Valenzuela- Assignment 5
By Sarah Valenzuela
September 22, 2015
Map of NYC boroughs and the Community Districts within them
Community Districts were created in 1975 in order to better serve the growing diversity of the city. Some districts are bigger than others based on population size and territory. The bigger the circle represents the bigger the district size. Community Districts are responsible for the budgeting, community planning, public access to tools, and land use of the district territory. In total there are 59 Districts. While there are more than 59 bubbles, we assume the data also accounts for number districts close together. So bigger bubbles may account for more than one district as well as population size.
Let’s start small with Staten Island. If you zoom into that part of the map, you’ll notice there are only 3 bubbles. This makes sense because Staten Island’s population size is significantly smaller to the rest of the boroughs, therefore less to account for.
But let’s zoom out again and now zoom in on the boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens which both have the highest number of bubbles on the map. This make take a little bit of background in information in order to understand. Queens and Brooklyn account for the bulk of the population of New York City and are also the most diverse areas in the entire world. They also have a history of crime and neglect. Back in the 60s,70s, and 80s, New York City as a whole was not a friendly place. The neighborhoods that were known to be highly crime ridden and full of drugs and poverty were much larger than they are now. Today, these neighborhoods still exist largely in Queens and Brooklyn and the Bronx. But for now we’ll focus on Queens and Brooklyn to stick with population size.
To clarify: most of these two boroughs are very residential. So why do community districts appear so large in bubble size aside from population? Well with greater population comes greater need for resource and funding and tools that just aren’t available at the rate they are needed nor for the capacity they are needed. So these districts are overhauled with more people than they can handle. This leaves many crucial neighborhoods forgotten. Many of these neighborhoods are home to the housing projects; areas that are notorious for closing its residents off from leaving the areas. It’s not a forced situation, it just happens to be the way businesses and resources are laid out around the areas.
In order to get to the root of the class and culture divide and the crime disparity from one neighborhood to the completely adjacent neighborhood, we need to analyze the districts and question their use and worth if some districts can make some things happen while others do not or can not.