New York County (Manhattan), New York

Monday, April 26, 2010 - 11:20 AM

Listen to the segment here!

Your Anecdotal Census: A People's History of the New York City Area 2000-2010

Tell us about change that matters in your community. Here are some possible questions to answer:

How is your community different today than it was 10 years ago?

Who's moving in and who's moving out? 

How has the housing boom/housing bust changed your community?

How have the politics of your community changed? If power has shifted in your community, how and why?

How has 9/11 changed your community? 

Do you have a story about change in your own life over the last decade that you think represents a larger trend?

What's an untold story of change in your community that needs to be told? 

Dante's Take

As part of the Patchwork Nation project, Dante Chinni has been exploring demographic trends around the country. He tells us what to watch for in New York County...

→ Visit the New York County page on Patchwork Nation for lots more!

By The Numbers:

What story do you think this data tells? Do you think the data reflects what's really going on in your community?

New York County, NY1980199020002008/2009
Total Population 1,428,285 1,487,536 1,537,395 1,629,054
Median Household Income (2008 adjusted dollars) $41,300 $56,000 $60,800 $68,402
% Foreign Born 24.4% 25.8% 29.4% 28.1%
% Under 18 Years Old 17.8% 16.6% 16.8% 17.0%

Explore the Maps:

New York, NY - Median Household Income (2007) - Go to the Interactive Maps at Social Explorer

More Resources:

US Census Bureau QuickFacts

Social Explorer

More in:

Comments [23]

Jack from Lower East Side

Along with the sack and pillage of the "village" by the developers-it is now impossible to walk on the sidewalks or negotiate the streets without extreme concern for one's personal safety.The "green is good gang" has created a perilous environment with cyclists-working, primarily but also recreational and commuter-gone rubber wild.The DOT has been taken over by Transportation Alternatives.The NYPD seemingly restrained from enforcement by this administration. After the blitz of amenities it is time to move authentically toward a responsible bike culture. I am -pro bike-former bike shop owner on Ave A.

Aug. 03 2010 08:22 AM
Meg from East Village

What has changed in my community is that all the new coop owners in my only so-so, hardly luxurious building decided that I, as a senior citizen and renter, should be evicted; their conduct about this matter was so silly, shallow and clueless that the morale of the building has been permanently shattered by it. They seemed to assume that if they wanted something to happen, it would happen—especially if they felt they held the better financial cards. This could only have happened had I been so intimidated by their only moderate prosperity and not-even-moderate levels of education that I would have simply meekly acceded to their demand that I disappear. Preferably die and disappear.

Not that these new coop owners aren’t clean and well-dressed and all. They are very clean and presentable, very well-groomed, well tailored. Very clean. But not a lot else is happening. They spend a lot of time having brunch, shopping at Whole Foods, and going to the gym. I am the only person in the building to subscribe to the New York Times. I am seemingly the only person in the building who regularly goes to the opera, the ballet, the theater, museums on a regular basis. And they would still just love to get rid of me, because I really am not the kind of person who is happy spending any time in a shopping mall, and I am too busy teaching and writing to go to the gym. And I don’t do brunch. Which means I am not their sort of person at all--why, they wonder, can't they just get RID of me? Why is life SO unfair, they wonder?

This is the big change I have seen in NYC--a trend? Looks like it to me.

Jul. 10 2010 02:46 PM
Nicole Root from Washington Heights

In 2000, when I first went to check out an apartment on 157th and Riverside, I was called a "cracker b--h" when I got out of the subway. There weren't too many white people up here at the time. My building consisted of at least 50 years of residents who had stayed throughout the neighborhood's many transitions: African American, Puerto Rican, Jewish, South American and Dominican. A few young kids were beginning to share apartments in the neighborhood, but left once the bubble burst, moving back with their parents or to Brooklyn. By 2005, an even more transient population of Columbia students began to take over many apartments. White middle class families started to move in, displacing the long-time residents and low-income newcomers like myself.

According to local talk, some buildings offer special deals to prospective white renters. Commercial landlords are raising rents on locally owned small businesses and in many cases, pushing them out.

Even though I see many, many more middle class white people on the subway, there is still a lot of diversity in the Heights, for now. There is a major risk of the area turning into an extension of the very homogenous and upscale Upper West Side. (See 'lower Harlem') For now, I can still walk down the street and not see a single ironic t-shirt or trip over a cluster of nanny-driven strollers. I'm not sure that will last much longer.

Jul. 01 2010 12:14 PM
Jim Pharo from East Harlem

The biggest change is the increase in real property values -- even though the last two years have seen a modest decline. The biggest impact has been on the retail stores, etc. More high-end residents mean fewer customers of moderate stores, and higher real property values means higher retail rents -- which means fewer moderate-cost stores, etc.

I think the story in the next five years will be the decline of street-level retail. The "food truck" phenomenon is a consequence of retail space simply being priced too high for productive uses. We have so many empty store fronts, and think how many that are occupied are banks -- how long can all those banks afford all that retail real estate, when the basic retail bank model doesn't really require a bricks-and-mortar presence.

The collapse of the Manhattan retail market -- watch for it!

Jun. 23 2010 12:47 PM
julia Whedon from 76th and First Avenue

Biggest changes over ten years in the east 70's...influx of massive strollers and multiple births...disappearing population of the eldery...banks and chain drugstores everywhere.. flashy new apartment buildings offering five and six bedrooms for millions of dollars...subway construction...small stores quickly opening and closing...snazzy new buses and the usual long waits for same..oblivious fast-paced pedestrians on cells phones talking, talking and texting, texting...vanishing New York accents except for work crews who alone know how to relax and lunch...more teens gathering on street corners from Wagner, Lycee, and my personal favorite so-called "El Ro" (Eleanor Roosevelt). Big changes from the days of Houdini and Jimmy Cagney, former locals.

Jun. 21 2010 11:04 AM
sandy from Union Square area

I've lived in the same building for 40+ years and have seen almost everything in my neighborhood from druggies & drunks (99.9% extinct) to park beautification (Stuyvesant Park & Union Sq. Park) but in the past 10 years the area has become so congested, (mostly due to additional NYU housing), that it often impossible to walk on 14th Street, 3rd AVe & 2nd Ave at any time of day or night...and it has become much noisier and is getting younger and younger .

Jun. 16 2010 03:02 PM
frances from Albuquerque

I moved to Tribeca in 1980, right out of college -- from New Mexico. I remember the cab driver saying, "Are you sure this is where you want to go?" Come to think of it, a cab driver asked the same thing of me 1983, when I was attending a party on Ave. D.

I remember weekend volleyball games on Greenwich Street (in front of the beautiful new Greenwich Hotel which used to be a parking lot next to Farmer Bros. Coffee) on the weekends, and community barbecue at Puffy's. (Glad to see it's still there.)

The West Side Highway walkway/bike path is magnificent.

I moved to Albuquerque 4 years ago, and in many ways it reminds me of Tribeca of 30 years ago. Lots of theater companies (30!), in fact, a former director of the Ohio Theater lives here now. Tons of music and music venues, and PLENTY of New Yorkers like myself who have moved here.

It's not New York, but it too, has a pioneer spirit and no shortage of creative people and places to be seen and heard.

Heed Patti Smith's advice: Detroit, Poughkeepsie.. . . and I"ll add my own: Albuquerque

Jun. 11 2010 06:33 PM
Gera from Upper West Side

Since 1972, I have considered the area from Columbus Circle to W.90th street from Central Park West to Riverside Drive my neighborhood. At that time the inner areas here were a really rundown area with the exception of Lincoln Center. Over the years, it has become yuppified and high rises have been erected.
However,during the Bloomberg administration, the place has been beautified. The center of Broadway has become a lush garden. Previously only W. 67th Street stood out for its trees but now many of the side streets have become tree lined and many have flowers around the trees. Through the efforts of the Doe Fund and the Business District people the streets are kept cleaner than ever.
Lincoln Center/Julliard have become more welcoming and beautiful.
The Central Park Conservancy has performed miracles with Central Park.
Also walking up Broadway, one sees many more minorities looking at home.

Tremendous improvement but most of the mom and pop stores are gone. People still rides their bikes on the sidewalk on CPW instead of using the bike lane and tourists by the busloads block the sidewalks instead of moving to the side.

May. 26 2010 11:32 AM
bob from manhattPr

Bars, bars, bars---the amount of bars that have opened up in the city in the past few years is staggering---I find it particularly noticeable in the East Village, where there seems to be at least one bar on every street, but walk down a block in Williamsburg or read about the Fourth Avenue corridor in Park Slope, and it is the same thing. Walk down a street with an empty storefront, then come back to it two months later, and behold, there is the latest "tavern". These bars seem totally recession proof-----are they.....?
Bars seem totally recession proof. Are they....?

May. 24 2010 08:35 AM
Kathleen from Morningside Heights

The change I see can be summed up rather simply: luxury glass condos and chain stores in, mom and pop's out. Patti Smith is right, New York City has turned into a playground for the rich. The intensity, the diversity, the edge I moved here for, is gone.

May. 19 2010 12:01 PM
David Asch from Upper West Side-Trump Place

I live on 66th and Riverside Blvd in theTrump Place complex on Riverside Boulevard (between 71 St and soon to be 63rd St). Freedom Place used to be the "back alley" of Lincoln Towers with a fence looking down at the rail yards. There are now 9 "new buildings" the first of which went up around 1998. The buildings have some nice amenities. The "real" Upper West Side is just a block or so away. The area is ethnically diverse but houses mostly middle-upper to upper income level. We now have a supermarket and some other services. The park below is called Riverside Park South which among other things boasts a bicycle-free pedestrian path and pier/cafe along the river. Despite the noise from the West Side highway above it and the uninteresting monolithic architecture, I have come to enjoy this mini-enclave, having lived in 6 other Manhattan neighborhoods including the West Village, Midtown, W 80's, W 90's and Brooklyn. I think I will not stay here forever, however and someday long to be in a real neighborhood in Brooklyn like Carroll Gdns, Park Slope or Williamsburg, which are more my style.

May. 05 2010 01:07 PM
Tim from Hell's Kitchen from W. 51st St.

Ninth avenue has changed radically in the past ten years. But the changes had begun way before that.

It is now the land of restaurants and bars. Deli's,
hardware stores and all the independent drug stores
have closed. Even the new restaurants open and close quickly. Rents are surely astronomical which is why many of the new business's are corporately owned: Duane Reade, Dunkin Donuts, etc.

There are still numerous residents who have been born and bred in the neighborhood but there has also been a huge influx of younger people who are responsible for keeping the majority of the new bars and restaurants afloat.

Residential rents have also gone flying high like in so many Manhattan neighborhoods. I think an average studio apartment probably goes for about $1400.00 dollars a month. And that is not a lot of square feet.

What do these young people do for a living? I don't know but the proliferation of luxury condos in the area speaks volumes about their income. for sure they are not waiters, dishwashers and probably not artists. It looks to me like whatever artistic community thrived in this neighborhood has mostly evaporated. There still remain some scraps here and there but Hell's Kitchen would not be known as 'artist friendly' in my opinion.

I love the city and I know change has always been a huge portion on the menu that makes New York great but (and this word is so overused) the 'edge' has definitely been dulled. I believe I used to sense a general thirst for knowledge, an interest in reaching past the known boundaries. Unfortunately those qualities appear to have vanished like reasonable rents.

May. 05 2010 11:36 AM
dorothy koppelman from 14 Wooster Street

My husband, Chaim Koppelman and I moved into what is now SoHo in 1963. We were pioneers, fighting the Broome Street Expressway, and so the artists finally got a legal place to live and work. The artists brought the galleries, like Ivan Karp's Hell's hundred Acres, Paula Cooper and the Tderrain Gallery, which is still on Greene Street. at the not-for-profit Aesthetic Realism Foundation The neighborhood has become a place to shop, buy clothes, etc. a market place. But the artists are still here and people come from all over the world to SoHo. We hear so many different languages, see the variety of the world here. And artists are still working high up in the beautiful cast-ioron buildings we all worked to save from destruction.

May. 04 2010 12:17 PM
Anita from Morningside Heights

I live in the Columbia University neighborhood. Never mind it is officially Morningside Heights. A university neighborhood is, or should I say was, a special place. Since 9/11 those many of us who live here, not just take classes here, have been shut out of the life of the university. Without an active ID card, we are now made to feel like trespassers. The cohesive cultural, intellectual, political heartbeat of my neighborhood has been muffled, almost snuffed out.

May. 04 2010 12:02 PM
Debra from Soho

Hi there you guys, you are always on the perpiral of what everybody is thinking about and that is why I love you! I moved to Soho just after 9/11 with my family, we knew it was not going to be like the neighborhood we left beind in Tribeca. Since moving here, we are a block behind Broadaway. The Jewish trim and Fabric shops have all but disappeared, making way for the generic sneaker stores...Now the rent has got to high for them, and Bloomingdales, Top shop, and H&M seem to dictate the rents. I never thought Soho would cave into a Gap, but it has sadly. All my friends have moved to Brooklyn, for the ideals they moved to Soho for 20 odd years ago, when artists still lived in the hood. We have lost all our local diners, making way for trendy restuarants and bars, that only last whilst they are flavor of the month..We have also lost our car parks, every one of them giving way to a boutique hotel, maybe getting rid of the car was a positive thing. We have concrete playgrounds and dog runs. I just wish there was somebody in our city planning that would just think of the long term effect of what will happen to Soho, and start thinking of creating a greener family enviroment. Its sad that even after living here for 9 years and frequenting the local Starbucks they never ever give you the faintest of nods of reconition we are all just tourist to them....

May. 04 2010 11:57 AM
Rajakh Ndoye from Dumbo

There was once a little quiet corner on 116st and Pleasant Ave., which is east of first avenue next to the east river and is only about 6 blocks in length. It is known for having a little tiny Italian restaurant where real life "hits" have taken place. This hidden corner is now home to a gigantic mall that overlooks the east river. I have not been there on ground level since moving out before the mall was built, but I cant imagine how it fits into one of the most isolated areas of east Harlem.

May. 04 2010 11:51 AM
Charles Townsend from West Harlem (Sugar Hill)

Since 2001 I can get brown rice in neighborhood Chinese restaurants as well as white rice. I've lived here for over 25 years and I used to have to go below 96th street to get brown rice. Is this because of gentrification and appealing to the tastes younger, richer whites who've moved to Harlem? I don't know but it's nice to have more choices.

May. 04 2010 11:50 AM
Elyse from UWS

I'm thinking about the artistic community, which even a decade or two ago was able to thrive in Manhattan. Particularly south of 14th St. When I came to NYC, you could still find apartments under $1K in Manhattan to share and there were numerous venues popping up throughout Downtown that supported young theatre artists and risk-taking work. Due to astronomical rent increases, that's no longer the case, and the closing of the Ohio Theatre this summer is particularly a hard blow. This past weekend, Patti Smith advised young artists over the weekend that "New York has closed itself off to the young and the struggling. But there are other cities. Detroit. Poughkeepsie. New York City has been taken away from you. So my advice is: Find a new city."

May. 04 2010 11:44 AM
Kevin from 24th street and 6th avenue

The corner of 24/6 used to have Billy's Topless.

Then it was Billy Stopless (trying to get away with stripping with a slight name change)

Now it's a bagel store.

May. 04 2010 11:43 AM
Sally from NYc

I know the segment is about Manhattan, but in looking at the Dominican population, I think looking at Lawrence Massachusetts is crucial. Many go from the DR to Washington Heights and then quickly --few months or so to Lawrence Mass which has an increasing percentage of Dominicans making up their population. I think there is even a direct bus from Wash Heights to Lawrence--10 bucks or so.

May. 04 2010 11:42 AM
Katsumi Kishida from Harlem

I move to Harlem in 2001. It has changed so much in the past decade. I used to be the only few non african/african-american in the neighborhood and would stand out every time I walked the streets. Since about 3 to 4 years ago, different races have started moving in this area diversifying the population. It is not longer predominantly african/african-american and now I see other races and families of other races (mainly white and asian) living in the area. My friend and I even play a game where we sit at our favorite restaurant and comment on things like "a group of young white mothers with strollers!" which was a sight never seen a decade ago in this area. Now the area I live in (8th avenue and west 116th) is called South Harlem (to separate its fancy self from the Harlem image) and we have expensive condos being built, a starbucks as well as a high end supermarket! It is really incredible to see the change.

May. 04 2010 11:25 AM
Bobby G from East Village

I've lived in this community for thirty years. In the past ten my 35 apartment building has transformed from 90% Puertorican and Dominican to 90% white.

Many empty lots now have have buildings -- both low income and market rates.

May. 04 2010 11:23 AM
Roxie from zip 10016

I've lived in Murray Hill for 25 years. My rental doorman building, on Park and 35th, used to have older folks, Jewish and Wasp. Now we have many young upwardly mobile Asian couples moving in. Not many Hispanic, African-American, Indian, Eastern European.
(I used to have a painting studio on Union Square (for 20 years). In 1985 you could roll a bowling ball down Bway and not hit anyone on a weekend. Now it's full of baby carriages, shoppers, restaurant-goers etc. Had to move studio to Long Island City.)

May. 04 2010 11:23 AM

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