We all know that 911 changed the way New Yorkers live, the same way 7/7 changed the way London’s residents live their lives. But 911 changed the way people in Central Ohio live too, even though there have never been any terrorist attacks in the area.

Homeowners near Columbus started buying different kinds of real estate than they had before. A survey done in November, 2001, showed they wanted to live in less populated areas, with more space. All other factors, such as school quality, commuting distance, safety and price, remained the same. By coincidence, another survey had been done just a few months before 911, showing that neighborhood density wasn’t nearly as important.

“After 9/11, nothing else but housing density and parks mattered to people when they considered moving,” says researcher Hazel Morrow-Jones. “While such results may not be surprising for an eastern seaboard city or other likely target of terrorism, they are somewhat surprising for a mid-sized, Midwestern city.”

This points up one of the saddest aspects to terrorism: it makes us distrust our neighbors.

Art credit: http://www.freeimages.co.uk

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