Fifth Avenue a ‘Great Place’: List

By Catherine Yang
Catherine Yang
Catherine Yang
October 3, 2012 Updated: October 1, 2015
Fifth Avenue in Manhattan, New York, on Oct. 3, 2012, one of the most popular shopping destinations in the world for the rich and famous. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)
Fifth Avenue in Manhattan, New York, on Oct. 3, 2012, one of the most popular shopping destinations in the world for the rich and famous. (Amal Chen/The Epoch Times)

NEW YORK—Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue (between Washington Square North and 124th Street in Harlem) made the list of 2012 Great Places in America, posted by the American Planning Association (APA).

The list highlights great neighborhoods, great streets, and great public spaces across the country.

Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue runs through Harlem, the Museum Mile, Greenwich Village, and features much of the city’s historic and iconic buildings.

Characteristics of a “Great Street,” according to APA, is that the street encourages human contact and social activities, employs the landscape to a great effect, and has memorable character.

Fifth Avenue annually hosts parades, such as the Martin Luther King Jr. Parade and St. Patrick’s Day Parade, and borders five different parks—Washington Square Park, Madison Square Park, Bryant Park, Central Park, and Marcus Garvey Park.

The street is also home to the New York City Public Library, Rockefeller Center, Empire State Building, Saint Patrick’s Cathedral, the Flatiron Building, Greenwich Village Historic District, Ladies’ Mile Historic District, and the Upper East Side Historic District, not to mention the long line of high-end retail shops. 

The street itself also holds historic zoning value. The Fifth Avenue Association, created in 1907, was the first in the country to create a zoning resolution (in 1916), which held back the number of growing factories from the avenue in favor of residential, retail, and other public-use properties.

The APA said the 11 neighborhoods along the street are “unique, yet (each) contribute a uniform feel.”

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