will luxury apartments prove to be a barrier for new residents downtown?

When we begin to value the land for what it is and build cities worth living in, density develops and density makes things happen. ~ ERIC W. SANDERSON

There is hand-wringing around social media on the projected rents of new apartments coming online in the next few years. Now I'm not going to say that $2+ a square foot for rent is reasonable, but I don't think it will be the end of the world either.
Instead of assuming that these new apartments should fill up with brand new downtown residents there is another way to look at it.
I know first hand there are lawyers and finance guys renting in older building because, well because what other choice do they have? And since they have filled up the older places there is nowhere else for anyone wishing to move downtown. Here is what I picture could happen, as these new luxury apartments come online, people who can afford the rents but who have been stuck in cheaper apartments will upgrade. And once that happens the more reasonable apartments will free up for everyone else.
I don't think luxury apartments will be the barrier to new residents that people worry it will be.
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  1. Three buildings on 7th street are going to be "affordable" apartments. Construction begins in March.

  2. No matter how high Cincinnati rents rise, they will never be as high as cities like New York or San Francisco. "Working class" people (hate to use that term) will always be able to afford decent apartments in Cincinnati. Just maybe not at The Banks. People will never be forced to live in a tiny micro-apartment with three other roommates in Cincinnati, like they do in those other cities.

  3. I am just suspect of our local developers who seem to only build expensive new buildings and leave the rest to potentially be affordable to everyone else. While I think Cincinnati has come a long way over the past 10 years, I don't think it really demands $2,000/month rents anywhere in the city. I also think land values and construction prices are low enough in this town that developers could build new product that is affordable...they just are choosing not to. It's a shame really because it's keeping more from moving into the city that would like to.

  4. Developers tend to favor high-end projects, because the return is better for them. And as buildings get older, and new luxury places are built, theoretically, the former expensive places become affordable. Of course, that's based on the idea that what is considered luxury today is affordable tomorrow.

  5. Are you suggesting that developers are misjudging the market for housing downtown?

  6. When one can buy an entire downtown building for $975,000 (that sound you hear is people in NY fainting), I'm pretty sure Cincinnati is and will continue to be one of the cheapest places in the country to live.