Queens' Changing World A NYCity News Service Special Report

Queens is the most diverse county in the country - and the borough's only constant is change.

With Census figures eight years old, the NYCity News Service looked at the latest available public elementary school statistics to get an idea of where immigrant families are settling in Queens. We discovered that at least one of every 12 of Queens' 122,000 elementary school students is a recent arrival. The youngsters represent more than 50 countries, with Guyana, China and Mexico leading the charge.

We mapped out the stats by community district and hit the streets - putting faces and names to the only-in-New-York stories behind the numbers. Here's what we found:

PHOTO CREDITS: Unisphere photo (right) from Wikipedia and Unisphere photo (background) by Peter Dutton.

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CD 1: The (Stein)Way of Life

The Steinway & Sons piano factory in Astoria has provided immigrants employment for more than 150 years.

CD 2: Fighting to Stay in Woodside

Maria Reyna, the mother of a special needs child, made a new life in Queens. Now she faces deportation to Mexico.

CD 3: Looking For a Home Back Home

Real estate concerns in Corona are marketing affordable South American houses to Latino immigrants.

CD 4: Finding Freedom in LeFrak City

Manash Shimonov is among the hundreds of Buhkarian Jews from Uzbekistan who have carved out a new life in LeFrak City.

CD 5: Poles Apart in Ridgewood

As many Polish immigrants move into Ridgewood, others seek economic opportunity back in Europe.

CD 6: Bukharians Seek a Balance

Bukharian Jewish immigrants in Forest Hills are dealing with the conflicts between tradition and modern living.

CD 7: Flushing Future Unclear For Asian Pols

The race is on in Flushing to replace City Councilmember John Liu, the city’s first Asian-American lawmaker.

CD 8: A Scramble for Spiritual Space

An immigrant influx into Jamaica Estates has spurred calls for more churches, mosques and temples.

CD 9: Koreans Compete in Little Guyana

Korean-run businesses are filling bustling Liberty Ave. in Richmond Hill’s Little Guyana — rankling some longtime grocers.

CD 10: Cricket Bowls Over Schools

Cricket is now a varsity sport in 16 city high schools made up primarily of students of South Asian and Caribbean descent.

CD 11: Assimilating On-Line

Social networking sites like and Facebook are helping immigrants to meet one another and established New Yorkers.

CD 12: A Taste of Guyana in Jamaica

Sybil’s Bakery and Restaurant, a family-run Jamaica mainstay for 30 years, draws customers with its Guyanese fare.

CD 1: Q&A With Henry Steinway

Henry Steinway is the great-grandson of the Steinway & Sons founder and the last family member to lead the firm. Although he’s 92 and retired, Steinway still spends most mornings at the Steinway piano showroom on W. 57th Street in Manhattan. What was it like growing up in the Steinway family? I was one of […]

CD 13: Golden Krust Reaps Bounty

Golden Krust, a Jamaican-style eatery known for its beef patties, is rapidly expanding in New York — and beyond.