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Keller @ Large: Crowding Means Taxes Going Up

BOSTON (CBS) - A new report from the Donahue Institute at UMass-Boston confirms what you already knew – it's getting crowded around here.

Not so long ago, we were among the national leaders in population loss. Manufacturing jobs went South and West and lots of Massachusetts workers left with them.

But that has changed.

Our population has been growing fast since the turn of the decade, fueled by millenials, and what the Donahue report calls "international immigration."

They predict we'll add another 722,000 people by 2035, with the over-65 population growing to nearly one-fourth of the total.

What does this all mean for life here?

For one thing, you think the traffic is bad now?

The MBTA and commuter rail not only need to be brought back from the dead, they need to be turned into a reliable resource that can handle many more customers. We sure can't handle another 700,000 cars on the road.

And let's face it, an older population means more demand for services and health care, with their associated costs.

Let's put it this way, your taxes are going up over the next 20 years, and not incrementally.

A key thing to watch is how many of those millenials who grow out of their micro-apartments will find affordable housing they want, or bolt for nicer climates with much cheaper real estate?

And there's one other question raised by these projections of the future that is perhaps the most chilling – what on earth do you suppose a bleacher seat at Fenway will cost by then?

Listen to Jon's commentary:

You can listen to Keller At Large on WBZ News Radio every weekday at 7:55 a.m. You can also watch Jon on WBZ-TV News.

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