You May Never Guess
America’s Second-Hippest City


Ron Sklar

The second-most hipster-friendly city in America? Brooklyn? Austin? Nope. Salt Lake City (It’s also a top-rated city for Millennials).

Movehub, a relocation-expert service, ranked cities based on its number of  trendy venues (think microbreweries, tatt parlors and vegan restaurants) per 100,000 residents.

According to its website, the company studied 446 cities across 20 countries: That’s 2,834 record stores, 7,772 vegan eats, 14,588 tattoo studios, 15,549 vintage boutiques, and 93,203 coffee shops, covering a combined population of over 200,000,000 people.

FYI: The #1-ranked city is Vancouver, Washington. This may not be front-of-brain when you’re naming hip cities, but it makes sense when you do the math: Vancouver is just 10 miles north of Portland, Oregon.

To some, Salt Lake City may be even more confounding. Its reputation is commonly understood to be Mormon, dry, and in the middle of nowhere.

Realtor.com does Movehub one better. The leading online real estate information center listed Salt Lake City as the top city for Millennials (followed by Miami, Orlando, Seattle, Houston, Los Angeles, Buffalo, Albany, San Francisco and San Jose).

According to the site, Salt Lake City, has the highest share of Millennials, comprising 15.8 percent of its total population. Seattle is close behind with a millennial population at 15.2 percent, Los Angeles and San Francisco tie for third with 15.0 percent.  In addition, Salt Lake City has the lowest unemployment rate of all the markets on the list at 2.9 percent, which is well below the national unemployment rate of 4.7 percent.

The city is projected to have one of the strongest housing markets in the country in 2018, Globe St. reports. Similar to Denver, driving the growth of Salt Lake City is its growing economy, affordability, and Millennial population.

The city is also affordable when compared to larger cities. The median home sale price at the end of 2017 was $273,000, which is $20,000, $70,000 and $90,000 lower than other Millennial-friendly markets: Austin, Portland and Denver, Realtor.com reports.

The common perception that Millennials only rent is also diminishing, at least in Salt Lake City. Its Millennial population is 1.3 times higher than the U.S. average, and made up 46 percent of its mortgages in 2017, beating the U.S. average by 9 percent.

In regard to investment attraction, Salt Lake City is also the least populous city to be listed in the “Emerging Trends in Real Estate 2018”report, released by financial services provider PriceWaterhouseCoopers and The Urban Land Institute. It ranked #3, after Seattle and Austin. Report co-author Mitch Roschelle noted that the cost of doing business in Salt Lake is 12 percent lower than the national average.

KBS properties in Salt Lake City include:

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Gateway Tech Center:  a five-story, Class A office property built in 1909 and serving the city’s tech center. Originally a warehouse for a hardware company, its brick-and-timber design was maintained when it was renovated in 1996.

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Hardware Village: a 466-unit multifamily Class A apartment development within one block of The Gateway, a retail center with a live music venue, a planetarium, a movie theatre with IMAX, and fast casual and sit-down restaurants. It’s also close to the Energy Solutions Arena (where the Utah Jazz play) and the Salt Lake City Convention center.

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222 Main: a 21-story Class A office tower (with retail), located in the heart of Salt Lake City’s central business district. It features magnificent views of the Wasatch Mountain Range and downtown Salt Lake City, and is LEED Gold Core & Shell certified.

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Parkside Tower: a 13-story Class A office tower with ground-floor retail, located within the city’s central business district. The lobby was recently renovated, and also features an on-site deli, fitness center and showers, building conference room and on-site management team. It’s within walking distance to everything offered by downtown Salt Lake City.