Dimke, Christine; Lee, Marissa C.; Bayham, Jude
The COVID-19 pandemic has had broad impacts on American society. As remote work became increasingly common and population density became a liability, many people reconsidered where they live. Using mobile device data, we document the influx of people to rural areas with high scenic and recreational amenities. While an influx of people to these areas led to an early rise in COVID-19 cases and deaths, that effect was short-lived. Since mid-April, these rural areas with high amenities have experienced substantially lower disease burden. We conclude with a discussion of the risks and opportunities posed by this influx to rural communities.