Zachary Halaschak writes for the Washington Examiner about one sign of Florida’s continued popularity.

In downtown Naples, nearly every street along the turquoise waterfront has an active construction project, whether a new home or a remodel.

Almost every part of Collier County, southwest Florida, and South Florida more generally has only been expanding more after people began relocating to the Sunshine State to escape pandemic restrictions in the rest of the country.

Naples, a city of about 20,000 people, is part of the much larger Collier region, which boasts some 375,000 residents as of the 2020 census. “Naples,” which is now the name used to reference much of the county west of Interstate 75 even beyond city limits, has become an in-demand locale for out-of-staters attracted to the wealth, coastal lifestyle, and hot labor market.

The area is a major contrast to other parts of the country. The National Association of Homebuilders last year declared a nationwide “housing recession,” which is expected to deepen next year as higher mortgage rates have put home buying out of reach for many sales and slowed starts of new construction.

In San Jose, California, for instance — long one of the hottest housing markets, thanks to the long ascent of nearby Silicon Valley — housing prices have fallen 8.8% over the past year, according to Redfin. Prices have dropped 4% in New York City and 4.6% in Los Angeles.

Prices have declined more than 16% in Austin, Texas, which was also a popular pandemic destination, rivaling Florida.

But South Florida is defying those trends. Naples has seen 13.1% growth over the past year, and Miami has had prices rise 7.6%. In Fort Myers, prices have climbed nearly 14% in the past year alone — astonishing growth that cuts against the national housing recession narrative.

“Despite what is happing nationally, this market here is really its own situation outside of the national picture,” Chris Spina, owner and president of Spina Realty Company, told the Washington Examiner while standing in the foyer of a $14 million home located just a short walk from the beach.