Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Asian and Hispanic families combining households

If you live in Southern California this is nothing new.
The number of such households, defined as those with three or more generations living under one roof, grew to almost 5.1 million in 2010, a 30 percent increase from 3.9 million in 2000, the data show.
Now, in the suburbs and not the farms.
Although the term multigenerational invokes images of grandma churning butter on a pioneer farm or turn-of-the-century immigrants crammed into tenements, today’s extended families are more likely to live in suburbs. Among large cities, the one with the highest percentage of multigenerational households, at 16 percent, is Norwalk, California, a collection of largely single- family homes 15 miles (25 kilometers) south of Los Angeles.
Cultural and Economic Reasons
Corporate America is figuring out ways to create products for, and market to, these multi-income, multifaceted families, Gallegos said.
Home builder KB Home (KBH) is seeing increased demand for what it calls double master suites, two large bedrooms with attached bathrooms to accommodate parents living with their adult children, according to Cara Kane, a spokeswoman for the company, which is based in Los Angeles. All 10 of the largest communities in the U.S. ranked by their percentage of multigenerational households were within an hour’s drive of the nation’s second- largest city. All had populations over 100,000....
Her research on the state’s Filipino residents found multigenerational households are most common among the poor, who live together so they can pool their resources, and the rich, who have the space.
“A lot of times it’s for economic reasons,” Yuan said in an interview. “Other times it’s just cultural preferences.”
On a recent Monday afternoon, the Norwalk Senior Center was bustling with people playing bingo and taking weaving classes. Francisca Bernard, a 75-year-old retired waitress, said she has lived in the same three-bedroom Norwalk house since 1968. It now accommodates four generations of her family, including three grandchildren and her father, who is 100 years old.
“The house is big and we like to be together,” she said. Finances also play a role, Bernard said. While her daughter does most of the grocery shopping, major purchases, such as a new car, are hashed out over the dinner table.

And other issues due to this trend.
The city saw an explosion in residents after World War II as returning soldiers swelled the population to 35,000 in 1950 from 5,770 a decade earlier, according to a municipal history.
By the time Norwalk incorporated in 1957, the city’s developable land was largely built out, according to Kurt Anderson, director of community development. Population increases and additions put on existing structures have strained the municipality, which now counts 105,000 residents.
“Parking is a huge issue,” said Marcel Rodarte, a Norwalk native and city council member. The city requires more onsite parking when permits are requested for room additions, he said
Funny this article doesn't address traffic in these areas.  

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