What is a First Suburb?
First Suburbs are older suburban communities that were built or mostly built, before 1980. First Suburbs offer many advantages such as proximity to their central cities, access to affordable housing, shopping and established quality of life amenities. These communities also offer older distinctive housing in traditional neighborhoods complete with features like bicycle routes, sidewalks and neighborhood parks.
However, with age, many of these First Suburbs have begun to experience challenges which previously had been exclusively central city challenges. According to the Brookings Institution, First Suburbs are caught in a “policy blind spot” — social and economic problems typical of large cities impact First Suburbs, but they lack many of the cultural, financial, and government resources that core cities have to address similar challenges.