Great minds think alike. And so it was that this weekend the country’s two most prestigious daily newspapers both brought us stories of how sleepy, prosperous suburbs of their respective cities are developing hip downtowns with all the accoutrements of a gentrified urban neighborhood. Out with the chain store surrounded by parking lots, in with the yoga studio and “vintage” clothing boutique on Main Street.
The New York Times reports that hipsters are fleeing Brooklyn and Manhattan’s East Village for towns along the Hudson River. “You no longer have to take the L train to experience this slice of cosmopolitan bohemia,” the Times claims. “Instead, you’ll find it along the Metro-North Railroad, roughly 25 miles north of Williamsburg, Brooklyn, in the suburb of Hastings-on-Hudson, N.Y.”
Meanwhile, the Washington Post published a story about Montgomery County, Md., a collection of leafy, wealthy suburbs, that, in the hopes of appealing to young professionals, is making plans to build pedestrian-friendly downtown areas and seeking trendy stores to fill them. “For all its prosperity and family-friendly suburban appeal, Montgomery is in the throes of a midlife crisis,” the Post writes. “That angst has led to a new item at the top of the public policy agenda: a yearning to be hip.”