What is New York’s best borough? Today: The case for Staten Island

In today’s round of the battle of the boroughs, we present five reasons Staten Island kicks ass

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Verazzano Bridge, Staten Island

Verazzano Bridge, Staten Island


In the upcoming issue of Time Out, it's a battle of the boroughs—natives and longtime residents square off to explain why their home turf is superior to all others. This week we’re spotlighting one borough a day online. Read on to see whether our arguments for Staten Island dominance sway you, or whether they only bolster your other-borough pride.

1. Heralded musicians like David Johansen, Vernon Reid and Galt MacDermot live here.

2. San Rasa’s Sri Lankan cuisine is heaven on a plate.

3. NYC is, like, the least smoker-friendly city ever, but you can puff and drink a cheap beer on the Staten Island Ferry. You know you want to.

4. Staten Island is the cheapest place in NYC to hold a waterside wedding, and the Richmond County Courthouse is the easiest place to file for divorce.

5. Staten Island Yankees mascot Scooter the Holy Cow beats all other NYC mascots. Yes, even Mr. Met.


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8 comments
Mary F
Mary F

I don't even live in Staten Island, but I would mention, Sailors Snug Harbor, Richmondtown Restoration, Clay Pits Ponds Preserve, and the Greenbelt for a start.  Staten Island has unique soils and rare, endangered plants found nowhere else in the city.  Would I say it's the best borough?  Actually, I would go for the Bronx instead, but still, Staten Island deserves better.

Joseph P
Joseph P

This article is horrendous. 

How about the Alice Austen House, the former cottage of a pioneering female photographer that's now a great museum with beautiful grounds? How about Snug Harbor, the compound that was constructed in the 19th century for "decrepit" sailors to live out their final years, which is now a cultural center and botanical garden, housing the Chinese Scholars Garden, the Staten Island Children's Museum, an art school (Art Lab), a contemporary art gallery (Newhouse), and about a dozen other interesting things?

Or the fact that the trains are free, even though they're run by the MTA? Or the greenbelt, contiguous parkland over 2,800 acres in size? Or the flourishing arts scene on the north shore (see free gallery openings at Deep Tanks, Everything Goes, the LGBT Cultural Center, the Studio, etc.)? Or the bevy of historic houses, including those from the Dutch New Amsterdam era, as well as a generous amount of Victorian mansions (see Mud Lane)?

Or the lighthouse? Or the museum of Tibetan art? Or the only Frank Lloyd Wright-designed house in the city? Or even the abandoned boat cemetery on the west shore? Or Little Liberia, the largest population of Liberians outside of Liberia, which has a ton of authentic African stores? And how about Fort Wadsworth, a sprawling fort complex under the Verrazano Bridge which is part of the National Park System and free to enter?

No, you think getting a divorce easily (what??) is something to write about. Do some research. Nobody likes a hack.

Edwin S
Edwin S

You cannot smoke on the Staten Island Ferry.

Bill W
Bill W

And "I" live here...

Rachel C
Rachel C

How about the fact that it is the greenest borough? Staten Island has 9,300 acres of federal, state and city parkland.

Rich G
Rich G

This is the most poorly-researched article I've ever seen. Good work.