Somerset County, New Jersey

Thursday, April 29, 2010 - 02:16 PM

Your Anecdotal Census: A People's History of the New York City Area 2000-2010

Tell us about change that matters in your community. Here are some possible questions to answer. Add your story to the comments below!

How is your community different today than it was 10 years ago?

Who's moving in and who's moving out? 

How has the housing boom/housing bust changed your community?

How have the politics of your community changed? If power has shifted in your community, how and why?

How has 9/11 changed your community? 

Do you have a story about change in your own life over the last decade that you think represents a larger trend?

What's an untold story of change in your community that needs to be told? 

By The Numbers:

What story do you think this data tells? Do you think the data reflects what's really going on in your community?

Somerset County, NJ
Total Population 203,129 240,279 297,490 326,869
Median Household Income (2008 adjusted dollars) $78,000 $96,400 $99,400 $99,817
% Foreign Born 8.18% 10.89% 18.13% *
% Under 18 Years Old 26.7% 22.0% 25.5% 24.8%

*Most recent % Foreign Born data is from 2000

Explore the Maps:

Somerset County, NJ - Median Household Income (2007) - Go to the Interactive Maps at Social Explorer

More Resources:

US Census Bureau QuickFacts

Social Explorer

More in:

Comments [5]

Iris Naroden

My husband and I moved to Hillsbborough in July 1991 with new baby in tow to live in a new community where houses ( i.e. our Condo ) was affordable. Over the past 19 years the "Farms" on Farm road and others developed into big houses and some of the ruralness has disappeared with the developement of shopping centers etc for rateables and lawsuit settlements.

That being said Hillsborough is a microcosm community . Apartments, condos, single family homes, mansions, farmland all here. It is the central in central New Jersey. Good schools ( admittedly taxes have doubles in 10 years) 1 hour from beach, mountains, NY or Philly.

Love it here but may have to leave as taxes strangle us.

Jun. 25 2010 11:49 AM
Mike in Warren

My family moved to Warren in 1977. Warren at that time lacked its own ZIP code, being 07060 like nearby (and much larger) Plainfield. Our street had no painted dividing line, street lights, or sidewalks. (It still lacks the latter two. About a block away is the border with Watchung, which does have sidewalks, so to reference my favorite childhood poet Shel Silverstein, we live "where the sidewalk ends.") But, if I recall correctly, just before or soon after we moved in, an extension of Route 78, a major east-west artery to New York City, was completed (with special overpasses for the wildlife of the Watchung Reservation), so it was inevitable that things would change.

It is my recollection, though, that little did change much during the next 20 years. We live on a dead end, and we would walk our Westie down the street, where he could explore the woods and do his business. He left us in 1997, and about that time, the neighborhood and the town changed noticeably. McMansions in large developments popped up all over town; our dog's beloved woods made way for several houses. Older houses in Warren tend to be sited within old-growth glades and blend in, given their natural colors and wood siding. These newer ones, squatting in faux-Provencal and quasi-Tuscan splendor on vast clear-cut lawns, definitely do not. A Starbucks appeared at the town center, and Wal-Mart, Old Navy, and Panera showed up in adjacent towns. And since our street is quite close to I-78, commuters taking a shortcut to and from all those developments create a constant humming stream of cars passing in front of our house during rush hour.

I know I sound a tad nettled, but it ain't that bad, I'll admit. Heck, last year Money Magazine selected Warren one of the top 10 best places to live in the entire United States. But it definitely is different from when I was growing up, and something subtle, a feeling, a flavor has been lost. Shangri-la in the Watchung Mountains is much less remote than it used to be.

May. 26 2010 02:03 AM
Eyeswideopen NPlainf

Folks in this county keep voting to approve millions of tax dollars to be spent on "Preserving Open Spaces." That's pretty much all it says on the ballot. (And as locals know, Somerset County at its natural best is literally breathtaking, truly a beautiful place on earth). The rest of the story is that Freeholders have no problem dipping into this pot for funding football fields, astroturf, etc., arguably at the expense of actual natural open spaces. Would love to know what an "Open Space" is -- because our downtown is dying without a municipal parking lot!

May. 14 2010 09:39 AM
Laurie from Montgomery Twp, near Rocky Hill NJ

When I first saw Montgomery Twp, the southernmost township in Somerset Co., it was predominantly agricultural. I worked in the area almost 30 years ago doing biological census work for the state DEP, counting threatened bird species that lived in farm fields. I liked the area so much I moved here. Unfortunately the data was never used, the fields were not preserved, and gone are the birds and the farms. Now Montgomery is 75% residential development (BIG new houses), 25% preserved open space, and no commercial or industrial tax base. Almost no public services, except the huge pricey schools. No jobs here, and a long commute - by car of course - to wherever the jobs are. Here is the crisis of the exurbs. Development caused the loss of what people came to the area for, and brought incredibly high property taxes. Throw in the "deer problem" and lyme disease, and I'm ready to move back to town... if I can sell the house....

May. 11 2010 05:23 PM
Joe from Bridgewater

Bridgewater has grown significantly in the last ten years, and the growth has been in townhouses, replacing the previous preponderance of single-family homes. This trend has increased the population density, and raised the demand on municipal services, particularly schools.

Unfortunately, the school system has recently come under devastating attack from Gov. Christie. My family moved to Bridgewater because of its superior schools, and it's painful to seeing them be destroyed before our eyes.

May. 04 2010 12:24 PM

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