One of the things that happened during the COVID 19 lockdown was that some people in urban areas fled to other parts of the country.
Heck the Illinois governor’s family went to Florida and now are in Wisconsin. He’s got Illinois workers crossing the border to work on his farm but I digress.
You know, it’s “dangerous” to cross the border according to the governor.
A lot of people left places like New York and Illinois and crossed borders to South and North Carolina, Arizona, Florida, Texas and other states for a few months.
For the past five years, I have always left Illinois in the winter since my job is sort of virtual anyway.
I was in Nevada when the whole quarantine hit. I just stayed as long as I could and even decamped to Arizona for a couple of weeks.
For years, snowbirds have left the North for the warmer climate of the South during winter but they always go back.
I met other Chicago transplants in both places.
I also met transplants from places like California and Oregon. They are finding that there is life outside of their former home.
For people that grew up in places like New York or Chicago, it can be really hard to leave.
Cities seem to be timeless and never go away unless you are Detroit.
New Yorkers and Chicagoans will say they aren’t Detroit. True to a point.
I think this is the sentiment of a lot of the folks in the city and the people running the cities now.
It takes upheaval to get someone to really alter their life.
The Great Depression upended a lot of families and they moved for opportunity.
World War Two happened on the heels of the Depression, and it stirred the pot even more.
9/11 happened, and people left NYC but not in masses since it was a one-time freak event.
What’s happening now is people are rethinking their life.
They are looking at the costs of living in a place like Chicago, along with the expected future costs, and getting three months to try on a new lifestyle in another place.
Of course, it’s not normal in the new place either.
A lot of the small businesses and restaurants that created the character we loved about the place we were from are not going to survive the quarantine.
Conversely, if you owned a small business, especially a restaurant, why wouldn’t you rethink and open up somewhere else that had forward momentum?
Austin, Nashville, Dallas, Houston, Charlotte, Jacksonville, Atlanta, Phoenix, Denver vs SF, LA, Chicago or NYC?
It will be interesting to see the data five years from now on migration patterns. It will show up in tax collections sooner, but I suspect there will be a big shift.
*Featured post photo by Free To Use Sounds on Unsplash