It’s been more than a decade since the attack on the World Trade Center. The towers collapsed into nothing. Smoke billowed up and covered neighboring buildings in the Financial District with dust. Chaos ensued within the neighborhood. Families huddled in nearby apartments, shaken by events going outside their dirtied windows. Those on the streets were tarnished with ashes from above. The future of FiDi seemed bleak as it faded beneath ominous clouds of debris. Moving forward seemed inconceivable.
After the attacks, business slowly and cautiously went back to normal. FiDi streets were once again filled with those rushing to meetings, grasping briefcases, and answering important phone calls. More commonly known as its name implies, the Financial District has been mostly bustling with young businessmen (and women). The majority of buildings were designated for office space, and most people knew of the area itself as simply being the home of the Stock Exchange. Yet the demographic of FiDi has changed - drastically - as it is swiftly becoming a residential area which is highly sought after.
Back in 1990, a mere 25,366 people dwelled within the Financial District. However, this number took a 35.7% jump up to 34,420 people in 2000, and in 2010, an even larger 77.2% leap to 60,978 people. That’s over 35,000 people who have chosen to call FiDi (as well as Battery Park City) their home even after the attacks of September 11th. Many of the office buildings there have been converted into residential dwellings due to the boom of individuals looking to call this neighborhood home.
But who exactly is living there? In 2009 the median household income in the Financial District was $100,159, compared to the rest of the city’s $50,033. 12% of the population here lives below the poverty line, while 21.2% live below it elsewhere in the city. It seems that FiDi is aiming to be a prosperous portion of Manhattan. More than 36% of those who dwell within Lower Manhattan have their bachelor’s degree, in comparison to the rest of the city’s 16%. Furthermore, a combined percentage of 29.7 are male and females which possess occupations in management, while the rest of the males and females in the city are a combined 17% with this occupation.
Since the attacks, the downtown portion of Manhattan was damaged, and no one could foresee the growth that it has experienced throughout the years. One can think twice about living so close to the site of such distraught, but with newly constructed luxury condominiums such as W New York Downtown and the William Beaver House (to name a few) one can’t help but notice what this growing neighborhood has to offer. To move within FiDi is to move within an area of New York City which has healed, surrounded by New Yorkers which have prospered despite previous situations.