It’s not all concrete and skyscrapers — New York City’s most important feature may surprise you

FILE - This Aug. 30, 2011, file photo, shows the Empire State Building in an aerial view of the Manhattan skyline in New York. The Empire State building was New York's tallest from 1931-1972, until the completion of the World Trade Center. It became the tallest once again when two planes crashed into the World Trade Center in a terrorist attack, causing the twin 110-story towers to collapse on Sept. 11, 2001. On Monday, April 30, 2012, One World Trade Center _ being built to replace the twin towers destroyed on 9/11 _ gets steel columns to make its unfinished framework a little higher than the Empire State Building's observation deck, to become the tallest building in New York. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

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Many people associate New York City with the endless high-rises of midtown Manhattan. It’s easy to forget that the Big Apple is mainly made of water. It’s an island, after all.

If you added up the city’s bays, rivers, estuaries and channels, it would be the sixth largest borough.

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New York’s massive growth was due to these waterways, as material goods could be brought it from around the world.

As land becomes more and more scarce, waterfront property provides a much-needed outdoors refuge for New Yorkers.

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