KCUR-Radio: As rural towns lose population, they can learn to ‘shrink smart’

EXCERPT: “Just outside tiny Sheffield, Iowa, a modern steel and glass office building has sprung up next to a cornfield. Behind it, there’s a plant that employs almost 700 workers making Sukup brand steel grain bins. The factory provides an economic anchor for Sheffield, population 1,125. Charles Sukup, the company’s president, says that even though workers can be hard to come by, there are no plans to relocate . . . Population loss like Sheffield’s is happening in small towns across the U.S. ‘The big picture for all rural communities that don’t have a connection to a growing metro area is that they are going to get smaller over time,’ says Kimberly Zarecor, associate professor of architecture at Iowa State University. Zarecor argues that towns like Sheffield shouldn’t spend money trying to lure new residents to shore up their population numbers. She says instead, they should focus on making life better for the residents they still have.” FULLSTORY: http://bit.ly/2MHTGL2