What Percentage of Your Neighborhood’s Eateries Have Rat Problems?

Map of rats in New York City Restaurants

The city’s rats may be on birth control, but we probably won’t see the complete eradication of the beady-eyed pests in our lifetimes. Until they’re gone, it behooves us to keep an eye on their seedy activities and accordingly freelance journalist Steven Melendez has been kind enough to do just that. The results are…really gross.

Melendez combed through every restaurant inspection for all five of the city’s boroughs since January 1, 2013 and divided boroughs by zip code. Using the inspection results, he determined what percentage of each zip code’s restaurants had received citations for the presence of rodents. He even went so far as to name disgusting eateries with C grades and rodent infestation citations. And now all that sexy, sexy data is in handy dandy Google Map form.

Here’s how Brooklyn stacks up: most of our problem restaurants are in Crown Heights (11213) and Flatbush-Ditmas Park (11218), where 50 and 52 percent of restaurants received citations for rodents, respectively. In fact, most of the restaurants in the center of Brooklyn (i.e. East Flatbush, Borough Park and Brownsville) fell into the 40-50% range. Meanwhile, West Brooklyn is markedly better off. Zip codes in Greenpoint, Williamsburg, Park Slope, Fort Greene, Gowanus, Bushwick  and so on fell into the 30-40% range.

More generally, large swaths of East and Central Queens, Harlem and The Bronx are locked in battle with our rodent overlords and (surprise, surprise!) the Upper East Side and the Upper West Side are two of Manhattan’s most rodent-infested neighborhoods. 43% of the neighborhoods’ 1120 restaurants have received rodent-related citations. We’re going to go ahead and blame Central Park/gross human error.

The only zip codes to come out more or less unscathed were Roosevelt Island (0%), Bayside (8%) and the 10282 and 10005 zip codes in South Manhattan (7% and 11%, respectively). Though it should be noted that all of those locations have very few restaurants, we still commend them for their achievements.

If your thirst for data-driven journalism outweighs your distaste for an in-depth look at the rodential hold on our city, head over to Gothamist to check out the interactive map.

Follow Nikita Richardson on Twitter @nikitarbk

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