The Hudson Valley – Beyond the next Hipsturbia
What's happening beyond the core?
As part of our inquiry into ways to grow your city, we are looking into exemplary trends of what attracts people to places to live and the underlying urban structure.
The Hudson River Valley is one of many places being heralded as the next Williamsburg. It is much more than just replication though, it is a cultural shift: Just as Williamsburg evolved to mean something different to its hipsters than Soho meant to its original bohemian artist inhabitants, the Hudson River Valley evolves to mean something new to the current era and today’s urban inhabitants.
The Hudson River Valley reflects a new desire for being in nature, local organic food and cheaper rents. Its new residents use technology to bring Brooklyn with them and embrace the valley’s urban aspects like ethnic diversity and its industrial heritage in architecture.
There are several interesting questions to explore in this:
- What are people looking for in cities now? What attracts them?
- Is there a new paradigm evolving that replaces “urban hip”? (Think Portlandia)
- What are the specific urban characteristics of the Hudson Valley that make it attractive? (Working thesis: Natural beauty, connectivity, diversity and openness)
- After suburban sprawl and the rediscovery of downtown living, is there a new trend evolving, again reversing the previous trend to now disperse again?
- If so, is the new technologically aided symbiosis of city and region a new category of urban form that requires reexamining the concepts of city, metropolis and region?
And those questions we hope to discuss here soon.
A New York Times article about hipsters relocating to the Hudson Valley (and the source of the term “hipsturbia”):
Columbia University’s Hudson Valley Initiative (HVI) website:
Historic River Towns of Westchester: Hudson River Waterfront – Present and Future:
A more current look at the transformation of Peekskill in Northern Westchester:
A link to the famous Portlandia turkey sketch:
Photos from trailtramps blogspot, the New York Times and summertomato.com.