Cumberland, Maryland, is a sleepy, post-industrial community of about 21,000 people. It is 134 miles from Washington, DC. It is 139 miles from Baltimore. Home prices in Cumberland shot up 17 percent last year. Why? Because everyone has gone completely insane:
Davis lives in Cumberland full time, though Hart, like many of Cumberland's newer residents, is a commuter.
A commuter to where? Baltimore. Did I mention that Baltimore is 134 miles away? He does not drive it everyday. But still. This is straight up cuckoo.
Seriously. I wonder what "urban enthusiasts" make of this. Cumberland is certainly becoming a hipper, more cosmopolitan place. It is becoming denser as people filter back in, of course. And it is now chock full of art studios and fancy restaurants staffed with big-city chefs. Presto! Urban amenities! Walkability!Except many of these people are commuting 140 miles to work. Which kid of makes people in suburban McMansions look like a bunch of environmentalists.
So from an environmental perspective, how far away can you live from work if you just go once a week? Twice a week? Is this a good thing or a bad thing?
And just to give you some perspective, Cumberland is actually closer to Pittsburgh (123 miles) than it is to DC or Baltimore. You could commute from Pittsburgh to Erie (127 miles), Pittsburgh to Cleveland (132 miles) or Pittsburgh to State College (136 miles) and still drive less than the Cumberland-to-Baltimore people do.