Miami Is in the Midst of a Major Millennial Population Drain Problem

Categories: Recessionomics

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Miami is an area that caters openly to youthful urges. Clubs are open till the wee hours. The cultural scene continues to grow. We've got beaches and bike gatherings and bacchanals galore, but perhaps the metro area isn't so great at catering to youthful needs.

The Miami/Fort Lauderdale/Pompano Beach metro area continues to shed its millennial population at an alarming rate. Between 2007 and 2009, there was a net population loss of 6,530 residents between 25 and 34 years old, the fourth-greatest loss of any major metro area in America (topped only by the considerably larger NYC, L.A., and Chicago areas). Between 2010 and 2012, the area lost another 2,639 millennials according to the Wall Street Journal, the eighth-biggest net loss.

This occurred even as the area's total population continued to grow.

And the millennial population we do have isn't particularly engaged. A 2012 National Conference of Citizenship and University of Florida study shows millennials in the Miami area are some of the least civically engaged in the nation.

The area's median age as of 2010 was a relatively gray 39.4 years old.

Hmm, but why could this all be?

Could it be that Miami's economy still hasn't fully recovered from the recession and unemployment remains relatively high?

Could it be that efforts to diversify that economy and attract high-paying tech industry jobs are still nascent?

Could it be that post-real-estate-bust development has tended toward the high-end luxury condos and is openly marketed to people who don't even plan to live here full-time and treat it like some sort of exclusive currency?

Could it be that type of development is creeping into areas that were once attractive to and affordable for millennials?

Could it be that Miami's income disparity remains out of control and higher than many parts of the Third World?

Could it be that millennials figure there's no use in moving here because Miami might be half underwater in their lifetime anyway?

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33 comments
frankd4
frankd4 topcommenter

.............................it seems to me in that age group someone who is good at what they do at their J O B is best to go where the game is played on a big league stage - if you are young and educated and talented to be truly recognized you must compete with the best of the best to test yourself and that means head for the major cities elsewhere = period

frankd4
frankd4 topcommenter

......................quite simply this is NOT the place to raise a family = period

JuanCarlos
JuanCarlos

Maybe if we had a decent public transit system with Metro lines that went more places (Wynwood, South Beach, Little Havana, FIU, etc.) then we'd get somewhere. We need Metrorail extensions! Why is nothing being done about this? This is huge.

More importantly though, the quality of our public schools and lack of quality jobs keeps many of us from coming back. It's sad. I love Miami, I have so much passion for it, but it's a frustrating place to live for those of us who grow up there. Shame.

Matt Gómez
Matt Gómez

I would say that 9/10 young professionals who are from Miami, and at some point leave, won't come back.

Matt Gómez
Matt Gómez

Yea, Erika really hit the nail on the head here. I left for Miami to attend college in Virginia at 17, graduated, and am now in law school in Philadelphia. And while I love coming back to Miami to VISIT (ie, beach and party), I do not see myself ever returning full-time because there are so many better opportunities elsewhere. Anywhere. Why pigeonhole myself to one place just because it happens to be where I'm from?

oyedude
oyedude

its because everybody in this city is a big idiot and its frustrating

tklo
tklo

I would say it is several things, but the economics are the biggest deals.  First, there are few good jobs for young people, there is no quality affordable housing and there is no great reliable public transportation...  Also, the city and the nightlife and everything start to get old after a while.  And many of the young people start to get old to hang around as they are focused on drugs and partying and are really flakey.  Miami after a while starts to feel small and also feels lonely.

Keith Christopher
Keith Christopher

Erika Ann Grohoski Peralta - awesome points!! I am up in DC this month road-tripping and exploring opportunities outside MIA as well!!

Mike Rivero
Mike Rivero

Im dying to get out of here also. lol

vicgr54
vicgr54

Well, if your not a millionare...MIAMI SUX! Young'ens be broke these days

Seán J. McMahon
Seán J. McMahon

Devona, Miami is wonderful and there's no shortage of hospitals. I wouldn't recommend it for some other fields, but for medicine, you're fine. I thoroughly enjoyed living there for several years before I left for graduate school.

GoalDigger Foxx
GoalDigger Foxx

im curious to know is it really that bad in S. Fla? reason i ask is bc im moving to Orlando in 3 wks and once im done at UCF i would like to practice medicine in the Miami metro area. it was a toss up b/t Miami and Houston but i love the culture and weather in S. Fl. Am i wrong? should i look elsewhere?

Victoria Marie
Victoria Marie

I moved to Chicago and (unfortunately) had to come back.... Sad to say but NOTHING HAS CHANGED in the (almost) 2 years that was I gone. There is no room to grow here. While it might be fun and exciting, that life gets old.... Fast

Sergio F. Maldonado
Sergio F. Maldonado

^Totally agree with you. I would totally love to move out of here also. Check this out Vanessa.

Erika Ann Grohoski Peralta
Erika Ann Grohoski Peralta

I'm 22 years old... I moved to Washington, DC for college and I've been seriously thinking about moving back to Miami after I graduate. And as much as I want to, I think it's a bad idea. I study urban sustainability, and Miami, while an exciting challenge to this field, kinda feels pointless. The citizens are either not interested in becoming a 21st century city or are so disenfranchised/powerless because of yes, the income disparity, that it feels like nothing could ever change. AND the fact that it probably will be underwater in the next 20-50 years makes it seem like a really silly place to raise a family and start a life. Our industries are in construction and tourism and we cater to the transient wealthy. Where are the opportunities for the locals to improve their lot? How will we ever gain enough capital to prepare ourselves for the inevitable climate disasters if all the money is in the people who don't even live here full time? In short, WHAT IS THE POINT? I'm in the beginnings of my life, I'm getting ready to start a career and in a few years start a family. Why would I ever pick a place primed for environmental disaster, that offers no diverse industries, and because of it's political-economic structures could never change?? I love you Miami, but you don't love me.

sykoelf
sykoelf

I'm 22 years old... I moved to Washington, DC for college and I've been seriously thinking about moving back to Miami after I graduate. And as much as I want to, I think it's a bad idea. I study urban sustainability, and Miami, while an exciting challenge to this field, kinda feels pointless. The citizens are either not interested in becoming a 21st century city or are so disenfranchised/powerless because of yes, the income disparity, that it feels like nothing could ever change. AND the fact that it probably will be underwater in the next 20-50 years makes it seem like a really silly place to raise a family and start a life. 

Our industries are in construction and tourism and we cater to the transient wealthy. Where are the opportunities for the locals to improve their lot? How will we ever gain enough capital to prepare ourselves for the inevitable climate disasters if all the money is in the people who don't even live here full time? In short, WHAT IS THE POINT?

I'm in the beginnings of my life, I'm getting ready to start a career and in a few years start a family. Why would I ever pick a place primed for environmental disaster, that offers no diverse industries, and because of it's political-economic structures could never change??

I love you Miami, but you don't love me.

ezedoes
ezedoes

Im from here...but the job market is not great...income disparity reminds me of Nicaragua..ughh

Ken Argüelles
Ken Argüelles

No surprise, the Miami's job market is too dependent on tourism and construction.

Claudia Sandino
Claudia Sandino

You don't ask a ton of questions and call that an article....

tklo
tklo

@Devona Foxx its not that bad, especially if you have money.  The weather is nice, people are beautiful, and the upper end housing is nice.  If you have money for the clubs and restaurants they are nice as well.  The people get old and are not very educated or interesting, and quite flakey.

Joannadj
Joannadj

@Victoria Marie Same here! Moved to Chicago, moved back (kinda had to), and although there are some scenic changes and more things to do. There is still no room to grow. 

Joannadj
Joannadj

@Erika Ann Grohoski Peralta "I love you Miami, but you don't love me" is how I've always felt. It's a love/hate situation lol

dchdch
dchdch

@Claudia Sandino the bold and different colored font is a link to an article addressing the rhetorical questions.

la_pretty_nena1
la_pretty_nena1

@Claudia Sandino funny, as a journalist,  i thought the same thing

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