Forest Hills in Queens NY

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Forest Hills is a prestigious area.

The Forest Hills neighborhood is home to a mix of middle to upper-class residents, the latter of whom often live in the neighborhood's prestigious Forest Hills Gardens area. Forest Hills has historically had a very large Jewish population with more than 10 synagogues located in the area.

Particularly, the immigrants from middle Asia – Uzbekistan are known for choosing Forest Hills as their destination point. They call themselves Bukharians or Bukharian Jews after the town of Bukhara from which most of them arrived to the United Stated. Bukharians Jews mass exited Uzbekistan in the 1990’s and settles mostly in Forest Hills (and Rego Park). There are businesses and shops run by Bukharians and it must be noted that they maintain very close ties among themselves. They value family traditions, their religious rituals and appreciate financial wealth as a measure of their life success.

History of Forest Hills

Forest Hills was founded in 1906, but before that it was known as Whitepot. In 1909, Margaret Olivia Slocum Sage, who founded the Russell Sage Foundation, bought 142 acres of land from the Cord Meyer Development Company. The original plan was to build good low-income housing and improve living conditions of the working poor. Grosvenor Atterbury, a renowned architect, was given the commission to design Forest Hills Gardens. The neighborhood was planned on the model of the garden communities of England. As a result, there are many Tudor-style homes in Forest Hills, most of which are now located in Forest Hills Gardens. However, there are currently a number of Tudor homes in particular areas of Forest Hills outside of the Gardens.

The neighborhood contains areas of private houses with little commerce, such as the Gardens area; dense commercial districts full of stores and large apartment complexes; and streets with the six-story brick apartment buildings common throughout Queens. The main thoroughfare is the 12-lane-wide Queens Boulevard, while Metropolitan Avenue is known for its antique shops. The commercial heart of Forest Hills is a mile-long stretch of Austin Street, which contains many restaurants, boutiques, and chain stores. Forest Hills is home to a large working to middle-class community. On 62-nd Drive, the last block before 108th Street ventures north into Corona, Queens, is a NYCHA low-income housing project that caused controversy among the residents in the more prestigious areas in Forest Hills when constructed in the early 1970s.

Note on Forest HIlls

Forest Hills was once the home of the U.S. Open tennis tournament, played at the West Side Tennis Club before it moved to the USTA National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows Park. When the Open was played at the tennis stadium, the tournament was commonly referred to merely as Forest Hills just as The Championships, Wimbledon are referred to as Wimbledon. In the 2001 motion picture The Royal Tenenbaums, Luke Wilson's character plays a tennis match at the West Side Tennis Club in Forest Hills. Gene Hackman's character is also shown cruising on the premises.

Forest Hills is also home to the main offices of JetBlue Airways Corp., a US low-cost carrier.

Two monuments are erected in Forest Hills Gardens:

* A tribute to the victims of World War I, the "Great War".
* The mast of Columbia, the winner of the America's Cup in both 1899 and 1901.

Demographics of Forest Hills

As of the 2000 census, there were 41,417 people residing in Forest Hills. The population density was 27,396 people per square mile. The racial makeup of the neighborhood was 73.1% White, 20.1% Asian, 0.06% Pacific Islander, 1.62% African American, 0.12% Native American, 2.39% from other races, and 2.61% from two or more races. 9.35% of the population were Hispanic of any race. 41.6% of the population was foreign born, 47.4% came from Asia, 34.6 from Europe, 14.9 from Latin America and 3.1% from other.

Links: Forest Hills Community Board

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