BY YVETTE BROWN
South Jamaica is known as a working class neighborhood, located in downtown Jamaica, with one- and two-family houses ranging from colonials that were built in the 1960s to new developments, like public housing and some smaller apartment buildings.
There are also quite a few hotels located in the district due to the fact that the John F. Kennedy airport isn’t too far from the area. The Airtrain JFK route helps to transport travelers and the community to and from the airport. The southern extension of the New York City subway line is located at Archer Avenue, where the E, J and Z lines are.
The area faces the Long Island Rail Road tracks, Jamaica Avenue and Liberty Avenue, which is to the north of South Jamaica. The Van Wyck Expressway is located to the west and continues east heading to Merrick Boulevard in St. Albans. Also within the community are the primary thoroughfares of South Jamaica, which include Baisley, Foch, Linden, Guy R. Brewer and Sutphin Boulevards.
The community is predominantly African American with the majority being of Afro-Caribbean descent. During recent years, the area has seen an increase in the Hispanic community with people from Mexico, El Salvador, Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic. Guyanese and Bangladeshi also make up a large portion of people coming to join the South Jamaica community.
Baisley Pond Park in the southern end of the neighborhood is an important recreational space for residents and is often crowded on summer afternoons with locals enjoying the outdoors. The picturesque pond in the center of the park is often used to sail model boats and is known locally for the ducks that live there.