I had other friends who'd moved to one of the coasts but didn't find happiness until returning to the Rust Belt. Many ditched paper-pushing jobs for something more fulfilling, or found work in Pittsburgh or Cincinnati that let them have lives outside the office. But the lifestyle isn't the Rust Belt's only appeal: These cities' architecture and infrastructure are genuinely beautiful and a constant reminder that for generations people from around the world have been flocking to the region to make things. Forget the cliches about depression and decay. The spirit that survives in the Rust Belt is marked by the freedom to do whatever you want in the shadow of the industrial past.
James Griffioen is describing a migration archetype that defines the latest globalization epoch in the United States. Talent is returning and others are following, turning the urban hierarchy upside down. The world used to be spiky.
As usual, the press is late to the party. In cities such as Cleveland, the transformation is largely unnoticed. I'll have more to say about that later this week. The trend Griffioen is describing is in full bloom. It is years in the making and finally obvious enough to spillover into a magazine such as Details. The people most surprised by this news are Rust Belt residents who never left. That's because people develop, not places.