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!
  • Sigal Samuel's family amulet isn't just rumored to have magical powers. It's also a symbol of how Jewish and Indian rituals became intertwined over the centuries. http://jd.fo/a3BvD Only three days left to submit! Tell us the story of your family's Jewish heirloom.
  • British Jews are having their 'Open Hillel' moment. Do you think Israel advocacy on campus runs the risk of excluding some Jewish students?
  • "What I didn’t realize before my trip was that I would leave Uganda with a powerful mandate on my shoulders — almost as if I had personally left Egypt."
  • Is it better to have a young, fresh rabbi, or a rabbi who stays with the same congregation for a long time? What do you think?
  • Why does the leader of Israel's social protest movement now work in a beauty parlor instead of the Knesset?
  • What's it like to be Chagall's granddaughter?
  • Is pot kosher for Passover. The rabbis say no, especially for Ashkenazi Jews. And it doesn't matter if its the unofficial Pot Day of April 20.
  • A Ukrainian rabbi says he thinks the leaflets ordering Jews in restive Donetsk to 'register' were a hoax. But the disturbing story still won't die.
  • Some snacks to help you get through the second half of Passover.
  • You wouldn't think that a Soviet-Jewish immigrant would find much in common with Gabriel Garcia Marquez. But the famed novelist once helped one man find his first love. http://jd.fo/f3JiS
  • Can you relate?
  • The Forverts' "Bintel Brief" advice column ran for more than 65 years. Now it's getting a second life — as a cartoon.
  • Half of this Hillel's members believe Jesus was the Messiah.
  • Vinyl isn't just for hipsters and hippies. Israeli photographer Eilan Paz documents the most astonishing record collections from around the world:http://jd.fo/g3IyM
  • Could Spider-Man be Jewish? Andrew Garfield thinks so.
  • 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.