Chinese people in New York City

  (Redirected from Chinese in New York City)

The New York metropolitan area is home to the largest and most prominent ethnic Chinese population outside of Asia, hosting Chinese populations representing all 34 provincial-level administrative units of China[1][2] and constituting the largest metropolitan Asian American group in the United States as well as the largest Asian-national metropolitan diaspora in the Western Hemisphere. The Chinese American population of the New York City metropolitan area was an estimated 893,697 as of 2017.[3] New York City itself contains by far the highest ethnic Chinese population of any individual city outside Asia, estimated at 628,763 as of 2017.[4]

The Chinese American experience has been documented at the Museum of Chinese in America in Manhattan's Chinatown since 1980.

New York City and the surrounding area, including Long Island and parts of New Jersey, is home to 12 Chinatowns, early U.S. racial ghettos where Chinese immigrants were made to live for economic survival and physical safety[5] that are now known as important sites of tourism and urban economic activity. Six Chinatowns[6] (or nine,[7] New York including the emerging Chinatowns in Elmhurst and Whitestone, Queens,[8] and East Harlem, Manhattan) are located in New York City proper, and one each is located in Nassau County, Long Island; Edison, New Jersey;[8] West Windsor, New Jersey; and Parsippany-Troy Hills, New Jersey. This excludes fledgling ethnic Chinese enclaves emerging throughout the New York metropolitan area, such as Jersey City, New Jersey; China City of America in Sullivan County, New York; and Dragon Springs in Deerpark, Orange County, New York, which serves as the de facto headquarters for both the global Falun Gong religious movement as well as the Shen Yun performance arts troupe.[9]

The Chinese American community in the New York metropolitan area is rising rapidly in population as well as economic and political influence. Continuing significant immigration from Mainland China[10] has spurred the ongoing rise of the Chinese population in the New York metropolitan area; this immigration and its accompanying growth in the impact of the Chinese presence continue to be fueled by New York's status as an alpha global city, its high population density, its extensive mass transit system, and the New York metropolitan area's enormous economic marketplace.


Crossing Canal Street in the Manhattan Chinatown (紐約華埠), facing Mott Street toward the south

Among the earliest documented arrivals of Chinese immigrants in New York City were of "sailors and peddlers" in the 1830s and again in 1847, when three students arrived to continue their education in the U.S. One of the scholars, Yung Wing, soon became the first Chinese American to graduate from a U.S. college in 1854, when Wing graduated from Yale University.

Many more Chinese immigrants arrived and settled in Lower Manhattan throughout the 1800s, including an 1870s wave of Chinese immigrants searching for "gold.[11]" By 1880, the enclave around Five Points was estimated to have from 200 to as many as 1,100 members.[11] However, the Chinese Exclusion Act, which went into effect in 1882, caused an abrupt decline in the number of Chinese who emigrated to New York and the rest of the United States.[11] Later, in 1943, the Chinese were given a small quota, the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965 caused a revival in Chinese immigration,[12] and the community's population gradually increased until 1968, when the quota was lifted and the Chinese American population skyrocketed,[11] and in 1992, New York City officially began providing language assistance for electoral materials in Chinese, given that this population had reached a critical mass in numbers.[13]


New York City boroughsEdit

New York City has the largest Chinese population of any city outside of Asia[14] and within the U.S. with an estimated population of 573,388 in 2014,[15] and continues to be a primary destination for new Chinese immigrants.[16] New York City is subdivided into official municipal boroughs, which themselves are home to significant Chinese populations, with Brooklyn and Queens, adjacently located on Long Island, leading the fastest growth.[17][18] After the City of New York itself, the boroughs of Queens and Brooklyn encompass the largest Chinese populations, respectively, of all municipalities in the United States.

Rank Borough Chinese Americans Density of Chinese Americans per square mile in borough Percentage of Chinese Americans in borough's population
1 Queens, Chinatowns (皇后華埠) (2014)[19] 237,484 2,178.8 10.2
2 Brooklyn, Chinatowns (布魯克林華埠) (2014)[20] 205,753 2,897.9 7.9
3 Manhattan, Chinatown (曼哈頓華埠) (2014)[21] 107,609 4,713.5 6.6
4 Staten Island (2012) 13,620 232.9 2.9
5 The Bronx (2012) 6,891 164 0.5
New York City (2014) 573,388[15] 1,881.1 6.8

Large-scale immigration continues from ChinaEdit

In 2013, 19,645 Chinese legally immigrated to the New York-Northern New Jersey-Long Island, NY-NJ-PA core based statistical area from Mainland China, greater than the combined totals for Los Angeles and San Francisco, the next two largest Chinese American gateways;[22] in 2012, this number was 24,763;[23] 28,390 in 2011;[24] and 19,811 in 2010.[25] These numbers do not include the remainder of the New York-Newark-Bridgeport, NY-NJ-CT-PA Combined Statistical Area, nor do they include the significantly smaller numbers of legal immigrants from Taiwan and Hong Kong. There has additionally been a consequential component of Chinese emigration of illegal origin, most notably Fuzhou people from Fujian and Wenzhounese from Zhejiang in mainland China, specifically destined for New York City,[26] beginning in the 1980s.

Quantification of the magnitude of this modality of emigration is imprecise and varies over time, but it appears to continue unabated on a significant basis. As of April 2019, China Airlines (flying non-stop to Taipei), China Eastern Airlines, China Southern Airlines, EVA Air, Hainan Airlines, and XiamenAir all served John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK), while Air China and Cathay Pacific Airways served both JFK and Newark Liberty International Airport in the New York metropolitan area – and among U.S. carriers, United Airlines flew non-stop from Newark to Beijing, Shanghai, and Hong Kong. Hainan Airlines flies non-stop from JFK to both Chengdu and Chongqing in Western China; while China Southern Airlines is expected to start non-stop flights from JFK to Wuhan, in Central China, in July 2019. Meanwhile, Singapore Airlines flies to Singapore, where Standard Chinese is one of the official state languages, both from Newark (with one of the longest non-stop flights in the world[27][28]) and from JFK.

Within the Chinese population, New York City is also home to between 150,000 and 200,000 Fuzhounese Americans, who have exerted a large influence upon the Chinese restaurant industry across the United States; the vast majority of the growing population of Fuzhounese Americans have settled in New York.

The Chinese immigrant population in New York City grew from 261,500 foreign-born individuals in 2000 to 350,000 in 2011, representing a more than 33% growth of that demographic.[29] Chinese immigrants represented 12,000 of the country's asylum requests in fiscal year 2013, of which 4,000 applied for asylum to the New York-area asylum office.

Movement within and outside the metropolitan areaEdit

As many immigrant Chinese to New York City move up the socioeconomic ladder, many have relocated to the suburbs for more living space as well as seeking particular school districts for their children. In this process, new Chinese enclaves and Chinatown commercial districts have emerged and are growing in these suburbs, particularly in Nassau County on Long Island and in the four counties of New Jersey which start with the letter "M": Mercer County, Middlesex County, Monmouth County, and Morris County. The attractions of these New Jersey and Long Island counties to Chinese immigrants include affluent and safe neighborhoods comprising large numbers of professionals, vaunted educational systems, and ready accessibility to Manhattan by commuter rail.[30][31] Some Chinese New Yorkers are also migrating to Boston, Philadelphia,[32] and eastern Connecticut.[33][34]


Pell Street, Manhattan Chinatown

The Manhattan Chinatown was the original Chinatown.[35] Little Fuzhou in Manhattan is an ethnoculturally distinct neighborhood within the Manhattan Chinatown itself, populated primarily by Fujianese people. The Sunset Park neighborhood of Brooklyn houses another such Little Fuzhou. Queens and Brooklyn are home to other Chinatowns. The Flushing as well as Elmhurst areas of Queens and multiple burgeoning neighborhoods in Brooklyn[36] also have spawned the development of numerous other Chinatowns. Most of Manhattan, as well as Corona in Queens, the Brooklyn Heights and Park Slope areas of Brooklyn, and northeast Staten Island, have also received significant Chinese settlement.[35][37]


Manhattan (曼哈頓華埠)Edit

Manhattan's Chinatown holds the highest concentration of Chinese people in the Western Hemisphere.[38][39] Manhattan's Chinatown is also one of the oldest Chinese ethnic enclaves.[40] The Manhattan Chinatown is one of nine Chinatown neighborhoods in New York City,[7] as well as one of twelve in the New York metropolitan area, which contains the largest ethnic Chinese population outside of Asia, comprising an estimated 893,697 uniracial individuals as of 2017.[41] Manhattan's Chinatown is actually divided into two different portions. The western portion is the older and original part of Manhattan's Chinatown, primarily dominated by Cantonese populations and known colloquially as the Cantonese Chinatown. Cantonese were the earlier settlers of Manhattan's Chinatown, originating mostly from Hong Kong and from Taishan in Guangdong Province, as well as from Shanghai.[42] They form most of the Chinese population of the area surrounded by Mott and Canal Streets.[42]

The Fukien American Association is based in Chinatown's Little Fuzhou (小福州, 紐約華埠) neighborhood.
Mahayana Buddhist Temple (大乘佛教寺廟) on Canal Street in Chinatown, Manhattan

However, within Manhattan's Chinatown lies Little Fuzhou or The Fuzhou Chinatown on East Broadway and surrounding streets, occupied predominantly by immigrants from the province of Fujian, Mainland China. They are the later settlers, from Fuzhou, Fujian, forming the majority of the Chinese population in the vicinity of East Broadway.[42] This eastern portion of Manhattan's Chinatown developed much later, primarily after the Fuzhou immigrants began moving in.

Areas surrounding "Little Fuzhou" consist of significant numbers of Cantonese immigrants from the Guangdong of China; however, the main concentration of people speaking the Cantonese language is in the older western portion of Manhattan's Chinatown. Despite the fact that the Mandarin speaking communities were becoming established in Flushing and Elmhurst areas of Queens during the 1980s–1990s and even though the Fuzhou immigrants spoke Mandarin often as well, however, due to their socioeconomic status, they could not afford the housing prices in Mandarin speaking enclaves in Queens, which were more middle class and the job opportunities were limited. They instead chose to settle in Manhattan's Chinatown for affordable housing and as well as the job opportunities that were available such as the seamstress factories and restaurants, despite the traditional Cantonese dominance until the 1990s. Eventually this pattern was repeated in Brooklyn's Sunset Park Chinatown, but on a much larger immense scale.

However, the Cantonese dialect that has dominated Chinatown for decades is being rapidly swept aside by Mandarin, the national language of China and the lingua franca due to the influx of Fuzhou immigrants who often speak Mandarin and as well as there are now more Mandarin speaking visitors coming to visit the neighborhood.[43] Chinatown's modern borders are roughly Delancey Street on the north, Chambers Street on the south, East Broadway on the east, and Broadway on the west.[44]

Queens (皇后華埠)Edit

The busy intersection of Main Street, Kissena Boulevard, and 41st Ave. in the Flushing Chinatown (法拉盛華埠), Queens, NYC. The cultural heart of Flushing Chinatown is Main St. between Kissena Boulevard and Roosevelt Ave., punctuated by the Long Island Rail Road trestle overpass. With more than 30,000 residents born in China alone, the largest by this metric outside Asia, Flushing is home to largest and fastest-growing Chinatown in the world.[45] Flushing is undergoing rapid gentrification by Chinese transnational entities.[46]
The Elmhurst Chinatown (艾姆赫斯特) on Broadway in Queens is now a satellite of the Flushing Chinatown.

New York City's satellite Chinatowns in Queens, as well as in Brooklyn, are thriving as traditionally urban enclaves, as large-scale Chinese immigration into New York continues,[47][48][49][50] with the largest metropolitan Chinese population outside Asia.[51] busy intersection of Main Street, Kissena Boulevard, and 41st Avenue in the Flushing Chinatown (法拉盛華埠), in Queens. The segment of Main Street between Kissena Boulevard and Roosevelt Avenue, punctuated by the Long Island Rail Road trestle overpass, represents the cultural heart of Flushing Chinatown. Housing more than 30,000 individuals born in China alone, the largest by this metric outside Asia, Flushing is home to one of the largest and fastest-growing Chinatowns in the world.[45] Massage parlors in the Flushing Chinatown have become the hub of organized prostitution in the United States.[52]

The Flushing Chinatown, in the Flushing area of the borough of Queens in New York City, is one of the largest and fastest growing ethnic Chinese enclaves outside Asia, as well as within New York City itself. Main Street and the area to its west, particularly along Roosevelt Avenue, have become the primary nexus of Flushing Chinatown. However, Flushing Chinatown continues to expand southeastward along Kissena Boulevard and northward beyond Northern Boulevard. In the 1970s, a Chinese community established a foothold in the neighborhood of Flushing, whose demographic constituency had been predominantly non-Hispanic white. Taiwanese began the surge of immigration. It originally started off as Little Taipei or Little Taiwan due to the large Taiwanese population. Due to the then dominance of working class Cantonese immigrants of Manhattan's Chinatown including its poor housing conditions, they could not relate to them and settled in Flushing.

Later on, when other groups of Non-Cantonese Chinese, mostly speaking Mandarin started arriving into NYC, like the Taiwanese, they could not relate to Manhattan's then dominant Cantonese Chinatown, as a result they mainly settled with Taiwanese to be around Mandarin speakers. Later, Flushing's Chinatown would become the main center of different Chinese regional groups and cultures in NYC. By 1990, Asians constituted 41% of the population of the core area of Flushing, with Chinese in turn representing 41% of the Asian population.[53] However, ethnic Chinese are constituting an increasingly dominant proportion of the Asian population as well as of the overall population in Flushing and its Chinatown. A 1986 estimate by the Flushing Chinese Business Association approximated 60,000 Chinese in Flushing alone.[54] Mandarin Chinese[55] (including Northeastern Mandarin), Fuzhou dialect, Min Nan Fujianese, Wu Chinese, Beijing dialect, Wenzhounese, Shanghainese, Suzhou dialect, Hangzhou dialect, Changzhou dialect, Cantonese, Hokkien, and English are all prevalently spoken in Flushing Chinatown, while the Mongolian language is now emerging. Even the relatively obscure Dongbei style of cuisine indigenous to Northeast China is now available there.[56] Given its rapidly growing status, the Flushing Chinatown has surpassed the original New York City Chinatown in the Borough of Manhattan in size and population, while Queens and Brooklyn vie for the largest Chinese population of any municipality in the United States other than New York City as a whole.

Elmhurst, another neighborhood in Queens, also has a large and growing Chinese community.[57] Previously a small area with Chinese shops on Broadway between 81st Street and Cornish Avenue, this new Chinatown has now expanded to 45th Avenue and Whitney Avenue. Since 2000, thousands of Chinese Americans have migrated into Whitestone, Queens (白石), given the sizeable presence of the neighboring Flushing Chinatown, and have continued their expansion eastward in Queens and into neighboring, highly educated Nassau County (拿騷縣) on Long Island (長島), which has become the most popular suburban destination in the U.S. for Chinese.[58][59][60]

Brooklyn (布魯克林華埠)Edit

One of several Chinatowns in Brooklyn (布魯克林華埠) (above)[36] and Chinatowns in Queens (在皇后區唐人街) (below). Chinese in New York constitute the fastest-growing nationality in New York State and on Long Island,[61][62][63][64] with large-scale Chinese immigration continuing into New York, home to the largest metropolitan Chinese population outside of Asia.[1][2]

By 1988, 90% of the storefronts on Eighth Avenue in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, were abandoned. Chinese immigrants then moved into this area, consisting of not only new arrivals from China, but also members of Manhattan's Chinatown seeking refuge from high rents, who flocked to the relatively less expensive property costs and rents of Sunset Park and formed the original Brooklyn Chinatown,[65] which now extends for 20 blocks along 8th Avenue, from 42nd to 62nd Streets. This relatively new but rapidly growing Chinatown located in Sunset Park was originally settled by Cantonese immigrants like Manhattan's Chinatown in the past. However, in the recent decade, an influx of Fuzhou immigrants has been pouring into Brooklyn's Chinatown and supplanting the Cantonese at a significantly higher rate than in Manhattan's Chinatown, and Brooklyn's Chinatown is now home to mostly Fuzhou immigrants.

In the past, during the 1980s and 1990s, the majority of newly arriving Fuzhou immigrants settled within Manhattan's Chinatown, and the first Little Fuzhou community emerged within Manhattan's Chinatown; by the first decade of the 21st century, however, the epicenter of the massive Fuzhou influx had shifted to Brooklyn's Chinatown, which is now home to the fastest-growing and perhaps largest Fuzhou population in New York City. Unlike the Little Fuzhou in Manhattan's Chinatown, which remains surrounded by areas which continue to house significant populations of Cantonese, all of Brooklyn's Chinatown is swiftly consolidating into New York City's new Little Fuzhou. However, a growing community of Wenzhounese immigrants from China's Zhejiang is now also arriving in Brooklyn's Chinatown.[66][67] Also in contrast to Manhattan's Chinatown, which still successfully continues to carry a large Cantonese population and retain the large Cantonese community established decades ago in its western section, where Cantonese residents have a communal venue to shop, work, and socialize, Brooklyn's Chinatown has seen a change from its primarily Cantonese community identity to a more diverse Chinese melange.[68]

Like Manhattan's Chinatown during the 1980s and 1990s (pre-gentrification), Brooklyn's Chinatown became the main affordable housing center for Fuzhou immigrants – and for job opportunities ranging from seamstress factories and restaurants – despite its domination by Cantonese immigrants in the earlier years.

Bensonhurst, Brooklyn, as well as Avenue U in Homecrest, Brooklyn, in addition to Bay Ridge, Borough Park, Coney Island, Dyker Heights, Gravesend, and Marine Park, have given rise to the development of Brooklyn's newer satellite Chinatowns, as evidenced by the growing number of Chinese-run fruit markets, restaurants, beauty and nail salons, small offices, and computer and consumer electronics dealers. While the foreign-born Chinese population in New York City jumped 35 percent between 2000 and 2013, to 353,000 from about 262,000, the foreign-born Chinese population in Brooklyn increased 49 percent during the same period, to 128,000 from 86,000, according to The New York Times. The emergence of multiple Chinatowns in Brooklyn is due to the overcrowding and high property values in Brooklyn's main Chinatown in Sunset Park, and many Cantonese immigrants have moved out of Sunset Park into these new areas. As a result, the newer emerging, but smaller Brooklyn's Chinatowns are primarily Cantonese dominated while the main Brooklyn Chinatown is increasingly dominated by Fuzhou emigres.[36]



Street fairs (街頭慶祝活動) are common and are an integral institution in the cultural fabric of Chinatown in Manhattan.


For much of the overall history of the Chinese community in New York City, Taishanese was the dominant Chinese dialect.[69] After 1965, an influx of immigrants from Hong Kong made Cantonese the dominant dialect for the next three decades.

Later on, during the 1970s–80s, Taiwanese and Fuzhou-speaking immigrants began to arrive into New York City. Taiwanese were settling into Flushing, Queens when it was still predominantly European American, while Fuzhou immigrants were settling in Manhattan's then very Cantonese-dominated Chinatown. The Taiwanese and Fuzhou people were the earliest significant numbers of Chinese immigrants to arrive into New York who spoke Mandarin but not Cantonese, although many spoke their regional Chinese dialects as well.

Since the mid 1990s, an influx of immigrants from various parts of Mainland China began arriving later on eventually, with the increased influence of Mandarin in the Chinese-speaking world, and a desire of Chinese parents to have their children learn this language, Mandarin has been in the process of becoming the dominant lingua franca among the Chinese population of New York City. In the Manhattan Chinatown, many newer immigrants who speak Mandarin live around East Broadway, while Chinatowns in Brooklyn and Queens have also witnessed influxes of Mandarin-speaking Chinese as well as Min Chinese and Southern Min speakers.[70]

Unique Demographics of NYC Chinese EnclavesEdit

However, the different Chinese cultural and language groups as well as socioeconomic statuses are often subdivided among different boroughs of New York City. In Queens, the Chinatowns are very diverse, composed of different Chinese regional groups mainly speaking Mandarin although speaking other dialects as well, and who are more often middle- or upper-middle class. As a result, the Mandarin dialect is primarily concentrated in Queens. In addition, Flushing's Chinatown is now the largest Chinese cultural center of New York City, including being the most diverse with many different Chinese populations from many various regions of China and Taiwan, but in since the 2000s, especially since the 2010s, the Northeastern Chinese immigrants have been increasingly becoming a more dominant Chinese population in Flushing Queens.

However, since Manhattan's Chinatown and Brooklyn's Chinese enclaves still hold large Cantonese speaking populations, who were the earlier Chinese immigrants to arrive into New York City and with the popularity of Hong Kong Cantonese cuisine and entertainment being widely available, the Cantonese dialect and culture still hold a large influence, and Cantonese is still a dialect in those enclaves.

Even though there are very large Fuzhou populations in Manhattan's Chinatown and Brooklyn's Chinese enclaves, many of whom speak Mandarin as well, the influence of Mandarin in those enclaves is as only one of the dialects in addition to Cantonese, rather than being the dominant one – unlike in the Chinese enclaves in Queens, where Mandarin is the most dominant dialect and as well as an almost exclusive dialect, despite the presence of a high diversity of Chinese regional languages in Queens – since there are fewer Mandarin speakers besides the Fuzhou population in Manhattan and Brooklyn than in Queens.

However, in Brooklyn, Fuzhou speakers predominate in the large Chinatown in Sunset Park while the several smaller emerging Chinatowns in various sections of Bensonhurst and in a section of Sheepshead Bay are primarily Cantonese speakers, unlike in Manhattan's Chinatown, where the Cantonese enclave and Fuzhou enclave are directly adjacent to each other. Therefore, Mandarin and Cantonese dialects significantly varies between the different Chinatowns of Sunset Park, Bensonhurst and Sheepshead Bay. Cantonese is the main variety of Chinese spoken in Bensonhurst's and Sheepshead Bay's Chinatowns, since they are mostly Cantonese populated; Mandarin is another, but less dominant variety. Since Sunset Park's Chinatown is now mostly Fuzhou populated, Mandarin is more dominant there. In Manhattan's Chinatown, Cantonese is dominant in the western portion and Fuzhouese in the eastern portion. Cantonese and Mandarin are equally spoken there due to the high number of Mainland Chinese visitors and Cantonese residents from other neighborhoods.[71][72][73][74][75][76]

The Cantonese and Fuzhou populations are often more working class. However, because of the gentrification in Manhattan's Chinatown, Sunset Park in Brooklyn is increasingly becoming the main target for newly arrived Fuzhou immigrants while Bensonhurst and Sheepshead Bay in Brooklyn are increasingly becoming the main targets for the newly arrived Cantonese immigrants. This shift has now resulted in Brooklyn's Chinatowns rapidly replacing Manhattan's Chinatown as the largest primary gathering cultural centers for the Cantonese and Fuzhou populations of New York City.[77][78][79]

Cooks at a Manhattan Chinatown restaurant taking a break


Given that the New York City metropolitan area has become home to the largest overseas Chinese population outside of Asia,[1][80] all popular styles of regional Chinese cuisine have commensurately become ubiquitously accessible in New York City,[81] including Hakka, Taiwanese, Shanghainese, Hunanese, Szechuan, Cantonese, Fujianese, Xinjiang, Zhejiang, Korean-Chinese, and Malaysian Chinese cuisine. Even the relatively obscure Dongbei style of cuisine indigenous to Northeast China is now available in Flushing, Queens,[82] as well as Mongolian cuisine and Uyghur cuisine.[83] The availability of the regional variations of Chinese cuisine originating from throughout the different Provinces of China is most apparent in the city's Chinatowns in Queens, particularly the Flushing Chinatown (法拉盛華埠), but is also notable in the city's Chinatowns in Brooklyn and Manhattan.

Kosher preparation of Chinese foodEdit

Kosher preparation of Chinese food is also widely available in New York City, given the metropolitan area's large Jewish and particularly Orthodox Jewish populations. The perception that American Jews eat at Chinese restaurants on Christmas Day is documented in media as a common stereotype with a basis in fact.[84][85][86] The tradition may have arisen from the lack of other open restaurants on Christmas Day, as well as the close proximity of Jewish and Chinese immigrants to each other in New York City. Kosher Chinese food is usually prepared in New York City, as well as in other large cities with Orthodox Jewish neighborhoods, under strict rabbinical supervision as a prerequisite for Kosher certification.

News mediaEdit

The World Journal, one of the largest Chinese-language newspapers outside of Asia, has its headquarters in Whitestone (白石), Queens,[87][88] while The Epoch Times, an international multi-language newspaper and media company affiliated with the Falun Gong new religious movement, is headquartered in Manhattan.[89][90][91][92] The Hong Kong-based, multinational Chinese-language newspaper Sing Tao Daily maintains its overseas headquarters in Chinatown, Manhattan. The Beijing-based, English-language newspaper China Daily publishes a U.S. edition, which is based in the 1500 Broadway skyscraper in Times Square.[93] In addition, the Global Chinese Times is published in Edison, Middlesex County, New Jersey,[94][95] to serve both a growing global readership and New Jersey's growing Chinese population of over 150,000 in 2016.[96]


The Museum of Chinese in America is located in the Manhattan Chinatown, at 215 Centre Street, and this prominent cultural institution has documented the Chinese American experience since 1980.

Chinese Lunar New YearEdit

Chinese Lunar New Year (農曆新年) celebration in Manhattan Chinatown

Chinese Lunar New Year is celebrated annually throughout New York City's Chinatowns. Chinese New Year was signed into law as an allowable school holiday in the State of New York by Governor Andrew Cuomo in December 2014, as absentee rates had run as high as 60% in some New York City schools on this day.[97]


Beginning in 2006 many Chinese Catholics began worshipping at St. John Vianney Church in Flushing.[98]


P.S. 184 is a public school in Manhattan's Chinatown, as part of the New York City Department of Education, that offers a dual-language instructional program in Mandarin and English.[99] Conversely, the Yung Wing school, also in Manhattan's Chinatown and known additionally as P.S. 124, is an elementary school within the New York City Department of Education.[100] The Huaxia Edison Chinese School operates in Edison, Middlesex County, New Jersey, as a branch of the Huaxia Chinese School system; while all students at the YingHua International School in nearby Kingston, New Jersey are fluent in Mandarin by 8th grade.[101] Chinese Americans compose a disproportionate enrollment relative to the general population in the nine elite public high schools of New York City, including Stuyvesant High School and Bronx Science High School.[102]


Numerous New York City Subway routes directly serve the multiple Chinatowns of New York City. The BMT Fourth Avenue Line (D​, ​N​, and ​R trains) and BMT Brighton Line (B and ​Q trains) connect Chinese communities in Lower Manhattan and Brooklyn. The Little Fuzhou neighborhood within Chinatown, Manhattan, hosts the East Broadway station on the IND Sixth Avenue Line (F and <F>​ trains). Avenue U is served by the B and ​Q trains, while Sunset Park is served by the N​ and ​R trains, and Bensonhurst is served by the D train. The IRT Lexington Avenue Line (4, ​5, ​6, and <6> trains) serves the burgeoning Chinese community of East Harlem in Upper Manhattan. Meanwhile, Flushing in Queens is served by the IRT Flushing Line (7 and <7>​ trains) of the New York City Subway, as well as by four stations of the Long Island Rail Road (LIRR)'s Port Washington Branch.[103]

Subway and commuter rail routes in New York City's Chinatowns
Borough Line Route Neighborhoods served Notable stations
Brooklyn BMT Brighton Line    Avenue U Avenue U
BMT Fourth Avenue Line  ​​  Sunset Park 53rd Street, 59th Street
BMT Sea Beach Line   Eighth Avenue, Fort Hamilton Parkway
BMT West End Line   Bensonhurst 20th Avenue, Bay Parkway
Manhattan IND Sixth Avenue Line    Little Fuzhou East Broadway
   Manhattan Chinatown Grand Street
BMT Broadway Line      Canal Street
BMT Nassau Street Line    Bowery, Canal Street
IRT Lexington Avenue Line    Canal Street
East Harlem 110th Street, 116th Street
Queens IND Queens Boulevard Line    Elmhurst Elmhurst Avenue, Grand Avenue–Newtown
IRT Flushing Line    Flushing Flushing–Main Street
LIRR Port Washington Branch Flushing–Main Street, Murray Hill, Broadway, Auburndale

A system of dollar vans operates between the different Chinatowns in New York City. The dollar vans (which are distinct from, and not to be confused with, Chinatown bus lines), go from Manhattan's Chinatown to places in Sunset Park, Brooklyn; Elmhurst, Queens; and Flushing, Queens. There is also a service from Flushing to Sunset Park that does not pass through Manhattan. Contrary to their name, the dollar vans' fares are $2.50, which is cheaper than the New York City transit fares of $2.75 as of 2015.[104][105][106]

There are also intercity bus services that operate from the Chinatowns in New York City.[107][108]

As of 2016, the two largest Taiwanese airlines have provided free shuttle services to and from John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York City for customers based in New Jersey.


Area Chinese-American associations include the Millburn-Short Hills Chinese Association (MSHCA; Chinese: 蜜尔本华人协会; pinyin: Mìěrběn Huárén Xiéhuì) in New Jersey, which hosts a moon festival each year.[111] 2005 is the year of the organization's establishments.[112]

The Long Island Chinese American Association (LICAA) serves those on Long Island. As of 2020, Gordon Zhang is the president. Other associations include Chinese American Association of North Hempstead and the Herricks Chinese Association.[113]

Political influenceEdit

The Tuidang Service Center, based on Main Street in Flushing Chinatown, urges renunciation of the Chinese Communist Party by China.[114]

The political stature of Chinese Americans in New York City has become prominent. As of 2017, Guo Wengui, a Chinese billionaire turned political activist, has been in self-imposed exile in New York City, where he owns an apartment worth $68 million on the Upper East Side of Manhattan, overlooking Central Park. He has continued to conduct a political agenda to bring attention to alleged corruption in the Chinese political system from his New York home.[115] Taiwan-born John Liu, former New York City Council member representing District 20, which includes Flushing Chinatown and other northern Queens neighborhoods, was elected to his current position of New York City Comptroller in November 2009, becoming the first Asian American to be elected to a citywide office in New York City.[116] Concomitantly, Peter Koo, born in Shanghai, was elected to succeed Liu to assume this council membership seat. Margaret Chin became the first Chinese American woman representing Manhattan's Chinatown on the New York City Council, elected in 2009. Grace Meng is a member of the United States House of Representatives, representing New York's 6th congressional district in Queens since 2009. Of the more than 2,100 Asian Americans within the uniformed ranks of the New York Police Department (NYPD) in 2015 – about six percent of the total – roughly half were Chinese American, NYPD statistics show, a number which has grown tenfold since 1990.[1] Yuh-Line Niou is a Taiwanese-American Democratic Party member of the New York State Assembly representing the 65th district in Lower Manhattan, elected in 2016, taking over the seat previously held by Sheldon Silver.[117]

Economic influenceEdit

The economic influence of Chinese in New York City is growing as well. The majority of cash purchases of New York City real estate in the first half of 2015 were transacted by Chinese as a combination of overseas Chinese and Chinese Americans.[118] The top three surnames of cash purchasers of Manhattan real estate during that time period were Chen, Liu, and Wong.[118] Chinese have also invested billions of dollars into New York commercial real estate since 2013.[119] According to China Daily, the ferris wheel under construction on Staten Island, slated to be among the world's tallest and most expensive with an estimated cost of $500 million, has received $170 million in funding from approximately 300 Chinese investors through the U.S. EB-5 immigrant investor program, which grants permanent residency to foreign investors in exchange for job-creating investments in the United States, with Chinese immigrating to New York City dominating this list.[120] Chinese billionaires have been buying New York property to be used as pied-à-terres, often priced in the tens of millions of U.S. dollars each,[121][122] and as of 2016, middle-class Chinese investors were purchasing real estate in New York.[123] Chinese companies have also been raising billions of dollars on stock exchanges in New York via initial public offerings.[124] The major Chinese banks maintain operational offices in New York City.

Notable peopleEdit

Academia and humanitiesEdit

Academia and sciencesEdit


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