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Cook County's Updated Comings and Goings

By Chuck Sudo in News on Nov 17, 2011 5:00PM

Last year Forbes charted migration in America via interactive map and we shared comings and goings of residents in Cook County. Forbes has since updated those maps using new data from the IRS.

Last year, 37.5 million Americans moved from one home to another. As Forbes noted, this "mobility makes us efficient seekers of economic improvement," with the fortunes of cities rising and ebbing like tides as people move.

Bruner told us he also wanted to look at some longer-term trends and how they factor into migration, such as the collapse of the housing market. Bruner cited Phoenix as a prime example of his research. Phoenix "was taking in nearly twice as many migrants as it was losing and which is now losing more than it’s taking," Bruner said. This pattern of migration to affordable housing, then leaving when the economy or housing market collapses, also holds in Las Vegas, Miami and Charlotte, NC.

Cook County isn't losing as many residents as Phoenix, but there are more residents leaving as arriving. As with the original map, most migrations from Cook County are fleeing for warmer climes while migration to Cook County hails mainly from the Midwest and East Coast. Forbes also asked experts to analyze the migration patterns, including Michael Conzen, chairman of the Committee on Geographical Studies at the University of Chicago. Conzen wrote that people leaving Chicago is mitigated by to the city from collapsing Rust Belt economies.

NewGeography executive editor Joel Kotkin found that outbound migration from dense urban areas like Chicago, while still outpacing incoming migration, has slowed.

"The key question now," Kotkin wrote, "is whether the slowing of out-migration will continue." Anyway, here's the link to Cook County's migration patterns. It's good as both legitimate research and as a time-waster.