Here’s a statistic: According to urban design expert David Dixon, 75 percent of new home buyers don’t have children living in their households.

This is Dixon’s way of reminding audiences that the housing market is changing. Today, more people, young and old, are drawn to the amenities associated with urban life – restaurants, coffee houses, jobs and shops a short walk from home.

And fewer folks want to live in a single-family house with a lawn to mow – where every trip to the store, workplace, friend’s home or restaurant involves navigating a car through long lines of traffic.

Dixon was a member of the national urban design team that visited Santa Rosa last week, and recommended that city leaders work to transform the downtown into the city’s “living room.”

Click here for my column on how the reinvention of the downtown has become a test of leadership at City Hall.