Orthodox Population Drives Jewish Growth in Brooklyn But Not Spread of Bike-Share Kiosks


The first major study of the city’s Jewish population to be completed in over a decade reveals several interesting trend, including this headline grabby from the New York Times: After years of declining, the overall Jewish population in the city grew in the last decade fueled by “explosive” growth among the Hasidic and other Orthodox communities in Brooklyn. The rise of these groups, concentrated in areas like Williamsburg and Crown Heights “where college degrees are rare and poverty rates have reached 43 percent,” more than made up for a decline in the number of wealthy, educated Jews on the Upper West Side. Not surprisingly, the shifts coincided with a decline in Jews with moderate religious views. “There are more deeply engaged Jews and there are more unengaged Jews,” said one of the authors of the UJA-Federation-financed study. “These two wings are growing at the expense of the middle. That’s the reality of our community.” Between 2002 and 2011, the percentage of Jews who identify as Orthodox rose from 34 to 40 percent. The percentage of Jewish children who are Orthodox? 74. And while the population of Jews in South Williamsburg may be booming, they won’t be availing themselves of the city’s new bike-share program: The Wall Street Journal reports that there will be zero kiosks in the Hasidic stronghold. “We’re not really looking to put them where there isn’t a lot of demand,” said DOT commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan. Check out the glaring hole in the map on the jump.
Chart: Growing Jewish Population, Especially in Brooklyn [NY Times]
Aided by Orthodox, City’s Jewish Population Is Growing Again [NY Times]
Bike-Share Rides Past Neighborhood [WSJ]

11 Comment

  • ooooh noooo! Another daily installment of the great Orthodox Bike Share Controversy of 2012?

    Tomorrow, please devote some space in this blog to any fundamentalist Mormans in Brooklyn, and how they are reacting to the (admittedly very scary) prospect of bike sharing in our neighborhoods.

    In a presidential election year, with a Mormon as the probable nominee of a major-party ticket, I think it would be especially relevant to read about Mormonism, cycling, and sharing bicycles. In Brooklyn.

    And since the presidential nominee in question is most famous for — well, besides running for president — he’s most famous for strapping a dog to the roof of his station wagon on the way to a vacation in Canada, I think it’s safe to say that transportation issues are important here….

  • skillman, no, I’m suggesting this whole thing has gotten a little ridiculous.

    Although in all seriousness, I think it sucks whenever fundamentalist cultmembers are allowed to dominate public policy debate with their dogma.

  • Too bad that they have hijacked the issue. The city should continue to ignore the Hasidic community on this kind of infrastructure improvement. Their concerns are irrelevant, if they don’t want their children to be tempted by the evils of cycling, then that is their problem, not ours.

  • They could use a Minivan Share Kiosk.
    How ’bout we build em one of those.

  • FYI, I have noticed many more orthodox Jewish cyclist around. You can see them with riding with their talits under their Lycra jerseys and the fringes sticking out. They are not Hasidim though.

  • The one who dies with the most kids, wins!

  • I love how the article finally calls BillyBurg a “stronghold”. After years and administration after adminstration saying they were for fair and equitable housing the truth is out and obviously so are the kids from the womb of those women who act like zombies. In all my years living in Williamsburg as poor and as dirty as some of the other cultures kept parts of Brooklyn, the Hasidim keep it dirtier, uglier and offensively worse off. Just getting off the BillyBurg Bridge and seeing that building overwrought with graffitti that they won’t clean it. The cages they put on all of their window even 6, 7, 8 stories up? The way they let their kids ride all the hell over on those darn tricycles, They need to be contained, neutered and given a lesson in cleanliness. Can’t wait for Bloomburg to leave office. He is the architect of this invasion.