View Poll Results: Should NJ's northeastern cities be combined into one large city?

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Thread: Consolidaton of NJ's northeastern cities

  1. #1
    New Jersey Ambassador Admin & Founder JerseyDevil's Avatar
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    Default Consolidaton of NJ's northeastern cities

    I've thought about this a long time. I think it's time for New Jersey to consildate it's northeastern cities and make them into boroughs similar to NY. This is the only real way for NJ to compete with NY on a level playing field.

    Elizabeth, Bayonne, Jersey City, Hoboken, Newark, etc to Fort Lee should all be joined into a single city - called New Jersey City. By this process, a lot of group planning can be done to improve the whole area. I know that a lot of people would be upset with the "loss of identity", and I've wrestled with that as well. But what would they rather have - a single vibrant city that is efficient and can stand head to head with NY, or continue to be considered the "suburbs of NY" that merely get the flowover businesses. Instead of hearing about us having ferry terminals being built to take people from NJ to Manhattan - I want to hear about ferry terminals being built to take people from Manhattan to New Jersey. This isn't going to happen unless NJ starts to take hard look at how to improve the northeast region and bring TRUE revitalization there.

    NY would not have been able to grow the way it has if it hadn't annexed Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens and State Island into one city (Manhattan was the only borough which made up the original NY City).

    Think of what a powerhouse this section of NJ could be. We would truly be able to give NY a run for it's money.

    Compare this...

    Size of NYC - 368 square miles; Population: 8 million

    Size of major NJ northeastern cities -
    Newark - 23.8 square miles; population: 273,546 (NJ's largest city)
    Jersey City - 14.9 square miles; population: 240,055
    East Rutherford - 3.8 square miles; population: 8,716
    Fort Lee - 2.58 square miles; population: 35,461
    Bayonne - 5.39 square miles; population: 61,842
    Elizabeth - 11.69 square miles; population: 120,568
    Hoboken - 1.97 square miles; population: 38,577

    Now let's be honst here - there is no way a 23.8 square mile city with a population of only 273,000 can ever compete with a 368 square mile city with 8 million people. I truly feel it is time for this. It may have to be a stepped process - but we need to start working on this.

    Here are the county facts...

    Bergen - 246.75 square miles; population: 884,118
    Essex - 129.56 square miles; population: 793,633
    Hudson - 62.24 square miles; population: 608,975
    Passaic - 193.81 square miles; population: 489,049
    Union - 103.4 square miles; population: 522,541
    ---------------------------------------------
    Total: 735.76 square miles; population: 3,298,316 (this is 41% of NJ's population, but only covers 8.45% of NJ)

    Now I wouldn't combine all the full counties, for instance I would probably split Passaic and only include the eastern spur (around Paterson) and I would probably include the eastern part of Middlesex county which includes Perth Amboy. The resulting city would be able to better manage resources, such as fire and police, schools, roads, etc.

    With the fiefdom mentality of NJ though, Im sure it will not happen anytime soon - maybe not even in my life time. But for NJ to truly compete with NY - I feel this is a necessary step.

    As an added question - if NJ was to do this what would be th best way to go about it? Should we create the counties into boroughs and then have the cities make up sections within each borough?
    New Jersey is the only state honored by two resorts at Walt Disney World. The Beach Club Resort, modeled after Historic Cape May and The Boardwalk Resort, after Atlantic City. If the Jersey Shore is good enough for Walt Disney to recreate, isn't the REAL Jersey Shore even better for you and your family?

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  2. #2
    Moderator MITHRANDIR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JerseyDevil
    Size of NYC - 368 square miles; Population: 8 million

    Size of major NJ northeastern cities -
    Newark - 23.8 square miles; population: 273,546 (NJ's largest city)
    Jersey City - 14.9 square miles; population: 240,055
    East Rutherford - 3.8 square miles; population: 8,716
    Fort Lee - 2.58 square miles; population: 35,461
    Bayonne - 5.39 square miles; population: 61,842
    Elizabeth - 11.69 square miles; population: 120,568
    Hoboken - 1.97 square miles; population: 38,577

    = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =

    Here are the county facts...
    Bergen - 246.75 square miles; population: 884,118
    Essex - 129.56 square miles; population: 793,633
    Hudson - 62.24 square miles; population: 608,975
    Passaic - 193.81 square miles; population: 489,049
    Union - 103.4 square miles; population: 522,541
    ---------------------------------------------
    Total: 735.76 square miles; population: 3,298,316 (this is 41% of NJ's population, but only covers 8.45% of NJ)
    Interesting facts you present.

    If all of the areas you mentioned were consolidated (incorporated) into one city would it truely be governed effectively for all areas concerned?

    Just look to NYC for one example: Tension between where development and improvements occur between Manhattan and the other NYC boroughs. Some people think that NYC does not treat all the boroughs equally when doing infrastructure improvements.

    If the entire super city could be governed effectively, it could make some sense for creating one city instead of the current collection of 6-15 cities that currently exist.

    I am not sure what would be the best way to create this super city.
    Sincerely,
    Anthony


    NJ & You, Perfect Together

  3. #3
    New Jersey Ambassador Admin & Founder JerseyDevil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MITHRANDIR
    If all of the areas you mentioned were consolidated (incorporated) into one city would it truely be governed effectively for all areas concerned?

    Just look to NYC for one example: Tension between where development and improvements occur between Manhattan and the other NYC boroughs. Some people think that NYC does not treat all the boroughs equally when doing infrastructure improvements.
    Well of course there would be tensions, and competition, similar to NY. That would be an issue. Currently there is that issue with south Jersey versus north Jersey (At the Star Ledger tourism consumer show this past weekend someone from a south Jersey tourism council was asked by another south Jersey council why they were wearing a Jersey Devils hat, as if it was an out of state team. ).

    As for NYC not treating all the boroughs equally - of course they don't. Manhattan gets the most support - Staten Island gets the least. A couple of years ago Staten Island was voting on seceding from NY. There wil obviously be competitions, and Newark and Jersey City would most likely remain the powerhouses, but I would think that Jersey City would expand throughout the Hudson coast and newark and Jersey City would eventually be connected.
    If the entire super city could be governed effectively, it could make some sense for creating one city instead of the current collection of 6-15 cities that currently exist.
    In order to manage a city like this, you realy need top rate managers, similar to Guiliani and Bloomberg. NY has had terrible mayors too - which really destroyed the city. A good mayor can make New Jersey City one of the top cities in the country though. Also, New Jersey City would rocket up to the 3rd largest city in the country, surpassing Chicago which has 2,862,244, Los Angeles has - 3,845,541 people.
    I am not sure what would be the best way to create this super city.
    It would take a lot of planning and be a huge undertaking. I think the first step would be to look at how NY is organized, the government structure and so forth. They have different representatives for each of the boroughs and neighborhoods. I'm not too familiar with the NY City government though. It would be something to look into.

    We need to revitalize our cities, one of the reasons for property taxes being so high and NJ taxes being so high, is because the state supports the cities so much. The state needs to work at cutting the apron strings from the cities and make them live off their own.
    New Jersey is the only state honored by two resorts at Walt Disney World. The Beach Club Resort, modeled after Historic Cape May and The Boardwalk Resort, after Atlantic City. If the Jersey Shore is good enough for Walt Disney to recreate, isn't the REAL Jersey Shore even better for you and your family?

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  4. #4
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    Default I think it would be great if NJ cities would

    cosolidate into one mega city. Or, at least, the cities shold be allowed to annex the smaller towns around them. For example, Newark, should be all of Essex County, with maybe Harrison and Kearny thrown in also. We probably wouldn't see this anytime soon, because of peoples' obsession with "HOME
    RULE" which is a joke.

  5. #5
    New Jersey Ambassador Admin & Founder JerseyDevil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by beatman10
    cosolidate into one mega city. Or, at least, the cities shold be allowed to annex the smaller towns around them. For example, Newark, should be all of Essex County, with maybe Harrison and Kearny thrown in also. We probably wouldn't see this anytime soon, because of peoples' obsession with "HOME
    RULE" which is a joke.
    That coudl work - with Jersey City being all of Hudson County. But as you said, people will be against it because of home rule. There is a proposal in "Princeton" to combine the Princeton Borough and Princeton Township police departments (now Princeton Borough is only about 1.5 square miles), and there is an outcry against that even. Imagine what would happen if people suggested the cities start combining.
    New Jersey is the only state honored by two resorts at Walt Disney World. The Beach Club Resort, modeled after Historic Cape May and The Boardwalk Resort, after Atlantic City. If the Jersey Shore is good enough for Walt Disney to recreate, isn't the REAL Jersey Shore even better for you and your family?

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  6. #6
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    Default Exactly, and that's why we have close to 600

    municipalities, and 612 school districts. We are being stangled by burocracy, and we allow it to happen. We must consolidate our cities for a unified state.
    I live in southern New Jersey (notice I didn't write South Jersey) and I get
    tired of feeling like a foreigner in my home state because I'm not from
    Pennsylvania. It's bizarre!!

  7. #7
    New Jersey Ambassador Admin & Founder JerseyDevil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by beatman10
    municipalities, and 612 school districts. We are being stangled by burocracy, and we allow it to happen. We must consolidate our cities for a unified state.
    I live in southern New Jersey (notice I didn't write South Jersey) and I get
    tired of feeling like a foreigner in my home state because I'm not from
    Pennsylvania. It's bizarre!!
    I'm not at all surprised by your experience with being an outsider in your home state. NJ has a north/south divide problem I have discussed in other threads. I also post how at a tourism show there was a southern NJ representative with a New JERSEY devils hat on and another southern New JERSEY representative gave him a hard time because it wasn't a Flyers hat. Now at what point has the flyers become a NJ team? They don't play in NJ - they are a philadelphia team. (okay so this is off topic, but just like you - this is something that really upsets me).
    New Jersey is the only state honored by two resorts at Walt Disney World. The Beach Club Resort, modeled after Historic Cape May and The Boardwalk Resort, after Atlantic City. If the Jersey Shore is good enough for Walt Disney to recreate, isn't the REAL Jersey Shore even better for you and your family?

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  8. #8
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    Default I find that most people who are in favor of this

    so called "State of South Jersey" have either moved here from, or have strong ties to, Pennsylvania. For some reason, they don't want to discover
    the entire state and they'll only drive as far north as the A.C Expressway because that's the road to take them back to Philly.
    Also, politicans like to play the North/South card whenever it's convenient for them, like not following through on a campaign promise(remember the early 90's Initiative and Referendem scam? After being elected, the south Jersey politicans all did an about-face on I and R, claiming that North Jersey
    would try dumping toxic waste in the pinelands.
    Yes, and those great cities,NEW YORK and PHILLY also like to keep the divide going because it keeps us Jerseyans attached to their coattails.
    Yes it's DIVIDE and CONQUER in NJ!!

  9. #9
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    Talking coattails

    First this Jerseyans is not attached to anyones coattails ,why should anybody be attached to NYC in any way if your from N.J. , NYC was the murder capital of the U.S.A. in 2005 . Why dont the late night jerks make fun of that like they did when it was announced Camden was the most dangerous city ? Second I dont buy N.Y. papers I buy the Star Ledger , I listen to N.J. radio stations 105.5 NEW JERSEYS own rock station and they let us know they are from N.J. and 101.5 PROUD TO BE NEW JERSEY ! Also at times I listen to 1450 WCTC out of New Brunswick . As far as news I watch news 12 or NJN . Thats all good enough for me .More positive news about N.J. last year was the # 1 ranking town to live in the country was here along with the #9 ,#15 and # 72 towns. N.Y. had 1 in the top 25 . Here in N.J. last year we were the #1 state in saving money N.Y.was # 37 seems to me we put them to shame there too ! And according to an article I came across in the paper , N.Y.C . has 100,000 toxic sites in it ,this is according to goverment documents .The city had plans to put the Olympics in the Willets Point section of Queens after the Manhatten stadium fell through the Queens site was called a chemical hell hole which as of June 19 ,2005 would cost taxpayers $12.5 million to clean up .Keep in mind that was to clean up just that one site . Well I just destroyed N.Y.C. ,let me see what dirt I can dig up on Filthadelphia . One other thing I drink good old Wiedenmayers Jersey Lager or any other micro brew from Jersey . NEW JERSEY HISTORY SECOND TO NONE !
    Last edited by NJPRIDE; 02-18-2006 at 11:20 PM.

  10. #10
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    here's some of my ideas for municipalities that should incorporate. take in mind also, that 100 years ago Newark did include many of its surrounding towns, Paterson included Clifton, Passaic, Little Falls, W Paterson. Ridgefield included Fort Lee and other towns nearby. Edison included Highland Park and Metuchen. Bridgewtaer included Somerville, Raritan, Bound Brook, etc. list could go on

    Newark could include all of the Oranges, Irvington, Maplewood, Bloomfield, Belleville, and Nutley. making it a city of over 550,000

    Jersey City could include pehaps all of Hudson county, tho i'm sure Hoboken and Bayonne have way too much historical pride to annex themselves, but perhaps annexing Union City, Weehawken, Guttenberg, North Bergen and West New York could work. if the latter were done the city would have a pop over 500,000

    Fort Lee could include Ridgefield, Fairview, Edgewater, Cliffside Park, Leonia, Palisades Park and maybe even the Englewoods. making it a city of over 150,000

    Elizabeth could include Linden, Rahway, the Roselles. and maybe Hillside, Union, Kenilworth as suburbs. making it a city near or over 300,000

    Paterson could include Clifton, Passaic, West Paterson, maybe little falls to match the original charter. making it a city over 300,000

    New Brunswick could possibly annex Highland Park and maybe Somerset from Franklin. or perhaps it could add North and East Brunswick, Milltown and South River. making it a city of nearly 150,000

    and beyond North Jersey, i could even see Trenton annexing Ewing and the White Horse section of Hamilton, and Camden annexing Pennsauken, Gloucester City and the many small towns and boros nearby.

    a lot of towns would be dissolved off of the books, but they'd still exist in name as neighborhoods. you could refer to Belleville as the Belleville neighborhood of Newark, or Weehawken as the Weehawken section of Jersey City, or Union City could become Little Cuba, etc. i think if its promoted the right way, and the benefits are laid bare, it could have real possibilities. every small town still needs to be run by a local government, and the cost of police, lawyers, school board, etc. add up, so why burden ourselves with more positions to fill, more pensions? lets cut the fat and put the money to use in larger, stronger, more vital communities.

  11. #11
    New Jersey Ambassador Admin & Founder JerseyDevil's Avatar
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    Sir lord Baltimore - I like your plans. I know that many towns and cities were at one point part of another, but seperated for one reason or another. I have a book called "Multiple Municipal Madness" that goes into how many of these towns were seperated. It's pathetic.

    There is a town with only 24 people currently - it was 1921 when Tavistock was created. It was a country club, but the town it was in (Center Township in Camden County) was going to make it illegal to golf on Sundays and there were already laws against drinking after golfing. So the club decided to form their own municipality. Well the governor, who could not run again and was a diehard golfer, approved the country club into becoming it's own municipality. Today the municipality of Tavistock still exists, but is it necessary anymore? Was it even necessary then or was it merely the usual political palm greasing that goes on in New Jersey, that gave us Tavistock and so many other useless municipalities and government waste?
    New Jersey is the only state honored by two resorts at Walt Disney World. The Beach Club Resort, modeled after Historic Cape May and The Boardwalk Resort, after Atlantic City. If the Jersey Shore is good enough for Walt Disney to recreate, isn't the REAL Jersey Shore even better for you and your family?

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  12. #12
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    Hi Jersey devil, After reading the posts I can see the wisdom in combining the cities into one. But do you think it will ever happen? Marianita

  13. #13
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    I haven't given this idea as much thought as you guys have, but New Jersey City would have one hell of a basketball team.
    NEW JERSEY.....What happens here......Gets buried in the Pine Barrens.

  14. #14
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    Hi Angry American, They sure would. I happen to think that if the cities were combined into one, what would happen to all the addresses of the residents? They would have to change the name of their city on their address. lol. It probably won't happen. Not only are there alot of cities in New Jersey but they are under townships. So that would have to change too. Am I making sense? lol. Marianita

  15. #15
    New Jersey Ambassador Admin & Founder JerseyDevil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marianita
    I happen to think that if the cities were combined into one, what would happen to all the addresses of the residents? They would have to change the name of their city on their address. lol.
    Actually they wouldn't have to change their city name on their addresses, just ike with NY - people still have Brooklyn and Bronx as their city for the address, but those cities are now all part of NY, which originally just included Manhattan.
    It probably won't happen. Not only are there alot of cities in New Jersey but they are under townships. So that would have to change too. Am I making sense? lol. Marianita
    It won't happen for a number of reasons, one being NJ's problem of everyone wanting their own little fiefdom. The Princeton's used to be one municipailty - then they seperated. Now they are talking about combining the police force, etc into one unit and the citizens are outraged. All you see in Princeton packet are how one or the other will be short changed, the police won't respond as quickly, etc. It's rather ridiculous that a 1.7 square mile area insists on having it's own police force.
    New Jersey is the only state honored by two resorts at Walt Disney World. The Beach Club Resort, modeled after Historic Cape May and The Boardwalk Resort, after Atlantic City. If the Jersey Shore is good enough for Walt Disney to recreate, isn't the REAL Jersey Shore even better for you and your family?

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  16. #16
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    Well Jersey Devil, It is a fact that people do not as a rule go for change. We get comfortable with the way things are. But you are right. It seems ridiculous that 1.7 square mile has their own police force. I wonder how many officers it has. lol.New Jersey City does sound good don't you think? I was not aware that New York had combined the cities. Marianita

  17. #17

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    I've brought this idea up so many times over the past few years on so many different message boards (mostly Devils boards) but it remains the best idea for New Jersey. In my opinion it would be more manageable to simply get rid of the municipalities within the counties and have the county seat assume the responsibilities of city hall. While I love the idea of the megacity and have proposed it before, for one thing the cities weren't really planned that way. Union County was planned as part of Elizabeth. Essex was all an outgrowth of Newark. Passaic is mostly an outgrowth of Paterson/Passaic, etc.

  18. #18
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    Hi newarkdevil, It is probable doable but it would take a lot of planning and probably a long time to finish.As I said before people are reluctant to change but actually the idea is sound. There are so many small cities within the state and it might be easier to combine them. Has anyone really thought about this? If NY did it NJ can do it. Marianita

  19. #19

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    I'm not saying it isn't doable, I'm simply saying that, given that you've got the infrastructure already layed out a certain way, it would be easier to do it that way. The infrastructure of the counties in northeastern New Jersey are pretty much all laid out so that the county seat is simply the center of the city that is the entire county. Some counties have two centers, like Middlesex with New Brunswick and Perth Amboy or Monmouth with Long Branch-Red Bank and Freehold. What might make more sense would be to have a New Jersey City made up of the borough of Newark (Essex County), borough of Elizabeth (Union County), Borough of Paterson (Passaic County), Borough of Hackensack (Bergen County), and Borough of Paulus Hook (Hudson). Then you could split Middlesex and Monmouth into two cities each. Trenton would become all of Mercer County, Camden would encompass Gloucester, Camden and most of Burlington Counties, Atlantic City would take up all of Atlantic County, Toms River would become the epicenter of Ocean County, Cape May would become one city, Cumberland another city centered around Vineland-Millville and Salem would become one city. Northwestern New Jersey could have another city in Morris County centered around Morristown, but the rest of it would be difficult to urbanize since there aren't too many other urban centers in that area. Perhaps Phillipsburg and Newton could draw the areas around them, but that area in general might just be better off Balkanized.

  20. #20

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    One other thing, here's a post I made on this subject on a New Jersey Devils board I post on years ago:

    http://www.njdevs.com/forums/index.p...opic=12368&hl=

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