New York - is a state in the northeastern United States. It is sometimes called New York State when there is need to distinguish it from New York City, the most populous city in both the state and the nation. Because of the preponderance of the population concentrated in the southern portion around New York City, the state is often regionalized into Upstate and Downstate.
New York State's borders touch (clockwise from the northwest) two Great Lakes (Erie and Ontario, which are connected by the Niagara River); one former Great Lake (Lake Champlain); the provinces of Ontario and Quebec in Canada; three New England states (Vermont, Massachusetts, and Connecticut); the Atlantic Ocean, and two Mid-Atlantic states (New Jersey and Pennsylvania). In addition, Rhode Island shares a water border with New York.
New York is also the site of the only extra-territorial enclave within the boundaries of the U.S., the United Nations compound on Manhattan's East River.
The southern tip of New York State - New York City, its suburbs, and the southern portion of the Hudson Valley can be considered to form the central core of a megalopolis, a super-city stretching from the northern suburbs of Boston to the southern suburbs of Washington and therefore occasionally called "BosWash". First described by Jean Gottmann in 1961 as a new phenomenon in the history of world urbanization, the megalopolis is characterized by a coalescence of previous already-large cities of the Eastern Seaboard: a heavy specialization on tertiary activity related to government, trade, law, education, finance, publishing and control of economic activity; plus a growth pattern not so much of more population and more area as more intensive use of already existing urbanized area and ever more sophisticated links from one specialty to another. Several other groups of megalopolis-type super-cities exist in the world, but that centered around New York City was the first described and still is the best example.
New York City - officially the City of New York - is the largest city in the United States and the most densely populated major city in North America. Located in the state of New York, the city has a population of over 8.1 million within an area of 321 square miles (approximately 830 km²). Its metropolitan area has a population of 18.7 million and is one of the largest urban areas in the world.
New York City is a center for international finance, fashion, entertainment, and culture, and is widely considered to be one of the world's major global cities with an extraordinary collection of museums, galleries, performance venues, media outlets, international corporations, and financial markets. It is also home to the headquarters of the United Nations.
Popularly known as the Big Apple, the city attracts large numbers of immigrants—over one-third of its population is foreign born—as well as people from all over the United States who come for its culture, fast-paced lifestyle, cosmopolitanism, and economic opportunity. It is among the most diverse cities in the world—138 languages are spoken in Queens alone.
New York City is located at the center of the BosWash megalopolis, 218 miles (350 km) driving distance from Boston and 220 miles (353 km) from Washington, D.C.. The city's total area is 468.9 square miles (1,214.4 km²), of which 35.31% is water. The city is situated on the three major islands of Manhattan, Staten Island, and western Long Island. The Bronx is the only borough that is part of the mainland United States.
New York City's significance as a trading city results from the natural harbor formed by Upper New York Bay, which is surrounded by Manhattan, Brooklyn, Staten Island, and the coast of New Jersey. It is sheltered from the Atlantic Ocean by the Narrows between Brooklyn and Staten Island in Lower New York Bay.
The Hudson River flows from the Hudson Valley into New York Bay, becoming a tidal estuary that separates the Bronx and Manhattan from New Jersey. The East River, actually a tidal strait, stretches from the Long Island Sound to New York Bay, separating the Bronx and Manhattan from Long Island. The Harlem River, another tidal strait between the East and Hudson Rivers, separates Manhattan from the Bronx.
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