Is New York an island? Relevant geographical information about NYC
The geography of New York City is represented by its coastal position. It’s position is at the meeting of the Hudson River and the Atlantic Ocean in a naturally harbor. The city’s geography, with its scarce availability of land, is a contributing factor in making New York the most densely populated major city in the United States. Even if this information is quite clear, the most common question still arises: is New York an island or not?
New York City has five boroughs. While Manhattan and Staten Island are islands, Brooklyn and Queens are geographically part of Long Island. The Bronx is part to the US mainland and the island links the mainland by bridges, tunnels and ferries.
Short geography lesson about New York City
Manhattan is roughly 13.4 miles (20 km) long and about 2.3 miles (4 km) wide at its widest. Except at its northern and southern tips, the borough’s avenues run roughly north and south, and streets run east and west. Fifth Avenue divides the island into east and west sides (for example, locations on 57th Street west of Fifth Avenue are designated “W. 57th St.,” and east of Fifth Avenue, they’re “E. 57th St.”). As you move farther east or west from Fifth Avenue, street addresses increase, usually in increments of 100 from one block to the next.
The city’s land area has approximately 321 square miles (830 km2). However, a more recent estimate calculates a total land area of 304.8 square miles (789.4 square kilometres). Today, more than 8 million New Yorkers live in the five boroughs–more than one-third of whom were born outside the United States. Thanks to the city’s diversity and vibrant intellectual life, it remains the cultural capital of the United States.
The five boroughs of New York City
- The Bronx is New York City’s northernmost borough. It is the birthplace of rap and hip hop culture. Except for a small piece of Manhattan, the Bronx is the only section of the city that is part of the North American mainland.
- Brooklyn is the city’s most populous borough and was an independent city until 1898. The borough also features a long beachfront and Coney Island, famous as one of the earliest amusement grounds in the country.
- Manhattan is the most densely populated borough and home to most of the city’s skyscrapers. The borough contains the major business centers of the city and many cultural attractions.
- Queens is geographically the largest borough and the most ethnically diverse county in the United States. Historically a collection of small towns and villages, the borough today is mainly residential and middle class, with enclaves of above average income and wealth.
- Staten Island is the most suburban in character of the five boroughs.