The Quality-of-Life Issues Are Slicing Away at the Big Apple Experience

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A poll conducted by the non-profit Citizen’s Budget Commission says that only 50% of all New Yorkers plan on staying in the city over the next five years. Meanwhile, only 30% of respondents say they are happy in the five boroughs. Are quality-of-life issues going to drive the city off the rails? WOR street reporter Natalie Migliore walked through midtown Manhattan and asked people on 710 WOR’s Len Berman and Michael Riedel in the Morning program what quality of life issues would cause them to bolt from the Big Apple.

Cost-of-living and crime seemed to be evenly distributed among most Migliore talked to. “I would definitely say the cost of living is so much higher, and it is very easy to get depressed, and I understand how people are out here just acting crazy and homeless, and mental illness is on the rise, so it’s definitely bittersweet,” one woman told Migliore.

Another woman said the cost of living forces many people to call it quits before they can even afford to get started: “I can’t afford to stay here anymore, and even if you’re making twenty and up dollars an hour, it’s just, it’s not the same as it was before. It’s just not. Unfortunately, I know a lot of people would love to stay, but it’s just not possible.”

Migliore ran into one pedestrian who recently returned to New York after a long absence; she thought the city was bad enough when she left in 1981, but she was stunned to see how much worse the city has become: “I was about 28, 29, and I saw my city in the Bronx change right off the Grand Concourse, and the Holy Spirit told me, ‘relocate.’ I went to Washington State. I’ve been back for the first time to New York in 42 years. Where did everybody go? What’s happened to our country? Why is this city so dirty? Why is it so crowded? Where did these people come from?”

Photo Credit: Getty Images

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