Starting at 110th Street and stretching all the way up to 155th Street is one of the most famous neighborhoods in Manhattan. Central Harlem is home to some of the best food, entertainment, and cultural institutions in the city which is why the folks who live here are so proud of the neighborhood.
Central Harlem began its life much like the rest of northern Manhattan, as farmland. A bit more densely packed than the rest of the farmland in the area, the British made sure to burn it to the ground during the American Revolution as American forces retreated off the island. Once the war ended, the rebuilding process for the area was a bit slow.
Things in the area ramped up in the 1860’s and 70’s for several reasons, including the destruction of a prominent black neighborhoods to make room for Central Park, railroads were built further north, and the end of the Civil War brought many black families north to look for opportunity and safety from the post war south.
Once the neighborhood was full and rebuilt, the people there went into full swing, creating the art, business, and music. This event was called the Harlem Renaissance, and it started around the time of WWI. The Renaissance ended with the Great Depression, and a lack of government support left the neighborhood battered for years.
However, Central Harlem never stopped being influential, especially in the black community. Playing major roles in the Civil Rights Movement, Harlem was back in the limelight. By 1990, the city started to pay attention to Harlem, encouraging the people who lived there to permanently own their homes and beginning massive renovation projects. Today, Harlem is an energetic, proud neighborhood, with a personality that’s known throughout the world.
Central Harlem has everything you can imagine. There are shorter rowhouses, mid rise apartment complexes, pre-war high rises, and modern luxury high rises are everywhere you look. The face of Harlem is always changing, but there’s a massive effort to preserve the history of the neighborhood while also adding new things to it.
Central Harlem is energetic, vibrant, and friendly. Thanks to movies and films, Central Harlem has a bit of a reputation of being dangerous. However, take one step into the neighborhood and you’ll be surrounded by friendly faces greeting their neighbors, tons of shopping and entertainment opportunities, and some of the best restaurants in the city.
Harlem is an area that’s always moving, especially in areas with major train access. There are more suburban areas in the neighborhood that are pretty quiet. That said, all the exciting stuff is between 125th and 145th, where the heart of the neighborhood lies.
Central Harlem isn’t the dangerous place movies and television make it out to be. Violent crime is extremely rare and crime is constantly dropping in the neighborhood. In fact, take a walk around Central Harlem, and you’ll find a ton of families enjoying their day. That’s because Central Harlem has good schools, easy access to hospitals, and a ton of activities to keep busy. While the neighborhood usually has a lot going on, there are more quiet parts that are more residential, making Harlem a great place to raise a family.
The New York City subway system has amazing service in Central Harlem. The west side of the neighborhood is accessible via the A, B, C, and D trains. The east side of the neighborhood is accessible via the 4, 5, and 6 trains. The 2 and 3 trains take you straight up the middle of the area.
Biking is popular in certain areas of Central Harlem due to wide streets and access to a number of Citi Bike docking stations. However, in the busier parts of the neighborhood, it could be difficult to navigate through the crowds.
The same can be said for driving. Driving is never bad in the area, and parking is always ample. However, in the more pedestrian filled areas of the neighborhood, drivers should practice caution.
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Central Harlem is located within New York County, New York. This area currently has 1,634,989 residents in 753,385 households. Out of the total population, 40.12% of the residents speak another language at home instead of English. The majority of the inhabitants in this county are currently unmarried and have a median age of 37.
When looking at residents older than 25, around 12.55% have graduated from high school, 31.80% have a bachelor's degree, and 28.64% have obtained their master's degree or above. Employment rate is typically around 62.9% and the median income in this county is $75,513.
At least 76.86% of those living in this county are renting their homes. Most residents will commute to work by public transportation with an average commute time of 31 minutes.
Geographically, New York County, New York is a part of the New York - Newark, NY - NJ - CT Urban Area. This county is currently home to 18,812,161 residents, or 6,707,347 households with a median income of $68,319. the New York - Newark, NY - NJ - CT Urban Area residents have a median age of 38 and 50.07% are currently renting their homes in the area.