San Diego Is Sucking Them Back In

Coastal California staging a comeback

With its beautiful beaches, delightful weather and high quality of life, who'd ever want to leave San Diego?

Turns out, not as many people as in years past. After years of losing population to cheaper areas, San Diego has people staying put.

According to a new study by the Brookings Institution, a trend towards people moving out of San Diego has reversed and is seeing a net gain from internal migration.

It's part of a nationwide trend of people staying put in coastal areas and cities, after decades of trickling away to exurban locations like the Central Valley, the Inland Empire, and the sprawlopolises of Las Vegas and Phoenix.

Part of it has to do with the housing bust: It's harder for people to pick up and move when they can't sell their houses, granted. But might not the region's unduplicated charms have something to do with drawing people here and getting them to stay?

"For the moment, the national migration slowdown appears to have benefited California, as more of its younger, well-educated residents have remained Californians than in the recent past," wrote researcher William H. Frey.

San Diego has a lot of work to do. Our budget deficits aren’t particularly attractive, some argue we need a bigger airport and our property tax base has gone south.

But the fact that more people are moving here than are moving away speaks to the notion that we must be doing something right.

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