Unlike what others on here have said, Binghamton is a major city in New York State... right up there with Syracuse, Buffalo, Rochester, Albany, and Ithaca. It's situated on the crossroads of 81, 86, and 88, and contains a fairly important train artery. Binghamton University, one of the top-rated state universities in New York (or the country for that matter), boasts a world-renowned archeology department. The metro area is broken up into boroughs, much like New York City (hence there not being a mayor in Vestal or JC). The actual city of Binghamton is fairly small, with only 50k residents, but the valley itself has almost half a million residents. It's the carousel capital of the world, home to one of the oldest zoos in the country, and has a pretty cool local museum with interesting tidbits about the city's history. Speaking of which, in it's day (up until the mid 1980's, in fact), Binghamton was a very famous and crucial city, especially in the 1920's when it was on the map in bigger letters than even Albany or Buffalo. If you're a fan of that particular era, Binghamton is a great place to visit because it captures the architectural style of that era really well. There's plenty of culture in Binghamton, and at least 1/3rd of the city's population is actually cultured a fair amount. The other 2/3rds? Name a city in the world where 2/3rds of the resident's AREN'T morons... please, try, any city in the world. Give up? I thought so.
The Bad: Since IBM (which was founded here) left the area, the city has started to fall apart. The sudden and drastic skyrocketing unemployment effects were created by both IBM leaving and the economic catastrophe of 9/11, which effected the entire state. Because unemployment went through the rough in a matter of days, the county increased its welfare benefits, and that lead to scummy people from New York City and the south to move here so they could live off the government and send the city further into the ground. But Binghamton rebounded a few years later, and today, the economy is growing stronger. We're starting to see the southern pickup-driving confederate-wearing fucktards from down south move away because we aren't cutting them checks anymore, and that's having a drastically-positive effect on the city. Anyway, let me close with some statistics for the idiot who said Binghamton "doesn't have black people." I'm half-black, my family is mostly black... here's some stats for you to wash down your stupidity with:
38% - Black
36% - White
11% - Hispanic (88% of which are puerto rican)
9% - Asian (63% of which are vietnamese or laotian)
6% - other
^ that's the actual racial breakdown for Binghamton, New York. Maybe if you went somewhere besides State Street you'd actually know that ;)
2) A city in Upstate New York whose only reason for existence is the State University situated there. This sad fact is not widely recognized by residents and causes a great deal of animosity toward the students whose money keeps the shit-hole from becoming a ghost town.
3) The Forsaken Lands.
After a mild turn-of-the-century presence as a manufacturing center of shoes and cigar materials, Binghamton suffered a precipitous decline in fortunes beginning with the loss of its core manufacturing base in the years following the war and consummating in the closing of its high-tech industries in the late 1980's and early 1990's. From a post-war population high of about 80,000, Binghamton has now shed nearly half of its population.
Binghamton was the home of Rod Serling, host of the 1960's now cult-status television series "The Twilight Zone". The city and region suffered a devastating flood in the summer of 2006.
After years of misfortune, mismanagement and neglect, Binghamton has apparently instituted an audacious program modeling such cities as Camden NJ, Youngstown OH and Gary IN as examples of what it strives to become. This policy is achieving its goals with great success.
Like much of upstate new york, the city of Binghamton has been in a steady state of decline for the better part of three decades. But it was never all that great to begin with.