New Yorkers (and the Region) Are Feeling the Squeeze

Times are tight for those who call the Big Apple home. In a new poll conducted by The New York Times and Siena College, 50% of New York City residents reported finding it difficult to make ends meet financially. While those sentiments were particularly strong in Brooklyn and the Bronx, economic anxiety also is felt by residents of Manhattan, 30% of whom said that “they were just getting by.”

The findings for New York City are mirrored throughout the region, RPA research has shown. Across the New York metropolitan region, stretching from southwestern Connecticut through northern New Jersey, median household incomes have dropped for more than three-quarters of the region’s households since 1990.  As RPA revealed Fragile Success, a look at the state of the region and the launch point for RPA’s Fourth Regional Plan, those with incomes in the lowest quartile have lost the most ground, with an 18% drop in median incomes over the same time period.

In our work on the Fourth Regional Plan, we have been evaluating how decisions on land use, infrastructure investments and community design can help alleviate the economic pressure that many residents of the region are experiencing.  As we continue our work on the Fourth Regional Plan, expanding economic opportunity so that all the region’s residents have access to greater opportunity remains a primary concern.