City Planning Releases Second Regional Economic Growth Report

Graphic from Geography of Jobs Report shows comparison of number of jobs added to number of units permitted across the region. Image Credit: NYC DCP

The 2019 report shows that the economy expanded faster than housing. On October 30, 2019, Deputy Mayor Vicki Been and Department of City Planning Director Marisa Lago announced the release of the 2019 Geography of Jobs report. This is the City’s second report on shifting growth patterns concentrating jobs and housing pressures in New York City and other urban areas.

A one page summary of the report can be found here. The 2018 report can be found here.

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 examines trends in the last two decades, focusing on the periods 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. 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.

Some of the highlights of the report include:

Housing/Jobs Balance:

  • In the decade prior to the Great Recession, the region permitted 2.2 housing units per net new job added.
  • In the decade after the Great Recession, the region has only produced 0.5 housing units per net new job.
  • New York City alone has produced more than 400,000 units and added a significant number of new jobs, resulting in nearly 363,000 more jobs gained than units produced since 2001.
  • Long Island gained more jobs than new housing, adding 62,000 more jobs than housing units produced over the last two decades.
  • 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.


  • The region produced 30 percent fewer housing units per year after the Great Recession than in the prior decade.
  • New York City and northern New Jersey produced 83 percent of the region’s new housing after the Great Recession
  • All areas in the region produced fewer housing units per year after the Great Recession, but Long Island (-58 percent), the Hudson Valley (-50 percent), and Connecticut (-40 percent), already lesser contributors to the region’s overall new housing supply, experienced more significant production declines than New York City (-25 percent) and North New Jersey (-17 percent)


  • The region has added 923,950 private sector jobs since 2008 – 146k more jobs than reported in the 2018 report
  • New York City’s private sector job gains (+675,000) fueled the region’s economic growth since the Great Recession
  • Employment gains in all five boroughs drove the region’s post-Great Recession economic growth
  • The region experienced varied employment growth across industry sectors

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

Along with the report, the Department of City Planning also announced a comprehensive update to the NYC Metro Region Explorer, which features detailed interactive population, employment, housing, and commuting data for the public to view and download.

Deputy Mayor for Housing and Economic Development Vicki Been stated, “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.”

Department of City Planning Director Marisa Lago stated, “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.”

By: Laine Vitkevich (Laine is a CityLaw Intern and  New York Law School Student Class of 2020)


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