Skip to content
CityLab
Transportation

Startups Are Abandoning Suburbs for Cities With Good Transit

A new study finds that new business startups are choosing cities with good public transportation options over the traditional suburban locations.
SEPTA trains connect Philadelphia commuters with nearby regions.
SEPTA trains connect Philadelphia commuters with nearby regions.Matt Rourke/AP

During the late 20th century, startup companies were quintessentially suburban, in standard-issue office parks dubbed “nerdistans.” Think of Silicon Valley, the North Carolina Research Triangle, and the suburbs of Seattle where Microsoft is located.

But high-tech startups have become increasingly urban in the past decade or so, gravitating to dense neighborhoods in downtown San Francisco and Lower Manhattan, which have supplanted Silicon Valley as the nation’s leading centers for such startups.