New York at a Glance
New York City: NeighborhoodsFotolia
Manhattan is the backdrop of many an expat's dreams of making it.
Manhattan´s skyline, dominated by world-famous skyscrapers housing the headquarters of countless corporations and the US branches of many a multinational company, is among the most famous on the whole globe. It will be familiar to everybody thinking of relocating to New York.
The UN headquarters, the Empire State Building, the Chrysler Building, and Wall Street are probably among Manhattan´s most defining features. But the borough also has an abundance of cultural attractions, such as the Guggenheim Museum and the Museum of Modern Art, the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, and Broadway.
It is densely populated and not the most popular borough among families. However, Manhattan neighborhoods such as the Lower East Side and the East Village rank comparatively high in “livability” indexes. They mainly attract a youngish crowd of bohemians and professionals who value the exciting nightlife of the area.
Tribeca scores high in many categories such as good public schools, fantastic transport links and very low crime rates. It is thus an attractive option for families in Manhattan, although only the wealthiest can afford to live there.
Brooklyn and Queens
Brooklyn is the most populous borough and home to people of various cultural, social and ethnic backgrounds. It boasts its very own arts scene, a great deal of noteworthy architecture as well as Coney Island, one of the oldest amusements parks in the country, located on Brooklyn´s long beachfront.
Some neighborhoods recommended for families are Park Slope, Cobble Hill, and Boerum Hill, all of which have low crime statistics, a lot of green spaces and good public schools. While prices for accommodation are not cheap, they reflect good value for money.
Queens is the largest borough in terms of surface area and the most ethnically diverse community in the whole country. The growing population is a good indicator for the popularity of Queens’ mostly residential and middle class neighborhoods, among them Sunny Side, Woodside, and Jackson Heights. Queens is also home to two of New York´s international airports, the John F. Kennedy Airport and La Guardia Airport.
Bronx and Staten Island
Despite numerous new development projects and an ongoing regeneration process, the Bronx is probably still the least desirable borough to live in. Arguably most famous for being the cradle of hip hop and rap, the Bronx still has a vibrant street culture.
The median household income is lower than elsewhere in New York, and the quality of housing can vary greatly. However, the derelict facades of abandoned buildings, which were such a common sight in the 1980s, are now a thing of the past. Among the more attractive neighborhoods are Riverdale and Co-op City, but commutes to Manhattan are long.
Staten Island is the most suburban of New York´s boroughs. Public transport in general is below average. The subway does not operate there and the only mass transit linking Staten Island to Manhattan is the free Staten Island ferry, popular with commuters and tourists alike. Due to their proximity to Manhattan, neighborhoods like West New Brighton or St George on the North Shore are particularly desirable.