The article begins with the proclamation that “a prominent engineer and statistician recently estimated that by the year 1950 New York City’s population would exceed 19,000,000!”
It goes on to explain that businesses will displace residences in Manhattan, which will see a population decrease, but Queens and Brooklyn will blow up to 6,000,000 and 7,000,000 residents respectively. “How closely these figures will come to being correct only time will show, but the indications are that the estimate will not prove wild.”
Well, let’s see what time does show.
According to historic census data, the population of New York City in 1910 when this article was written was 4,766,883. Approximately half those people lived in Manhattan.
In 1950, the population of New York City was not 19 million, but 7,891,957. So that estimate was way off. But the projection that other boroughs would gain more residents than Manhattan was correct. In 1950, Brooklyn had almost a million more residents than Manhattan. And both Queens and The Bronx were quickly catching up.
Today, both Brooklyn and Queens have higher populations than Manhattan. The Bronx is not far behind. But the city’s entire population is still nowhere near 19 million. Growth has slowed down considerably, and in 2008 there were 8,363,710 people living in New York City.
ONE FAMILY HOMES TO SOLVE NEW YORK’S CONGESTION: Committee Seeking to Relieve Overcrowding Lays Plans Against Estimated Population of 19,000,000 in 1950 — Individual Homes the Keynote (PDF)
From May 29, 1910