Forest Hills, Queens
|Neighborhoods of New York City|
|City||New York City|
|• Total||2.6 sq mi (7 km2)|
|• Land||2.4 sq mi (6 km2)|
|• Water||0.2 sq mi (0.5 km2)|
|• Density||34,886/sq mi (13,470/km2)|
|Time zone||EST (UTC-5)|
|• Summer (DST)||EDT (UTC-4)|
|Area code(s)||718, 347, 917|
The neighborhood is disproportionately home to the upper-middle class, of whom the wealthiest often live in the Forest Hills Gardens section. Historically, Forest Hills has had many Jewish residents. Originally, the area was called Whitepot. The development of adjacent Forest Park began in 1895.
In 1906, Brooklyn attorney Cord Meyer (note the large "CM" adorning the office building on the south side of Queens Boulevard near 72nd Avenue) bought abutting land made up of six farms (those of Ascan Bakus, Casper Joost-Springsteen, Horatio N. Squire, Abram V. S. Lott, Sarah V. Bolmer, and James Van Siclen) and then renamed the aggregated 600 acres Forest Hills. In 1909, Margaret Sage, who founded the Russell Sage Foundation, bought 142 acres (0.575 km2) of land from the Cord Meyer Development Company. The stated plan was to build good low-income housing and improve living conditions of the working poor, but the resulting huge property values made this claim totally impractical. Grosvenor Atterbury, a renowned architect, was given the commission to design Forest Hills Gardens. The neighborhood was planned on the model of the garden communities of England. As a result, there are many Tudor-style homes in Forest Hills, some more sprawling ones located in Forest Hills Gardens while most are located in the Cord-Meyer section (loosely bounded by 68th Avenue on the north; 72nd Road on the south; 108th Street on the west; and Grand Central Parkway on the east).
The southern part of Forest Hills contains a particularly diverse mixture of upscale housing, ranging from single-family houses, attached townhouses, and both low-rise and high-rise apartment buildings. South of the Long Island Rail Road, the Forest Hills Gardens area is a private community that features some of the most expensive residential properties in Queens County. It was subject to restrictive covenants until the mid-1970s.
Forest Hills Gardens was named "Best Community" in 2007 by Cottage Living Magazine. The adjacent Van Court community also contains a number of detached single-family homes. There are also attached townhouses near the Westside Tennis Center and detached frame houses near Metropolitan Avenue. Finally, there are a number of apartment buildings scattered throughout the community. The most notable high-rise apartment buildings are The Continental on 108th St, Kennedy House, the Pinnacle, and the Windsor. The north side of Forest Hills is home to the Cord Meyer community, which contains detached single-family homes. Teardowns and their replacement with larger single family residences has had a significant impact on the architectural integrity of the area. However, the Bukharian Jewish community, whose members have settled in the area in large numbers since the late 1990s, advocating the changes say the bigger homes are needed for their large extended families.
On the northwestern edge of Forest Hills, on 62nd Drive and 108th Street, immediately adjacent to the Long Island Expressway is a NYCHA (New York City Housing Authority) low-income housing project that provoked controversy among the residents in the more prestigious areas of Forest Hills when it was constructed in the early 1970s. In fact, the high-rise (eighteen stories) building accidentally burned to the ground three or four times during that period.
The main thoroughfare is the twelve-lane-wide Queens Boulevard. Metropolitan Avenue is known for its antique shops. Forest Hills is easily accessible by subway, rail, bus and car. The commercial heart of Forest Hills is a mile-long stretch of Austin Street between Yellowstone Boulevard and Ascan Avenue: the latter thoroughfare was named in 1909 by developer Frederick Backus for his own father, Ascan Backus, II.
Forest Hills has the multiple-link Forest Hills–71st Avenue subway station (E F M R trains) at the intersection of Continental Avenue and Queens Boulevard. The local 75th Avenue stop (E F trains) is also in the area, and some entrance/exits of the express Kew Gardens–Union Turnpike station (E F trains) service the southeastern portion of Forest Hills. The neighborhood also has a commuter train station, the Forest Hills station of the Long Island Railroad, where Continental Avenue and Austin Street intersect.
Forest Hills was once the home of the U.S. Open tennis tournament. The event was held at the West Side Tennis Club before it moved to the USTA National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows Park, about four miles (6 km) away. When the Open was played at the tennis stadium, the tournament was commonly referred to merely as Forest Hills, just as All-England Lawn Tennis Association Championships are referred to, simply, as Wimbledon. In the 2001 motion picture, The Royal Tenenbaums, Luke Wilson's character plays a tennis match at the West Side Tennis Club in Forest Hills. A pivotal scene in Alfred Hitchcock's 1951 film Strangers on a Train, in which the main character (played by Farley Granger) is a professional tennis player, features a lengthy championship game at the Club, with distinctive shots of the surrounding community.
Two monuments are erected in Forest Hills Gardens: a tribute to the victims of World War I, the "Great War"; and the mast of the Columbia, the winner of the America's Cup yacht races in both 1899 and 1901.
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Forest Hills is served by the New York City Department of Education.
Pupils attend several public different elementary Schools, including:
- P.S. 101 School In The Gardens
- P.S. 144 Col. Jeromus Remsen School
- P.S. 175 Lynn Gross Discovery School
- P.S. 196 Grand Central Parkway
- P.S. 220 Edward Mandel
Junior high students in Forest Hills attend either J.H.S. 157 Stephen A. Halsey (commonly referred to as Halsey) in Rego Park or J.H.S. 190 Russell Sage (known as Sage) in Forest Hills as well as the newest school from grade 6 to 12, M.S. 167 (otherwise known as Metropolitan Expeditionary Learning School (MELS)), "a school for a sustainable city". This school does partnership with New York City Outward Bound. New York City high school students at the turn of the 21st century began applying to the high schools of their choice, as there is no longer a zoning policy for Forest Hills High School. Students from all over New York City may apply to high schools in other parts of the city. In addition to Forest Hills High School, a large percentage of students from both J.H.S. 157 and J.H.S. 190 gain admission to other high schools in New York City. Many J.H.S. 157 students also attend the Bronx High School of Science and Brooklyn Technical High School.
Traditionally many more students from J.H.S. 190 choose to study at Stuyvesant High School and Townsend Harris High School, in addition to the Bronx High School of Science. Numerous students from Forest Hills also choose to attend middle and high school at the Baccalaureate School for Global Education, a public school in Astoria, Queens, which teaches grades 7 through 12 and follows the International Baccalaureate curriculum. Many of the students from outside the district accepted to attend Forest Hills High School are those who applied to either the school's Law & Humanities program, or the Carl Sagan program in accelerated math and science. FHHS began admitting students by audition to their Academy of Instructional Music and Performing Arts in 2005. Famous graduates of Forest Hills High School include Jacob Lew, current US Secretary of the Treasury; Dennis Tito, the first outer space tourist; as well as many show-business stars, including musicians Burt Bacharach, Simon & Garfunkel, and The Ramones.
Catholic schools include Our Lady of Mercy and Our Lady Queen of Martyrs.
Bramson ORT College is an undergraduate college operated by the American branch of the Jewish charity World ORT. Its main campus is in Forest Hills, with a satellite campus in Brooklyn. Touro College/NYSCAS has a branch location in Forest Hills.
Forest Hills is served by the IND Queens Boulevard Line of the New York City Subway E F M R trains. Stations serving Forest Hills are 67th Avenue (E M R trains), Forest Hills – 71st Avenue (E F M R trains) and 75th Avenue (E F trains). Also, the Long Island Railroad stops at its own Forest Hills station. Several buses, including the Q60 on Queens Boulevard and Q64 along Jewel Avenue, serve the area, along with several MTA express buses to Manhattan: the QM4, the QM11, and the QM18. The Q23 is the main bus route through the neighborhood as it cuts through the heart of Forest Hills. Following a north-south route, it bi-sects North Forest Hills, traveling via 108th Street; south of Queens Boulevard, it serves commercial strips along Austin Street and Metropolitan Avenue, and residential streets such as 69th Avenue and Loubet Street, all while bypassing Forest Hills Gardens. The main express bus to Manhattan is the QM12, making stops along Yellowstone Boulevard.
Parks and recreation
Forest Hills is bordered by two of the more sizable parks in Queens managed by the NYC Department of Parks and Recreation: the 1,255 acres (5.079 km2) Flushing Meadows–Corona Park, the site of two World's Fairs and the iconic Unisphere, and the 544 acres (2.201 km2) Forest Park. Within Forest Hills, some of the more popular parks and playgrounds include: Yellowstone Municipal Park – Katzman Playground (located on Yellowstone Blvd, between 68th Avenue and 68th Road); The Annandale Playground (located on Yellowstone Blvd, between 64th Road and 65th Avenue); The Willow Lake Playground (located off the Grand Central Parkway, between 71st and 72nd Avenues); The Ehrenreich-Austin Playground (located on Austin St, between 76th Avenue and 76th Drive); and The Russell Sage Playground (located on 68 Ave, between Booth St and Austin St).
- Emanuel Shalom (born 1981), Market Strategist, Gain Capital.
- Hank Azaria (born 1964), actor and voice artist
- Walter Becker (born 1950), half of the musical duo Steely Dan
- Joseph Bowler (born 1928), artist and illustrator
- Michael A. Burstein (born 1970), science fiction writer
- Dale Carnegie (1888–1955), self-improvement lecturer and author of How to Win Friends and Influence People lived at 27 Wendover Rd in Forest Hills.
- David Caruso, (born 1956), actor in CSI: Miami, and NYPD Blue
- Candy Darling (1944–1974), Warhol Superstar who appeared in a number of his films
- Sergei Dovlatov (1941–1990), Russian short story writer and novelist
- Geraldine Ferraro (1935–2011), member of U.S. House of Representatives, television personality
- Art Garfunkel (born 1941), singer-songwriter
- Ernie Grunfeld (born 1955), former player and general manager of the New York Knicks
- Alan Hevesi (born 1940), disgraced former Comptroller of New York
- Steve Hofstetter (born 1979), comedian/radio personality
- John V. Hogan (1890–1960), radio pioneer
- John Francis Hylan (1848–1936), Mayor of New York City (1918–1925)
- Ethel D. Jacobs (1910–2001), thoroughbred horse owner and breeder, wife of Hirsch Jacobs
- Hirsch Jacobs (1904–1970), thoroughbred jockey, husband of Ethel Jacobs
- Donna Karan (born 1948), fashion designer
- Helen Keller (1880–1968), lecturer, author, fundraiser, activist
- Alan King (1927–2004), actor/comedian 
- Andrea King (1919–2003), actress
- David Krumholtz (born 1978), actor
- Gary Kurfirst (1947–2009), concert promoter and record producer
- Michael Landon (1936–1991), actor known for his roles on Bonanza and Little House on the Prairie
- Harvey J. Levin (1924–1992), internationally recognized pioneer of communications economics, holder of Long Island's first professorial chair
- Jack McAuliffe (1866–1937), world lightweight boxing champion
- Min Xiao-Fen (born 1961), pipa player and vocalist 
- Michele "Big Mike" Miranda (1896–1973), consigliere of the Genovese crime family and one of the most powerful New York gangsters in the 1950s and 1960s
- Carroll O'Connor (1924–2001), actor, best known for his role as Archie Bunker on All in the Family
- Rick Overton (born 1954), actor and comedian
- Susan Polgar (born 1969), chess grandmaster
- Dee Dee Ramone (1951–2002), bassist and songwriter of seminal punk rock band, the Ramones
- Joey Ramone (1951–2001), lead singer and songwriter of the Ramones
- Johnny Ramone (1948–2004), guitarist of the Ramones
- Tommy Ramone (born 1952), record producer and musician with the Ramones
- Wilhelm Reich (1897–1957), psychiatrist known for his theories of Orgone energy
- Daniel Ribacoff (born 1959), private investigator and polygraph expert for The Steve Wilkos Show
- Ray Romano (born 1957), actor-comedian, best known for Everybody Loves Raymond
- Chris Rush, stand-up comedian
- Renato Russo (1960–1996), Brazilian bandleader
- Joan Shawlee (née Fulton; 1926–1987), actress
- Paul Simon (born 1941), singer-songwriter
- Debbie Wasserman Schultz (born 1966), member of the U.S. House of Representatives for Florida's 20th congressional district.
- Tatiana Troyanos (1938–1993), mezzo-soprano known for her work at the Metropolitan Opera
- Bob Tufts (born 1955), former Major League Baseball pitcher
- Jeff Wayne (born 1943), musician known for his musical version of The War of the Worlds
- Katharine Weber (born 1955), novelist, author of five novels, including Triangle and True Confections.
- Leslie West (born 1945), of the hard rock band Mountain
- Henry Willson (1911–1978), Hollywood agent
- Jack Wyatt (1917–2008), host of ABC's Confession; Episcopalian priest
- Gideon Yago (born 1978), journalist, former correspondent at MTV and CBS News
- Manuel Ycaza (born 1938), jockey inducted into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame
- Abdelfattah Shabana (born 1960), Egyptian Singer who is called the singer of The Egyptian Revolution .
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- Mikael J. "DCC4N's Rick Overton Interview", DC Comedy: 4 Now blog, May 12, 2009; accessed June 18, 2009. "I Grew up in Forest Hills until 1966, at which point we moved to Englewood NJ because Dizzy Gillespie found us a house near him!"
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- Pareles, Jon. "Dee Dee Ramone, Pioneer Punk Rocker, Dies at 50", The New York Times, June 7, 2002; accessed June 17, 2009. "Tony Colvin moved her children to New York in the late 1960s. They settled in Forest Hills, Queens, where Douglas met the future members of the Ramones, described in Lobotomy as 'the obvious creeps of the neighborhood.'"
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|url=missing title (help). Retrieved October 3, 2012.
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