Manhattan

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Manhattan skyline at night.
Total Population: 1,629,054
Population Density: 70,951/sq mi (27,394.3/km2)
Area: 22.96 sq mi (59.5 km2) Land, 10.81 sq mi (28 km2) Water, 33.77 sq mi (87.5 km2) Total

Manhattan Overview

The smallest and oldest borough, it is the most dense in population. It is certainly the most densely populated area of the United States and even one of the most densely populated areas in the world. It is also one of the wealthiest counties in the United States, with a 2005 personal income per capita above $100,000. Manhattan is the third-largest of New York's five boroughs in population, and its smallest borough in size.

The original city of New York began at the southern end of Manhattan, expanded northwards and then, between 1874 and 1898, incorporated land from surrounding counties. Comprised of an island surrounded by Spuyten Duyvil Creek and the Harlem River, the Hudson River, Upper New York Bay, and the East River, Manhattan is approximately 33 square miles in size and also includes a small portion of the Bronx and several small adjacent islands in the East River including: Roosevelt Island, Randall's Island, Wards Island, Governors Island, Liberty Island, part of Ellis Island, Mill Rock, and U Thant Island; as well as Marble Hill.

Manhattan is a major commercial, financial, and cultural center of both the United States and the world. Anchored by Wall Street, in Lower Manhattan, New York City vies with the City of London as the financial capital of the world and is home of both the New York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ. Many major radio, television, and telecommunications companies in the United States are based here, as well as many news, magazine, book, and other media publishers.

Manhattan has many famous landmarks, tourist attractions, museums, and universities. It is also home to the headquarters of the United Nations. It is the center of New York City and the New York metropolitan region, hosting the seat of city government and a large portion of the area's employment, business, and entertainment activities. As a result, residents of New York City's other boroughs such as Staten Island, Brooklyn, the Bronx, and Queens often refer to a trip to Manhattan as "going to the city", despite the comparable populations between those boroughs.

Geography and Grid Plan

Manhattan is loosely divided into Downtown, Midtown, and Uptown, with Fifth Avenue dividing Manhattan's east and west sides. Manhattan Island is bounded by the Hudson River to the west and the East River to the east. To the north, the Harlem River divides Manhattan from The Bronx and the mainland United States.

Manhattan has fixed vehicular connections with New Jersey to the west by way of the George Washington Bridge, Holland Tunnel, and Lincoln Tunnel, and to three of the four other New York City boroughs—the Bronx to the northeast and Brooklyn and Queens on Long Island to the east and south. Its only direct connection with the fifth New York City borough is the Staten Island Ferry across New York Harbor, which is free of charge. The ferry terminal is located near Battery Park at its southern tip. It is possible to travel to Staten Island by way of Brooklyn, using the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge.

The Commissioners' Plan of 1811, called for twelve numbered avenues running north and south roughly parallel to the shore of the Hudson River, each 100 feet (30 m) wide, with First Avenue on the east side and Twelfth Avenue in the west. There are several intermittent avenues east of First Avenue, including four additional lettered avenues running from Avenue A eastward to Avenue D in an area now known as Alphabet City adjacent to Manhattan's East Village. The numbered streets in Manhattan run east-west, and are 60 feet (18 m) wide, with about 200 feet (61 m) between each pair of streets. With each combined street and block adding up to about 260 feet (79 m), there are almost exactly 20 blocks per mile. The typical block in Manhattan is 250 by 600 feet (180 m). Fifteen crosstown streets were designated as 100 feet (30 m) wide, including 34th, 42nd, 57th and 125th Streets, some of the borough's most significant transportation and shopping venues. Broadway is the most notable of many exceptions to the grid, starting at Bowling Green in Lower Manhattan and continuing north into the Bronx at Manhattan's northern tip. In much of Midtown Manhattan, Broadway runs at a diagonal to the grid, creating major named intersections at Union Square, Herald Square (Sixth Avenue and 34th Street), Times Square (Seventh Avenue and 42nd Street), and Columbus Circle (Eighth Avenue/Central Park West and 59th Street).

Neighborhoods

See: Manhattan Neighborhoods, Manhattan Neighborhoods Map.

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