The SummerScore Shows Where To Spend Your Summer
Maximize Your Summer Fun With Data

When we think of summertime, memories come to mind of walks through the park, dinner with friends on the patio of our favorite restaurants, and when we must head in to the office, riding a bike to work. Well, at RentHop we thought it was about time to embrace summer and what better way to do that than with data? In order to figure out which New York City neighborhoods will maximize your summer fun, we took a dive into the oceans of data on all things summer. When we surfaced, we had the SummerScore, a wide-ranging index of the things that make a summer day awesome and not-so-awesome. Don't like stepping in dog poop? We don't either, so we accounted for that. Neighborhoods with high poop complaints per square mile received a Poop Penalty to their SummerScore.

Read on, and check out the map below to see if your neighborhood is the hottest place to be this summer...

The Interactive SummerScore Map

Which Neighborhood Was Number 1?

Two neighborhoods actually received the coveted '100' SummerScore: Fort Greene and Brooklyn Heights-Cobble Hill. These two Northwestern Brooklyn neighborhoods had the best-overall amounts of everything good, with only a small Poop Penalty. One can expect to see the streets of Brooklyn Heights more fully lined with trees, but fewer sidewalk cafes per square mile. Both neighborhoods have nearly 30 Citibike stations per square mile, many miles of bike paths and over 10% park coverage. Brooklyn Heights has slightly lower poop complaints as well. Use the map and the generated bar charts to see breakdowns for each neighborhood's score.

Our Top 10 Neighborhoods For Summer Are As Follows:
  1. (TIE)  Brooklyn Heights-Cobble Hill - 100
  2. (TIE)  Fort Greene - 100
  3.   SoHo-TriBeCa-Civic Center-Little Italy - 99
  4. (TIE)  DUMBO-Downtown Brooklyn - 98
  5. (TIE)  West Village - 98
  6. (TIE)  Midtown-Midtown South - 97
  7. (TIE)  Chinatown - 97
  8. (TIE)  East Village - 96
  9. (TIE)  Battery Park City-Lower Manhattan - 96
  10.   North Williamsburg - 95

How Did We Do It?

Pulling this together was no small feat, with multiple data sources and years of data to sift through, we set out to ensure that the SummerScore covered aspects relevant to as many New Yorkers as possible. Most of the data came from open data sources, so anyone can access and have a look for themselves. The foundation upon which everything was built were the Neighborhood Tabulation Areas as defined by NYC, used for zoning and planning. In many cases, colloquial neighborhoods are combined into one area, but using these areas allows us to utilize official demographic information to normalize the data based on population and square miles, making for a fair comparison. Some neighborhood names were renamed to be more recognizable, such as North Williamsburg, which was previously 'North Side-South Side', others were simply made more concise.

We Used These Data Sources

In order to calculate the SummerScore, we counted the number of occurrences of many of the above factors there are/were in each neighborhood using a GIS spatial reference function. These counts were then normalized based on square mile size of the neighborhood, or population. For park coverage percentage, we compared the sizes of all the parks, squares, playgrounds, and Greenstreets throughout the city to the sizes of the neighborhoods they were located in. Neighborhoods like Upper East Side, Park Slope, and Brighton Beach were given bumps to their score for bordering Central Park, Prospect Park and having a beach front. Many neighborhoods have lower amounts of parks in them since they're so close to other large parks and so we accounted for that. Lastly, to create the Poop Penalty, data from 2010-2015 on canine waste complaints was compiled, and we calculated the average number of complaints per year, per square mile for that 6-year period.

Other Findings

While calculating the SummerScore, we had quite a few other interesting findings, such as:

We'll be doing in depth analyses of these and other datasets that went into the SummerScore in the very near future, so be sure to check back. Next up will be an analysis of the many years of dog waste complaints, and poop forcasting for the rest of this year.

If you’re in the market for a new apartment, or were just influenced to move because of this study, be sure to check out the extensive selection of New York City apartments for rent.

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