Walking 6,000 Miles in the City

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

William Helmreich has walked virtually every block of all five boroughs of New York--an astonishing 6,000 miles. He spoke with hundreds of New Yorkers from every part of the globe and from every walk of life, including Mayor Michael Bloomberg and former mayors Rudolph Giuliani, David Dinkins, and Edward Koch. He tells their stories in his book The New York Nobody Knows: Walking 6,000 Miles in the City.


William Helmreich
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Comments [13]

Bel from Brooklyn from Brooklyn~

Totally agree. Hard to believe this guy is actually a professor at an accredited institution.

Dec. 19 2013 10:02 AM
Bel from Brooklyn from Brooklyn

Your guest's over simplification of police interaction and gentrification is incredible for a sociologist. The NYPD doesn't tell the "bad guys" to leave the new comers alone- they stop & frisk them, incarcerate them and leave them unemployable with a 20% unemployment rate for men of color in these now desired neighborhoods. I was a victim of both gentrification and white flight, first in Boston and then in Brooklyn. Both devastate communities and have negative social and development effects on the people- old and young and love with instability and in security.

Dec. 18 2013 11:52 PM
Doxie from 3beca

Excellent guest and interview!

Dec. 18 2013 03:16 PM

FYI - for art525 on Neir's Bar in Woodhaven -

A debunk from a Mae West site:

Dec. 18 2013 02:02 PM
Amy from Manhattan

How's this for gentrification: A few months ago, someone opened a "dental spa" in my neighborhood!

Dec. 18 2013 01:55 PM
jf from reality

The crime was a result of the lead paint and lead in gasoline.

Dec. 18 2013 01:55 PM
carolanyc from Bed-Stuy

I don't think that gentrification is responsible for the revitalization of the city. Neighborhoods such as the Village, Williamsburg and Soho became attractive because the artists moved there because it was the only area they could afford, and then they became 'hip' and the rents went up.

As one of those lower income people who was displaced from Williamsburg in 2001, I moved to Bed-Stuy, which is now gentrifying like crazy because it's the 'new Williamsburg.' The only reason I can afford to stay is that I have a kind landlord who, unlike the one in Williamsburg, has chosen not to raise my rent.

Dec. 18 2013 01:55 PM
Wayne Johnson Ph.D. from Bk

Gentrification: It's not a mystery, people leave because they are priced out.

Dec. 18 2013 01:50 PM


Dec. 18 2013 01:43 PM
antonio from baySide

I'd have to say my two favorite streets are Fiske Pl and Polhemus Pl. So tranquil.

Dec. 18 2013 01:32 PM
Wally from NY

I was expecting a breezy overview of the different areas you saw while on your walks. Reading about the hatred, distrust and suspicion one immigrant group has toward other groups was depressing. It’s a fascinating book, but I was surprised at how brutally frank you are about the motivations of the various groups that make up the 5 boroughs.

Dec. 18 2013 12:41 PM
art525 from Park Slope

I have been following a website for some time about a guy who is walking every street and every block in NYC. I assume it's not the same guy, as this walker says he doesn't have a permanent residence and relies on friends to provide a couch. Amazing that more than one person has set out to walk the whole thing. And fascinating. One example- he came across a small corner bar out in Queens where Mae West started her preforming career. The website is

Dec. 18 2013 12:14 PM
George from Brooklyn

Have people complained about increased rents?

Dec. 18 2013 08:40 AM

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