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Town of Colonie
Colonie Memorial Town Hall, Newtonville, NY
Colonie Memorial Town Hall, Newtonville, NY
Official seal of Colonie
Etymology: From Dutch Colonie meaning a colony, referring to the Colony of Rensselaerswyck surrounding Albany
Location in Albany County and the state of New York.
Location in Albany County and the state of New York.
Location of New York in the United States
Location of New York in the United States
Country United States
State New York
County Albany
Incorporation as town 1895
 • Total 57.84 sq mi (149.81 km2)
 • Land 55.95 sq mi (144.90 km2)
 • Water 1.89 sq mi (4.91 km2)
344 ft (105 m)
Highest elevation
(Locust Lane Loudonville)
413 ft (126 m)
Lowest elevation
(sea level)
0 ft (0 m)
 • Total 81,591
 • Estimate 
 • Density 1,487.40/sq mi (574.29/km2)
Time zone UTC−5 (EST)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−4 (EDT)
ZIP Codes
12047, 12110, 12189, 12204, 12205, 12211, 12303, 12304, 12309
Area code(s) 518
FIPS code 36-001-17343
FIPS code 36-17343
GNIS feature ID 0978853
Wikimedia Commons Colonie, New York

Colonie is a town in Albany County, New York, United States. It is the most-populous suburb of Albany, and is the third-largest town in area in Albany County, occupying approximately 11% of the county. Several hamlets exist within the town. As of the 2010 census, the town had a total population of 81,641.

The name is derived from the Dutch Colonye or "Colonie", derived from the Colonie of Rensselaerswyck. All the land outside the Village of Beverwyck (now Albany) was referred to as the "Colonie". The town of Colonie is north of Albany and is at the northern border of the county. Within the town of Colonie are two villages, one also known as Colonie and the other known as Menands.


Town of Watervliet in 1866

This area was once part of the Rensselaerwyck manor. The town of Colonie was formed in 1895 after the rural residents of the town of Watervliet opposed the state's proposal to transform the entire town into a city of Watervliet. The town/village of Green Island was also split off as a town from the town of Watervliet a year later and the village of West Troy that remained became the current city of Watervliet. All debts from the original town were divided proportionally between Green Island, Watervliet, and Colonie. Several lawsuits worked their way through the court system from the results of division. The original town of Watervliet was the "mother of towns" in Albany County, having once been all the land outside of the city of Albany within the county, all current towns either were formed directly or indirectly from a town formed from Watervliet. The central part of the town was once the location of the extensive Shaker community farms. The Watervliet Shaker Historic District is located in Colonie. Much of that land is now occupied by the Albany International Airport.

Through to the 1930s, Colonie was a simple series of extensive farms and a few hamlets. However, in the post-war years, there was intensive suburban development, originally on the corridor that connected Albany and Schenectady, but quickly throughout the entire township. By 1980, suburban development had saturated the community. At the same time, there were large highways (I-87, I-787, US Rt. 9 and NY Rt. 7) constructed which drastically changed the nature of the town and life there. The Colonie of the 1990s and beyond has become an entirely different community from the town of the 1930s and 1940s.

The Casparus F. Pruyn House at Newtonville is open to the public as the historical and cultural arts center for the Town of Colonie.

Historic sites

A number of sites in Colonie are included on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places, including -

  • Albany Rural Cemetery
  • Bacon-Stickney House
  • Senator William T. Byrne House
  • Frederick Cramer House
  • Martin Dunsbach House
  • Royal K. Fuller House
  • Goodrich School
  • Isaac M. Haswell House
  • Hedge Lawn
  • Henry-Remsen House
  • Ebenezer Hills, Jr., Farmhouse
  • Friend Humphrey House
  • John Wolf Kemp House
  • John V. A. Lansing Farmhouse and Billsen Cemetery and Archeological Site
  • George H. Lawton House
  • Louis Menand House
  • Menands Manor
  • Reformed Dutch Church of Rensselaer in Watervliet
  • Alfred H. Renshaw House
  • Simmons Stone House
  • Jedediah Strong House
  • Treemont Manor
  • George Trimble House
  • Van Denbergh-Simmons House
  • Watervliet Shaker Historic District


According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 57.9 square miles (149.9 km²). 56.1 square miles (145.2 km²) of it is land and 1.8 square miles (4.7 km²) of it (3.11%) is water.

The north town line borders Schenectady County, and Saratoga County, marked by the Mohawk River. The east town line is the border of Rensselaer County, marked by the Hudson River. The town lies near the junction of the Hudson and the Mohawk.

Interstate 87, Interstate 787, and U.S. Route 9 pass through the town. State Routes 2, 5, 7, 32 and 155 are also important arterials within the town.



Colonie Historical Populations
Year Pop. ±%
1810 1,406 —    
1900 7,035 +400.4%
1910 8,385 +19.2%
1920 10,196 +21.6%
1930 17,436 +71.0%
1940 20,631 +18.3%
1950 29,522 +43.1%
1960 52,760 +78.7%
1970 69,147 +31.1%
1980 74,593 +7.9%
1990 76,497 +2.6%
2000 79,258 +3.6%
2010 81,591 +2.9%
2016 83,217 +2.0%
U.S. Decennial Census

As of the census of 2000, there were 79,258 people, 30,980 households, and 20,539 families residing in the town. The population density was 1,413.6 inhabitants per square mile (545.8/km2). There were 32,280 housing units at an average density of 575.7 per square mile (222.3/km2). The racial makeup of the town was 90.55% White, 3.96% Black or African American, 0.15% Native American, 3.59% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 0.61% from other races, and 1.13% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.86% of the population.

There were 30,980 households, out of which 29.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.3% were married couples living together, 9.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.7% were non-families. Of all households, 28.1% were made up of individuals, and 11.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.43 and the average family size was 3.00.

In the town, the population was spread out, with 21.8% under the age of 18, 8.9% from 18 to 24, 27.8% from 25 to 44, 25.1% from 45 to 64, and 16.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females, there were 92.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 89.6 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $51,817, and the median income for a family was $62,649. Males had a median income of $41,453 versus $30,763 for females. The per capita income for the town was $25,231. About 3.0% of families and 4.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including 4.5% of those under age 18 and 6.0% of those age 65 or over.


The Town of Colonie operates and maintains over 850 acres of property and facilities, including the 130-acre Crossings Park, the 160-acre Mohawk River Park and Pool, the 12-acre Mohawk Riverside Landing Park, the 36-hole Town of Colonie Golf Course, the 43-acre Schuyler Flatts Cultural Park, a 5.5 mile section of the Mohawk Hudson Bike/Hike Trail, and other sports facilities and pocket parks.

Communities and locations

  • Albany International Airport (ALB) -- An airport servicing Albany and the Capital District.
  • Boght Corners—A hamlet in the northeast part of the town.
  • Colonie—An incorporated village in the southern part of the town.
  • Crescent Station—A hamlet at the northernmost point of the town.
  • Karner—A hamlet southwest of the village of Colonie.
  • Dunsbach Ferry—A hamlet in the northwest part of the town at the Mohawk River.
  • Latham—A hamlet near the center of the town.
  • Lisha Kill—A hamlet in the northwest section of town, on Central Ave/ NY Route 5.
  • Loudonville—A suburban hamlet near the Albany city line.
  • Mannsville—Part of the Schuyler Heights Fire District and Watervliet City School District.
  • Maplewood—A hamlet adjacent to Cohoes, Watervliet and Green Island.
  • Maywood—A hamlet northwest of the Village of Colonie on Central Ave/ NY Route 5.
  • Menands—An incorporated village in the eastern part of the town.
  • Newtonville—A hamlet between Latham and Loudonville.
  • Schuyler Heights—A hamlet north of Menands; south and west of Watervliet; east of Loudonville; lying on the west bank of the Hudson River. Part of the Schuyler Heights Fire District and Watervliet City School District and North Colonie School District.
  • Roessleville—A suburban community near the city line of Albany.
  • Shakers—A settlement southwest of Albany International Airport.
  • Stanford Heights—A hamlet on the western edge of town, along the Schenectady County line.
  • Verdoy—A hamlet north of Albany International Airport.
  • West Albany—A hamlet on the southern edge of the town, along the Albany city line.


There are six public school districts that serve the town of Colonie: the South Colonie Central School District, North Colonie Central Schools, Watervliet City School District, Menands Union Free School District, Niskayuna Central School District, and Mohonasen Central School District. South Colonie (Colonie Central High School) serves much of the western part of the town, including West Albany, the village of Colonie, and a small part of the adjoining town of Niskayuna. North Colonie (Shaker High School) serves Latham and the smaller, suburban and rural hamlets to the north of Latham, as well as most of Loudonville and Newtonville. The Watervliet City School District (Watervliet High School) serves some students from Menands and the Schuyler Heights area. Mohonasen's (Mohonasen High School) schools serve the sliver of Colonie which lies south of the Amtrak tracks and east of its border with the Town of Rotterdam. Niskayuna Central School District's boundaries enter Colonie for the short segment of Vly Rd. east of Denison Rd., and the few streets along this stretch. The Menands Union Free School District is a single building school district serving the village of Menands and educates students from kindergarten through eighth grade. Upon completion of eighth grade, Menands Union Free School District students choose whether to attend Shaker High School, Colonie Central High School, Watervliet, Heatly Junior-Senior High School in Green Island, or Tech Valley High School in Albany. In 2008, the Maplewood-Colonie Common School District merged with, and into the North Colonie School District.

The town of Colonie is also home to the Christian Brothers Academy, as well as several private and/or religious elementary schools. Siena College is located in the hamlet of Loudonville. Bryant & Stratton College, a proprietary college, is in the town of Colonie. Colonie was formerly home to a campus of ITT Technical Institute,

Notable people

  • Robert Prentiss, Massachusetts and New York (state) politician, lived in Colonie.
  • Leland Stanford, born in Colonie in 1824, at which time it was known as Watervliet
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