Jersey City is a city in Hudson County, New Jersey, United States. As of the United States 2000 Census, the population of Jersey City was 240,055, making it New Jersey's second-largest city, behind Newark. As of the Census Bureau's 2007 estimate, the population had grown to 242,389. It is the seat of Hudson County.
Jersey City lies on the west bank of the Hudson River across from Lower Manhattan in New York City, and is part of the New York metropolitan area. A commercial and industrial center, it is a port of entry and a manufacturing center. With 11 miles (17.7 km) of waterfront and significant rail connections, Jersey City is an important transportation terminus and distribution center. It has railroad shops, oil refineries, warehouses, and plants that manufacture a diverse assortment of products, including chemicals, petroleum, electronics, textiles, and cosmetics. Jersey City has benefited from its location near the island of Manhattan, as many of its companies are extensions of businesses whose headquarters are there. Recent developments have included increased housing and shopping areas; some parts of the city, however, remain run-down after years of commercial inactivity.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 54.7 km² (21.1 mi²). 38.6 km² (14.9 mi²) of it is land and 16.1 km² (6.2 mi²) of it is water. It has the smallest land area of the 100 largest cities in America. The total area is 29.37% water. Jersey City is bordered to the east by the Hudson River, to the north by Union City and Hoboken, to the west by Kearny and Newark, and to the south by Bayonne.
Given its proximity to Manhattan, Jersey City and Hudson County are sometimes referred to as New York City's sixth borough.
Incorporation and Merger
The City of Jersey
was incorporated by an Act of the New Jersey Legislature
on January 28
, from portions of North Bergen Township
, while the area was still a part of Bergen County
. The city was reincorporated on January 23
, and again on February 22
, at which time it became completely independent of North Bergen and was given its present name. On February 22
, it became part of the newly-created Hudson County.
As Jersey City grew, several neighboring communities were annexed: Van Vorst Township (March 18, 1851), Bergen City and Hudson City (both on May 2, 1870), and Greenville Township (February 4, 1873). These annexations have resulted in the current boundaries of Jersey City.
As of the census
of 2000, there were 240,055 people, 88,632 households, and 55,660 families residing in the city. The United States Census Bureau
has estimated the 2004 population at 239,079. The population density
was 6195.2/km² (16,045.6/mi²). There were 93,648 housing units at an average density of 2,423.4/km² (6,278.3/mi²). The racial makeup of the city was 34.01% White
, 28.32% African American
, 0.45% Native American
, 16.20% Asian
, 0.08% Pacific Islander
, 15.11% from other races
, and 5.84% from two or more races. Hispanic
of any race were 28.31% of the population. Largest ancestries include: Italian
(2.8%), and German
Relations between ethnic groups in this heavily-mixed population are not always amicable, as evidenced by incidents such as the infamous Dotbusters gang attacks of 1987 against residents of South Asian descent, and, more recently, the March 2007 defacing of a local sports field with Nazi slogans and racial slurs.
Jersey City is ethnically diverse, with several distinct religious groups, prominently the Coptic Orthodox Church of Egypt. The large influx of Copts in New Jersey can be attributed to their persecution in Egypt, in addition to those who emigrate seeking education and financial opportunities. Currently, there are more than 30,000 Copts in Jersey City alone.
Of all households, 31.1% have children under the age of 18 living there, 36.4% were married couples living together, 20.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 37.2% were non-families. 29.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 8.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.67 and the average family size was 3.37.
The age distribution is spread out with 24.7% under the age of 18, 10.7% from 18 to 24, 35.1% from 25 to 44, 19.7% from 45 to 64, and 9.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 32 years. For every 100 females there were 95.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 92.6 males.
The median income of its households is $37,862, and the median income of its families is $41,639. Males had a median income of $35,119 versus $30,494 for females. The per capita income for the city was $19,410. About 16.4% of families and 18.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 27.0% of those under age 18 and 17.5% of those age 65 or over.
Jersey City is currently governed under the Faulkner Act (Mayor-Council)
form of municipal government by a mayor and a nine-member city council. The city council consists of six members elected from wards and three elected at large, all elected to four-year terms on a concurrent basis in non-partisan elections.
The current Mayor of Jersey City is Jerramiah Healy. The current Business Administrator of Jersey City is Brian O'Reilly.
Members of the City Council are:
- Mariano Vega, Jr., Council President
- Willie Flood, Councilwoman-at-Large
- Peter Brennan, Councilman-at-Large
- Michael Sottolano, Ward A - Greenville, Councilman
- Mary Spinello, Ward B - Westside, Councilwoman
- Steve Lipski, Ward C - Journal Square, Councilman
- William Gaughan, Ward D - Heights, Councilman
- Steven Fulop, Ward E - Downtown, Councilman
- Viola Richardson, Ward F - Bergen, Councilwoman
Jersey City Municipal Court gets a fairly heavy load of criminal cases along with some traffic violations. Mayor Healy is a member of the Mayors Against Illegal Guns Coalition, a bi-partisan group with a stated goal of "making the public safer by getting illegal guns off the streets." The Coalition is co-chaired by Boston Mayor Thomas Menino and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg.
Federal, state and county representation
Jersey City is in the Ninth, Tenth and Thirteenth Congressional Districts and is part of New Jersey's 31st, 32nd and 33rd Legislative Districts.
The Lenape and New Netherland
The land comprising what is now Jersey City was wilderness inhabited by the Lenape
, a collection of tribes (later called Delaware Indian
). In 1609, Henry Hudson
, seeking an alternate route to East Asia
, anchored his small vessel The Half Moon
at Sandy Hook
and Weehawken Cove
, and elsewhere along what was later named the North River
. After spending nine days surveying the area and meeting its inhabitants, he returned to The Netherlands
. The Dutch organized the United New Netherlands Company
to manage this new territory and in June 1623, The New Netherlands
became a Dutch province, with headquarters in New Amsterdam
. Michael Reyniersz Pauw
, Lord of Achttienhoven
, a burgermeester of Amsterdam
and a director of the West India Company, received a land grant as patroon
on the condition that he would establish a settlement of not fewer than fifty persons within four years. He chose the west bank of the Hudson River
and purchased the land from the Lenape. This grant is dated November 22
and is the earliest known conveyance for what are now Hoboken
and Jersey City. Pauw, however was an absentee landlord who neglected to populate the area and was obliged to sell his holdings back to the Company in 1633. That year, a house was built at Communipaw
, an area adjacent to present-day Liberty State Park
. for Jan Evertsen Bout
, superintendent of the colony, which had been named Pavonia
form of Pauw's name, which means peacock). Shortly after, another house was built at Harsimus Cove (near the present-day corner of Fourth Street and Marín Boulevard) and became the home of Cornelius Van Vorst
, who had succeeded Bout as superintendent, and whose family would become influential in the development of the city. Relations with the Lenape deteriorated, in part because of the colonialist's mismanagement and misunderstanding of the indigenous people, and led to series of raids and reprisals and the virtual destruction of the settlement on the west bank. During Kieft's War
, approximately eighty Lenapes were killed by the Dutch in a massacre at Pavonia
on the night of February 25
Scattered communities of farmsteads characterized the Dutch settlements at Pavonia: Communipaw, Harsimus, Paulus Hook, Hoebuck, Awiehaken, and other lands "behind Kil van Kull". The first village (located inside a palisaded garrison) established on what is now Bergen Square in 1660, and is considered to be the oldest town in what would become the state of New Jersey.
Among the oldest surviving houses in Jersey City is the stone Van Vorst house of 1742.
During the American Revolutionary War
the area was in the hands of the British who controlled New York. Paulus Hook was attacked by Major Light Horse Harry Lee
on August 19
. After the war Alexander Hamilton and other prominent New Yorkers and New Jerseyeans attempted to develop the area that would become historic downtown Jersey City and laid out the city squares and streets that still characterize the neighborhood, giving them names also seen in Lower Manhattan or after war heroes (Grove, Varick, Mercer, Wayne, Monmouth, and Montgomery among them). During the 19th century, Jersey City played an integral role in the Underground Railroad
. Four routes through New Jersey converged in the city.
Turn of the Century
Jersey City was a dock and manufacturing town for much of the 19th and 20th centuries. Much like New York City, Jersey City has always been a landing pad for new immigrants to the United States. In its heyday before World War II, German, Irish, and Italian immigrants found work at Colgate, Chloro, or Dixon Ticonderoga. However, the largest employers at the time were the railroads, whose national networks dead-ended on the Hudson River. The most significant railroad for Jersey City was the Pennsylvania Railroad Company whose eastern terminus was in the Downtown area until 1911, when the company built the first tunnel under the river to Penn Station, New York. Before that time, Pennsy rail passengers transferred in Jersey City to ferries headed to Manhattan or to trolleys that fanned out through Hudson County and beyond. The Black Tom explosion occurred on July 30, 1916 as an act of sabotage on American ammunition supplies by German agents to prevent the materials from being used by the Allies in World War I.
From 1917 to 1947, Jersey City was ruled by Mayor Frank Hague
. Originally elected as a reform candidate, the Jersey City History Web Site
says his name is "synonymous with the early twentieth century urban American blend of political favoritism and social welfare known as bossism
." Hague ran the city with an iron fist while, at the same time, molding governors, United States senators, and judges to his whims. Boss Hague was known to be loud and vulgar, but dressed in a stylish manner earning him the nickname "King Hanky-Panky". In his later years in office, Hague would often dismiss his enemies as "reds
" or "commies
". Hague lived like a millionaire, despite having an annual salary that never exceeded $8,500. He was able to maintain a fourteen-room duplex apartment in Jersey City, a suite at the Plaza Hotel
, and a palatial summer home in Deal, New Jersey
, and he traveled to Europe
yearly in the royal suites of the best liners.
After Hague's retirement from politics, a series of mayors including John V. Kenny, Thomas J. Whelan, and Thomas F.X. Smith attempted to take control of Hague's organization, usually under the mantle of political reform. None was able to duplicate the level of power held by Hague.
Jersey City was briefly home to the Brooklyn Dodgers
of the National League for seven home games in both 1956 and 1957. Games were played at Roosevelt Stadium
, a minor league ballpark that held just under 25,000 fans.
Decline and renaissance
The city developed a reputation for corruption, even after Hague left office. By the 1970s, it was caught up in a wave of urban decline that saw many of its wealthy residents fleeing to the suburbs, and led to an influx of working class citizens scarred by rising crime, civil unrest, political corruption, and economic hardship. From 1950 to 1980, Jersey City lost 75,000 residents, and from 1975 to 1982, it lost 5,000 jobs, or 9% of its workforce. The city experienced a surge of violent crime during this period. New immigrants sought refuge in Jersey City because of its low housing costs, despite the decline in many of its neighborhoods due to decay, abandonment, or neglect.
Beginning in the 1980s, development of the waterfront in an area previously occupied by rail yards and factories helped to stir the beginnings of a renaissance for Jersey City. The rapid construction of numerous high-rise buildings increased the population and led to the development of the Exchange Place Financial District, also known as 'Wall Street West', one of the largest banking centers in the United States. Large financial institutions such as Goldman Sachs and Merrill Lynch occupy prominent buildings on the Jersey City waterfront. Amid this building boom, a light-rail network brought articulated streetcars to downtown Jersey City.
Wide-scale gentrification of the Downtown neighborhood coincided with the growth of Jersey City as an arts center, particularly the visual arts. Beginning in the late 1970s, many artists moved the short distance across the river from Manhattan in search of affordable studio space. One structure of note, the massive Civil War-era building located at 111 First Street, became a haven for hundreds of Artists in the area and was considered by many as the heart of the Jersey City Arts community. Nonetheless, the building was demolished in 2005 to make way for future development, including a high-rise building designed by world-famous architect Rem Koolhaas. The art scene has continued to grow with a proliferation of galleries and other organizations such as Rock Soup Studios, 58 Gallery, Arthouse Productions, Lex Leonard Gallery, and LITM, among others. The recent addition of the Jersey City Museum, a venue for contemporary art, has also raised the profiles of local artists.
Jersey City consists of Six Districts or Wards; Greenville, West Side, Journal Square, The Heights, Downtown, and Bergen/Lafayette. Each of these Districts consists of smaller neighborhoods, for example the Paulus Hook neighborhood of the Downtown District and the Western Slope neighborhood of The Heights District. Jersey City is a city of neighborhoods, each with a different aesthetic and architectural style, to some degree.
Downtown Jersey City includes the Waterfront (including Newport, Paulus Hook, and Exchange Place), Hamilton Park, Grove Street, Harsimus Cove, Van Vorst Park, and Liberty State Park.
Jersey City Heights (or, simply, "The Heights") includes the Western Slope and the Central Avenue Shopping area. Journal Square, site of the Jersey Journal and PATH Transportation Center, West Side features West Bergen/Lincoln Park and Hudson Mall, Bergen/Lafayette where Communipaw Avenue connects the West Side with Liberty State Park, Greenville featuring Port Liberte and residential neighborhoods.
Downtown Jersey City
Downtown Jersey City is the area from the Hudson River westward to the Newark Bay Extension of the New Jersey Turnpike (Interstate 78) and the New Jersey Palisades; it is also bounded by Hoboken to the north and Liberty State Park to the south.
Newport and Exchange Place are redeveloped waterfront areas consisting mostly of residential towers, hotels and office buildings. Newport is a planned mixed-use community, built on the old Erie Lackawanna Railway yards, made up of residential rental towers, condominiums, office buildings, a marina, schools, restaurants, hotels, Newport Centre Mall, a waterfront walkway, transportation facilities, and on-site parking for more than 15,000 vehicles. Newport had a hand in the renaissance of Jersey City although, before ground was broken, much of the downtown area had already begun a steady climb (much like Hoboken). Some critics have derided the Newport development for its isolation because it is cut off from the rest of the city by the Newport Centre Mall and other big box retail.
Exchange Place, the first part of Jersey City to redevelop, was built on the grounds of the old Jersey City Penn Station, ferry and shipping terminals. It is now a bustling business and financial district.
To the west lie three brownstone neighborhoods with "historic" protected districts — Hamilton Park, Van Vorst Park, and Harsimus Cove — separated from the waterfront by a legacy of older infrastructure, big-box development, and old warehouses still awaiting re-use.
Paulus Hook is another neighborhood with a historic designated zone. It borders Exchange Place and Liberty State Park on the waterfront, and blends older brownstone-lined streets with newer luxury developments. The Essex Street stop on the Hudson-Bergen Light Rail cuts through the southern portion of the neighborhood. The area has become increasingly active with development to the east and the construction of the light rail; many of its streets are lined with shops, and restaurants with outdoor seating.
The Jersey City Medical Center operated in the 20th century on Baldwin Avenue, south of Journal Square. Now JCMC is located on Grand Street downtown, next to the Light Rail and Liberty State Park. The old medical center buildings, a cluster of Art Deco buildings on a rise in the center of the city, will be converted into residential complexes called The Beacon.
Once the commercial heart of Jersey City, Journal Square has become rather derelict in recent years, but is in the process of rehabilitation, in part because of the efforts of the Journal Square Restoration Corporation (JSRC) and the Jersey City Economic Development Corporation (JCEDC). Here, Kennedy Boulevard and Bergen Avenue, main thoroughfares in the city, are at their widest, lined on both sides by brick houses and medium-density apartment complexes. The Stanley Theater, currently a Jehovah's Witness meeting hall, and Loew's Jersey Theater on Kennedy Boulevard are among the city's most noted landmarks, and are two of the best preserved movie palaces in the Tri-State area. Directly across Kennedy Boulevard from the Loews is the Journal Square Transportation Center (JSTC), which houses the Journal Square PATH station and the city's largest bus terminal. The Journal Square PATH station serves as a hub between Newark, Newark Airport, and the World Trade Center PATH Station in New York City, approximately 10 minutes ride from Journal Square. Buses from the JSTC connect Jersey City to communities throughout Hudson County, as well as to the Port Authority Bus Terminal in Midtown Manhattan. Saint Peter's College is located about 10 blocks south of Journal Square. To the north of the square on Newark Avenue lies India Square, one of the larger and livelier Indian neighborhoods in New Jersey.
Jersey City's West Side is very ethnically diverse. Many ethnic grocery shops (Filipino
, Indian, West Indian) line West Side Avenue. West Side runs from Broadway near U.S. Route 1/9 Truck
along Route 440 to the Bayonne city line. This neighborhood is served by the Hudson-Bergen Light Rail
at Claremont Avenue. West Side also features Hudson Mall, Jersey City Incinerator Authority, Lincoln County Park and Society Hill running along Route 440 and U.S. 1/9 Truck. In this district, at the old Roosevelt Stadium
, Jackie Robinson
broke the color barrier in Minor League Baseball
before his Major League Baseball
(also known as "The Hill") is primarily residential--once the home of Frank Sinatra, with a principal commercial corridor surrounding Danforth Avenue. The neighborhood is adjacent to Greenville Yards, a former Conrail rail yard now being used as a distribution center. Jersey City includes the Port Liberté development, a high-end gated residential community on the Hudson River waterfront, as being part of Greenville, although Jersey City residents typically consider Port Liberté to be distinct from Greenville as they are separated by the New Jersey Turnpike extension (Interstate 78) and represent vastly different socioeconomic backgrounds.
The Greenville section runs from about 10 blocks south of Communipaw Avenue to the Bayonne city line. It includes some of the most depressed areas in the city, but is slowly being revitalized, particularly along the light rail line. The crime rate is higher here than in any other part of Jersey City and many streets are lined with abandoned homes, but municipal aid over the past few years has helped in rebuilding many of them and in bringing life back to many of Greenville's neglected streets. With the gentrification of the downtown area, many of the city's working-class tenants have moved into this area.
Jersey City Heights
(aka "The Heights") is a neighborhood atop the New Jersey Palisades
to its east and the Hudson River. It consists mostly of two- and three-family houses, and remains traditionally middle-class. The primary commercial strip is Central Avenue
, with residential districts flanking it on both sides. Six blocks to the east, and parallel to it, are Palisade and Ogden Avenues, both of which offer views of the Manhattan
skyline from Riverside Park. The trolley station at
Congress and Ninth Streets
connects this area of the Heights to the Hoboken PATH train and regional New Jersey Transit train lines. Many stately Victorian
homes contribute to the attractiveness of the Heights, particularly along Summit Avenue and Sherman Place as well as areas to the east of Central Avenue. Pershing Field is a park near the center of this district, offering green space, a running track, several baseball fields, basketball and tennis courts, a semi-Olympic size swimming pool and an ice skating rink. Adjacent to Pershing Field Park is an abandoned reservoir which constitutes one of the largest patches of green space in Jersey City Heights. The future of the reservoir has been hotly contested as business interests, city government, and environmentalist groups have each proposed a different use for the land. Recently, the Mayor of Jersey City has announced that the city has decided to move forward with plans to develop the reservoir into a nature preserve which will be open to the public.
Bergen/Lafayette, formerly Bergen City, New Jersey
, lies between Greenville on the south and Journal Square on the north. It also borders with West Side and Liberty State Park. Communipaw Avenue and Bergen Avenue (approaching Journal Square) both have many small shops.
Of all Jersey City commuters, 8.17% walk to work, and 40.26% take public transit. This is the second highest percentage of public transit riders of any city with a population of 100,000+ in the United States, behind only New York City and ahead of Washington, D.C.
- Hudson-Bergen Light Rail: Twenty three stations in Bayonne, Hoboken, Jersey City, North Bergen, Union City, and Weehawken. Three branches: Hoboken-22nd Street, Hoboken-Tonnelle Avenue, and West Side Avenue-Tonnelle Avenue.
- PATH: 24-hour subway service with four stations in Jersey City: Exchange Place, Pavonia-Newport, Grove Street, and Journal Square to Hoboken Terminal (HOB), midtown Manhattan (33rd) (along 6th Ave to Herald Square/Pennsylvania Station), World Trade Center (WTC), and Newark Penn Station (NWK).
- Hoboken Terminal-New Jersey Transit Hoboken Division: Main Line (to Suffern, and in partnership with MTA/Metro-North, express service to Port Jervis), Bergen County Line, and Pascack Valley Line, all via Secaucus Junction (where transfer is possible to Northeast Corridor Line); Montclair-Boonton Line and Morris and Essex Lines (both via Newark Broad Street Station); North Jersey Coast Line (limited service as Waterfront Connection via Newark Penn Station to Long Branch and Bay Head); Raritan Valley Line (limited service via Newark Penn Station).
- The BillyBey Ferry Company operates ferries between Newport, Paulus Hook, Liberty Harbor, Port Liberté and the World Financial Center and Pier 11 lower Manhattan and 39th Street in midtown Manhattan, where free transfer is available to a variety of "loop" buses.
- Circle Line provides service between Liberty State Park and Ellis and Liberty Island
- Liberty Water Taxi operates ferries between Dock M. of Liberty State Park and the World Financial Center during the summer months
The Journal Square Transportation Center
, Exchange Place
, and Hoboken Terminal
(just over the city line's northeast corner) are major origination/destination points for buses. Service is available to numerous points within Jersey City, Hudson County, and some suburban areas as well as to Newark on the 1, 2, 22, 43, 64, 67, 68, 80, 81, 82 83, 84, 85, 86, 87, 88
, 305, 319
lines. Also serving Jersey City are various private lines operated by the Bergen Avenue and Montgomery & Westside IBOAs
, and by Red & Tan in Hudson County
A majority of the streets in Jersey City are named streets, with Downtown the only district with numbered streets - in an East-West alignment.
- The numbered streets go from 1 to 18 and cover only half of Downtown. Some numbered streets are discontinuous, being interrupted at various points by buildings. Second Street is the only numbered street in the city that runs from the Palisades to the edge of the Hudson River without obstruction.
- Many streets are named for Jersey City families who owned land in the city. Examples; Van Vorst Street (the Van Vorst Family), Tues Street (Jane Tuers), Tonelle Avenue (John Tonelle), Sip Avenue (Peter Sip) and Monmouth Street (the Monmouth Family).
- Many streets are named after American Revolution generals. Examples; Washington Street, Mercer Street, Greene Street, Montgomery Street, Wayne Street, Warren Street, Lafayette Street, Steuben Street and Gates Avenue.
- Many avenues are named after cities or other locations, whether in or out of New Jersey. Examples; Newark Avenue, Communipaw Avenue, New York Avenue, and Palisades Avenue.
- All boulevards are named after famous people in history and cross city lines. These include Luis Muñoz Marín Boulevard (named for Luis Muñoz Marín, the first elected Governor of Puerto Rico), which crosses the Hoboken city line, and John F. Kennedy Boulevard - County Route 501.
- Most drives are named after people in city and world history and are wholly contained within a district. Examples; Martin Luther King Drive in Bergen/Lafeyette, Christopher Columbus Drive in Downtown, and Audrey Zapp Drive in Liberty State Park.
- Jersey City has small residential streets called Parkways. They feature a street island, and are commonly found in the Greenville District. Examples; Stegman Parkway, and Wegman Parkway.
- There are several "roads" in Jersey City including Old Bergen Road, Caven Point Road, Secaucus Road and Paterson Plank Road.
- The names of many residential streets in Jersey City change along their route. One notable continuity change is Grove Street. It is named Grove Street between the Hoboken border and Boyle Plaza, Manila Avenue between 12th Street and 1st Street, then Grove Street again between 1st Street and Grand Street.
Colleges and universities
Jersey City is home to the New Jersey City University
(NJCU) and Saint Peter's College
, both of which are located in the city's West Side district. It is also home to Hudson County Community College
, which is located in Journal Square. The University of Phoenix
has a small location at Newport, and Rutgers University
offers MBA classes at Harborside Center.
The Jersey City Public Schools
serve students in kindergarten through twelfth grade. The district is one of 31 Abbott Districts
Dr. Ronald E. McNair Academic High School was the top-ranked public high school in New Jersey out of 316 schools statewide, in New Jersey Monthly magazine's September 2006 cover story on the state's Top Public High Schools and was selected as 15th best high school in the United States in Newsweek magazine's national 2005 survey. In contrast, William L. Dickinson High School, located near Jersey City's downtown area, is the oldest high school in the city. It is also one of the largest schools in Hudson County, in terms of student population. Opened in 1906 as the Jersey City High School, it is one of the oldest sites in Jersey City. It is a four-story Beaux-Arts structure located on a hilltop facing the Hudson River. Other public high schools in Jersey City are James J. Ferris High School, Lincoln High School, and Henry Snyder High School. The Hudson County Schools of Technology (which also has campuses in North Bergen and Secaucus) has a campus in Jersey City.
Among Jersey City's elementary and middle schools is Academy I Middle School, one of the top middle schools in the country. Many Academy I students go on to McNair Academic High School. Academy I is also part of the Academic Enrichment Program for Gifted Students.
Jersey City also has a number of charter schools which are run under a special charter granted by the Commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Education. There are six charter shcools that serve elementary and middle school students. Jersey City Community Charter School, Jersey City Golden Door Charter School, Learning Community Charter School, Liberty Academy Charter School and Soaring Heights Charter School all accept students in grades K-8 while Schomburg Charter School accepts grades K-5. The two charter schools for high school students are CREATE Charter High School and University Academy Charter High School.
Private high schools in Jersey City include:
There are many choices for grade school, including the OLC School and St. Aloysius School Catholic schools serve every area of the City and a number of other charter and private schools are also available. Genesis Educational Center is a private Christian school located in downtown Jersey City for ages newborn through 8th grade, Al-Ghazaly Elementary School Islamic school http://www.alghazalyschool.org/ Established in 1984, Al-Ghazaly developed a comprehensive education program taught to the highest standards as defined by New Jersey's Core Curriculum Content Standards, with a strong focus on Islamic Studies .
Liberty Science Center is an interactive science museum and learning center located in Liberty State Park
The center, which first opened in 1993 as New Jersey's first major state science museum, has science exhibits, the world's largest IMAX Dome theater, numerous educational resources, and the original Hoberman sphere, a silver, computer-driven engineering artwork designed by Chuck Hoberman. The museum opened with another artistic exhibit that is related to the sciences, Jim Gary's Twentieth Century Dinosaurs sculpture exhibition, as the exhibit on the ground floor.
Portions of Jersey City are part of an Urban Enterprise Zone
. In addition to other benefits to encourage employment within the Zone, shoppers can take advantage of a reduced 3½% sales tax
rate (versus the 7% rate charged statewide).
- Ellis Island is inside Jersey City's borders, and is managed jointly by the states of New Jersey and New York, though it is owned by the federal government. In 1983, the State of New York went to the Supreme Court to sue the State of New Jersey over the ownership of the island, but in 1998, New York lost; New York retains title only to the original three acre portion of the Island, while New Jersey owns the 24 acres that were added as landfill.
- The Statue of Liberty is 2,000 feet from Jersey City. In 1987 Representative Frank J. Guarini, a Democrat from New Jersey, and Gerald McCann, who was Mayor of Jersey City, sued New York City, contending that New Jersey had ownership over the Liberty island because they are in the New Jersey portion of the Hudson River. The federally owned islands are over two miles from New York City.
- The Katyń Memorial by well-known Polish American artist Andrzej Pityński on Exchange Place is the first memorial of its kind to be raised on American soil to honor the dead of the Katyń Forest Massacre
- The Colgate Clock, promoted by Colgate-Palmolive as the largest in the world, sits in Jersey City and faces Lower New York Bay and Lower Manhattan (it is clearly visible from Battery Park in lower Manhattan). The clock, which is 50 feet in diameter with a minute hand weighing 2,200 pounds, was erected in 1924 to replace a smaller one.
- The tallest building in New Jersey is Jersey City's Goldman Sachs Tower, which was completed in 2004. Other notable buildings in Jersey City include 101 Hudson Street, the Newport Tower, 630 Bergen Ave, and the Exchange Place Centre.
- In 1916, German agents set off a series of explosions in present-day Liberty State Park in what came to be known as the Black Tom Explosion.
- WFMU 91.1FM (WXHD 90.1FM in the Hudson Valley), the longest running freeform radio station in the US, moved to Jersey City in 1998.
- Z-100 WHTZ 100.3 The top rated New York City radio station broadcasts from the Merrill Lynch Building (101 Hudson Street) in Jersey City.
Jersey City in popular culture
- Part of the 1993 Saturday Night Live spin-off movie Coneheads was filmed in Jersey City.
- Much of the 1999 movie Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai was filmed in Jersey City.
- The movie City Hall, starring Al Pacino and John Cusack is partly set in the Tunnel Diner, next to the Holland Tunnel
- In The Ren and Stimpy Show episode Black Hole/Stimpy's Invention, Ren and Stimpy tried to escape the Black Hole by riding an Intergalactic Bus to Jersey City, but did not have the money to pay the fare (or so they thought).
- On The History Channel's 10 Days that Unexpectedly Changed America episode, When America was Rocked, an old newspaper article of a city-wide ban of Rock and Roll in Jersey City was shown and archival film footage of the Mayor explaining his reasoning of the ban was also shown.
- The animated series Megas XLR takes place primarily in Jersey City.
- The bar scenes in the movie CopLand, were filmed in the Paulus Hook Pub (no longer in existence) on Grand Street, owned by life-long Jersey City resident and civil servant Roy Zevoteck. It featured Sylvester Stallone, Debbie Harry, Ray Liotta, Harvey Keitel, Robert Patrick, Michael Rapaport and Frank Vincent.
- One of the scenes in the movie 8 Mile is shot behind Indian Square, along the PATH train's route to Newark.
- The Last Days of Disco was filmed in the lobby of the Loew's Jersey City Theatre in Journal Square.
- The Old Power Station is shown in the final scene in the film Sid and Nancy with Gary Oldman. The undeveloped shoreline of Jersey City is also depicted in the previous scene.
- Jersey City has also been featured in the game Grand Theft Auto IV and was renamed to Alderney, it is also stated as the ugly sister city of it's neighboring city Liberty City (Grand Theft Auto).
- Novelist Richard Price did extensive research in the housing projects of Greenville, Jersey City's southernmost section, as preparation for his 1992 novel Clockers. Jersey City is the model for Price's fictional city of Dempsey, which is the setting for Clockers, Freedomland (1998) and Samaritan (2004).
Jersey City has some sister cities
, as designated by Sister Cities International, Inc. (SCI)