The March issue of The Atlantic magazine mentions Evanston in the same breath with Seattle suburb and Microsoft headquarters city Redmond, Wash., as one of a small number of suburban communities where single-family homes “are likely to hold their values just fine.”

Sounds to you like faint praise? Well, writer Christopher Leinberger, an urban planning professor at the University of Michigan, thinks many other suburbs are destined to become America’s new slums.

Leinberger sees the recent trend of redevelopment in central cities extending into the future and predicts that today’s urban fringe McMansions will soon be chopped up into low-income rental apartments the way urban row houses were a half-century ago.

Leinberger, also a visiting fellow at the Brookings Institution, thinks towns like Evanston — which he describes as affluent and relatively close to central cities, along rail lines and with a thriving walkable urban core — are likely to do well.

The issue is on newstands but not yet on the publication’s website.

Thanks to Evanston Now and The Atlantic reader Polly Hawkins for the tip.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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