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Let me tell you—2023 in New York is about to rock your socks off

Here are some predictions for the year ahead.

Anna Rahmanan
Written by
Anna Rahmanan

“Let Me Tell You” is a series of columns from our expert editors about NYC living, including the best things to do, where to eat and drink, and what to see at the theater. They publish each Wednesday so you’re hearing from us each week. Last month, News Editor Anna Rahmanan argued that it’s time for New York to make a television comeback.

Ah, 2022. You were so great yet so stressful.

The first full year (sort of) out of the pandemic, 2022 was defined by a semi-return to normalcy, with New Yorkers feeling comfortable dining indoors again despite the never-ending presence of rats all over town. We were also treated to the opening of a slew of art exhibits, enjoyed a tourism rebounding and we're excited about the fact that theater patrons were finally allowed to choose whether to wear masks during Broadway shows or not

We dare say the city feels alive again.

Sure, we're currently dealing with a tridemic (flu! COVID-19! RSV!), but, by now, we're all pros: we spent an entire year sitting in our apartments dreaming of the days when we'd have a vaccine for the coronavirus—which we now do. Let's try and safely move on with our lives, right?

The year 2022 kicked off with a proverbial bang: New York was officially recognized as the most stressed-out city in the United States, a superlative that free umbrella stations across town will certainly abate. We also started selling our restaurant reservations for a lot of money because, well, we're all hustlers after all, while mourning the loss of a number of beloved local venues: the Court Street Regal Theater, Sidecar, speakeasy Angel's Share, Unoppressive Non-Imperialist Bargain Books on Carmine street, Jean-Georges' Mercer Kitchen, the 9/11 Tribute Museum in downtown Manhattan, the iconic Phantom of the Opera on Broadway and, more recently, the Jane Hotel, crowd-pleasing percussion sensation Stomp and food chain Dallas BBQ in the East Village.

But if there's one thing that living in New York has taught us is that, as much as we treasure our legacy and history, we should always look ahead—so here are some predictions about what 2023 has in store for us based on the most popular news stories we've published on the site in the past year (find a top 10 list right below the forecast of sorts!):

1. City officials will embark on a quest for more green spaces and car-free zones

Some born-and-bred New Yorkers may own cars, but they certainly still treasure their automobile-free areas around town. There's just something about being able to walk around and gaze at the city without hearing the ceaseless sound of traffic that tickles the senses, right? Officials have been presenting city dwellers with expanded access to car-free zones in the past 12 months already, and we expect the trend to pick up steam throughout the next year as well.

2. Long Island may actually become... cool?

It's a tale as old as time: as folks get priced out of Manhattan and Brooklyn, they find other areas close enough to the center of town to inhabit, which end up becoming neighborhoods that New Yorkers start flocking to.

Just a few years ago, for example, Long Island City was a no man’s land and a hub for car-related warehouses and shops. Today, the area is filled with Michelin-starred restaurants, exciting cultural opportunities and beautiful apartments (that don’t really cost much less than their Manhattan counterparts).

Given the success of all the Long Island-related news stories we've published in the past year, we dare suggest that the parts of Long Island that are only 40 minutes away from Manhattan (yes, there are a few!) will actually become versions of surburbia-land that even the most die-hard city lovers will start considering actually cool. Who knows, 2023's must-try eatery may actually set up shop outside NYC.

3. NYC will become home to a number of new animal species

This year, we learned all about the spotted lanternfly, the invasive pest from Asia that we were asked to kill as soon as noticed. Given the world's interconnectedness and the odd viruses that have quite literally taken over our existence, we wouldn't be surprised to hear about new only-in-NYC animals seen across Central Park, for example.

A few creations of our own imagination: the coyo-bat, a special sort of coyote that likes to take residence under bridges and actually sleeps upside down; the squerkey, the offspring of a squirrel and a turkey that looks like the latter but is as quick on its feet and prone to tree-hugging as the former; and the rat-coon, which is a pretty self-explanatory nightmare that we’re honestly shocked isn’t in existence quite yet. 

4. Our transit system will finally improve

This is more wishful thinking than a prediction but, by the beginning of 2023, New Yorkers will be treated to a revamped Penn Station (it’s been a long time coming, indeed) and the grand opening of the Grand Central Madison LIRR station. Given the excitement surrounding the two updates and the new tap-and-go subway system, we hope that those in charge will finally realize that it's time for our entire transit system to undergo a massive renovation. Fingers crossed.   

The most popular news stories published on Time Out New York in 2022:

1. This NYC restaurant has officially been named best pizzeria in the world

2. Fifth Avenue will be closed to all car traffic for the first time ever

3. New Yorkers using the tap-and-go subway payment system will get free unlimited passes 

4. The largest Asian grocery store in the country is opening on Long Island

5. This is a spotted lanternfly—if you see one in NYC, kill it immediately

6. NYC libraries are offering free digital library cards to people across the U.S.

7. Century 21 is officially re-opening its NYC flagship store

8. More than 60 concerts are coming to The Rooftop at Pier 17 this summer

9. The world's largest indoor beachfront waterpark is opening near NYC

10. This interactive map ranks over 200 of NYC's best bagels

Popular on Time Out

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