‘Smart Growth’ Taking Hold in U.S. Cities, Study Says

By GABRIEL NELSON of Greenwire

Redevelopment of urban centers has continued to outpace construction in the outskirts of suburbia, according to a recent U.S. EPA study, suggesting a “fundamental shift” has begun in the real estate market as the Obama administration pushes denser development through its “livability” initiative.

Though the nation’s urban centers emptied for decades as suburbs sprawled outward, developers in many large cities are increasingly looking inward for building opportunities, according to the study (pdf), titled “Residential Construction Trends in America’s Metropolitan Regions.” In 26 of the nation’s 50 largest metropolitan areas, the share of residential construction taking place in central cities more than doubled since 2000.

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