Syracuse, New York

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Syracuse is a city in, and the county seat of, Onondaga County, New York, United States. It is the largest U.S. city with the name “Syracuse”, and is the fourth most populous metropolitan city in the state of New York.[1] At the 2010 census, the city population was 145,170, and its metropolitan area had a population of 732,117. It is the economic and educational hub of Central New York, a region with over a million inhabitants. Syracuse is also well-provided with convention sites, with a downtown convention complex and, directly west of the city, the Empire Expo Center, which hosts the annual Great New York State Fair. Syracuse was named after the original Syracuse (Siracusa in Italian), a city on the eastern coast of the Italian island of Sicily.

The city has functioned as a major crossroads over the last two centuries, first between the Erie Canal and its branch canals, then of the railway network. Today, Syracuse is located at the intersection of Interstates 81 and 90, and its airport is the largest in the region. Syracuse is home to Syracuse University, a major research university, as well as several smaller colleges and professional schools. In 2010 Forbes rated Syracuse 4th in the top 10 places to raise a family.


Colleges and universities

One of Syracuse’s major research universities is Syracuse University, located on University Hill. It had an enrollment of 15,097 for the 2013–2014 academic year.

Immediately adjacent to Syracuse University are two doctoral-degree granting State University (SUNY) schools, the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry and SUNY Upstate Medical University. Both institutions have long-standing ties to Syracuse University. SUNY Upstate Medical University is also one of Syracuse’s major research universities and is one of only about 125 academic medical centers in the country. It is the region’s largest employer.

Also serving Syracuse are Le Moyne College on the city’s eastern border, and Onondaga Community College, which has its main campus in the adjacent Town of Onondaga and has two smaller campuses downtown and in Liverpool. A branch of SUNY’s Empire State College is located in downtown Syracuse, along with a campus of the nationwide Bryant & Stratton College. A campus of ITT Technical Institute also calls the Syracuse metropolitan area home, also located in Liverpool. There are also the Crouse Hospital College of Nursing and St. Joseph’s College of Nursing.

Other colleges and universities in the area include Cornell University and Ithaca College in Ithaca, Hamilton College in Clinton, Oswego State College in Oswego, SUNY Cortland in Cortland, Morrisville State College in Morrisville, Colgate University in Hamilton, Cazenovia College in Cazenovia, Wells College in Aurora, and both Utica College and SUNY Institute of Technology in Utica.


Museums and art galleries

Everson Museum of Art, which opened in 1968 in a building designed by I.M. Pei, features one of the most extensive pottery collections in the United States along with works of American art, dating from the 18th century to the present. This collection includes paintings, sculptures, drawings, photography, and video.

Erie Canal Museum is a museum dedicated to preserving the history of the Erie Canal and its role in Syracuse’s growth.

– International Mask and Puppet Museum is a museum in Little Italy focusing on masks and puppets, the later of which are also used in educational performances for children.

Milton J. Rubenstein Museum of Science and Technology is a museum located in the Armory Square neighborhood that features exhibits in science and technology and also houses the city’s only IMAX theater.

– Onondaga Historical Association Museum & Research Center, located at 321 Montgomery Street downtown, features exhibits on the past of the Syracuse region, and contains historical archives relating to the area’s history. Its exhibits include a presentation of the history of the Underground Railroad.

– The Warehouse Gallery is located at 350 West Fayette Street in The Warehouse. It is a part of the Coalition of Museum And Art Centers (CMAC). This new contemporary art center exhibits, commissions, and promotes work by emerging and accomplished artists in a variety of media. The programming attempts to engage the community in a dialogue regarding the role the arts can play in illuminating the critical issues of our times.

– Spark Contemporary Art Space is located at 1005 E. Fayette St. in the Downtown area. Spark is run by Syracuse University graduate art students, but is a venue for a diversity of non-university affiliated events. The gallery’s directors curate and organize art and music related events, while local artists can rent the space to hold their own events. With the initiation of a monthly video screening series in 2001, Spark became one of the leading venues for video art in Syracuse. Spark Video provides the community an opportunity to see video work from local and international artists.

– Delavan Art Gallery is located at 501 West Fayette Street in an old farm equipment factory. It has a 3,800 square feet (350 m2) of exhibit space, and, on several other floors in the building, houses the studios of a number of area artists. It has shows which usually open on the first Thursday of the month. It showcases a wide variety of work, from multi-media sculpture to hyperrealism.

Point of Contact Gallery is located at 914 East Genesee Street. The newest member of the Coalition of Museums and Art Centers at Syracuse University, it is a space dedicated to the exploration of the verbal and visual arts and home of the Point of Contact Art Collection. It is a cross-disciplinary open forum for the essential discussion of contemporary art. A showcase for contemporary artists from around the world, with a strong prevalence from Latin America. The Point of Contact collection comprises over 200 original pieces created especially for “Point of Contact”, the book series, since 1975. Photography, collage, drawings, paintings and three-dimensional works form this rare collection.


Parks and recreation

The City of Syracuse maintains over 170 parks, fields, and recreation areas, totaling over 1,000 acres (4.0 km2).Burnet Park includes the first public golf course in the United States (1901) and Rosamond Gifford Zoo. Other major parks include Thornden Park, Schiller Park, Sunnycrest Park, Onondaga Park and Kirk Park. There are 12 public pools, two public ice rinks, and two public nine-hole golf courses in the city.

Right outside the city proper, along the east side and north end of Onondaga Lake, is Onondaga Lake Park. The adjacent Onondaga Lake Parkway is closed to vehicular traffic several hours on Sundays during the summer months, so it can be used for walking, running, biking, and rollerblading. During the holiday season, the park hosts Lights on the Lake, a two-mile (3.2 km) drive-through light show.


Air service

Syracuse is served by the Syracuse Hancock International Airport in nearby Salina, near Mattydale. The airport is served by 6 major airlines, which provide non-stop flights to destinations as far away as Minneapolis, as well as several daily flights to other important airline hubs and business centers such as Atlanta, Boston, Charlotte, Chicago, Detroit, Ft. Lauderdale, New York City, Orlando, Philadelphia, Tampa, Washington, DC, Toronto, and 147 foreign cites from 87 different countries, not including USA. Cargo carriers FedEx and UPS also serve the airport. New York City can be reached in under an hour flight.



The city lies on Amtrak’s Empire Service, Lake Shore Limited, and Maple Leaf lines.

The Empire Service runs several times daily from Niagara Falls to New York Penn Station, with major stops in Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse, Utica, and Albany along the way.

The Lake Shore Limited connects Syracuse to the same cities as
above (except Niagara Falls), but continues westward from Buffalo to Chicago via Cleveland and Toledo, and eastward to Boston. This train completes one roundtrip daily.

Also completing one roundtrip a day, the Maple Leaf follows the path of the Empire Service train, but continues to Toronto.

Amtrak’s station is part of the William F. Walsh Regional Transportation Center.

A regional commuter rail service, OnTrack, was active from 1994 until it was discontinued in 2007 due to low ridership. Its sole route connected the Carousel Center to southern Syracuse, often extending to Jamesville in the summer.



Greyhound Lines and Trailways provide long-distance bus service. Both also use the William F. Walsh Regional Transportation Center located in the northern area of the city.

Major highways and roads
Four Interstate Highways run through the Syracuse area:

– Interstate 81 (Highway 401 via Highway 137 in Ontario to Knoxville) runs north-south through Syracuse, and provides access to Canada, Pennsylvania and points south. Its downtown portion is extremely narrow, only consisting of four lanes and essentially no onramps.

– Interstate 90 (Seattle to Boston), also known as the New

York State Thruway runs east-west, just north of the city. It is a toll highway that provides access to Rochester, Buffalo, Albany, and the north-south (Interstate 87) part of the Thruway which leads to New York City.

– Interstate 690 runs east-west through the city, and provides access to Interstate 90, as well as to Syracuse’s northwestern and eastern suburbs. A spur off I-690 directly west of the city, NY 695,

provides freeway access to the southwestern suburbs. It meets Interstate 81 in downtown Syracuse in a highly complex and incomplete intersection. Most of its routing through the city directly replaced elevated rail lines, a fact quite notable by the city’s former main rail terminal, where the freeway spans the width between the terminal and its outermost platform. In 1981 artist Duke Epolito erected sculptures of “passengers” on the far platform. The piece is entitled “Waiting for the Night Train.”

– Interstate 481 forms an eastern loop around the city and continues to the northwest as NY 481 to Fulton and Oswego, on the shore of Lake Ontario.

Two US Highways run through the Syracuse area:

– U.S. Highway 11 (Route 223 in Quebec to New Orleans) passes through Syracuse, including downtown, and it follows the route of Salina and State Streets.

– U.S. Highway 20 (Boston to Newport, Oregon) passes south of Syracuse.


New York State Route Expressways:

– New York State Route 481 – Travels from NY 104 in Oswego to the junction of Interstate 81 and Interstate 481 north of Syracuse.

– New York State Route 690 – Was built as an extension of Interstate 690 in the northwest suburbs of Syracuse. The route is a four-lane divided highway from its southern end at I-690, where it meets Interstate 90 (NYS Thruway), to its end northwest of Baldwinsville in Lysander at NY 48 and NY 631.


– New York State Route 695 – Is a short state highway located west of Syracuse in the town of Solvay in Onondaga County. The number of the highway was derived from the two highways that NY 695 links, Interstate 690 and NY 5.