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Generations of people came to the Midwest in hopes of finding a better life. But economic opportunity has been harder to find since the recession began, and people have left the region in record numbers in search of jobs or a better housing market. Changing Gears “Midwest Migration” project is collecting photos, stories, and voicemail messages from former Midwesterners – people who have left region since the recession of 2008.We’re mapping where people ended up, and we're sharing their stories about why they left and whether life is better for them now.We’ll also hear whether they plan to return to the Midwest.You can share your Midwest migration story here, and see responses on our Midwest Migration tumblr page.The Midwest Migration will run through mid-February 2012.

Where do Michiganders go when they leave the state?

The preferred moving truck for young people.
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Are you leaving Michigan or coming to it?

Approximately 1.7 million Americans moved to a different state in 2012. But from where are people leaving, and where do they go?

A recent infographic by Chris Walker visualizes American migration patterns. It shows Americans are flocking to Florida, and more people are leaving Michigan than moving to the state.

Credit Chris Walker / Vizynary
A map showing the state-by-state migration patterns of the U.S.

According to the Census data that informed the infographic, about 134,000 Americans migrated to the Mitten State in 2012. More than 175,000 left the state.

So where do Michiganders go when they leave the mitten?

Credit Chris Walker / Vizynary
More people are leaving Michigan than moving to it, according to 2012 Census data.

They go to Florida. 23,000 Michigan residents headed for the Sunshine State in 2012. In comparison, 13,000 Floridians left for Michigan.

The infographic also shows many Michiganders head to other (warmer) climates: California, Arizona, Texas, Georgia and North Carolina are major recipients of former Michigan residents.

And as for the New York state of mind, Michiganders don't seem too interested. New York is the only state that experiences more people moving to Michigan than moving to New York.

- Melanie Kruvelis, Michigan Radio Newsroom


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