Chinatown, Flushing | 2012-10-17 15:08

Chinatown, Flushing, or Flushing Chinatown (法拉盛華埠),[1] in the Flushing area of the New York City borough of Queens, is one of the largest and fastest growing ethnic Chinese enclaves outside of Asia, as well as within New York City itself. In Mandarin, Flushing is known as "Falasheng" (simplified Chinese: 法拉盛; pinyin: Fǎlāshèng).

Main Street and the area to its west, particularly along Roosevelt Avenue, have become the primary nexus of Flushing Chinatown. However, Chinatown continues to expand southeastward along Kissena Boulevard and northward beyond Northern Boulevard.  WikiMiniAtlas40°44′32″N 73°52′43″W。
In the 1970s, a Chinese community established a foothold in the neighborhood of Flushing, whose demographic constituency had been predominantly non-Hispanic white, interspersed with a small Japanese community. The Taiwanese were the first Chinese immigrants to arrive and developed Flushing's Chinatown. It was known as Little Taipei or Little Taiwan. The Taiwanese immigrants that began arriving into New York City were unable to relate to the originally established Manhattan Chinatown, which was initially dominated by the Cantonese language and people before receiving large numbers of Fujianese immigrants but generally working class. Housing conditions in Manhattan's Chinatown were poor, and the Taiwanese immigrants were more likely to have higher educational standards and socioeconomic status, and so they settled in Flushing instead. As their population grew, they eventually created their own Flushing Chinatown that was more middle class and had better housing conditions. However, over the years many new Chinese immigrants from different regions of China have arrived, and now the Chinese population is very mixed, with different provincial languages and cultures.
A 1986 estimate by the Flushing Chinese Business Association approximated 60,000 Chinese in Flushing alone.[6] By 1990, Asians constituted 41% of the population of the core area of Flushing, with Chinese in turn representing 41% of the Asian population.[2] 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. Massive and relentless immigration from Mainland China, both legal[7][8] and illegal[9] in origin, continue to spur the ongoing rise of the ethnic Chinese population in Flushing Chinatown, as in all of New York City's Chinatowns.
The Second Largest Chinatown In New York City
According to a Daily News article, Flushing's Chinatown ranks #2 as NYC's largest Chinese community with 33,526 Chinese, up from 17,363, a 93% increase. Brooklyn's Chinatown now ranks #1 as the largest Chinatown of NYC with 34,218 Chinese residents, up from 19,963 in 2000, a 71% increase. As for Manhattan's Chinatown, its Chinese population declined by 17%, from 34,554 to 28,681 since 2000 to rank #3.
Chinatown, Elmhurst (唐人街, 艾姆赫斯特)
The Elmhurst Chinatown (艾姆赫斯特 唐人街) on Broadway in nearby Elmhurst, another neighborhood in the borough of Queens, also has a large and rapidly growing Chinese community. Previously a small area with Chinese shops on Broadway between 81st Street and Cornish Avenue, this newly evolved second Chinatown in Queens has now expanded to 45th Avenue and Whitney Avenue.[11]
The Flushing-Main Street (IRT Flushing Line) terminus station of the Number 7 subway line serving Flushing Chinatown is one of the busiest stations in the New York City Subway system.
The New York City Subway Number 7 line has its terminus at Flushing-Main Street; the intersection of Main Street and Roosevelt Avenue, at the heart of Flushing Chinatown, is the third busiest intersection in New York City, behind only Times Square and 34th Street/Herald Square in Manhattan. Numerous other public bus and rail connections also serve Chinatown at the Main Street/Roosevelt Avenue intersection, including Q12, Q13, Q15, Q16, Q17, Q19, Q20A/B, Q25, Q34, Q26, Q27, Q28, Q44, Q48 (to LaGuardia Airport), Q58, Q65, Q66, Q50, N20, N21, and the Long Island Railroad.[13] Flushing Chinatown is also readily accessible by automobile from several major highways, namely the Grand Central Parkway (via the Northern Boulevard exit), the Long Island Expressway, the Whitestone Expressway, and the Van Wyck Expressway.
Educational centers
In accompaniment with its rapid growth, Flushing Chinatown in particular has witnessed the proliferation of highly competitive businesses touted as educational centers as well as non-profit organizations declaring the intent to educate the community. Some entities offer education in Mandarin,[14] the lingua franca of Mainland China; others profess to provide students with intensive training in computer and technological proficiency; while still others entice high school students with rigorous preparatory classes for college entrance examinations in mathematics, science, and English literacy.
Political clout
The political stature of Flushing Chinatown appears to be increasing significantly. 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. Concomitantly, Peter Koo, born in Shanghai, China was elected to succeed Liu to assume this council membership seat.
Center of Chinese culture
Flushing Chinatown now rivals Manhattan's Chinatown as a center of Chinese culture.[15] The Lunar New Year Parade has become a growing annual celebration of Chinese New Year in Chinatown. More and larger Chinese supermarkets are locating and selling a diverse and uniquely vast array of Chinese food and ingredient selections in Flushing Chinatown, the largest of which include Hong Kong Supermarket and New York Supermarket, which also happen to be rapidly growing Chinese American chain supermarkets.
The popular styles of Chinese cuisine from every part of China are ubiquitously accessible in Flushing Chinatown,[19] including Taiwanese, Shanghainese, Hunanese, Szechuan, Cantonese, Fujianese, Xinjiang, Zhejiang, and Korean Chinese cuisine. Even the relatively obscure Dongbei style of cuisine indigenous to Northeast China is now available in Flushing Chinatown,[20] as well as Mongolian cuisine.
Mandarin Chinese[21] (including Northeastern Mandarin), Fuzhou dialect, Min Nan Fujianese, Wu Chinese, Beijing dialect, Wenzhounese, Shanghainese, Cantonese, Taiwanese, and English are all prevalently spoken in Flushing Chinatown.
Public institutions
The largest of the Flushing branches of the Queens Borough Public Library is located at the intersection of Kissena Boulevard and Main Street in Chinatown.[22] This library houses an auditorium for public events.
Medical care
New York Hospital Queens, a member of the NewYork-Presbyterian Healthcare System, is a major medical center providing Flushing Chinatown as well as surrounding communities with comprehensive medical care services.[23] Numerous tertiary medical clinics also serve the residents of Chinatown.
Social services
A diverse array of social services geared toward assisting recent as well as established Chinese immigrants is readily available in Flushing Chinatown.[24]
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