NLC releases State of Cities 2021 report
The National League of Cities (NLC) has released its State of Cities 2021 report, an annual analysis of priorities of more than 600 urban core, rural, suburban and exurban mayors. The information was collected through a survey conducted in March and April of this year, along with the state of city addresses from mayors across the country.
The report found that mayors from cities and towns are prioritizing infrastructure, budgets and public safety this year. The State of the Cities 2021 examines how critical issues facing municipalities have been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the report nearly a quarter of cities experienced fewer infrastructure upgrades over the past year, including those related to climate and resiliency, a reflection of the trend in delayed maintenance resulting from budget challenges.
The analysis of survey results gauges how key conditions in cities have changed over the past year and which conditions have had the most significant positive and negative local impacts through the pandemic. The report shows that local economic conditions worsened for most cities over the past year, with major challenges reported for affordable housing supply, vacant developments, and rental housing prices.
NLC said: “Overall, our findings indicate that essential infrastructure enabled community resilience during the pandemic, rising home values and decreasing affordable supply contributed to a growing urban-rural divide, and commercial decline hit smaller communities more drastically than anticipated.”
The complete State of the Cities 2021 report is available for download here.