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Washington (AP) - Most of the nation's largest cities have enhanced their allure, showing strong population growth for a second consecutive year.
New census estimates show big cities surpassed the rate of growth in their surrounding suburbs at an even faster clip last year. It's a sign of America's continuing preference for urban living after the economic downturn quelled enthusiasm for less-crowded expanses.
Growth in outlying suburbs known as exurbs slipped to the lowest level in more than a decade.
Economists generally have played down the recent city boom, saying young adults in the recovering economy will be back on the move after years of staying put in big cities. But the 2012 numbers indicate that young people are still playing it safe in dense urban cores, where many jobs are.