We’re Canada-fanatics at heart, but we must admit we really do love New York! That’s why we just had to bring this fascinating article from the New York Times to your attention.

This riveting piece of journalism asks a question that certainly many have pondered in the past, “how many people can Manhattan hold?”.

If you’ve ever been on a touristy walk through Times Square or crammed into a subway car heading into Lower Manhattan, you know that the borough is teeming with life — 1.6 million lives to be exact. And yet, somehow that island is still building high-rise after high-rise to accommodate new Manhattanites.

We highly suggest giving it a read, but here are a few of our favourite facts and predictions for the time-pressed among us. How crazy cramped Manhattan is right now and how much crazier will it get in 2030:

  • In 1910 Manhattan’s population was a staggering 2.3 million people
  • During the workday Manhattan’s population basically doubles to 3.9 million
  • Special events like the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade push the population past 5 million
  • New York’s Department of City Planning expect Manhattan will have 220,000 to 290,000 new residents
  • Neighbourhoods like Chelsea, the area surrounding Columbia University and the West Side are expected to absorb many of the new residents
  • The steadily increasing population puts a strain on resources and infrastructure but desalination, waste-to-power plants, bus rapid transit and an airport in the middle of the harbour are a few creative solutions to this classic issue
  • More Manhattan? One Columbia University prof says one way to go is to “build a new backyard” — in other words, build a new neighbourhood beneath Lower Manhattan from landfill
  • The most densely populated place ever measured was Kowloon Walled City in Hong Kong, at roughly the size of five footballs fields it housed about 35,000 people at its peak in the 1980s, but was demolished in 1994
  • If Manhattan was as densely populated as Kowloon Walled City it would have a population of 65 million people

We love New York no matter how crowded it gets, though we’re not sure if every Manhattan resident feels the same way!

Developments featured in this article

More Like This

Facebook Chatter