The exurbs are currently home to sixty million Americans, and may be home to more people than urban, suburban, or rural areas are by early in the next century. Planners may be unprepared to address the special needs and challenges presented by the exurbs, because the tools that planners use to manage cities, suburbs, and rural areas may be inappropriate. Before planners can respond adequately to the challenge of exurban development, they must first understand who lives there and why. Using a case study of the Portland, Oregon area, we find that although ex-urbanites have many socio-economic characteristics in common with suburbanites, they prefer a different lifestyle. This lifestyle includes rural amenities, large house lots, and longer drives to work. We also find substantial differences between exurbanites living in small towns and those living in rural areas.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Geography, Planning and Development
- Urban Studies