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Generation Y Hates Loudoun County

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drive-by sprawlAt last week’s National Association of Home Builders conference, panelists presented research showing the Millenials despise McMansions:

A key finding: They want to walk everywhere. Surveys show that 13% carpool to work, while 7% walk, said Melina Duggal, a principal with Orlando-based real estate adviser RCLCO. A whopping 88% want to be in an urban setting, but since cities themselves can be so expensive, places with shopping, dining and transit such as Bethesda and Arlington in the Washington suburbs will do just fine.

“One-third are willing to pay for the ability to walk,” Ms. Duggal said. “They don’t want to be in a cookie-cutter type of development. …The suburbs will need to evolve to be attractive to Gen Y.”

Outdoor space is important-but please, just a place to put the grill and have some friends over. Lawn-mowing not desired.

Makes you wonder. Who’s going to live in all those McMansions when the baby boomers no longer need or want them? Will those areas redevelop sustainably? Become a new kind of outer suburban blight? Or revert to forest, The World Without Us-style?

Update 1/20: A follow-up on what Generation Y’s love of Arlington means for some of Arlington’s traditionally-quieter neighborhoods.