The phrase “Sun Belt” is reported to have been invented in 1969 by writer and political commentator Kevin Phillips to characterise a region of the United States that featured businesses such as oil, military, and aerospace, as well as several retirement homes.
During World War II, many military production jobs were relocated from the northeast to the south and west. After the war, growth in these sectors continued.
Increased agriculture and the previous green revolution, which brought new agricultural technology, contributed to some of the region’s expansion. Furthermore, agricultural and allied professions in the region drew immigrants from neighboring Mexico and other nations eager for work in the United States. The climate in the sun belts areas attracted more of elderly people.
The Sun Belt includes sections of Alabama, Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico, South Carolina, and Texas, as well as nearly two-thirds of California and parts of Arkansas, North Carolina, Nevada, Tennessee, and Utah. Because of their abundance of beaches and deserts, Arizona, California, Florida, Nevada, and Texas are commonly referred to as the Sand States.
Not just to municipal and state governments, but also to the federal government, the environment in the belt is immensely valued. The biodiversity of eight of the ten states is extremely high ranging from 3,800 to 6,700 species, not including marine life. The Sun Belt is also home to the most diverse habitats, including chaparral, deciduous, desert, grasslands, temperate rainforest, and tropical rainforest.
Where is the sun belt region?
The Sun Belt is a 15-state area in the United States that stretches from Virginia and Florida in the southeast to Nevada in the southwest, as well as southern California. Between 1970 and 1990, the population of the South increased by 36% while that of the West increased by 51%, both substantially above the national average.
Large in-migration, a high birth rate, and a decrease in out-migration all led to the Sun Belt’s population and manufacturing activity growing quickly. Improvements in transportation and communications, as well as sufficient air conditioning in the summer and a pleasant winter temperature, all appeal to retirees and employees alike.
When was the migration to the sun belt?
More Americans are moving south, preferring beaches and milder climates to frigid winters. According to new Census statistics, the majority of the nation’s fastest expanding metro regions are retirement destinations in the Sun Belt. Since 2015, the inward migration from the Snowbelt to the Sun Belt has been moderate but steady. Between 2010 and 2019, the population of the southern states of South Carolina, Texas, Florida, North Carolina, Georgia, and Arizona increased by at least 10%.
In the last year, cities like Austin, Texas; Dallas; Houston; Charlotte, North Carolina; Tampa, Florida; Phoenix; and Atlanta had the most inbound migration. The option to work remotely provided the impetus for a lot of citizens to look for more cheap homes in southern states, better weather, or job prospects in large economic hubs.
Rust belt to sun belt migration
The phrase “Rust Belt” refers to a region in the northern United States. The states around the Great Lakes make up the majority of the area, and some of them are designated Midwest states. Steel manufacture and heavy industry were previously prominent in this area. Hundreds of thousands of Americans moved from the Northern and Midwestern Rust Belt to the Southern Sun Belt during the post-war period, which lasted from the 1950s through the 1980s.
There were various factors that contributed to the decline. Many individuals preferred the sunnier climate and warmer temperatures of the Sunbelt to the colder weather and snow of the Rustbelt. People went to more desired areas, causing mass migration.
What caused the downfall of the Rust Belt?
Though definitions differ, it is mostly made up of the Great Lakes Megalopolis. Due to the weakening of its once-powerful industrial sector, such as steel production, automotive manufacture, and coal mining, rust alludes to deindustrialization, economic collapse, population loss, and urban deterioration.
Warmer Weather in the Sun Belt Region
While job possibilities and cost are important considerations for those considering a relocation south, the weather is also a key one. Cold, dark, and lengthy winters may get tiresome quickly. The Sun Belt is known for its warmer winters and higher sun exposure, making it a popular destination for its northern neighbours.
Warmer weather appeals to the older elderly, particularly baby boomers who are approaching or have reached retirement age. There are a number of communities, such as the Villages outside of sunny Orlando, Florida, that are specifically dedicated to this group and provide a wide range of facilities.
Global warming is also a source of long-term concern. As certain sections of the north face increasing sea levels, wildfires, and storms, certain inland areas of the nation provide respite from these dangers.
Why are retirees attracted to the sunbelt?
Between 1970 and 1990, the population of the South increased by 36% and that of the West increased by 51%, both of which were much higher than the national average. Large in-migration, a high birth rate, and a drop in out-migration all contributed to the Sun Belt’s fast rise in population and manufacturing activity.
Transportation and communication advancements, plentiful air conditioning in the summer, and a pleasant winter temperature are all enticing factors for both retirees and working people. One evidence of restored population vigour is the huge and more prevalent movement from the Snow Belt to the Sun Belt. Another factor is the recent increase in net foreign migration from other countries.
Sun City is America’s oldest active retirement community.
Sun City first opened its doors on January 1, 1960, with five different house styles, a retail centre, a recreation centre, and a golf course. The inaugural weekend drew 100,000 people, ten times the estimated number, and resulted in a cover storey in Time magazine. Marinette, a former ghost town, was the site of the future retirement community.
Sun City was expanded throughout the years by developer Del E. Webb, and his business went on to establish other retirement communities in the Sun Belt. Sun City West debuted in the late 1970s, Sun City Grand debuted in the late 1990s, Sun City Anthem debuted in 1999, and Sun City Festival debuted in July 2006.
Sun City is intended to promote active retirement, giving those over the age of 55 a fulfilling life after working and having children. Maricopa County is located less than 30 minutes northwest of Phoenix. Sun City is “like Disneyland for seniors,” with seven entertainment facilities and eight golf courses.