Recognizing the need for better land-use decisions, and the limitations of effective municipal governance, the New Jersey Legislature has passed an impressive succession of laws to promote regional planning.
Through these efforts, the Legislature showed its willingness to retrieve powers it had earlier delegated to the municipalities under the Municipal Land Use Law and other statutes in order to transform land-use governance in specific locations. The most significant statutes in this series are: Hackensack Meadowlands Development Act (1969), the Pinelands Protection Act (1979) and the Highlands Water Protection and Planning Act (2004). Together these regional areas comprise 2,800 square miles, or 37 percent of the state’s land area. Regional planning occurs in a less comprehensive manner on the county level, authorized by the New Jersey County Planning Enabling Act (1935). Other groups of municipalities have formed voluntary regional planning organizations in areas including the Sourland Mountain Area and the Great Swamp Watershed.
In 2012, after Hurricane Sandy devastated the New Jersey Shore, that area became a new focus for conversations around regional planning. To help inform the discussion, New Jersey Future has built a resource page focused on rebuilding a resilient shore.
Comments from New Jersey Future and six other organizations call for the state’s draft hazard mitigation plan to be modified to take greater account of climate-based risks, and to integrate more closely with local planning efforts.
For the first time, the state requested public input on the draft hazard mitigation plan it must submit. But it opened the comment period only after it had submitted the draft plan.
Executive Director Peter Kasabach made his debut April 2 on Al Jazeera America, joining a panel on Ray Suarez’s show Inside Story to talk about the importance of understanding the risks posed by a changing climate, and giving communities the leadership and resources they need to plan accordingly.
Three housing developments; two downtown plans; a transformative open-space plan; an anchor of hope for its surrounding community; and a region-wide plan for smart economic growth are all winners of New Jersey Future’s 2014 Smart Growth Awards. Former State Planning Commission Chairman Joe Maraziti will receive the Cary Edwards Leadership Award.
New Jersey, and the entire region, can learn from New York’s success how best to invest in economic growth.
April 1, 2014 — Three different types of housing developments; two plans to revitalize fading downtowns; a plan that transformed an industrial riverfront into a premier urban asset; a project that will serve as an anchor of hope to its surrounding community; and a region-wide plan for smart economic growth are all winners of New Jersey Future’s 2014 Smart Growth Awards
A conference on the first anniversary of Superstorm Sandy examines the rebuilding progress made to date, and the work still left to do.
March 11, 2014 — New Jerseyans concerned about the state’s ability to withstand future storms now have the opportunity to weigh in on a document that could lay the groundwork for a more resilient future. Comments will be accepted for a one-month period ending April 11.
A gathering on the anniversary of Superstorm Sandy to connect with others involved in rebuilding the Jersey Shore.
March 5, 2014 — New Jersey Future submits two sets of comments in response to New Jersey’s Draft Sandy Recovery Action Plan, calling for more attention to planning, transparency and risk assessment.
Reports, Presentations and Testimony
- 04/11/2014: Letter of comment on the Draft 2014 State HMP
- NJ Shore Protection Master Plan 1981 vol 3 Comments
- Wastewater Planning County Fact Sheets
- County Planning in New Jersey 4-12 (Intern report)
- 04/29/2013: Sandy Recovery Action Plan Doesn't Commit to Resiliency Planning, Sustainability
- Cluster Presentation - NJ Farm Bureau 1-4-2012
- DKennedy State Strategic Plan APA-NJ 11-4-2011
- BBzik State Strategic Plan Somerset County Perspective 11-4-2011
- Smart Growth NJ August 2011 Poll Report
- 07/22/2011: Statement: Highlands Council
- NJ Shore Protection Master Plan 1981 vol 2 Basis and Background
- NJ Shore Protection Master Plan 1981 vol 1 Part II
- 03/05/2014: Sandy Action Plan Amendment Planning Letter
- 03/05/2014: Sandy Action Plan Amendment Resiliency Letter
- 02/12/2014: Testimony on Proposed Sandy Plan Still Puts Taxpayer Dollars at Risk
- Sandy Recovery Action Plan Selected Comments
- Hazard Mitigation Grant Program - Request for Public Comment
- Superstorm Sandy A Live Town Hall
- Targeting Transit -- New Jersey Future
- Somerset County Investment Framework 1-13 (Intern Report)
- NJ Shore Protection Master Plan 1981 vol 1 Part I
- Case Studies in Transfer of Development Rights 8-10 (Intern report)
- 01/05/2012: Statement on A4422-Permit Extension Act
- Agenda Invitation Dunes Dunes and More Dough May 8 2013
- ShapingNJ Community Pilot Meeting Overview 06-09-11
- Route 1 Planning Through Partnerships
- 12/15/2010: Highlands letter to Governor
- Sheehan-Mans JOINT STATEMENT ON ARC TUNNEL
- Pocino statement on ARC 10 08 10
- ARC Information Sheet 9-10
- 06/16/2011: Testimony: Keep Meadowlands Tax-Sharing Agreement
- 06/06/2011: Testimony: Keep Meadowlands Tax-Sharing Agreement
- Presentation: The Status of Transfer of Development Rights in New Jersey 12-10
- ARC Support Letter to Christie 09-14-10
- Transfer of Development Rights Task Force Report 08-11-10
- Presentation: Reining In Local Budgets 05-10
- 05/07/2009 Testimony on Urban Transit Hub Tax Credit Act
- 04-03-2009 Letter to DEP re Global Warming Solutions Fund Rules
- Getting to Work 11-08
- Property Tax Reform and Land Use 07-06
- Making Wildlife Protection a Reality 11-05
- Success in the Highlands 05-05
- Race to the Middle: The Homogenization of New Jersey's Population Density
- A New Vision for the Highlands 02-04
- Smart Conservation: The "Green" Side of Smart Growth
- Realistic Opportunity? The Distribution of Affordable Housing and Jobs in New Jersey
- Case Study Hopewell Township 08-00