Working for Smart Growth:
More Livable Places and Open Spaces


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Wastewater Rules to Change Development

June 19th, 2000 by

New Jersey Development

  • 79 percent of New Jersey voters say we should stop building so many shopping centers. Some 56 percent feel there’s too much development of all kinds.
  • 84 percent agree that “We are fast running out of land in New Jersey, and it’s time to save the land that’s left for open space.”

(Results of May 2000 poll of 1,201 New Jersey voters commissioned by New Jersey Future. Sampling error of +/- 2.8 percent)

New Jerseyans say they are fed up with the status quo pattern of land development. This month, the state announced plans for change.

The new Water Quality and Watershed Management Rules released June 5 (to be published in the July 3 New Jersey Register for public comment) represent a significant shift in land use and environmental protection in the state. Because they rely on the State Development and Redevelopment Plan, the new rules offer a win-win opportunity:

  • Open-space advocates win, because the new rules make it harder to extend sewers, and so discourage new development, in open and environmentally sensitive areas (planning areas 3, 4 and 5).
  • Builders win, because the new rules make it easier to get permits to extend sewers in centers, where the State Plan says growth should be concentrated (planning areas 1 and 2).

The rules’ actual impact will depend on community design and density. The rules guide where growth will grow. It will be up to local planners to decide how that growth will happen. By embracing “how” along with the “where,” New Jersey communities may indeed hold a powerful new weapon in their battle for smarter growth.  

Comments? Questions?
Do you have comments or questions about these Facts and Issues? Contact us directly:

Facts Contact:
B. Tim Evans, NJF Research Director
timevansatnjfuturedotorg  (timevansatnjfuturedotorg)  

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