from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
US state : new York
Administrative headquarters :
Foundation : 1634
Area code : 718
Residents : 2,504,709  (2010)
Population density : 13,694.4 inhabitants / km 2
Total area : 251.0 km²
Water surface : 68.1 km²
Map of Kings County within New York
Website :
Location of Brooklyn (yellow) in New York City (the airports LaGuardia in the north and JF Kennedy in the south are colored blue)

Brooklyn [ bɹʊklɪn ] is one of the five boroughs ( boroughs ) of New York City . It is located in the southeast of the city at the western end of Long Island and is congruent with Kings County . Brooklyn is the most densely populated administrative district in the United States after Manhattan or New York County . Founded in 1634 by the Dutch as Breuckelen (after the city of Breukelen near Utrecht ), it was an independent city until it was incorporated into New York in 1898. However, the district has retained a strong degree of independence to this day.



Districts and Neighborhoods

Brooklyn is located in the far west of Long Island . The only land border is in the northeast with Queens . The westernmost section of this border forms the Newtown Creek , which flows into the East River . On the opposite side of Upper New York Bay are Manhattan (to the northwest) and Staten Island (to the west).

The Brooklyn coast is defined by several bodies of water. The north coast is on the East River, the middle section on Upper New York Bay. On this part of the coast lies the Red Hook peninsula with the Erie Basin harbor. The Buttermilk Channel separates Brooklyn from Governors Island . To the southwest of it lies Gowanus Bay. The south coast of Brooklyn includes the Coney Island peninsula, which lies directly on the Atlantic Ocean . In the southeast is Jamaica Bay with its numerous small islands.

The highest point in Brooklyn is the area around Prospect Park and Green-Wood Cemetery , which is around 60 meters above sea level. Another elevation is Brooklyn Heights, southwest of the central district of Downtown Brooklyn . According to the United States Census Bureau , the district has an area of ​​251.0 km². 182.9 km² of this is land and 68.1 km² (27.1%) is water.


Prospect Park
The Brooklyn Bridge opened in 1883
Montague Street in the Brooklyn Heights neighborhood
Riegelmann Boardwalk on Coney Island

Brooklyn has many diverse neighborhoods, many of which have evolved from small towns and villages that date back to the Dutch era in the early 17th century. The central district of Downtown Brooklyn is a functional, modern administrative district and the third largest business district in New York City, after Midtown Manhattan and Lower Manhattan . Fulton Street, which runs parallel to the main thoroughfare Atlantic Avenue in the southern part of downtown, is the most famous shopping street in the district.

The brick and sandstone houses from the 19th century are characteristic of the northwestern districts between the Brooklyn Bridge and Prospect Park . Here are some of Brooklyn's most gentrified and affluent neighborhoods. These include Boerum Hill , Brooklyn Heights , Carroll Gardens , Cobble Hill , Clinton Hill , Dumbo , Fort Greene , Fulton Ferry , Park Slope , Prospect Heights , and Vinegar Hill . The development of the historic districts in Northwest Brooklyn was partly different. Brooklyn Heights, for example, functioned early on as a suburb and migration area for Manhattan. In 1955, the district was declared New York's first Historic District . Dumbo and Red Hook , further south, have been badly affected by the decline of the port facilities and local industrial operations in the second half of the 20th century and have only benefited from the upgrading of artists since the 1990s .

Further north along the East River are Williamsburg and Greenpoint . Similar to the Red Hook and Sunset Park districts further south on Upper New York Bay, these are traditional working-class neighborhoods with a lively cultural scene. Originally, Williamsburg was heavily influenced by German and Irish immigrants . After the opening of the Williamsburg Bridge (1903), the district became the most densely populated area in New York. Williamsburg was known, among other things, for its numerous breweries and restaurants . In the second half of the 20th century, the district developed into a problem district in some areas . In the meantime, it is considered a party mile with the associated performance and fun culture. However, travel guides state that Williamsburg has retained its rough and rustic charm despite the upgrading processes associated with gentrification.

Located to the north on the Queens borough border, Greenpoint is considered Williamsburg's little sister. Polish immigrants originally dominated the area. Since the 1990s there has been an increased influx of Latin American immigrants. The same applies to Bushwick , a neighborhood to the southeast of Williamsburg and also adjacent to Queens. Bushwick is considered another gentrification candidate. The neighborhood's Latin American community is one of the largest in New York. Another feature of the district is the alternative counterculture that is becoming increasingly established there.

In the central and southern parts of Brooklyn are districts with strong ethnic and architectural contrasts. These emerged in the late 19th and early 20th centuries when wealthy immigrants moved from the tenements in Manhattan (e.g. Lower East Side ). Mostly Orthodox Jews live in Borough Park , Bensonhurst and Dyker Heights are Italian- influenced, while Brighton Beach on Coney Island is home to many Russians . In the Bedford-Stuyvesant and Flatbush area, mostly dark-skinned people settled down after World War II. Striking points of this district are part of Prospect Park and the central cemetery Green-Wood Cemetery in the north and the Coney Beach Peninsula in the south. The amusement parks based on Coney Beach were a well-known attraction frequented by millions of tourists until World War II . Due to the Russian and Jewish-Russian immigration, parts of the peninsula - especially the section around Brighton Beach - are also known under the names “Little Odessa ” or “Odessa by the Sea”.

The eastern districts of Brooklyn are generally considered to be problem areas in terms of social and security issues. Large parts are characterized by satellite settlements for socially disadvantaged people , so-called projects. This is especially true for East New York , located on Jamaica Bay directly on the Queens borough border. In terms of area, East New York is the largest district in Brooklyn. Socially, it is strongly characterized by a lack of prospects, poverty and crime , demographically speaking it is a collecting basin for socially disadvantaged Afro-Americans as well as migrant newcomers from Latin America and the Caribbean . In terms of security, East New York is regularly classified as a no-go area with high scores in the areas of gang presence, crime and murder rate . The Brownsville district to the west of East New York and the Canarsie district to the south of Jamaica Bay offer a similar picture .

A distinctive feature of Brooklyn are the different ethnic communities that are concentrated in certain districts. On the one hand, the multicultural population strongly shapes the image of Brooklyn. Travel guides generally characterize the coexistence of its residents as relaxed and normal - in contrast to the hustle and bustle and exuberance of Manhattan. However, Brooklyn's role as the outstanding melting pot of New York City is also viewed critically. The coexistence of people with different ethnic backgrounds is in practice more of a coexistence. Meetings tend to take place occasionally - for example on the occasion of street festivals or similar gatherings. The unequal distribution of income between whites and non-whites is also making itself worse.

The gentrification and upgrading process that starts in the north-western quarter and has extended to neighboring neighborhoods since the turn of the millennium is particularly controversial. Rough marking here: the north-western parts of the city including downtown, in which this process is already in full swing, the central and southern parts of the city, which are generally very heterogeneous, and East Brooklyn, which is characterized by social problems. The author and America correspondent of the Süddeutsche Zeitung , Andrian Kreye , stated a border roughly at the level of Prospect Park, which geographically marks the social divide: “Immediately behind the intersection, the mile-wide Terra Incognita of the poor and immigrant district begins, which extends to the airport and the Jamaica Bay. Remember - in Brooklyn, white Americans are a minority. Almost two thirds are black and Latinos. English is not spoken in almost half of all households . This is the Brooklyn that you only glimpse if you drive along the arterial roads to the airport, lined with warehouses, auto repair shops and food stalls. There are the dirty brown social building towers of East New York and Brownsville, whose corridors and parks are controlled by gangs like the Bloods and the Latin Kings . Live there all those people that taxi ride, selling hamburgers and cleaning offices. If you're lucky. Half of all black New Yorkers between 18 and 35 are unemployed. And a good quarter of all Brooklyn residents live below the poverty line . "

See also: Administrative divisions of New York City with a list of all districts


Brooklyn at the turn of the 19th century (painting by Francis Guy, 1760–1820)
Majority of non-white residents: youth on Independence Day (Bedford-Stuyvesant district, 1974)

Brooklyn is the most populous New York borough with 2.63 million inhabitants (2015) . The annual population growth is 0.5% (average 2000–2008).

The area of ​​what is now Brooklyn saw rapid population growth in the 19th and early 20th centuries. The towns in Kings County had a combined population of just under 6,000 at the beginning of the 19th century. When Brooklyn was incorporated into New York after a referendum in 1898, it already had more than 1 million inhabitants. 30 years later, the population passed the 2.5 million mark. After that, growth slowed significantly. In the middle of the 20th century, the population even began to decline, which by 1980 totaled almost a fifth. Since then, the number of inhabitants has increased slightly again, so that today it has almost reached the level of 1930.

The multicultural population of Brooklyn reflects all waves of immigration to the United States resist. The first settlers were Dutch and British , later Germans, Italians and, as part of the Great Migration, former black slaves from the southern states immigrated . In contrast, most of the migrants in recent decades come from Central and South America as well as from Asia and Eastern Europe . Due to the continued high level of immigration, 41% of all residents were born outside the United States today.

With a share of 36%, whites (excluding Hispanics) are by far the largest group of the population. The most common European groups of origin are Italians (7%), Russians (4%), Irish and Poles (3% each). 33% of the population are black and African-American , many of them immigrants from the Caribbean . Hispanics make up 20% of the population, with Puerto Ricans being the largest group of origin at 8%. Asians are the fastest growing population, now representing 9% of Brooklyn's residents, two-thirds of whom are Chinese . However, when looking at the individual neighborhoods of Brooklyn, the composition of the population appears to be far less diverse. Many city districts are either predominantly black or white inhabited or traditionally shaped by Puerto Ricans, Italians, Chinese, Russians, Jews or other ethnic groups.

English is the primary language for a good half of Brooklyn residents. The second most important language is Spanish , which 17% use at home. Chinese and Russian are spoken by just under 6% each. The remaining 18% are spread across other languages. Overall, 24% of respondents say they don't speak English very well.

The largest denomination in Brooklyn is the Roman Catholic Church with a share of 23%. Another 11% of the population are Jews and 29% Protestants of various directions, of which almost 60% belong to an Afro-American parish.


As an independent settlement (until 1898)

Brooklyn - Currier and Ives - Print from 1879
Coney Island Railway Station, late 19th century

The Dutch were the first Europeans to settle on the western end of Long Island , an area mainly populated by the Canarsia Indian tribe. The first Dutch settlement was Midwout (Midwood), which was founded in 1634. In the 1630s, the Dutch around Gowanus , Red Hook, what is now the Brooklyn Navy Yard and Bushwick acquired land from the Mohawk . The Dutch West India Company founded the Breukelen settlement in 1646, named after the Dutch community of that name, across from Nieuw Amsterdam on the southern tip of Manhattan.

In 1664 the entire colony of Nieuw Nederland was conquered by the English . The place name Breukelen changed over time, to Brockland, Brocklin, Brookline and finally to Brooklyn. The English reorganized the province of New York into twelve administrative districts in 1683. Kings County, named after King Charles II , was one of these so-called counties. The population structure became more heterogeneous after the takeover by the British. While the area was mainly populated by Dutch until 1660, immigrants from other parts of Europe also came. The county's six “Dutch Towns” - Brooklyn (Breukelen), Flatbush (Midwood), Bushwick, Flatlands (New Amersfoort), Gravesend and New Utrecht - gradually developed into the granaries and vegetable stores for those across the East River rapidly expanding New York.

The American Revolutionary War also affected Kings County, which is part of the New York area. On August 27, 1776, the Battle of Long Island (sometimes called the Battle of Brooklyn) took place, one of the first major battles. The British drove the Continental Army from the hills at Green-Wood Cemetery and Prospect Park . A few days later, the Americans had to give up their positions at Brooklyn Heights , whereby the British took control of the port of New York . During the entire war, the area was controlled by the British, who could count on the support of loyalists here . It was only with the signing of the Peace of Paris in 1783 that New York and Brooklyn fell to the Americans.

Rapid growth began after the War of Independence. The main beneficiary was the core town of Brooklyn, in whose catchment area an industrial infrastructure consisting of slaughterhouses, breweries and factories quickly established itself. The development was facilitated by the establishment of a regular steamboat ferry service to Manhattan in 1814. Brooklyn's population, which was 4,500 in 1790, tripled in the two decades after the War of Independence. With the opening of the Erie Canal in 1825, the New York area became an important trading post. During the first half of the 19th century, new urban settlements emerged along the East River. As a result of the improved infrastructure, Brooklyn developed into a "dormitory city" in the immediate vicinity of the expanding metropolis New York. In 1834 Brooklyn was granted city rights. Population meanwhile: 16,000 - compared to 25,000 in the entire county and 250,000 in New York. The north and south-east of today's borough was also increasingly developed - in particular Williamsburg and Jamaica Bay, which was connected to the port of Brooklyn by a railway line .

The population growth received a further boost with the construction of numerous railway lines from 1863. With the opening of the Brooklyn Bridge in 1883, Brooklyn and the city ​​of New York - which at that time only consisted of Manhattan and the Bronx - moved closer together. The surrounding towns and villages were gradually incorporated into the second half of the 19th century: Williamsburg in 1854, New Lots in 1886, Flatbush , Gravesend and New Utrecht in 1894. With the incorporation of Flatlands in 1896, the city of Brooklyn encompassed all of Kings County. The cultural and infrastructural network also became more dense as urbanization progressed. The Brooklyn Institute, the Long Island Historical Society, a music academy and Prospect Park were re-established during this period. The facility, which functions as the “green lung” for the borough and was built on the model of New York's Central Park , opened in 1870.

As a borough of New York City (from 1898)

Coney Island: Luna Park, which burned down in 1947, at night (1906)
Brooklyn Dodgers home baseball star player: Jackie Robinson (1954)

Brooklyn's population had increased tenfold since the middle of the century and was now approaching the million mark. Brooklyn was the third largest city in the United States as early as the second half of the 19th century. In 1898, its residents voted by a narrow majority for the unification of Manhattan, Bronx, Queens and Richmond (later Staten Island ) into New York City . Kings County has been a New York borough since then. It also retained its status as a county of New York State.

The densification processes described continued in the first half of the 20th century. At 2.2 million, the population of Brooklyn in 1930 was well ahead of that of Manhattan. New York's first airport ( Floyd Bennett Field ) opened on Brooklyn territory. The amusement facilities on the Coney Island peninsula at the southern end of the district have developed into a well-known crowd puller, visited by millions of holidaymakers. While Manhattan increasingly developed into a commercial, cultural and service center, industry and shipping remained the dominant areas in Brooklyn. During the Second World War, a large part of the material and personnel was sent to Europe via the Brooklyn Army Terminal .

The decades after the end of World War II were marked by decline and reorientation. The departure of the local baseball favorites Brooklyn Dodgers to Los Angeles in 1957 was a symbol of Brooklyn's decline in meaning . The decline of traditional industries hit the district hard. The formerly numerous breweries in the district were also affected. The discontinuation of the district-defining shipping has an almost even more dramatic effect. Port facilities and shipyards largely migrated to neighboring New Jersey - especially to Bayonne and Elizabeth .

Since the 1990s, processes of gentrification have become increasingly important. In particular, the western districts at the East River estuary and Upper New York Bay are coveted alternative quarters for artists, yuppies and all those who can no longer or do not want to afford the high rents in Manhattan. Brooklyn is still strongly influenced by its numerous ethnic communities. The southern districts are strongly influenced by the Jewish Orthodox, Russian, Greek , Italian, Scandinavian and Irish communities. The majority of African, Caribbean and Latin American immigrants, in turn, are mainly concentrated in some northeastern and eastern districts. The overall picture is correspondingly contradictory. While the western districts around downtown were able to consolidate and experienced a certain appreciation in the wake of gentrification and tourism, some districts in the east - especially East New York, which is characterized by satellite cities and social housing - are left behind for the time being.

Administration and politics

Brooklyn Borough Hall - the administrative seat of the district

The administrative breakdown is the same as in the other districts of New York based on the subdivision grid District ( " Borough ") - Community District (administrative abbreviation: "CD") - Neighborhood / Neighborhood. The individual neighborhoods and districts of Brooklyn are assigned to a total of 18 community districts. Similar to Manhattan and the other districts, a coexistence of different assignments sometimes coexists. The eastern district of Cypress Hill is sometimes highlighted as a separate neighborhood, in other cases it is shown as part of East New York.

The administrative seat of the Borough Brooklyn is the Brooklyn Borough Hall in the Downtown district . Until the merger with New York in 1898, it served as the town hall of the previously independent city. The highest local authority is the Borough Boards headed by the Borough President . As a result of the abolition of the New York Board of Estimate - which has essential competencies in overall urban planning - in 1990 the areas of responsibility of the Boroughs Board and Borough President have been greatly reduced. The electoral term is four years. In addition to the Borough President, the members of the City Council and the chairmen of the community boards are represented on the Borough Board. The latter are bodies made up of representatives from a total of eighteen community districts in Brooklyn and only have an advisory role.

The current Borough President of Brooklyn is the Democrat Eric Adams. He was elected in November 2013 with 90.8 percent of the vote. Adams' predecessor was Marty Markowitz, also a Democrat. The Democratic Party holds a majority of public office. In 2005, 69.7 percent of registered voters were Democrats. At the municipal level, the party is primarily committed to affordable housing, education and economic development. The Republicans have a relatively strong impact in the neighborhoods Gravesend, Bensonhurst, Bay Ridge, Dyker Heights and Midwood received from the Congressman Michael Grimm are represented.

Another elected function is that of the district attorney . The current district attorney is Eric Gonzalez, also a Democratic Party official.


Part of East New York: the Cypress Hills neighborhood
Former Domino Sugar Factory in Williamsburg
New buildings in East River Park, Williamsburg
House damaged by Hurricane Sandy

According to the May 2014 report published by the New York City Comptroller , Brooklyn's economic situation is mixed. The Downtown District is New York's largest business center outside of Manhattan. In terms of business growth, the district is growing faster than the rest of the city. The situation is similar with the rise in the employment rate. At 19.8%, it is growing almost twice as fast as in New York City. Around half of all jobs are in the health and retail sectors - a factor that is, however, linked to the disadvantage of low wages . Growing sectors are professional and business services, new technologies , the creative industries and gastronomy.

In absolute terms, the private sector is the most dynamic economic factor with 484,560 employees in 2012 . According to the economic report published by New York State with the key district data for 2014, 160,410 employees worked in the health and social sector, 64,890 in retail, 41,830 in professional and business service and almost 10,000 in leisure and tourism. The jobs in traditional production continued to decline - albeit at a slower pace. Total number in production: 20,000. Around 40 percent of this is attributable to the two sectors of food and clothing manufacturing (5410 and 3580).

The number of businesses doing business in 2011 was just under 50,000. Here, too, growth is higher than in the rest of the city. Small businesses dominate the district. The lion's share is accounted for by retail. In terms of the number of companies, the health and social sector is falling behind with 13%, but it provides around 33% of jobs . The main reason for the discrepancy: the high number of employees in hospitals and similar institutions.

The wage development also has a faster rate of growth than in other districts. However, when compared to Manhattan, the Bronx, Queens and Staten Island, Brooklyn is still at the bottom of the scale. Likewise with regard to the average annual income in the USA. The average wage in the private sector was 2012 38.550 US dollars per year, the average household income 45,230 US dollars. New York-wide the latter is currently at 50,900 US dollars. The median income for US citizens in 2011 was $ 48,450. The low average wage reflects, among other things, the high concentration of poorly paying sectors in the district - in particular the healthcare and retail sectors.

The unemployment is in Brooklyn since the mid-1990s than in any other district. It fell from a high during the economic crisis in 2008 (10.9%) to a level of 8.8% (2014). The unemployment rate varies significantly between the districts. While the northwestern neighborhoods of Brooklyn Heights, Cobble Hill and Windsor Terrace are below average, Brownsville, Bushwick, Bedford-Stuyvesant, Coney Island, Crown Heights and East New York are well above it.

The average Brooklyn household income in 2012 grew twice as fast as the rest of the city. The poverty rate (24.2%) has increased as a result of the recession , but lower than at its peak in 1993. In 2011, 70% of all households lived in rental apartments. The lack of affordable housing is a serious problem in the district. One main reason: the increase in rents , which between 2000 and 2011 was almost twice as strong as that of incomes (71 compared to 41 percent). Almost 30 percent of households are now forced to spend more than half of their income on rent.

The dynamic of gentrification shows different effects in individual districts. While the "brownstone areas" with old brick building substance in the northwest benefit from well-paid newcomers from Manhattan, the former port and industrial districts of Williamsburg, Greenpoint, Red Hook and Sunset Park are still at the beginning of this development. The district currently has six economic conurbations:

  • the Greater Downtown Brooklyn Area: the location for many of the district's higher-paying jobs.
  • the Brooklyn Tech Triangle including the Brooklyn Navy Yard: a new industrial park between Manhattan and Williamsburg Bridge for the creative, IT and electronics industries .
  • Sunset Park: a major manufacturing and industrial hub that currently provides nearly 8 percent of Brooklyn's jobs. The nearby Brooklyn Army Terminal has been relocated to a manufacturing hub.
  • Williamsburg – Greenpoint area. This metropolitan area contains 10 percent of the district's jobs, which are concentrated in the health and construction industries .
  • South Brooklyn: This economic hub provides around 9 percent of Brooklyn's jobs - nearly half of them in health care. Then there is the tourism and leisure sector on the beaches of Coney Island.
  • Greater Borough Park Area: This metropolitan area essentially comprises the boroughs and neighborhoods Borough Park, Kensington and Ocean Avenue area. It provides 8 percent of Brooklyn's jobs. The health sector and social support account for roughly half of this.

The areas of art, culture and tourism play a not insignificant part in the economic development of the district. In 2013, the district had 15 million tourists. Another important factor are the partly renowned educational institutions in the district. The NYU Polytechnic, founded in 1854, is one of the leading technical universities. The Long Iceland University Brooklyn in turn has especially in medicine profiled. Another important institution to be listed is the Brooklyn Music School, founded in 1912 and located in Fort Greene.

The effects of Hurricane Sandy in October 2012 proved to be a serious setback for the district's economic consolidation . The waterfront promenades in North Brooklyn and the neighboring areas in Greenpoint, Williamsburg, Dumbo, Red Hook, Gowanus and Sunset Park were particularly hard hit. Southern Brooklyn with the Coney Island peninsula were also affected. The reconstruction work and accompanying utilities make but slow progress.

In terms of economic development projects, the focus is currently on several projects. One of them is the Livonia Commons Project: 278 social housing units with mixed use in the deprived area of ​​East New York. The uneven distribution of economic development has intensified the contrasts between the “old” districts in the west and those bordering Queens in the east. While the former were able to recover from the loss of importance of the classic industries and partially prospered, the eastern half of the district has so far been largely excluded from this development. The economic dichotomy largely coincides with the ethnic one. According to a census evaluation from 2005, the economically weaker districts in the east and northeast are mainly inhabited by Afro-Americans, Hispanics and immigrants from the Caribbean.


Public transport network

New York Subway: Jacked up trains in the hall of the Coney Island Complex

With 57 percent of households without a car , Brooklyn is slightly above the New York average. The main means of transport is the public transport network - especially the subway operated by the New York City Transit Authority . 92.8 percent of Brooklyn residents use the subway to travel to Manhattan . A total of 18 lines of the New York subway serve the district. Important junctions in the further downtown area are Atlantic Avenue / Barclays Center and Jay Street-Metro Tech . There are also DeKalb Avenue in Bedfort-Stuyvesant, Broadway Junction in the east near Queens and Coney Island / Stillway Avenue on Coney Island.

In addition, a bus network from different providers covers the district. There is also a regular express bus service to Manhattan. The public transport network is supplemented by the suburban railway lines of the Long Island Rail Road . The main stations are Atlantic Terminal , East New York and Nostrand Avenue .

On July 3, 1854, the first horse-drawn tram line began operating in Brooklyn (Myrtle Avenue line from Fulton Ferry to Marcy Avenue). From 1891 the lines of the now rapidly growing network were electrified; this was completed by 1895. In the course of LaGuardia 's goal of making New York “ tram-free ”, the lines in Brooklyn were also gradually shut down until the last “trolley” ran in 1956.

Bridges and roads

Marine Parkway Bridge from Coney Island to Queens

Brooklyn is connected to Manhattan by three bridges . The oldest and most famous is the Brooklyn Bridge, completed in 1883 . It runs from Brooklyn Heights and Dumbo to the Civic Center and Financial District in Lower Manhattan. Immediately upstream is the Manhattan Bridge, which opened in 1909. The third bridge connection to Manhattan is the Williamsburg Bridge, completed in 1903. It connects the Williamsburg district with the opposite Lower East Side . The fourth cross-district bridge is the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge , which was completed in 1964 and is four kilometers long . Located on the southwest side, it bridges Upper New York Bay between Brooklyn and New York's Staten Island on the other side of the bay. Another major spanning bridge is the Marine Parkway – Gil Hodges Memorial Bridge at the southeast end of the district. It connects Brooklyn with the Rockaway Peninsula belonging to Queens .

Brooklyn is crossed by several expressway and parkway thoroughfares. The most important are:

  • the Brooklyn – Queens Expressway. Starting from the Brooklyn Bridge, he crosses the district in a north-easterly direction to Queens.
  • the Prospect Expressway. As an extension of the Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel coming from Manhattan, it runs south. Extension towards Coney Island is the Ocean Parkway.
  • the Gowanus Expressway. Turning off the Prospect Expressway, it leads towards Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge.
  • Belt Parkway and Shore Parkway. The main traffic route, which varies in distinction, runs along the southwest and southern district coast to the John F. Kennedy International Airport in Queens.
  • Jackie Robinson Parkway (formerly: Interborough Parkway) . Turning off Atlantic Avenue, it leads from Brownsville in the direction of Queens.

In addition to these transit roads, there are other important inter-city connecting roads. In a west-east direction, Atlantic Avenue , Eastern Parkway and Linden Boulevard run from north to south . Important district connecting roads in north-south direction are the Kings Highway , the Bay Parkway and Fourth Avenue. An important feeder for the district's traffic infrastructure is the Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel (official name: Hugh L. Cary Tunnel), which opened in 1950 - a toll connection between the southern tip of Manhattan and the Red Hook district in west Brooklyn.


Brooklyn Army Terminal (waterside)

For a long time Brooklyn was an important port of call - especially for the Brooklyn Army Terminal in the Sunset Park district . During World War II, the military shipped most of their transports from this assembly point. After the shipping industry moved to New Jersey, the piers and landing stages still in operation focus on ferry services and pleasure cruises. The Brooklyn Cruise Terminal in the Red Hook district maintains the luxury steamer Queen Mary 2, a passenger ship that, despite its size, is flat enough to pass under the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge located out of the sea. As a local line operator, NY Waterway offers commuter services within Brooklyn and to Manhattan.

Sights, culture and sports

Brooklyn has a diverse infrastructure of different cultural, recreational and sporting facilities. Part of this can be attributed to the basic cultural provision and is more locally known. Other institutions such as Prospect Park are considered to be above average and therefore enjoy a corresponding reputation.


Brooklyn Botanic Garden
Soldiers 'and Sailors' Memorial Arch at Grand Army Plaza

Brooklyn has some great parks, cemeteries, and architectural landmarks. The most important are:

  • the Prospect Park. Opened in 1867, the 2.4 km² facility is located in the center of the district south of downtown. The park was designed on the model of Central Park in Manhattan. The architects were also the same: Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux .
  • Green-Wood Cemetery . The approximately 1.9 km² area not far from Prospect Park is home to around 600,000 graves - including many well-known personalities. The cemetery was laid out in 1837.
  • Brooklyn Botanic Garden - located near Prospect Park and built in 1910.
  • Coney Island . Remains of the amusement parks from the first half of the 20th century, such as the legendary Luna Park, can still be found scattered across the peninsula. Relics of the earlier beach promenades are also reminiscent of earlier times, such as the Riegelmann Boardwalk, which was built up against the effects of erosion.
  • Brooklyn Bridge . The bridge, built in 1883, was the longest suspension bridge in the world when it was built. Today it is a popular spot for excursions from Manhattan to Brooklyn, which is popular with tourists.
  • Soldiers 'and Sailors' Arch. A neoclassical style triumphal arch, completed in 1892, right on Prospect Park. It is dedicated to the “defenders of the Union” in the Civil War of 1861–1865.
  • Fulton Mall (Fulton Street). Central promenade and shopping street in the Brooklyn Heights district.
  • Brooklyn Heights Promenade. Waterfront in the district of the same name with a view of the opposite skyline of Manhattan.
The Wyckoff House (2007) is one of ten National Historic Landmarks .

Ten locations have National Historic Landmark status . A total of 164 buildings and sites in the county are listed on the National Register of Historic Places (as of February 19, 2018).

Museums and other cultural institutions

  • Brooklyn Museum . Completed in 1885, built directly on Prospect Park and opened in 1887, the classicist-style building is New York's second largest museum. It contains, among other things, an important collection of ancient Egyptian objects and American art.
  • New York Transit Museum . Opened in 1976 and located in Brooklyn Heights, the Transportation Museum is the largest of its kind in the United States. It deals with the history of public transport in the city - in particular the development of the subway.
  • Brooklyn Children's Museum . Located not far from Atlantic Avenue in the Crown Heights district, the museum is the oldest children's museum in the world. It was founded in 1899 and after its reopening due to renovation in 2008 it was the first "Green Museum" in New York.
  • Brooklyn Public Library . Opened in 1952 and run by a not -for-profit organization , it is one of the largest public libraries in the United States. The head office is located in the Downtown district.

Cultural centers and regular events

Coney Island Mermaid Parade (2014)

Whether theater , classical music , pop music , events or literary events : Similar to the cultural scene in Manhattan opposite or in other large metropolises, that of Brooklyn also offers an almost unmistakable variety of different directions, including the associated infrastructure. The following facilities and events are considered significant local attractions:

  • Billie Holiday Theater. The off-theater, located near Atlantic Avenue in the Bedford-Stuyvesant district and named after the jazz singer Billie Holiday , who died in New York, is run by a non-profit organization. The institution feels particularly committed to promoting the Afro-American cultural element.
  • Brooklyn Academy of Music . With the same address as the Brooklyn Music School near Fulton Street, BAM, founded in 1861, also functions as a venue for operas, performances and theatrical productions.
  • BRIC Media House. Located near Fulton Street, the headquarters of the non-profit art and media company BRIC (for: Brooklyn Information and Culture) BRIC primarily acts as an organizer of public cultural events.
  • Labor Day Carnival (alternative name: West Indian Day Parade). Annual Caribbean street carnival festival in September in the Crowne Heights district.
  • Coney Island Mermaid Parade. Annual street parade on Coney Island in late June to mark the beginning of summer .


A significant historical event in Brooklyn sports history was the move of the legendary home baseball team Brooklyn Dodgers to Los Angeles in 1957. With Jackie Robinson , who on April 15, 1947 became the first black player since 1888 in a team in the Major Leagues, set the Dodgers are a mark of racial integration . Brooklyn now has a new home team - the Brooklyn Nets basketball team , which played in New Jersey until 2012 . When it comes to team sports, Brooklyn currently has:

  • the Brooklyn Nets . The Ohio-based contractor Bruce Ratner took over the professional basketball team playing in the NBA in 2004 with the announcement that they would be brought to Brooklyn. The move took place in 2012. The multi-purpose hall Barclays Center, built especially for the Nets and located on Atlantic Avenue, opened in September 2012.
  • the Brooklyn Cyclones. The regional baseball team plays in the minor league , one of the lower leagues in US baseball. Brought to New York by then Mayor Rudy Giuliani in 1999 , they played for different districts in the following years.
  • the New York Islanders . The New York professional ice hockey team announced in 2012 that their home games for the 2015/2016 season would be played at the Brooklyn Barclays Center.

Brooklyn in literature and film

Brooklyn is the subject, or at least the setting for a number of novels, if not as much as Manhattan. A well-known “Brooklyn novel” is Last Exit Brooklyn by Hubert Selby from 1964. A more recent novel, which addresses the integration problems of an immigrant Irish woman after the Second World War, is Brooklyn by the Irish bestselling author Colm Tóibín (2010). Another well-known novel is A Tree Grows in Brooklyn , written by the Brooklyn-born author Betty Smith in 1943. He describes the life of the lower class, which consisted mostly of immigrants, at the beginning of the 20th century.

Spike Lee (2012)

In addition, the district is the setting and / or location of numerous films. In 1989, Selby's novel was filmed under the title Last Exit Brooklyn . Also in the post-war era, Die Faust im Nacken starred with Marlon Brando - a drama filmed in black and white that explores the influence of the Mafia on the New York dockworkers' unions. The ethnic coexistence of different communities access among other Do the Right Thing by Spike Lee and the independent film Smoke by Wayne Wang on. The script for the latter came from the writer Paul Auster , who has lived in Brooklyn for decades.

Brooklyn is also the setting for several thriller productions made after the turn of the millennium - such as Brooklyn's Finest , a police drama starring Richard Gere , Don Cheadle and Ethan Hawke as well as Heroes of the Night with Joaquin Phoenix , Mark Wahlberg , Robert Duvall and Eva Mendez and Brooklyn - A Love Between Two Worlds with Saoirse Ronan in the lead role. Partly, largely or implicitly, the acts of Saturday Night Fever (1977) and the boxer drama Girlfight (2000) also take place in Brooklyn . The center of action for the award-winning HBO series Boardwalk Empire is not Brooklyn, but Atlantic City , New Jersey, 200 kilometers south . The historic beach promenade for the crowd scenes in the series, however, was specially recreated in Brooklyn. The series 2 Broke Girls and Brooklyn Nine-Nine are also mostly set in Brooklyn.


Arthur Miller
Barbra Streisand (1962)

The number of well-known personalities who were born or temporarily lived in Brooklyn is large. They include Henry and Arthur Miller , Truman Capote , Woody Allen , Norman Mailer , George Gershwin , Barbra Streisand , Steve Buscemi and the gangster Al Capone . Other celebrities such as baseball legend Babe Ruth only spent a few years in Brooklyn - Ruth, for example, after his active sports career as assistant coach for the Brooklyn Dodgers. Still others, such as the director Spike Lee, also use Brooklyn as a local location - Lee, for example, with his production company based in Fort Greene.

District partnerships

Sources and individual references

Main sources

  • Dirk Kruse-Etzbach: Iwanowski's New York. Tips for individual explorers. Reiseuchverlag Iwanowski, Dormagen 1999/2015, ISBN 978-3-86197-125-2 ; Pp. 500-534
  • Margit Brinke, Peter Kränzle: New York City. Reise Know-How Verlag, Bielefeld 2001/2012, ISBN 978-3-8317-2149-8 ; Pp. 302-314
  • An Economic Snapshot of Brooklyn , Thomas P. DiNapoli, Kenneth B. Bleiwas, Report of the State of New York Comptroller, May 2014 (PDF; English). Main source for “Economy” section.

Individual evidence

  1. a b US Census Bureau
  2. The coolest place in the world: Brooklyn Bohemia , Andrea Köhler, Neue Zürcher Zeitung, June 14, 2013
  3. ^ Dirk Kruse-Etzbach: Iwanowski's New York. Tips for individual explorers. Reiseuchverlag Iwanowski, Dormagen 1999/2015, ISBN 978-3-86197-125-2 , pp. 511/512
  4. New York Bushwick: No Wall Is Left Out , Aileen Tiedemann, Die Zeit, September 21, 2013
  5. ^ Walter Thabit: How East New York became a ghetto. New York University Press, New York 2005, ISBN 978-0-8147-8267-5 (English)
  6. Use in Dodge City , Jan Heidtmann, Berliner Zeitung, August 12, 1996
  7. Brownsville: Inside One of Brooklyn's Most Dangerous Neighborhoods , Feifei Sun, Time Lightbox, January 31, 2012 (English)
  8. ^ New York City - Population , mein, accessed March 10, 2015
  9. Urban visions: Industry goes - luxury apartments are moving up , interview with Doris Schäfer-Noske. Christoph Bartmann, Deutschlandradio Kultur, March 16, 2014
  10. On the right side of the bridge , Andreas Kreye, Süddeutsche Zeitung, May 19, 2010
  12. ^ Nicolaes Visscher: New Belgium and New England. 1656 (map; Brooklyn is called "Breukelen").
  13. Trendy boutiques, picturesque sandstone houses: Brooklyn - New York's most famous district  ( page no longer available , search in web archivesInfo: The link was automatically marked as defective. Please check the link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. , visit-usa-at, accessed March 10, 2015@1@ 2Template: Dead Link /  
  14. a b Mapping America: Every City, Every Block . Interactive New York Times map showing the ethnic distribution of the US population, based on the 2005 census.Accessed March 10, 2015.
  15. New York: Facts & Figures ( Memento of the original from March 4, 2016 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. ., accessed March 10, 2015 @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  16. ↑ Median income in the United States ., accessed on March 10, 2015
  17. Storm Damage to Outdated Infrastructure Cripples New York City , Bill Van Auken, World Socialist Web Site, Nov. 1, 2012
  18. Local transport, MTA, public transport in New York City (Manhattan) ,, accessed on March 27, 2015
  19. James C. Greller, Edward B. Watson: Brooklyn Trolleys . NJ International Inc., 1995. ISBN 0-934088-17-9 .
  20. Listing of National Historic Landmarks by State: New York . National Park Service , accessed February 18, 2018.
  21. Search mask database in the National Register Information System. National Park Service , accessed February 19, 2018.
  22. a b Basketball: B for Brooklyn , Ulrike von Bülow, Frankfurter Rundschau, October 30, 2012
  23. ^ Reinhard Lettau: An American Hell , Spiegel, October 21, 1968
  24. "Boardwalk Empire": Now the fun begins , Jörg Häntzschel, Süddeutsche Zeitung, September 20, 2010
  25. ^ NYC's Sister Cities around the world. Retrieved June 14, 2020 (English). .
  26. David and Goliath: Brooklyn and Leopoldstadt are now partners . The press, March 7, 2007


Web links

Commons : Brooklyn  - collection of pictures, videos and audio files

Coordinates: 40 ° 39 ′  N , 73 ° 57 ′  W