What are the top 10 small cities growing faster than their suburbs?

It might come as a surprise, but it’s not just big cities like New York and San Francisco that are experiencing a kind of downtown renaissance.

In fact, according to a new analysis of Census data from Smart Growth America, that support for more walkable neighborhoods near jobs, shops and schools is increasing even in the country’s small metro areas (those places with a population less than 1 million people).

“Previous research has shown that the country’s 51 largest metropolitan areas were, on average, growing faster in their cities than in their suburbs,” says Smart Growth America President and CEO Geoffrey Anderson. “We wondered whether this trend held true as well for smaller metro areas, and this new analysis says yes. And the smallest ones are doing the best.”

“The fact that cities in small metro areas are growing suggests that there’s a trend toward city living in smaller metros too,” says Bill Fulton, vice president of policy and research for Smart Growth America.

Policymakers and local leaders must take the time now to analyze these trends. Investments in smart growth, walkable neighborhoods and existing infrastructure over the next several decades will pay long-term dividends as more and more people in these small metro areas call the city home.

To learn more about the Top 10 cities growing faster than their suburbs, visit The Atlantic Cities.

To read the full report from Smart Growth America, click here.