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West Orange

  •   State: 
    New Jersey
    Essex County
    West Orange
      County FIPS: 
    40°47′09″N 74°15′54″W
      Area total: 
    12.13 sq mi (31.41 km²)
      Area land: 
    12.00 sq mi (31.09 km²)
      Area water: 
    0.12 sq mi (0.32 km²)
    512 ft (156 m)
    Incorporated April 10, 1863 (as township) Re; Incorporated February 28, 1900 (as town)
  •   Latitude: 
      Dman name cbsa: 
    New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA
    Eastern Standard Time (EST) UTC-5:00; Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) UTC-4:00
      ZIP codes: 

    West Orange, Essex County, New Jersey, United States

  •   Population: 
      Population density: 
    4,069.2 residents per square mile of area (1,571.1/km²)
      Household income: 
      Unemployment rate: 
  •   Sales taxes: 
      Income taxes: 

West Orange is a suburban township in Essex County, in the U.S. state of New Jersey. As of the 2020 United States Census, its population was 48,843 an increase of 2,636 (+5.7%) from the 46,207 counted in the 2010 Census. West Orange is both an inner-ring suburb of Newark (the seat of Essex County) and a commuter suburb of New York City; it is approximately 12 miles west of Manhattan. It is well known for having been home to the inventor Thomas Edison, who also maintained a laboratory and workshop in town. It was originally part of the Native American Hackensack clan's territory, for over 10,000 years. In the centuries prior to industrial development, the Passaic River and Watchung Mountains were major geographic landmarks amidst the untouched wilderness. The area is now known as "Turtle Back Rock Picnic Area" and gives its name to the Turtle Back Zoo. The Turtle Back Rocks were considered sacred to the Native Americans. The English took possession of Dutch New Netherland in 1664, and purchased 780 square miles (2,000 km²) of land from the Hackensacks, for about 154 English pounds. In 1678, Anthony Olive became the first European to settle in what is now West Orange. He started a farm at the base of the Newark Mountains. During the American Revolution, the valleys were populated by farms and mills. By 1702, New Jersey became a royal colony. By 1700s West Orange was known as part of East Jersey.


The Hackensack were a phratry of the Unami tribe of the Leni Lenape. The Acquackanonk sub-tribe were located along the Passaic River. They were part of the Algonquin language family, and known as "Delaware Indians" by the 18th century. The Native Americans were hunter-gatherer tribes who would overlap territories and occasionally had tribal wars, but did not "own" land. In the 1500s and 1600s, the territory was disputed and transferred many times between the Hackensacks, Dutch, Scottish, Swedes, and English colonists. Due to the wars between the Native Americans and European settlers, most European settlers stayed East of the Hudson River. In 1702, New Jersey became a royal colony of England. By 1706 what is now West Orangewas considered part of Essex County in the East Jersey territory. During the American Revolution, the valleys of the Newark Mountains were populated by farms and mills on Main Street. The area known as T Corner was called Williamstown, after two brothers who were Loyalists to the British crown, Nathaniel and Benjamin Williams. Nathaniel took his eldest sons James and Mary to join the British Army in 1777, and never returned. Mary Williams stayed on the farm with her younger children and gave freely to George Washington's revolutionary troops. She died of smallpox in 1720 and was buried in New York. A plaque erected to Mary Williams has been built in West Orange.


West Orange is located 5 miles (8.0 km) west of downtown Newark and 12 miles (19 km) east of New York City. The township has an eclectic mix of neighborhoods and housing types, which roughly correspond to the township's geographic features. The West Branch of the Rahway River originates at Crystal Lake and passes through the township in South Mountain Reservation. West Orange borders the Essex County communities of Essex Fells, Livingston, Millburn, Maplewood, Montclair, Orange, Roseland, South Orange and Verona. Unincorporated communities, localities and place names located partially or completely within the township include Crestmont, Crystal Lake, Llewellyn Park, Pleasantdale, and Saint Cloud. The oldest and most densely populated part of the township is Downtown West Orange, which lies in the low basin along the township’s eastern border with the city of Orange and Montclair. The housing stock in the neighborhoods of Hutton Park and Gregory is a mixture of Victorian, Jazz Age, and Tudor-style houses; large estates; garden apartments; and post-World War II modern houses. The westernmost section of West Orange lies along the eastern face of the Second Watchung Mountain, and includes large portions of the South Mountain reservation. It is home to the Thomas Edison National Historical Park, as well as the municipal building, police headquarters, and a branch post office. The West Orange Public Library is located on Mount Pleasant Avenue in this section, just west of Main Street.


As of the 2000 United States Census there were 44,943 people, 16,480 households, and 11,684 families residing in the township. The racial makeup of the township was 67.6% White, 17.5% African American, 0.14% Native American, 8.09% Asian, 3.52% from other races, and 3.20% from two or more races. The Census Bureau's 2006-2010 American Community Survey showed that (in 2010 inflation-adjusted dollars) median household income was $88,917 (with a margin of error of +/ $4,480) and the median family income was$106,742 (+/ $5,256). About 4.9% of families and 7.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 8.4% of those under age 18. The median income for a household in the town was $69,254, and for a family was $83,375. The per capita income for the Township was $43,368 (+ / $2,021). The median age was 40.6 years. For every 100 females ages 18 and older there were 83.2 males. The average household size was 2.70 and the average family size was 3.19. The township has a population of 46,207 people, with 17,612 housing units. The 2010 United States census counted 46,208 people, and 17,632 housing units in the Township.


Essex Green Shopping Center is an outdoor mall with stores that include ShopRite, restaurants and an AMC Theatres Fork and Screen dine-in movie theater. The 350,000-square-foot (33,000 m2) mall, the largest of its type in Essex County, was purchased in 2016 by Clarion Partners. The mall was developed by Sol Atlas and is located in the town of Essex, New Jersey. It is the largest mall of its kind in the county, according to Clarion. It was built in the 1970s and 1980s, and was the first mall of this type in the state. The shopping center is located near the town's downtown area, which is home to the New Jersey State Fair and the Essex County Expo Center. It also has a shopping center on the other side of the town, the Essex Green Mall, which was opened in the early 1990s. It has a total of 11 stores, including two restaurants and a movie theater, and a shopping mall on the second floor of the shopping center, which opened in 1998. It's the largest shopping mall in New Jersey, and one of the largest in the U.S., according to a report by the National Center for Retail Statistics, which tracks retail sales in the region. It opened its doors to the public in the summer of 1998. The Essex Green mall is located on a site that was previously used as a parking lot, and has been converted to an outdoor shopping mall.


The Jersey Rockhoppers hockey team of the Eastern Professional Hockey League, formed for the 200809 season, played home games at the Richard J. Codey Arena. The arena also used to be the practice facility for the New Jersey Devils from 1986 to 2007. The New Jersey Daredevils, a special needs hockey team formed in 2002 that plays in the SHI (Special Hockey International League), uses the arena for home games and practices. Annually in October, the Daringevils host a Halloween themed tournament for Special Hockey International teams (including the D daredevils themselves) called Frankenfest. Frankenfest has been going on every October since 2009. The Jersey Devils Youth Hockey team also plays here as well. The Arena was also used for the opening of the New York Rangers' new arena, the Madison Square Garden, in the 1980s and 1990s. It was also the home of the NHL's New York Islanders in the 1990s and early 2000s, when the team moved to the Prudential Center in Newark, New York. It is now the home to the New England Patriots hockey team, which plays at the MetLife Stadium in New York City. It has been home to a number of professional sports teams, including the Montreal Canadiens, the Montreal Expos, and the Toronto Maple Leafs, as well as several minor league hockey teams, such as the New Hampshire Phantoms and the Philadelphia Phantoms. It also has been the site of the annual New Jersey State Fair, which is held every October.

Parks and recreation

The township is set off by two large parks: the South Mountain Reservation along its southwestern borders with Maplewood, Millburn and South Orange. The Eagle Rock Reservation is along its northeastern borders with Montclair and Verona. Fishing and kayaking is available on the Rahway River. The township straddles the transition between the low-lying Newark Bay basin and the high terrain of the Watchung Mountains.

Landmarks and places of interest

Landmarks and places of interest include Thomas Edison National Historical Park, Turtle Back Zoo, South Mountain Reservation, and 9/11 Memorial. The National Park Service also maintains a number of other parks around the country. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers also maintains several parks, including Camp Pendleton and Camp Lejeune in New Hampshire. The Army National Guard also has a park in North Carolina, which is home to the Marine Corps Air Station and the Camp LeJeune Ranger Training Center.


West Orange is governed by Plan B of the Mayor-Council system of municipal government pursuant to the Faulkner Act. The governing body is comprised of a mayor and a five-member township council. The mayor is directly elected to a four-year term. In December 2013, the Township Council approved an ordinance that shifted municipal elections from May to the November general election. As of March 23, 2011, there were a total of 30,561 registered voters in West Orange, of which 14,166 (46.4%) were registered as Democrats, 3,273 (10.7%) as Republicans and 13,108 (42.9%) as Unaffiliated. There were no voters registered to other parties. In the 2012 presidential election, Democrat Barack Obama received 71.3% of the vote (15,214 cast), ahead of Republican Mitt Romney with 27.9% (5,950 votes), and other candidates with 0.8% (177 votes), for a turnout of 67.0%. In the 2004 presidential election, Democrat John Kerry outpolled Republican George W. Bush with 34.0% (7,118 votes) and 0.7% (186 votes), among the 20,933 ballots cast by the township's 28,418 registered voters, for a. turnout percentage of 73.7%. West Orange is split between the 8th Congressional District and the 10th Congressional district. Residents in the western portion of the township were placed in the 11th district in the 2010 Census.


The West Orange Public Schools serves students in pre-kindergarten through twelfth grade. As of the 201920 school year, the district, comprised of 12 schools, had an enrollment of 6,718 students and 632.5 classroom teachers (on an FTE basis), for a studentteacher ratio of 10.6:1. Schools in the district (with 201920 enrollment data from the National Center for Education Statistics) are Betty Maddalena Early Learning Center (with 71 students in Pre-K), Gregory Elementary School (454 students; in grades K5), and Mount Pleasant Elementary School. Seton Hall Preparatory School is a Roman Catholic all boys' high school that operates under the supervision of the Archdiocese of Newark. Golda Och Academy is a private Jewish day school that offers secular and religious education for Jewish children from pre-Kindergarden through twelve grade at two campuses in West Orange. Pleasantdale School was renamed Kelly School in May 2016 in honor of identical twins Mark and Scott Kelly, identical twins who attended the school starting in second grade before becoming NASA astronauts. The school moved to West Orange in 1985 and is located on the campus of Set on Hall University in New Jersey. The district's high school is West Orange High School (2,098; 912), which was founded in 1856 and moved to the West Orange campus in 1985. It is a public school that is part of the New Jersey Department of Education.

Air Quality, Water Quality, Superfund Sites & UV Index

The Air Quality index is in West Orange, Essex County, New Jersey = 18.9. These Air Quality index is based on annual reports from the EPA. Higher values are better (100=best). The number of ozone alert days is used as an indicator of air quality, as are the amounts of seven pollutants including particulates, carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, lead, and volatile organic chemicals. The Water Quality Index is 1. A measure of the quality of an area’s water supply as rated by the EPA. Higher values are better (100=best). The EPA has a complex method of measuring the watershed quality, using 15 indicators such as pollutants, turbidity, sediments, and toxic discharges. The Superfund Sites Index is 10. Higher is better (100=best). Based upon the number and impact of EPA Superfund pollution sites in the county, including spending on the cleanup efforts. The UV Index in West Orange = 3.7 and is a measure of an area's exposure to the sun's ultraviolet rays. This is most often a combination of sunny weather, altitude, and latitude. The UV Index has been defined by the WHO ( and is uniform worldwide.


The most recent city population of 48,843 individuals with a median age of 41.6 age the population dropped by -6.22% in West Orange, Essex County, New Jersey population since 2000 and are distributed over a density of 4,069.2 residents per square mile of area (1,571.1/km²). There are average 2.66 people per household in the 15,500 households with an average household income of $89,233 a year. The unemployment rate in Alabama is 8.10% of the available work force and has dropped -3.41% over the most recent 12-month period and the projected change in job supply over the next decade based on migration patterns, economic growth, and other factors will increase by 22.38%. The number of physicians in West Orange per 100,000 population = 319.6.


The annual rainfall in West Orange = 48.8 inches and the annual snowfall = 28 inches. The annual number of days with measurable precipitation (over .01 inch) = 118. The average number of days per year that are predominantly sunny = 205. 86 degrees Fahrenheit is the average daily high temperature for the month of July and 17.9 degrees Fahrenheit is the average daily low temperature for the month of January. The Comfort Index (higher=better) is 47, where higher values mean a more pleasant climate. The Comfort Index measure recognizes that humidity by itself isn't the problem. (Have you noticed nobody ever complains about the weather being 'cold and humid?) It's in the summertime that we notice the humidity the most, when it's hot and muggy. Our Comfort Index uses a combination of afternoon summer temperature and humidity to closely predict the effect that the humidity will have on people.

Median Home Cost

The percentage of housing units in West Orange, Essex County, New Jersey which are owned by the occupant = 68.14%. A housing unit is a house, apartment, mobile home, or room occupied as separate living quarters. The average age of homes = 52 years with median home cost = $318,480 and home appreciation of -14.84%. This is the value of the years most recent home sales data. Its important to note that this is not the average (or arithmetic mean). The median home price is the middle value when you arrange all the sales prices of homes from lowest to highest. This is a better indicator than the average, because the median is not changed as much by a few unusually high or low values. The property tax rate of $28.54 shown here is the rate per $1,000 of home value. If for simplification for example the tax rate is $14.00 and the home value is $250,000, the property tax would be $14.00 x ($250,000/1000), or $3500. This is the 'effective' tax rate.


The local school district spends $8,947 per student. There are 13.7 students for each teacher in the school, 707 students for each Librarian and 468 students for each Counselor. 4.73% of the area’s population over the age of 25 with an Associate Degree or other 2-year college degree, 24.09% with a master’s degree, Ph.D. or other advanced college degree and 18.77% with high school diplomas or high school equivalency degrees (GEDs).

  • West Orange's population in Essex County, New Jersey of 24,327 residents in 1930 has increased 2,01-fold to 48,843 residents after 90 years, according to the official 2020 census.

    Approximately 52.51% female residents and 47.49% male residents live in West Orange, Essex County, New Jersey.

    As of 2020 in West Orange, Essex County, New Jersey are married and the remaining 39.97% are single population.

  • 32.1 minutes is the average time that residents in West Orange require for a one-way commute to work. A long commute can have different effects on health. A Gallup poll in the US found that in terms of mental health, long haul commuters are up to 12 percent more likely to experience worry, and ten percent less likely to feel well rested. The Gallup poll also found that of people who commute 61­–90 minutes each day, a whopping one third complained of neck and back pain, compared to less than a quarter of people who only spend ten minutes getting to work.

    74.66% of the working population which commute to work alone in their car, 9.90% of the working population which commutes to work in a carpool, 9.67% of the population that commutes using mass transit, including bus, light rail, subway, and ferry. 3.44% of the population that has their home as their principal place of work.

  • Of the total residential buildings in West Orange, Essex County, New Jersey, 68.14% are owner-occupied homes, another 27.77% are rented apartments, and the remaining 4.09% are vacant.

  • The 54.22% of the population in West Orange, Essex County, New Jersey who identify themselves as belonging to a religion are distributed among the following most diverse religions.

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