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3 Bronx Locals Share the Secrets of Their Neighborhoods

There is no Bedford Park in Bedford Park, City Island doesn't have FIOS, and there's not a fresh Jewish rye loaf in sight in Grand Concourse

Depending on who's counting, there are more than 50 neighborhoods in The Bronx. At less than half the size of Queens, and over twice the size of Manhattan, The Bronx not only offers up topographic diversity—hello, City Island—but is also a place where old and new New York meet. Unlike other boroughs, its neighborhoods have been able to hold onto the characteristics that define them while still embracing change. Here, three Bronx dwellers tell us what they love, and don't love, about their very different neighborhoods.

Bedford Park

Houses in the Perry Avenue Historic District in Bedford Park, The Bronx Jeff Reuben/Curbed Flickr Pool

"Gentrification has slowly but surely begun to rear its ugly head," Shannon Lee Gilstad, a Bedford Park resident and community activist says. But this "microcosm of New York City" still has a lot to offer. Speckled with Art Deco gems and the home of Lehman College, Bedford Park is the kind of New York City neighborhood where "the more things change, the more things stay the same."

Read Gilstad's guide to the neighborhood here.

City Island

Nathan Kensinger

"City Island has a very small-town feel to it. I can't even walk up the block to the deli without running into and talking with someone I know," John Doyle, a 25-year neighborhood resident and member of the City Island Civic Association says.That small-town feel pervades the small neighborhood. "City Island has...been able to maintain its authenticity in times of change." With that, it can feel slow to evolve—Doyle says they're still waiting on FIOS.

Read Doyle's guide to the neighborhood here.

Grand Concourse

Grand Concourse Wikimedia Commons

Sam Goodman has been working as an urban planner for the office of the borough president for 15 years. He's also a third-generation resident of the Bronx's Grand Concourse neighborhood. Goodman praises the neighborhood as affordable and safe and full of parks. His one gripe? "The fact that I still need to take a subway ride if I want to buy a fresh loaf of Jewish rye bread that doesn't come in a package."

Read Goodman's guide to the neighborhood here.


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