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I'd like to visit some of NYC's projects, such as, say, those in Brooklyn, Bronx or Queens. Right now the one I have in mind is Queensbridge, being the largest in the USA and also immortalised by Nas in Illmatic.

Does it make a sense from a tourist perspective? Is it safe? I doubt anyone organises tours, but I guess what I'm looking for is a more genuine experience of the city and a glimpse into the lives of ordinary, working-class New Yorkers. And anything to do with the origins of hip-hop.

And if possible, I'd like to do the all of above in the least touristy and intrusive way.

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    Not tried it there, but I'd suggest seeing if there's anyone suitable on something like Couchsurfing. You might get lucky and be able to stay with or visit a knowledgable fan who lives in an area with relevant history who will enjoy talking your ear off about their neighbourhood and their passion in return for beer, and who can tell you where's safe and where isn't. – user568458 Dec 10 '14 at 12:58
  • @user568458 That's a very good tip, actually, thanks, at the very least it'd get me to meet some local people, which will definitely complete the experience of visiting the city. – Nobilis Dec 10 '14 at 13:10
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The Queensbridge Projects are located in Long Island City, and this means you can communicate directly with the cognizant community board for travel advice and other matters arising in that area.

The board is called, "Community Board 1", and their contact details are

Queens Community Board 1
45-02 Ditmars Boulevard
LL Suite 125
Astoria, NY 11105
Phone: 718-626-1021
Fax: 718-626-1072
Email: qn01@cb.nyc.gov

Conveniently, they have an email and will be able to provide you with the best times and routes to use through the Projects. With fortune, they may be able to connect you with a local 'guide' who can accompany you.

The Mayor's Community Affairs Unit will be able to put you further in touch for the other Projects in NYC you want to visit.

Source http://www.nyc.gov/html/cau/html/cb/queens_about.shtml

  • Thank you so much for the contact info, I don't have immediate travel plans, but I'll definitely get in touch with those guys once I've got something more concrete. – Nobilis Dec 10 '14 at 17:29
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    @Nobilis, no need to say thanks, please read stackoverflow.com/help/someone-answers and good luck in Queens :) – Gayot Fow Dec 10 '14 at 17:32

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