Ever since the start of the industrial revolution cities have grown rapidly. This is leading to more and more over and densely populated cities. If you look for example at my hometown Amsterdam the housing prices are growing double digits since the last two years. On the other end the country side is quickly becoming old and empty, house prices are dropping and houses are on the market longer and longer.
The questions I ask myself in this post is, what will the future hold? Will cities continue to grow and the countryside slowly returned to nature, or will the countryside become popular once more?
In favour of the city
Jobs are moving to the city, so naturally people will move to the city and work the jobs. As more and more jobs go to the city, the cities population keeps increasing. Look at innovations in vertical farming, they will allow a large part of farming to be done in the city.
Other areas are maybe meat production with other sources, such as grasshoppers or cloning of meat cells. This leaves very little reason for a country side other than being a place of natural wonder.
The housing is still an issue, but with the rise of tiny houses it is not weird to think that cities would become even denser than they are today, but way more efficient. they would also become much, much larger.
As the cities continue to grow people want more space. Not everybody enjoys living in a densely populated area, or wants to pay a premium for it. If I look at advances in mainly autonomous cars it is easy to see that having a house in the country side whilst working in the city is totally possible.
You could work in your car during the trip, and when arriving at work, the car either drives back, searches for a parking spot or goes back in the communal pool. The way back would be the same, or the seat might recline to offer a short nap. Yes, you would still have a commute, but it would be the same price or cheaper than public transport whilst offering more comfort.
My ideal situation?
When I think of these changes I would love a combination of both. Have a small place in the city, a tiny house, for its entertainment, buzz, work opportunities and network of friends. And then have a big home somewhere in the woods where you go in the long weekends. Once you have autonomous vehicles you could just go in your car on Thursday night, sleep during the night in the car whilst its driving, and wake up somewhere in the south of France in the middle of nature!