“Bright lights, big city, gone to my baby’s head,” – Jimmy Reed, 1961.

Of course, this song from decades ago was nothing more than an entertaining tune that made you relax and unwind, but there is some truth to this cautionary tale about urban life.

Your former, current, and future employees will have all faced similar battles at one point in their lives: expensive housing, long commutes, or outdated workspaces. That’s where Red Thread comes in.

Urban Perks

Before we dive into some benefits behind suburban real estate, there’s a strong case to be made for urban offices, too.

It’s no surprise Boston is home to innovation. With startups and entrepreneurs popping up around every street, it’s an incredible location buzzing with new events, community challenges, networking opportunities, and more. There is more convenience for employees to stay within one mile for all their daily needs, from work to healthcare to grocery shopping. Did we mention Trader Joe’s just opened up right across the street from our Boston WorkLife in Seaport?

There’s no denying the need for an office located in the heart of a city, as proven by our take on the new HQ, but you’re bound to hire employees that don’t necessarily fit the city lifestyle for one reason or another.

The Rise of “Hypsturbia”

When you come up against searching for a new or additional space, keep these 5 things in mind:

  1. Cities with more than a half million people collectively lost almost 27,000 residents age 25 to 39 in 2018 (Source: WSJ)
  2. In the U.S. alone, traffic congestion cost $305 billion last year, an increase of $10 billion from 2016 (Source: City Lab)
  3. A 2018 report from Zillow found that home buyers will pay 26.5% of their income each month for a median-value home in a city, compared to 20.2% for a similar home in the suburbs (Source: CNBC)
  4. Suburbs with good jobs, relatively easy access to nearby city centers and moderate weather are growing twice as fast as the closest cities, per census data (Source: Axios)
  5. Ride-hailing accounts for up to 14% of vehicle miles traveled in some cities, according to a study commissioned by Uber and Lyft (Source: The Verge)

These data points all reveal a larger societal trend of where millennials, Gen Z, and other generations are headed as the cost of living and traffic continues to increase.

What’s Next?

Organizations need to not only recognize these factors, but also respond and provide a more balanced work life for employees. Whether it’s creating satellite offices, providing co-working spaces, or moving out of the city, there are a variety of steps companies can consider in order to adapt to this ongoing trend.

“As a southern New Hampshire resident, working some days in Beverly is a great perk for me,” said Ken Lambert, Architectural Products Sales Consultant at Red Thread. “There are thousands of workers from New Hampshire and northern Massachusetts that deal with the Boston commute regularly, and many of these folks are seeking some more feasible options.”

At Red Thread, we’ve thoughtfully integrated people, place and technology at our new WorkLounge at Dunham Ridge in Beverly. We partnered with Cummings Properties to create this extension of Red Thread’s Boston WorkLife on the North Shore.

“Beverly, and much of the North Shore suburbs, has a lot to offer for companies of all sizes and industries. The various Cummings campuses provide a lot of variety and options, and Red Thread can fit out your new space to incorporate the best trends or features from the Boston and Cambridge vibe.”

To learn more about our Beverly WorkLounge location or set up a tour, feel free to directly contact Ken Lambert at klambert@red-thread.com or David Mendzela at dmendzela@red-thread.com.