Montclair ( or ) is a
township in Essex
It is the 50th largest municipality
in New Jersey
by population. As of the United States 2000 Census
township population was 38,977.
was first formed as a Township
on April 15, 1868, from portions of Bloomfield
Township, so that a railroad could be built to
After a referendum held on February 21, 1894,
Montclair was reincorporated as a Town
, effective February 24, 1894. In the
late 1970s, after protesting for years at the inequities built into
the formulas, Montclair joined several other communities to qualify
for a pool of federal aid allocated only to Townships, that allowed
townships to receive as much as double the revenue-sharing aid per
capita received by the four other types of New Jersey
municipalities — Borough, City, Town or Village.
Montclair has a temperate climate, with warm/hot humid summers and
cool/cold winters, according to the Köppen climate
climate. January tends to be the coldest month,
with average high temperatures in the upper 30's and lows averaging
21. July is the warmest months with high temperatures in the mid
80s and lows in the 70's, the average high is at 86 Fahrenheit.
From April to June and from September to early November, Montclair
experiences temperatures from the lower 60s to the lower 70s.
Montclair, NJ, gets on average 44 inches (1100 mm) of
rain per year, above the US average of 37 inches. Snowfall is
common from December to early March, at about 30 inches
annually. The number of days each year in Montclair with any
measurable precipitation is 90, and an average of 202 sunny
is one or two degrees warmer than the neighboring towns of Verona and Cedar Grove because of the mountain between them, which
sometimes blocks winds and clouds, including warmer air from the
ocean to the east.
Montclair is located at (40.822249, -74.211989).
According to the United
States Census Bureau
, the township has a total area of
6.3 square miles (16.3 km2
Montclair is located on the First Mountain of the Watchung Mountains
. Most of the town is
on the eastward-side of this ridge. Thus, many locations provide excellent
views of the surrounding area and the New York City skyline, which is about away.
formation of Montclair, the western border on that mountain with
Verona, West Orange, and Cedar Grove has moved slightly eastward,
making the town slightly smaller.
Montclair is assigned two ZIP codes
central and southern parts of the town are designated 07042.
northern portion of town, north of Watchung Avenue, has a separate
ZIP code, 07043, and is known as Upper Montclair.
Because the ZIP codes do not exactly match
municipal boundaries, a few homes near the borders with
neighbouring towns fall into the ZIP codes for those towns
(likewise, a few homes in some adjoining towns use one of the two
ZIP codes assigned to Montclair) . Small areas in the southeast of town fall
into the Glen
Ridge ZIP code, 07028
Several streams flow eastward through Montclair: Toney's Brook
in the center, Nishuane Brook in
the southeast, the Wigwam Brook in the southwest, the Pearl Brook
in the northwest, and the Yantacaw Brook in the northeast, all in
the Passaic River
Yantacaw and Toney's brooks are dammed in parks to create ponds.
The Wigwam, Nishuane, and Toney's brook flow into the Second River
, and the others flow
into the Third River
Formerly, north of Bloomfield Avenue between Grove Street and Pine
Street there was another dam and another pond, powering a factory.
Montclair is just north of the northern border of the Rahway River
The Southern border of Montclair is a straight line between the
Eagle Rock, on the ridge of the First Watchung Mountain, and the
point where Orange Road crosses the Nishuane Brook. The western border is
roughly along the ridge of the First Watchung Mountain between the
Eagle Rock and the Essex County/Passaic County Border.
The northern border is the same as
the border between those two counties.
As of the census
of 2000, there were 38,977
people, 15,020 households, and 9,687 families residing in the
township. The population density
was 6,183.6 people per square mile (2,388.7/km2
were 15,531 housing units at an average density of
2,464.0/sq mi (951.8/km2
). The racial makeup of the
CDP was 59.77% White
0.19% Native American
, 0.04% Pacific Islander
, 1.77% from
, and 3.03%
from two or more races. Hispanic
of any race were 5.12% of the
population. Montclair has long highlighted its diversity, a feature
that has attracted many to the community.
There were 15,020 households out of which 34.3% had children under
the age of 18 living with them, 47.2% were married couples
living together, 14.1% had a female
householder with no husband present, and 35.5% were non-families.
29.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 8.6% had
someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average
household size was 2.53 and the average family size was 3.16.
In the township the population was spread out with 25.6% under the
age of 18, 6.6% from 18 to 24, 31.9% from 25 to 44, 24.1% from 45
to 64, and 12.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age
was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 86.3 males. For
every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 80.7 males.
According to a 2007 estimate, the median income for a household in
the township was $92,988, and the median income for a family was
$119,850. Males had a median income of $64,151 versus $43,520 for
females. The per capita income
the township was $44,870. About 3.9% of families and 5.6% of the
population were below the poverty line
including 5.4% of those under age 18 and 7.2% of those age 65 or
As of 2007, 56.95% of Montclair residents affiliate with a
religion. 43.05% of Montclair is nonreligious, 35.29% of the
population are Catholic; 9.60% in Montclair are Jewish; 2.74%
affiliate with Islam; 9.3% are with another Christian sect.; with a
small percentages of others. Proportionally, there are more
Muslims, Jews, and Catholics than the country's average.
Montclair has attracted many who work for major media organizations
in New York City, including The
New York Times
. A March 11, 2007, posting in the
listed some of those who
work in the media and live in Montclair. In it also live many
commuters to New York
City and the Metro Area.
Montclair Municipal Building, the
town's government building
Montclair is governed under the Council-Manager
municipal government under the Faulkner Act
, whose originator was
a former mayor of Montclair. The government consists of a mayor and
a six-member Township Council. The mayor and council are all
elected to four-year terms in nonpartisan
elections on a concurrent basis. The
mayor and two council seats are elected at-large, with four council
seats elected from each of four wards.
Though the Mayor has no executive powers, the Mayor presides over
council meetings and has both a voice and vote in its proceedings.
The Mayor appoints the trustees of the public library and the
members of the board of education.
Members of the Montclair Township Council are:
In elections held on May 13, 2008, Jerry Fried won election as
mayor, defeating councilmembers Joyce Michaelson and Ted Mattox.
Fried's Unity Montclair running mates also won office, with Kathryn
Weller taking one of the at-large seats, Cary Africk winning the
2nd Ward and Nick Lewis taking the 3rd Ward. Partnership
Montclair's Roger Terry won an at-large seat and Rich Murnick won
in the 1st Ward. The new council takes office on July 1, 2008. The
4th ward was won by Dr. Renée Baskerville, who ran as an
Federal, state and county representation
Montclair is split between the Eighth Congressional District in the
north and Tenth Congressional District in the south. It is part of
New Jersey's 34th Legislative District.
On the national level, Montclair leans strongly toward the
Democratic Party. In 2008, Democrat Barack
received 83% of the vote here, defeating Republican
. About 70% of people in
Montclair are Democrats.
The Wellmont Theater during the BB
King Concert on 12/4/08
is home to many art institutions and theaters. For its relatively
small size, Montclair has more art venues than one could expect.
It has its
own art museum, the Montclair Art Museum and several small galleries.
hosts two theaters that showcase movies and films, both originally
live theaters, having been later converted. Clearview Cinemas has
two locations in Montclair, the Bellevue Theater located in
Montclair and the Clairidge Cinema, located on Bloomfield
While the Bellevue Cinema mostly shows main-stream
Hollywood films, the Clairidge Cinema shows different types of
movies from documentaries to small scale indy films. Live theaters
include, but are not limited to, The Montclair Opretta Company, the
Theatre, Montclair State University's Kasser Theater, Montclair State University's
theater in Life Hall, and the Studio Playhouse.
Bloomfield Avenue there is a public stage used for concerts and
other events. Dotted around Montclair there are also many art
galleries, though most are centered in the Bloomfield Avenue
Downtown Area. Live music is presented at the Wellmont Theater,
Outpost in the Burbs, and Trumpets jazz club. Free musical
performances are also presented at an outdoor stage at the corner
of Church Street and Bloomfield Avenue in the summer.
Montclair has 6 distinct commercial zones, each spread out around
A political rally on the intersection
of Bloomfield Avenue and Church Street
The Main Commercial Zones in Montclair are:
- Bloomfield Avenue, and surrounding streets such as Church
Street. It is the main commercial zone of Montclair and has the
largest stores such as furniture stores and large restaurants which
are more upscale near the center, which has many restaurants and
boutiques. Near the eastern end of this business area is Lackawanna
Plaza, a shopping center with about ten stores built inside an old
railway station. There is a post office one block to the north of
- Upper Montclair in the North of the town, the second largest
commercial zone. The center is the intersection of Valley
Road and Bellevue Avenue, with surrounding areas as well. The
Business District is home to several restaurants and shops.
Unlike many of Montclair's other commercial zones, it has chain
stores like Starbucks, Talbots, Williams-Sonoma, Gap, Charlie Browns, Cold Stone Creamery, Supercuts, CVS and smaller chains such as Tinga.
has both a park, Anderson Park, and a railway station, Upper
Montclair, nearby. There is a post office here.
- Watchung Plaza, around the intersection of Watchung Avenue and
Park Street. It is home to many "Mom and Pop Stores" and other
small businesses and is located on the divide Montclair's two
ZIP Codes, 07042 and 07043. Watchung Plaza
has its own post office.
- Walnut Street, built around the Walnut
Street train station. In the Spring, Summer, and
Fall it is home to the Montclair Farmer's Market.
- South End, in the south of town, at the intersection of Cedar
Avenue and Orange Road.
- Valley Road between Chestnut Street and Claremont Avenue.
Mostly a strip mall style layout on one side and on the other side
are window shops with residential apartments on top of them.
New Jersey Transit
and DeCamp Bus Lines
are the providers of
public transportation in Montclair. Montclair is considered a
commuter town of New York City. The average Montclair Commute is 38
minutes each way. 24% of commuters travelers take mass transit,
while 59% drive alone. Twelve times more Montclair commuters
travelers take mass transit than the national average.
Map of Bus and Rail Routes in
NJ Transit buses 11, 28, 29, 34,
run through Montclair, most going along the main street, Bloomfield Avenue
. The New
Jersey transit bus routes are:
goes from Downtown Newark through
Verona, Cedar Grove, and Little Falls to Willowbrook Mall in Wayne. The only Montclair street it goes along is
follows the route of #29 on Bloomfield Avenue until halfway through
Montclair, where it goes north along Park Street, Watchung Avenue,
and Valley Road to Montclair State University, and to Willowbrook
Mall on Weekends
Caldwell and Newark, passing through Caldwell, Verona, Montclair, Glen Ridge, and Bloomfield on Bloomfield Avenue. It
goes to Parsippany at rush
hour. The only Montclair street it goes along is Bloomfield
to Newark through East Orange and Orange on some trips, otherwise it goes to
Bloomfield.. The Streets it goes on are Orange Road, Elm
Street, and Bloomfield Avenue. It goes farther to the Montclair High School during that
school's start and end times.
- #97 goes from the Montclair Center south along Orange and
Harrison Roads through the Oranges.
goes from Willowbrook Mall through Little Falls to Montclair State University,
then to New York City.
- #705 goes from Passaic along Alexander Road, Mt. Hebron Road and
through Montclair State University to Willowbrook Mall
All of these routes except #97, #191, and #705 were trolley lines
originally, operated by the Public Service Railway
. A trolley
Garage existed on Bloomfield Avenue. In the 1930s and 1950s the
trolleys were destroyed
and replaced with
Bus Lines routes 33 and 66 run through Montclair to the Port
Authority Bus Terminal in New York
City, Carrying primarily commuters.
State University has Shuttle buses going around its
township of Montclair operates a jitney in the evening from the
Street train station to the southern end of
- #33 goes along Bloomfield Avenue, with some buses going onto
- #66 goes along Orange Road, Park Street, Valley Road, and Mt.
through Montclair is the Montclair-Boonton Line, which goes
between New York City / Hoboken and Hackettstown. There are seven railway stations in
Montclair: Bay Street, Walnut Street, Watchung Avenue, Upper Montclair, Mountain Avenue, and Montclair Heights, and Montclair
Only Bay Street station has weekend train
service.Montclair has a long history of railroads. The first
railroad was built to Montclair in 1856 by the Newark and
Bloomfield Railroad. It terminated at a station in Downtown
Montclair. First the Morris and Essex Railroad, then the Delaware, Lackawanna
and Western Railroad
leased the line. In 1868 The Montclair
Railway built another line through Montclair, which caused disputes
leading to Montclair's separation from Bloomfield. Shortly
afterward it was taken over by the New York
and Greenwood Lake Railway
, a subsidiary of the Erie Railroad
. A third Railroad to Morristown was planned in 1860 and construction began, but an
economic collapse in 1873 ended the building.
In 1912 the
Lackawanna Railroad built a large terminal at the end of their
line, but it was closed in 1981 and converted into shops. After the
two railroads merged and went bankrupt, NJ Transit took over
passenger operations. In 2002 the two railways were connected with
the construction of the Montclair
Air and Road
is from Newark Liberty International
Airport, from JFK
Airport and from LaGuardia Airport.
and U.S. Route 46
are slightly past the town's borders.
The main road through Montclair is Bloomfield Avenue
There is a taxi stand off of Bloomfield Avenue in eastern
Montclair, in front of Lackawanna Plaza, formerly the Montclair
The median price for a house in Montclair is $670,400, more than
three times the national average. The cost of living is also 48.37%
percent higher than the USA's average. The median age of a house in
Montclair is 51 years old.
Montclair is noted for its historic architecture. It is home to six
historic districts listed on the Register of Historic Places of
both the state and country as a whole, 92 individually listed
landmarks, and two locally designated commercial districts. Works
by significant architects include designs by Van Vleck and
Goldsmith, Charles Follen
, McKim, Mead, and
, Henry Hudson Holly, Charles
, Alexander Jackson Davis
, Dudley Van
Antwerp, Effingham R. North, and Frances Nelson, among
Public Schools serve students in pre-school through twelfth
Board of Ed.
Montclair's public school system spends $9,571 per
student, with the national average being about $6000. The schools
employ one faculty member for each 14 children it teaches. Schools
in the district (with 2005-06 enrollment data from the National Center for
) are seven elementary schools (K-5, except
as noted) —
(427 students), Edgemont
(643, grades 3-5), Nishuane
(586, grades K-2), Northeast
(382) and Watchung
(425) —Three middle schools for grades 6-8 —
(670), Mount Hebron
(612) andRenaissance (238) — andMontclair
High School for grades 9-12 (1,958).
is home to Montclair State University.
is also home to a host of private and parochial schools, including:
Kimberley Academy, Lacordaire Academy, Immaculate Conception High
School, St. Cassian's School, Virginia Harkness Sawtelle
Learning, Maria Montessori Early Learning, Montclair Cooperative
School, Trinity Academy, and Deron School
is home to many parks and nature reserves.
Montclair there are many parks, such as Edgemont
Memorial Park, Essex Park, Glenfield Park, Nishuane Park, Rand Park, Graz Park, Canterbury
Park, Watchung Park, Eagle Rock Reservation, Brookdale Park, Anderson Park, Yantacaw Brook Park the Bonsal Nature Reserve, Mountainside Park, the
Memorial Iris Gardens, and Mills
Reservation. There are also many sports fields, some
public, like in the parks, or some school owned, like the Essex
Park fields or Montclair State University's Sprague
In total Montclair has of township park
land spread around 18 parks and of county park land consisting of
There are also 18 public tennis courts, four skating rinks (two of
which are indoor) and 3 public swimming pools, which are the
Mountainside pool, the Nishuane pool, and the Essex pool.
Montclair has its own local newspaper, the Montclair
. In addition, there is a radio station on the
campus of Montclair State University, WMSC.
State University is also the major broadcasting site for New Jersey
Network in Northern New
Jersey. Locals also subscribe to The Star-Ledger of Newark, New
Jersey, and The New York
The township has a municipal public service
television channel, Channel 34, where town council meetings and
school board meetings are broadcast. Montclair
High School has its own paper the Mountaineer, and
State University has its own student-run paper, the
Montclarion. The Montclair Kimberley Academy has a student-run newspaper entitled The
Academy News which reached its height under the dedicated
leadership of Eli Bildner, Ari Bildner, Nick David, Ian David, and
Montclair also has a community blog network,
, school newspaper of
Upper Montclair's Lacordaire Academy, has released five issues in
the 2008-2009 school year for the first time in four years.
Montclair is twinned with the following cities:
Points of interest
Image:MontclairSymbol.JPG|Icon of Montclair,
WWI Memorial in Edgemont Memorial Park
Image:MontclairCorzine.JPG|Governor of New
Jersey, Jon Corzine
, walking down
Bloomfield AvenueImage:DSC07276.JPG|Business district in
Montclair, which is around the intersection of Valley Road
and Bellevue Avenue
Public LibraryImage:BloomfieldAve.JPG|Bloomfield Avenue business
PlazaImage:MBanner.JPG|Montclair's banner held by exchange students
from Montclair's sister city, Graz, AustriaImage:Mountainside
Hospital in Montclair.JPG|Mountainside Hospital, (Which is located just across the border in Glen
Image:Montclair South End.JPG|the South End area of
MontclairImage:Mrally.JPG| A political march in Montclair
- History of Montclair, Montclair Township.
Accessed August 5, 2007. "When Bloomfield authorities declined to
authorize a bond issue to underwrite another railroad, Montclair
residents were successful in securing from the State legislature a
charter for a separate township. Thus in 1868, the Township of
Montclair was created."
- "The Story of New Jersey's Civil Boundaries: 1606-1968", John
P. Snyder, Bureau of Geology and Topography; Trenton, New Jersey;
1969. p. 129.
- "Opponent of Distribution Formula For Federal Aid Steps Up
Attack; As South Orange Moves to Become Township, Montclair Aide
Calls for Equitable Sharing", The New York Times August 29,
1977. p. 59.
- History of Montclair, accessed January 1,
- Goodnough, Abby. " SCHOOLS: REFERENDUM;How to Pick the School
Board?", The New York Times, October 22,
1995. Accessed July 14, 2008. "In a town that has always been proud
of its diversity -- many residents say it was their primary reason
for moving to Montclair -- the difference of opinion has caused
- http://www.bestplaces.net/city/Montclair-New_Jersey.aspx Best
Places city data. accessed September 2008
- Where They Weekend: Montclair, NJ,
11, 2007. Accessed July 3, 2007.
- 2005 New Jersey Legislative District Data Book,
Rutgers University Edward
J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy, April 2005,
- Montclair's Form of Government, Montclair
Township. Accessed June 27, 2006.
- Montclair Township Government, Montclair Township.
Accessed July 7, 2008.
- Zarra, Erica. "Fried finishes first", Montclair Times, May
16, 2008. Accessed June 4, 2008.
- 2008 New Jersey Citizen's Guide to Government, New
Jersey League of Women Voters, p. 60.
Accessed September 30, 2009.
- September 3, 2009.
- September 3, 2009.
- Data for the Montclair Public Schools,
National Center for
Education Statistics. Accessed April 1, 2008.
- List of parks http://www.gotomontclairnj.com/parks.htm
- Montclair Information, Township of Montclair.
Accessed July 4, 2008.
- Online Directory: New Jersey, USA,
Sister Cities International.
Accessed November 8, 2007.
- Sister City Exchange With Barnet, England,
accessed September 12, 2006.
- Nicaragua Sister City projects