New York City: The World Is Here

Article excerpt


NEW YORK CITY As your huge Northwest Airlines jet reduces its speed to prepare for landing at the La Guardia airport, you peer excitedly through the window at New York City spread below.

You could see clearly tall buildings with gleaming glass walls reach upwards like gigantic stone and steel fingers. You see rivers too that twist around and through the city.

Looking down again, you could marvel under your feet a city of islands and islets that are all linked together by great bridges. Farther away from the city harbor is an islet called Liberty where the famous Statue of Liberty, worlds largest statue, is located at the nearby Ellis Island which was the immigration station during the bygone years through which millions of immigrants entered the United States.

You are among those millions of visitors who arrived in the city by plane either through the La Guardia airport, for your domestic flight, or John F. Kennedy airport for your international flight. Both airports are among the worlds busiest.

But there are two more ways to approach New York City. By water through great ocean liners and other types of boat that unload passengers at the New York Harbor; and by land where millions also of people arrive in buses and cars, which stream over highways, through tunnels, and across bridges to be swallowed up in the narrow ravines that lie between rows of skyscrapers

Railroad trains streak across the country to plunge under rivers and emerge at last to unload passengers into the domed vastness of the citys railroad terminals.

Regardless of how a visitor reaches New York or what he has heard about the city, the newcomer is overwhelmed by the citys size, the drove of its people, the endless streams of traffic, the steel and glass towers and crowd in every side.

New York City is made up of five sections called borroughs: the Bronx, Queens, Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Richmond. Only the Bronx is on the mainland. Brooklyn and Queens are part of Long Island. Manhattan is an island borrough and so is Richmond, on Staten Island, where New York throw all its garbage. Governors Island served as an army base for many years. Today it is a United States Coast Guard training center. Welfrare Island, the site of several city hospitals, once housed a city prison. There are many other small islands, such as Randalls Island and Rikers Island, scattered throughout the New York City waters.

New York City is crossed by an interconnecting system of waterways. All the waters that border the city are tidal salt waters. The most important river is the Hudson, which empties into the Atlantic Ocean by way of Upper and Lower New York Bay. The estuary of the Hudson gives the city its famous deepwater harbor. Large ocean-going vessels are able to proceed through the bay and to dock along the citys shoreline.

The Hudson is linked to the East River (actually a strait) by the Harlem River Ship Canal and the Harlem River. The East River connects Long Island Sound with Upper New York Bay.

Each of New York Citys five boroughs is also a county of New York State. In the rest of the state each county contains many villages, towns, and cities. But New York City is so heavily populated that the city has been divided into five different counties. The county and the borough names are the same except for Manhattan (called New York County) and Brooklyn (called Kings County) and Brooklyn (called Kings County). Bridges connect Manhattan, the core of the city, with all the boroughs except Richmond. Ferryboats link Richmond and Manhattan.

Bridges, highways, and tunnels connect the five boroughs and link the giant city to neighboring New Jersey and Connecticut.

No fewer than 61 bridges span the waters around New York. …