The City of Plattsburgh is located entirely within the original boundaries of the Town of Plattsburgh and is in the North Country region of the northeastern part of the state.
As of the census of 2000, there were 18,816 people, 7,600 households, and 3,473 families residing in the city. The population density was 3,728.2 people per square mile (1,438.6/km²). There were 8,010 housing units at an average density of 1,587.1/sq mi (612.4/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 93.41% White, 2.46% Black or African American, 0.52% Native American, 1.49% Asian, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 0.68% from other races, and 1.38% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.12% of the population.
There were 7,600 households out of which 22.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 31.1% were married couples living together, 11.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 54.3% were non-families. 40.4% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.10 and the average family size was 2.83.
In the city the population was spread out with 16.5% under the age of 18, 27.7% from 18 to 24, 23.5% from 25 to 44, 18.1% from 45 to 64, and 14.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 30 years. For every 100 females there were 86.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 83.7 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $28,846, and the median income for a family was $46,337. Males had a median income of $35,429 versus $26,824 for females. The per capita income for the city was $17,127. About 13.6% of families and 23.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 20.0% of those under age 18 and 13.0% of those age 65 or over.
Plattsburgh is traversed by Interstate 87, which connects Montreal with Albany and points south.
Amtrak, the national passenger rail system, provides service to Plattsburgh, operating its Adirondack daily in both directions between Montreal and New York City.
The city is served by Plattsburgh International Airport. The airport terminal was completed on the former Air Force Base in February 2007 with the building being dedicated on April 27, 2007. It opened in July 2007. Plattsburgh International currently has 4 FedEx Feeder flights, 2 UPS feeder flights (AirNow) and 5 CapeAir flights a day with service to Boston MA.
The closest major American city (as the crow flies) to Plattsburgh is Burlington, VT, which is accessible by ferry. The city is also in close proximity to Montreal (and the U.S./Canadian border), leading to its prominence as a large trade center for a city its size.
Plattsburgh lies 18 miles south of the border with Quebec, and 63 miles south of the city of Montreal.