An apartment project being developed by Weidner Apartment Homes of suburban Seattle is under construction on the south side of the Weidner Field multiuse stadium in downtown Colorado Springs.

Apartments around the country are getting smaller โ€” but not in Colorado Springs, where they're bucking the trend and growing in size.

A recent study of the nation's 100 largest cities byย RentCafe, an online rental service, shows that apartments in 2022 averaged 887 square feet in size, a decline of 54 square feet over the last decade.

More studio and one-bedroom apartments being added to the nationwide mix of apartments were among factors that contributed to the supply of smaller units, according to the study.

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Among cities studied by RentCafe, Tucson, Ariz., saw the biggest increase in apartment size over the last decade, increasing by 300 square feet to 1,037 square feet. Apartments in Silver Spring, Md., a Washington, D.C. suburb, saw the largest decline, falling by 114 square feet over 10 years to 780 square feet.

Colorado Springs renters have found they have an increased amount of elbow room than in many other cities, the RentCafe study shows.

Apartments constructed over the last decade in the Springs averaged 953 square feet, a 136-square-foot jump over that period. That was the 12th biggest gain among cities in the RentCafe study.

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One reason for Colorado Springs' increase might be that apartments built over the last decade have been part of large complexes, with two- and three-bedroom units, developed in fast-growing, suburban areas, said Gary Winegar, investment services president for Griffis/Blessing, the Springs real estate company that manages thousands of Front Range apartments.

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Larger cities with denser populations and less developable land tend to see smaller units in multistory buildings, Winegar said. Those projects are constructed on infill sites in urban areas for renters who might not need much more than a place to sleep and who might not even have cars, he said.ย  ย ย 

"Weโ€™re different; we have land," Winegar said.

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Also, micro-apartments โ€” which the Urban Land Institute, a national planning organization, describes as small studios typically less than 350 square feetย โ€” have never really caught on in Colorado Springs, he said.

"That was a trend in places like San Francisco and New York, some of the really big metro areas," Winegar said.

Denver apartments, meanwhile, also grew in size over the last decade, though at a smaller clip than the Springs.

RentCafe's study shows Denver apartments averaged 850 square feet over the last decade, a 43-square-foot increase.

In Colorado Springs, thousands of apartments have been built in recent years, while 2022 was an especially active year for multifamily development.ย The Pikes Peak Regional Building Department issued 130 permits in 2022 for the addition of almost 5,000 new apartments โ€” a record high for a single year.