The Fast-Shifting Map of Jewish New York

Population Dips in Old Strongholds, Explodes in New Ones

Shifts and Surprises: A new study pinpoints where New York’s Jewish population is growing fast and where its stagnant or shrinking. There are some big surprises.
claudio papapietro
Shifts and Surprises: A new study pinpoints where New York’s Jewish population is growing fast and where its stagnant or shrinking. There are some big surprises.

By Josh Nathan-Kazis

Published January 18, 2013.
  • Print
  • Share Share
  • Single Page

(page 2 of 3)

Its character, however, is quickly changing. For the report’s authors, the picture is of a highly diverse Jewish community living in large, dissimilar neighborhoods. “It’s a reminder to people who deal with New York Jewry that when you go to different neighborhoods you’re dealing not just with a different demography, but a different culture as well,” said Steven M. Cohen, a leading sociologist of American Jewish life and contributor to the report.

The area’s overall Jewish population grew to 1.5 million people from 1.4 million people over the past decade. In an interview with the Forward, Beck said that two thirds of that growth came from the Hasidic Brooklyn neighborhoods of Boro Park and Williamsburg.

The neighborhood report is the second analysis to come out of the UJA-Federation’s survey of nearly 6000 Jewish households in New York City, Westchester and Long Island. The first report, released in June, showed that the area’s Jewish community was growing poorer, less educated and more religious.

This new analysis highlights deep disparities between the city’s various Jewish population clusters in categories like income and intermarriage.

“There’s a measure of bird of feathers flocking together,” said Cohen. “It’s not that every type of Jew is scattered evenly.”

Economic conditions in Williamsburg, an Hasidic neighborhood, are even worse than in Boro Park. In Williamsburg, 78% of households earn less than $50,000 a year. Over half qualify as poor under federal poverty guidelines.

These Hasidic neighborhoods stand in stark contrast to the Upper West Side and Upper East Side, where incomes remain high. So high, in fact, that young families are moving farther north to find apartments – a trend illustrated in the study’s findings.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • When is a legume not necessarily a legume? Philologos has the answer.
  • "Sometime in my childhood, I realized that the Exodus wasn’t as remote or as faceless as I thought it was, because I knew a former slave. His name was Hersh Nemes, and he was my grandfather." Share this moving Passover essay!
  • Getting ready for Seder? Chag Sameach! http://jd.fo/q3LO2
  • "We are not so far removed from the tragedies of the past, and as Jews sit down to the Seder meal, this event is a teachable moment of how the hatred of Jews-as-Other is still alive and well. It is not realistic to be complacent."
  • Aperitif Cocktail, Tequila Shot, Tom Collins or Vodka Soda — Which son do you relate to?
  • Elvis craved bacon on tour. Michael Jackson craved matzo ball soup. We've got the recipe.
  • This is the face of hatred.
  • What could be wrong with a bunch of guys kicking back with a steak and a couple of beers and talking about the Seder? Try everything. #ManSeder
  • BREAKING: Smirking killer singled out Jews for death in suburban Kansas City rampage. 3 die in bloody rampage at JCC and retirement home.
  • Real exodus? For Mimi Minsky, it's screaming kids and demanding hubby on way down to Miami, not matzo in the desert.
  • The real heroines of Passover prep aren't even Jewish. But the holiday couldn't happen without them.
  • Is Handel’s ‘Messiah’ an anti-Semitic screed?
  • Meet the Master of the Matzo Ball.
  • Pierre Dulaine wants to do in his hometown of Jaffa what he did for kids in Manhattan: teach them to dance.
  • "The first time I met Mick Jagger, I said, 'Those are the tackiest shoes I’ve ever seen.'” Jewish music journalist Lisa Robinson remembers the glory days of rock in her new book, "There Goes Gravity."
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.