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Moving to Queens New York
Queens, NY is known as the Gateway to New York. If you have not been to Queens it is easy to believe that the images of the old TV show "All in the Family", the rows and rows of identical duplexes packed together with postage stamp size yards or the 2 story brick houses with postage stamp sized yards in the newer comedy "King of Queens". There is, however a wonderful diversity in the 2.2 million Queens residents representing all parts of the world who speak your language and welcome you to their neighborhood... It is possible to say "I ate food from around the world by spending a day in Queens".
Queens has over 300 years of history that can be experienced by visiting historic homes and sites using 42 miles of subway lines to get you from here to there. There are 7,000 acres of parks for you to explore from beach to bay to a forest of oak, hickory and pine.
The New York Hall of Science, Queens Botanical Garden, Queens Museum of Art, Queens Theater in the Park, Queens Wildlife center, located in Flushing Meadows Corona park.
There are 63 branches of the public library and 10 miles of sun, sand, and surf in the Rockaways. These add to the lure of Queens as a visitor and make moving or relocating to the area an attractive possibility.
Living in Queens places you in neighborhoods that are close to Manhattan. Three of the most popular neighborhoods in western Queens for those commuting to Manhattan are Astoria, Long Island City and Jackson Heights. They are all a short subway ride to Midtown. As people are priced out real estate in Manhattan, western Queens has gained in popularity, especially for folks in their 20's and 30's. To find an apartment, a real estate broker is usually the easiest route to go, but expect to pay one month's rent in fees. There are listings in local papers for no fee listings and small landlords often post for rent signs in windows and in Laundromats and cafes. This is an attractive alternative to newcomers who need to be on a tight budget and avoids the real estate broker fees
Astoria has become the hottest, most popular neighborhood in Queens. It is very close to Manhattan via subway lines that are 10 to 20 minutes from mid town. It has a real neighborhood vibe with many great places to eat and shop and there is even nightlife. Immigrants from around the world have brought to Astoria the most eclectic mix of restaurants anywhere in Queens. On any corner it is possible to see four restaurants, each representing a cuisine from a different continent. One drawback to Astoria is it congested streets. Take public transportation to avoid insanity.
Hipsters and yuppies have discovered Astoria, which has contributed to rising rental and housing prices. It is still possible to find a great apartment with roof or backyard access that is a true savings from life in Manhattan. Closer to Long Island City, the streets are more industrial, the housing is grittier, and rents drop. Avoid living on 31st street with the elevated subway. North of Astoria Boulevard, housing tends to be in more expensive row houses, with fewer rentals. One bedroom apartments start at $1200 to $1300 as of 2004
Long Island city is the shortest commute to Manhattan from Queens. Many artists call LIC home. The great location has the attention of city and business leaders with big plans for developing the waterfront. This will be even more attractive to those who would wish to relocate and move to Queens for employment.
Rental prices range from a starting $900 for a 1 bedroom and are often above $1200 for a one bedroom in prime areas or renovated buildings
Jackson Heights is farther east but is an easier commute to Manhattan because the E and F subways run express, stopping only twice before reaching Lexington Ave. It is less than 15 minutes from Midtown Manhattan to Roosevelt Ave in Jackson Heights. Similar to Astoria, there are great dining and shopping options in the neighborhood. Although Roosevelt Ave is thoroughly congested and loud, the residential streets are quiet.
Jackson Heights is know for its Little India section but the whole neighborhood is much bigger and more diverse. Immigrants from Latin America and South Asia predominate.
Housing near transportation tends to be in large apartment buildings, Mary are advertised as pre war, which should mean the apartments are larger and better insulated than in newer buildings. Other streets are lined with row houses and less often with multifamily and single family dwellings.
Rental real estate prices in Jackson Heights range from $1,000 for a one bedroom and $1200 for a 2 bedroom staring price
Queens is both a New York State county on Long Island and a borough of New York City. Although New York city includes five boroughs, when New Yorkers say "the City" they are referring to Manhattan. Queens is the largest New York City Borough with about 109 square miles or about 35% of NYC's total land area. Queens is the second largest borough after Brooklyn in population. More than 2 million people call Queens home. It projected that by 2025 Queens will be the most populous. This clearly shows the preference of those relocating to NYC and the desire to be moving into a close commute to Manhattan but a lower cost living.
The people of Queens count the rest of the United States and the world as their homelands, Immigrants have been settling in Queens for more than a hundred years, and they give no sign of letting up. Today more languages are spoken in these 109 square miles than anywhere else on the planet. English is spoken at home by the vast majority followed by Spanish, Rounding out the top ten most common languages are Chinese, Korean, Italian, Greek, Russian, Tagalog, French, and French Creole.
Queens is not set up in a convenient grid but in general streets run North South and the numbers get higher the further east you go. Avenues run east west and the numbers get higher the further south you go. Avenues are often paired with road and drives so you may find 85th Ave, 85t Drive and 85t Road all next to one another. Queens addresses are a string of number that refer to location i.e. "110-10 10th st" 110 is a cross street avenue and 10 refers to the house number. This can be very confusing at first to those who have recently relocated or moved in but soon it makes sense and helps find where you want to be from where you are.
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