Does anyone know of a simple tool, method or dataset to enable someone to convert geographic coordinates to New York City neighborhood names?

At the very least, it would be good to map a dataset to the set of neighborhoods.

3 Answers 3


tamu has a killer geocoder, as well as a definitive list of other free geocoders. all you have to do is upload your data

  • Do you have any advice on using these services for this project? I am testing it now but not seeing how I'd do this. It seems like I would need to upload my own neighborhood data as well as my own latitude coordinates (my dataset). Then I could match them. Does that correspond to your process? Commented May 19, 2014 at 22:24
  • i would create a spreadsheet...anything .csv with name, lat, lon, and other corresponding headers. easiest would be google docs.
    – albert
    Commented May 20, 2014 at 18:39
  • I just posted my solution. I am very curious to see yours as I am limited by the Maps API ratelimit (2500 queries per day) and my dataset is much larger. Commented May 25, 2014 at 20:33
  • they have a limit? huh. we work around that in my brigade by getting more than 1 person contribute...streety smarts offers free geocoding for non-profits....
    – albert
    Commented May 28, 2014 at 13:25
  • I just tried this it does NOT work. Gives addresses but not neighborhood. Commented Aug 1, 2014 at 20:08

Zillow provides Shapefiles for neighborhoods for the largest US Cities (includes NYC) for free (CC license). You can find them here:


  • Could you walk me through how to use a shapefile Pythonically or in R? Commented May 25, 2014 at 20:34
  • Hi I was unable to make these work. Could you help please? Commented Aug 1, 2014 at 20:03

For anyone else looking to figure this out, the trick is the following.

You'll need

  1. Your file with long/lat coordinates in NYC. You can obtain these by geoencoding addresses
  2. Use this NYC neighborhoods geometry file
  3. A Cartodb account.

Once you have all three, log into cartodb and upload your file with long/lat coordinates and the nyc neighborhood geometry file. Then follow these instructions:

  1. Geoencode the long/lat coordinates as a goemetry object in your long/lat coordinate file.
  2. Run the following SQL query from within the file:

    SELECT s.*,n.neighborhood FROM {{yourFileName}} as s, nyc_pediacities_neighborhoods_v3_polygon as n WHERE ST_Within(s.the_geom,n.the_geom)

You're creating two objects, yourFile as s and the shapefile as n, then matching the geometries against one another with the WHERE clause.

That should create a new column with rows featuring the NYC neighborhood of the long/lat of the same row.

3 . Export your file.

  • The polygon file for NYC neighborhoods would be much easier to use than Shapefiles, such as from Zillow. Commented Sep 2, 2014 at 16:10
  • @Andrew-OpenGeoCode Thanks but this is so easy. You just upload then run a query. What's the advantage? Commented Sep 2, 2014 at 16:11

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