The New York Times posted an article today for anyone who's ever had to endure subway transfers to get to their beloved. They track the story of one couple, Peter Horan and Afton Vermeer, who must trek nearly an hour and a half to see each other in the same city (Horan lives in western Harlem, Vermeer in Sunset Park.) While this is not news to many couples in the city, the Times reports that it seems to be happening more and more, with a variety of repercussions.

John Mollenkopf, the director of the Center for Urban Research at the City University of New York, said that “As Manhattan housing got more expensive, people had no option but to spread out more." Thus the gentrification of neighborhoods like Harlem, Bushwick and the South Bronx has meant more young singles in every area (though Mollenkopf avoids the hot button issue that this gentrification means more young white singles in these neighborhoods). Nevertheless, the singles are spreading, which means longer commutes and more strain on the relationship.

Also, due to the rise of internet dating, singles in a large city can specify desirability by zip code, with many New Yorkers looking to find love within a one-mile radius. One resident, Isaac Oliver, set the standard: "It took two trains and a bus to get home. There will be no second date." The 2008 American Community Survey said that there are 3.8 million single people in New York City. That's more than the population of all of Chicago. So this makes us wonder, isn't the point of being single in New York to find new things? Why limit yourself to one area? Of course, not every New Yorker feels this way. Melanie Hopkins of Washington Heights says of her Brooklyn boyfriend "“Rob could move to Sheepshead Bay and I’d make it work." Awww.