New York, also referred to as New York City, is the United States’ most populous city. Located on the state’s southern corner, the city serves as the hub of the New York metropolitan region, one of the world’s most populated urban agglomerations. New York is also the most densely populated large city in the United States, with an estimated 2015 population of 8,550,405 spread over a land area of only 305 square miles (790 km2). As a worldwide power center, New York City has a substantial influence on trade, banking, media, art, fashion, research, technology, education, and entertainment, with its brisk pace coining the phrase “New York minute.” New York, which is home to the United Nations’ headquarters, is a vital hub for international diplomacy and has been dubbed the world’s cultural and financial capital.
New York City is composed of five boroughs, each of which is a distinct county in New York State. In 1898, the five boroughs of Brooklyn, Queens, Manhattan, The Bronx, and Staten Island were merged into one metropolis. The city and its metropolitan region serve as the primary gateway for legal immigration to the United States, and New York is home to more than 800 languages, making it the world’s most linguistically diverse metropolis. According to 2015 estimates, the New York City metropolitan area remains the most populous in the United States by a substantial margin, as defined by both the Metropolitan Statistical Area (20.2 million persons) and the Combined Statistical Area (20.2 million residents) (23.7 million residents). In 2013, the MSA created approximately US$1.39 trillion in gross metropolitan product (GMP), while the CSA generated over US$1.55 trillion in GMP in 2012, both ranking first nationally by a large margin and behind just twelve and eleven nations, respectively, in GDP.
New York City dates all the way back to 1624, when it was founded in Lower Manhattan as a commercial center by Dutch Republic colonists and was renamed New Amsterdam in 1626. In 1664, the English took possession of the city and its environs. From 1785 until 1790, New York functioned as the capital of the United States. Since 1790, it has been the country’s biggest metropolis. The Statue of Liberty received millions of immigrants who arrived in the Americas by ship in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century, and it serves as a symbol of the United States and its democracy. New York has developed as a worldwide epicenter of innovation and business, social tolerance, and environmental sustainability in the twenty-first century.
Numerous areas and landmarks in New York City have gained international recognition, and the city welcomed a record-breaking almost 60 million visitors in 2015, housing three of the world’s top 10 most visited tourist attractions in 2013. According to many sources, New York City is the world’s most photographed city. Times Square, dubbed the “heart” and “crossroads” of the globe, is the brilliantly lighted core of the Broadway Theater District, one of the busiest pedestrian junctions in the world, and a key center of the global entertainment industry. Many of the city’s bridges, buildings, and parks are internationally renowned. Anchored by Wall Street in Lower Manhattan’s Financial District, New York City has been referred to as both the world’s most economically powerful city and the world’s leading financial center, and the city is home to the world’s two largest stock exchanges by market capitalization, the New York Stock Exchange and the NASDAQ. Manhattan’s real estate market is one of the world’s most costly. Manhattan’s Chinatown has the biggest concentration of Chinese residents in the Western Hemisphere, with the city establishing many unique Chinatowns. The New York City Subway, which operates 24 hours a day, is one of the world’s most comprehensive metro systems, with 469 stops. The higher education system in New York City consists of over 120 schools and institutions, including Columbia University, New York University, and Rockefeller University, all of which are rated among the world’s top 35.