New York City is known as the “melting pot” of the United States, but just how many foreign born residents are there and where do they live? This is what the NYU Furman Center has tackled in a recently released map, tracking the 37% of New York City residents (from the 2010-2014 American Community Survey) who have come from another country. This is up more than 1% from the 2000 data. Each dot in the map represents 500 residents born in the respective country by Census tract.
Looking at the top 10 countries of origin, the Dominican Republic takes the top spot at 13% of foreign-born residents. Many fled political instability in the mid-2oth century and settled in Upper Manhattan neighborhoods like Washington Heights and Inwood, and in the South Bronx. Well-known as well are the real estate pressures facing the immigrant populations residing in the last bastions of somewhat affordable real estate in Manhattan.
Not surprisingly, the Chinese population follows closely at 12% of the foreign born population, living in neighborhoods like Chinatown, Flushing and Sunset Park, with strong economic and employment links between the three. Mexican immigrants are just half that, at 6% of the foreign born population, concentrated in Upper Manhattan, the Bronx, and parts of Brooklyn. Queens has a diverse mix of foreign born populations, “including concentrations of New Yorkers from Jamaica, Guyana, Ecuador, India, Bangladesh, and many other nations,” reports the Furman Center. In 2000, 46.1% of the population in Queens was foreign born and by 2011 it was at 47.8%.
The percentage of foreign born residents in New York City has ebbed and flowed, responding of course to both national policies and political conditions abroad. The highest was in 1910, at 40.8%, the lowest in 1970 at 18.2%. Since 1980, where it was at 23.6% the figure has climbed steadily to the 37% it is as of 2014.