Press Releases

For Immediate Release
October 30, 2019

Rachaele Raynoff, Joe Marvilli – (212) 720-3471

Deputy Mayor Vicki Been and DCP Director Lago release new regional economic report & growth trends data

The 2019 edition of the Geography of Jobs details regional growth constraints as the economy expands faster than the housing supply

NEW YORK – Deputy Mayor Vicki Been and Department of City Planning (DCP) Director Marisa Lago today announced the release of the 2019 Geography of Jobs, the city’s second report on shifting growth patterns in the metropolitan region that are concentrating jobs and housing pressures in New York City and other urban areas.

“Falling housing production poses a threat to our cities, and to our region’s continued prosperity. The tri-state area has seen a 30% drop in the pace of new housing construction in the current market cycle compared to the prior cycle, even as job growth has surged. This imbalance is driving up rents, damaging our quality of life and exacerbating inequality. This report serves as an eye-opener to the challenges we face and that we must work together to address,” said Vicki Been, Deputy Mayor for Housing and Economic Development.

“I’m so encouraged by the progress that we’ve made over the past year speaking with our regional partners about the significant growth challenges that we face – ones that affect every resident in the New York metro region. From housing, to jobs, to concerns about equity and sustainability, this second edition of DCP’s Geography of Jobs report offers us new data and analysis to continue our discussion. I look forward to continuing to work with our regional colleagues to solve some of the most urgent challenges we face,” said DCP Director Marisa Lago.  

The report offers detailed employment, wage, labor force, and housing production data for New York City and the surrounding 26-county tri-state area extending into northern New Jersey, Long Island, the Hudson Valley, and southwest Connecticut. It focuses on the last two decades and examines trends prior to and after the Great Recession.

The report shows how the confluence of declining housing production, explosive job growth in select locations, and an aging labor force have shifted the geographic pattern of growth within the region. The continuation of imbalanced growth has major implications for the future of this region—heightening affordability challenges, impacting residents’ mobility and access to opportunity, straining our transit infrastructure, creating headwinds to long term economic growth, and threatening the region’s national and global competitiveness.

In conjunction with the release of the report, a comprehensive update to the NYC Metro Region Explorer tool features detailed, interactive population, employment, housing, and commuting data for the public to view and download.

Read a one-page summary of the 2019 Report.

Read the 2018 Report.

Housing/Jobs Balance

  • Over the last two decades, housing production has not kept up with job production–traditionally a key driver in housing creation. The report shows that in the decade prior to the Great Recession, the region permitted 2.2 new housing units per net new job added. Since the Great Recession, the region produced just 0.5 housing units per net new job added. The region continued to underproduce housing in recent years – permitting 0.3 housing units per net new job added in the last year.
    Housing units Permitted vs. Net Annual Employment Change, 2001-2018
  • Within the region, patterns of housing construction and job growth have resulted in a geographic imbalance between New York City and the rest of the region.
  • Though New York City produced the most new housing in the region, more than 400,000 units, it also added a significant number of new jobs, resulting in nearly 363,000 more jobs gained than units produced since 2001. Long Island similarly gained more jobs than new housing, adding 62,000 more jobs than housing units produced over the last two decades.
  • Meanwhile, housing production in northern New Jersey and southwest Connecticut was unmatched by job growth, with each permitting 195,000 and 76,000 more housing units than jobs gained, respectively. This suggests residents of those areas are increasingly working in other parts of the region—especially in New York City.


  • The region produced 30% fewer housing units per year after the Great Recession than in the prior decade. From 2001 to 2008, the region collectively issued permits for approximately 509,000 new housing units, averaging production of 64,000 units per year, but only 458,000 housing units from 2009 to 2018, averaging production of 46,000 units per year (and 51,000 units permitted in the previous year).
  • New York City and northern New Jersey produced 83% of the region’s new housing after the Great Recession, permitting 197,000 (43%) and 183,000 (40%) units, respectively. The rest of the region, which represents 30% of the region’s housing supply, accounted for just 17% of permitted units—the Hudson Valley permitted 31,000 units (7%), southwest Connecticut permitted 27,000 units (6%), and Long Island permitted 19,000 units (4%).
  • All areas in the region produced fewer housing units per year after the Great Recession, but Long Island (-58%), the Hudson Valley (-50%), and Connecticut (-40%), already lesser contributors to the region’s overall new housing supply, experienced more significant production declines than New York City (-25%) and North NJ (-17%). The region produced more homes in multifamily buildings with five or more units after the Great Recession, but that growth did not make up for declined production of small multifamily and single-family homes. This suggests a post-Great Recession trend towards housing production in building types that are costlier to construct, and in locations where land is more expensive, with less housing production overall.


  • The region has added 923,950 private sector jobs since 2008 – 146k more jobs than reported in last year’s report.  The region’s post-Great Recession annual average rate of growth has remained at +1.1%, just slightly higher than U.S. average (+1.0%), and slower than other large U.S. metropolitan areas in the south (Miami +1.5%, Houston +1.7%, Dallas +2.1%) and west (San Francisco +2.0%, Seattle +1.7%).
  • New York City’s private sector job gains (+675,000) fueled the region’s economic growth since the Great Recession. Indeed, the city’s employment grew more than four times faster than the rest of the region, and twice the U.S. average rate of growth. NYC accounts for 42% of the region’s private sector employment, but represented the majority of the region’s job and wage gains every year for the past eight years as growth continued to concentrate in the city following the Great Recession.
  • Employment gains in all five boroughs drove the region’s post-Great Recession economic growth. Manhattan gained the most private sector jobs (+307,000), while the combined job growth of Brooklyn (+200,000) and Queens (+113,000) represented greater job gains than the rest of the region in total.
  • The region experienced varied employment growth across industry sectors.
    • Office job growth was highly sensitive to economic downturns, and has strongly concentrated in New York City after the Great Recession.
    • The institutional sector served as the largest source of employment and wage growth elsewhere in the region.
    • Industrial and local services employment supported economic gains after the Great Recession, but growth has slowed in recent years.

Labor Force

  • The region’s labor force is aging, with only five counties—four of the five in New York City—gaining workers aged 25 to 54 since the Great Recession. Brooklyn gained the most young workers (+94,000), followed by Manhattan (+41,000), the Bronx (+31,000), Queens (+29,000) and Hudson County, NJ (+23,000).
  • Outside of New York City, the growth of the region’s resident labor force was attributable to an increasing number of older workers, notably those age 55 and older. While the decline of younger workers (aged 25 to 54) was modest overall, a continued pattern of labor force growth outside of NYC that does not include younger workers could have long-term implications for businesses seeking to sustain their workforce.

“This report clearly lays out some of the core challenges my Administration is working to address. In order to meet these challenges, we must continue working alongside our regional economic partners to execute on our shared vision: increasing the number of good-paying jobs for our residents, providing housing options for residents across income levels, and locating both near public transit. I thank Deputy Mayor Been and Director Lago for their collaboration on this issue and their commitment to helping build a sustainable future for our region,” said Nassau County Executive Laura Curran.

Westchester County Executive George Latimer said, “This report shows that our region faces both collective challenges and has had its share of collective successes. Most importantly, any path forward will involve cooperation from all stakeholders. It is no secret that our region needs more housing that is affordable for workers on all economic levels, and this report only serves to reinforce our commitment to finding it.”

“New Haven’s participation in regional planning meetings and workshops underscores my commitment to address interdependent policy areas essential for a vibrant economy with ample opportunity throughout the tri-state area,” New Haven Mayor Toni N. Harp said. “For example, to the extent housing options are addressed, and residents live closer to where they work, transportation challenges are reduced and environmental conditions improve. All of us in New Haven appreciate the invaluable research provided by NYC Planning, and remain grateful for the work of those researchers in the NYC Planning Regional Planning office.”

Carlo A. Scissura, Esq., President & CEO of the New York Building Congress, said “The Department of City Planning’s updated report demonstrates why we need to invest in more infrastructure, housing and transportation options across all five boroughs. As the region continues to grow and add jobs, we have to accommodate more people living here and businesses growing. Key projects like the Gateway Program, Phase 2 of the Second Avenue Subway and the Port Authority Bus Terminal are vital to providing greater transportation access across the region, which opens opportunities for new housing and jobs markets.”

“These updated numbers show conclusively that New York City is the center of a great and growing metropolitan region. But until we have better strategies to provide more housing and job opportunities to communities that need them, our growth will also create more challenges of segregation, displacement and mobility. RPA applauds the City for leading these efforts to collaborate with neighboring cities and counties. Working together we can uplift all the residents of the tri-state region,” said Tom Wright, President and CEO, Regional Plan Association.

“The tristate metropolitan region’s economy is among the largest and most complex in the world. Planning requires the integrated analysis of infrastructure, jobs, housing and services that DCP has achieved in this important report,” said Kathryn Wylde, President & CEO of the Partnership for New York City.