South Jamaica, Queens
South Jamaica is a working-class neighborhood in the New York City borough of Queens, located south of downtown Jamaica. Although a proper border has not been established, the neighborhood is an overall subset of the greater Jamaica area which faces the Long Island Rail Road tracks, Jamaica Avenue and Liberty Avenue to the north, the Van Wyck Expressway on the west, and continues east toward Merrick Boulevard in the neighboring community of St. Albans. Other primary thoroughfares of South Jamaica include Baisley, Foch, Linden, Guy R. Brewer and Sutphin Boulevards. South Jamaica is predominantly African-American with strong majority of Afro-Caribbean descent. In recent decades there has been an increase in the Hispanic community with members from Mexico, El Salvador, Puerto Rico and Dominican Republic. Guyanese and Bangladeshi make up much of the larger portion of newcomers to the community. Bengali people can be found mostly around Sutphin and Merrick Boulevards along 145th, 153rd, 157th and 170th Streets and South Road, 105th, 107th and 109th Avenues. Also a small population of Haitians, Pakistanis and Trinidadians live in this area.
The area is largely a working-class community consisting of suburban one and two-family houses ranging from colonials built around the 1960s to new developments. A number of smaller apartment buildings along with some public housing projects are also located in the area.
The AirTrain JFK route transports people between Jamaica and JFK International Airport on its elevated route over the Van Wyck Expressway without stopping. A southern extension of the New York City Subway's IND Archer Avenue Line to South Jamaica was planned by way of the LIRR Atlantic Branch but not completed.
The Baisley Park Houses and South Jamaica Houses housing projects are located in this community as well as the Rochdale Village Co-op development. Baisley Pond Park has over 100 acres (0.40 km2) of outdoor recreational space, including a 30 acres (0.12 km2) pond.
- 50 Cent (Curtis Jackson), rapper and actor
- Roi Heenok, rapper
- Tony Yayo, rapper
- Lloyd Banks, rapper
- Sha Money XL, music producer
- G-Unit, rap group
- Milford Graves, musician
- Nicki Minaj, rapper and member of Young Money was born in Trinidad and emigrated to South Jamaica, Queens.
- Pharoahe Monch, rapper and member of Organized Konfusion
- Lamar Odom, NBA basketball player.
- Bob Beamon, Olympic Athlete and world record holder in the long jump for 23 years.
- Rafer Alston, NBA Basketball Player.
- Ali Vegas, rapper and member of The Drama Kingz
- Fredro Starr, rapper and member of Onyx
- Sticky Fingaz, rapper, actor and member of Onyx
- Supreme, drug lord and leader of the Supreme Team who operated from the Baisley Park Projects
- Grafh, rapper
- Supreme Team, drug trafficking gang
- Canibus, rapper
- Lost Boyz, rap group
- Aasim, rapper
- Mr. Cheeks, rapper
- Onyx, rap group
- Wynter Gordon, singer
- Milford Graves, free-jazz drummer
- Nuttin' But Stringz, duo
- Sutter Kain, rapper & producer
- Waka Flocka Flame, rapper
- Williams, Lena. "TRACK AND FIELD; Soothing an Old Ache", The New York Times, January 1, 2000. Accessed November 7, 2007. "Neither the outpouring of affection from an adoring public nor the love he finally found after four failed marriages could make up for the neglect and physical abuse he suffered as a child growing up in South Jamaica, Queens."
- Litsky, Frank. " BASKETBALL: N.I.T.; Minnesota Will Meet Penn State for the Title", The New York Times, March 25, 1998. Accessed October 18, 2007. "Rafer Alston, the junior point guard from South Jamaica, Queens, explained it this way..."