The 5 boroughs of New York city
A borough is a town or district with an administrative unit. In the United States, it is simply a type of administration or a local government that has been set up below the State level. The term is used across various states in the USA for example in Alaska it has been used to describe a county-equivalent while in States such as Connecticut, New Jersey and Pennslyvania it has been used to describe a Municipality. In New York City and the State of Virginia, a borough has been used to describe a subdivision of a consolidated city that is corresponding to either a previous or present political subdivision.
New York City is comprised of five boroughs namely, Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens, Bronx and Staten Island. These boroughs are part of New York’s counties, that is, Manhattan is part of New York County, Staten Island belongs to Richmond County, Brooklyn is part of the King’s County, the Bronx is a part of Bronx County while Queens is a part of the County of Queens.
Prior to the formation of these boroughs, they were just small settlements with each having its own system of governance. This became a problem for the City as a whole which led to the consolidation of these settlements in 1898 where boundaries were set up leading to the creation of boroughs. Consequently, a mayor was appointed to oversee activities in all the five boroughs.
Each borough had to elect its own president but their powers are limited to only their respective boroughs and are inferior to those of the Mayor or citywide government. The presidents would go on to appoint members of the Local Community board. For effective legal filings and judicial purposes, these boroughs are treated as separate counties.
1. Manhattan - New York County
This is the smallest borough in New York City with a land area of 22.8 square miles and also the most populated with a population of around 1,664, 727. It derives its name from the Indian Language Lenape which means "Land of Hills."
The borough is surrounded by the East, Harlem and Hudson River and comprises of twelve districts. Due to its central location in New York City, it plays as the headquarter of most Multinational Companies. It is also the main financial, administrative and cultural center of New York City. It is through this that many people have come to describe it as the Capital center of media, entertainment, culture, and finance around the world. The borough is also famous for its skyscrapers as well as its prominent landmarks. This landmarks are unique in nature and can hardly go unnoticed and they include the Times Square, Central Park, South Street Seaport, and the Columbus Circle among others. It is also home Hell’s Kitchen, Alphabet city among others.
2. Staten Island - Richmond County
Through the free commuter ferry, one has a perfect view of the Lower Manhattan, Statue of Liberty and the Ellis Island. This is the most ideal tourist destination for those who are looking for a private getaway away from the city noise.
3. Queens - Queens County
Located to the east of Long Island and covering a land area of around 284 square kilometers, it is the largest borough and has a population of about 2,358,582. The borough was named after the Portuguese Princess(Catherine of Braganza) who was the then Queen of England in 1683. It is the most diverse borough among the rest in terms of its ethnicity and has also been recognized as the most diverse urban area in the world ethnically. This diversity is also experienced in the different types of food served, their art as well as their music. It plays host to the U.S tennis open tournament. Additionally, it hosts one of the busiest airports in New York namely: Laguardia Airport and the John F. Kennedy International Airport. Accommodations here tend to be quite cheap
4. Bronx - Bronx County
Named after Jonas Bronk this borough is located on the northern part of New York City and it is the only borough that is located on the mainland. The borough covers a land area of 42.4 square miles (109.8square kilometers) and a population of about 1,417,160 or thereabout. It plays host to Co-op City which is the largest Cooperatively owned housing complex in the USA. The borough experienced a steep decline in the 1960s due to major projects that went wrong such as the Bronx Expressway and this had a significant impact on the county such as lack of accessibility by public transit. The county has made significant strides to recover from the depression and is slowly developing. While there one can visit the famous Bronx Zoo, Woodlawn Cemetery as well as the New York Botanical garden.
5. Brooklyn - Kings County
This borough is Located to the west side of the Long Island. It is also the most populated, with a population of about 2,648,771 covering a land mass of about 185 square kilometers. The borough got its name from Dutch settlers who decided to name it Breuckelen after a town in the Netherlands. In the past decade, the borough has grown into becoming a hotbed for technology start-up firms, post-modern art, and design as well as entrepreneurship. It has become a major tourist attraction center due to its unique parks (Prospect Park and the Marine Park), restaurants, markets, and also its inspiring music. Additionally, it is the home to Coney Islands which was established in 1870 and plays hosts to both the local and international tourists. The borough is connected to Manhattan by the Brooklyn Bridge.