Blogging NYT: City versus Suburbs?

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)
According to the 2000 census, and the
New York Times, the number of children under age 5 living in Manhattan mushroomed by more than 32 percent, and that growth surge is due to wealthy caucasian families having children.

1 in 20 Manhattanites is under the age of five, a number pretty comparable to (gasp!) many suburbs in America. Is Manhattan the new suburbs?

What is really stunning are the family income numbers being quoted in this article. According to the NYT, in 2005, Manhattan’s 35,000(ish) white, non-hispanic toddlers lived in families with a median income of $284,208. The numbers are vastly different for Asian families ($66,213), African-American families ($31,171) and Hispanic families($25,467).

Yes, we know that socio-economic disparity isn’t new, and neither is seeing it broken down so clearly along racial lines. What this article suggests though, is that the old pattern of couples living in a city while young and childless and then moving to the suburbs to raise a family may be breaking down, and that parents may be staying in cities even after the arrival of their children.

Is it quality of life? An ‘either/or’ choice? Is it better to raise children in the city (any city) or in the suburbs?

Photo credit: Fred R. Conrad, New York Times