters.

The rent has to pretty low for people to accept dirty water and dirty air. I don't think Portland needs to worry.