Working for Smart Growth:
More Livable Places and Open Spaces


New Jersey Future Blogrss

What You Read 2023 – A Message from the Editor

January 12th, 2024 by

2023 was a year full of many unpredictable environmental events ranging from major rainfall to extreme heat to a collapsed highway overpass. Our daily newsletter “What We’re Reading” brings our readers the most up-to-date articles covering our New Jersey Future issue areas and major developments in the Garden State. We compile our daily digest by monitoring our favorite news sites and newsletters, and always bring you NJF in the news. Have an article you want to see included? Feel free to email suggestions to the NJF communications team  (commsatnjfuturedotorg)  .

We’ve compiled the most-read articles from the year—no surprise that housing, flooding, and transportation were popular topics. Check out the top articles that have captivated our readers in 2023 and continue to keep current with news and developments by reading What We’re Reading!
– Sneha Patel

  1. Op-Ed: School segregation in NJ is not an accident (NJ Spotlight)
    Despite being one of the most racially diverse states in the country, New Jersey remains stubbornly segregated at the local level. Persistent segregation in New Jersey’s schools has given rise to a lawsuit that seeks to compel the state government to develop a strategy for addressing it. Superior Court Judge Robert Lougy has issued a ruling that acknowledges that segregated schools are indeed a problem in many parts of the state, and while it does not call for any specific remedy, it finds that the state has a duty to correct it.
  2. Lambertville City Council Approves Stormwater Management Ordinance (New Hope Free Press)
    During Thursday evening’s council meeting, the City of Lambertville Council approved a wave of ordinances. Perhaps the most important one approved was the stormwater management ordinance. By approving this ordinance, the city will be able to fulfill requirements set by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection.
  3. NJ lawmakers to consider slew of legislation about warehouses (NJ Spotlight)
    New Jersey lawmakers are due to consider at least two dozen warehouse-related bills in the current lame-duck session in response to growing public calls for state action to cool the continuing warehouse construction boom across the state. “It certainly tells me that warehouses are still firmly on everyone’s radar screen,” said Pete Kasabach, executive director of New Jersey Future, a nonprofit that advocates for “smart growth” including the placement of warehouses where they help the economy without hurting the environment or their towns. “They continue to be problematic, and it shows that legislators are hearing from their constituents that this is a problem.”
  4. What are the chances your home will flood? New N.J. law, revamped tool hope to help. (
    Storm surges will not only likely worsen in New Jersey due to climate change in the future, but much of the consequences are already here. Some residents in mid-July saw it firsthand in towns that received a month’s worth of rain in three days. As part of the bill, S-3110, which was signed by Gov. Phil Murphy on July 3, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection will also look to revamp its publicly-available “Flood Indicator Tool” to make it more user-friendly for anyone to determine flood risks for themselves.
  5. A Climate Change Success Story? Look at Hoboken (New York Times)
    Let’s take a moment to give a shout-out to Hoboken. As climate change delivers more extreme weather and rising seas, communities across America are struggling to prepare. That’s not Hoboken’s situation. New York City has been spending billions on flood walls and breakwaters and is still contemplating giant gates to hold back rising tides, but it hasn’t done as much to deal with rain. Hoboken has been adding infrastructure to cope with both rain as well as sea-level rise.
  6. Affordable housing quotas may get a sweeping overhaul. How it could impact your town (
    New Jersey towns may follow a new process to calculate their constitutionally mandated affordable housing quotas in two to three years, under a wide-reaching overhaul introduced during the lame-duck session by legislative leaders Monday. New Jersey needs to create more than 224,000 affordable rental units to meet its needs for extremely low-income families, according to a report by the National Low Income Housing Coalition.
  7. Microforests in NJ: Turning developed urban spaces back to green (NJ 101.5)
    To help bring new environmental and public health benefits to this Union County city, three microforests have been planted. A microforest is an innovative and effective method of tree planting and it increases carbon mitigation in urban areas like Elizabeth, said Phillips. With New Jersey being the most densely populated state in the nation, it has many urban areas, where microforests could be beneficial.
  8. 3,300 NJ localities aren’t part of the state’s municipal governments. What are they? (Asbury Park Press)
    There’s Double Trouble, The Alligator and Water Witch. Loveladies, Wickatunk and Success. They’re among more than 3,300 New Jersey localities tracked by the state that aren’t among the 564 municipal governments incorporated as cities, townships, boroughs, towns or villages within the state’s 21 counties. The curious names for many of these communities, neighborhoods and hamlets have interesting stories behind them, although some are in dispute and a few remain mysteries.
  9. Extend NYC subway to New Jersey? (NJ Spotlight)
    Rep. Bill Pascrell (D-9th) and Rep. Rob Menendez (D-8th) sent a letter to the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s Traffic Mobility Review Board last week urging the agency to couple congestion pricing with the extension of the 7 train line to Secaucus via a new subway tunnel under the Hudson River. Such an extension — which would be the first MTA line to cross state borders — would allow commuters transferring from New Jersey Transit trains to directly access Grand Central Station and points in Queens.

Interested in staying on top of New Jersey news? Take advantage of this one time no cost sign up opportunity to receive our What We’re Reading newsletter for more on urban planning, water, and infrastructure in the Garden State!

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Comments are closed.

© New Jersey Future, 16 W. Lafayette St. • Trenton, NJ 08608 • Phone: 609-393-0008 • Fax: 609-360-8478

Are you receiving our email newsletter?

  • Latest news on land-use policy issues
  • Research and reports
  • Upcoming events
  • Monthly

Click to subscribe