September 22, 2022
Dear Friends,
Our diversity is one of our strengths in New Jersey. While we’re bound by common barriers and tied together by our trains and highways, our cities and townships make their own determinations on land use due to the legacy of “home rule.” This month’s newsletter explores a few areas where differences of approach doesn’t necessarily mean differences in values.

We are paradoxically one of the most diverse and most segregated states in the nation. While New Jersey has grown more diverse over the last two decades, our macro-level diversity often does not translate into integration at the local level. New Jersey Future’s new report, “Promoting and Maintaining Racial Integration: Lessons from Selected New Jersey Towns,” examines what towns can do and have done to foster stable racial integration since 2000, providing insightful case studies and lessons learned for other NJ cities and towns to emulate.

NJF has also been engaged with the recently adopted Warehouse Siting Guidance drafted by the NJ Office of Planning Advocacy (OPA) earlier this summer, intended for use by municipalities in deciding how best to plan for warehouse developments. With the rapid growth of the goods-movement industry in New Jersey in recent years, more and more municipalities are in need of help to sort through the issues involved. Please read more on our thoughts about aligning freight goods and warehouse planning to avoid congested streets, loss of open space, and poor air quality negatively impacting vulnerable communities.

I hope you caught the recent announcement of our 2022 Smart Growth Award Winners. This year’s projects span every corner of New Jersey and represent the best in planning, reclamation, and redevelopment in the state. Our annual Smart Growth Awards are not only an opportunity to examine best practices and exciting developments, they allow us to come together and celebrate all of our efforts to promote a future for our state that is inclusive, fair, and resilient to the challenges we face ahead. Please read further below about each of our six winning projects and plan to attend our virtual showcase on Thursday, November 10.

Peter Kasabach
Executive Director
New Jersey is paradoxically one of the most diverse and most segregated states in the nation. The state has grown more diverse over the last two decades, with its non-Hispanic white percentage shrinking from two-thirds of the state population in 2000 to a little more than half as of the 2020 Census, with notable proportional growth among Hispanic and Asian-American communities. Read More.
It has been just over a year since New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection’s (NJDEP) 2020 amendment to the Stormwater Management Rule (NJAC 7:8) took effect. Since March 2, 2021, NJ municipalities have been required to utilize green infrastructure—systems that mimic natural hydrologic processes to capture and reuse stormwater—as a stormwater management technique on all new public and private major developments (see our March 2021 article for an overview of the new stormwater rules). Read More.
New Jersey Future has announced the 2022 Smart Growth Award winners, recognizing the best in planning, development, and redevelopment across the state! The 20th anniversary 2022 virtual celebration, hosted on the interactive event platform Accelevents, honors six incredible winning projects and our two Cary Edwards Leadership Award winners for their groundbreaking contributions to making New Jersey communities sustainable and strong. Register today to join us for free on November 10 from 12:00-1:00 p.m. with an encore showing from 5:00-6:00 p.m. Read more about the 2022 winners.
Demonstrate your commitment to smart growth by becoming a sponsor. View the available sponsorship opportunities or contact Michele Glassburg, 609-393-0008 x 107.
One Water Summit
As part of the New Jersey delegation, New Jersey Future staff traveled to Milwaukee, Wisconsin to attend the US Water Alliance's One Water Summit, which gathered a diverse group of water stakeholders in the country for a completely unique and urgent conversation about the future of water.

A central message from the conference: You are not alone. New Jersey delegates connected with the broader national community and were reminded that our state is not alone in its struggle for clean water. Continued collaboration is vital to addressing the water challenges our communities face.
There is no safe level for lead exposure. As such, water systems in NJ are working to meet the new statutory requirement to replace all lead service lines (LSL) by 2031. This monumental effort requires collaboration and coordination; mayors, business administrators, and city managers will all play a pivotal role. This quarterly primer from the Jersey Water Works (JWW) Lead in Drinking Water Task Force provides key information on how lead pipes can be replaced quickly, cost-effectively, and with community support.
The explosive growth of online retail coupled with our state’s globally significant ports have made land use along our highways and byways incredibly attractive to construct warehouses and store goods. The State Planning Commission has adopted new warehouse siting guidance. NJF submitted comments to the NJ Office of Planning Advocacy (OPA), here’s our take:

  • The next step should be to translate the principles articulated in the guidance into a map indicating the best places for future warehouse growth to take place.
  • In preparing the map, the Office of Planning Advocacy should coordinate with the New Jersey Department of Transportation, which is preparing a Freight Plan that will address freight as it moves over the transportation network.
  • State efforts to address warehouse growth are serving to highlight the importance of statewide planning in channeling future growth in a way that makes efficient use of infrastructure and resources while also preserving the state’s quality of life.

Read more in our recent blog delving deeper into the subject.
Image Credit: Safe Routes Academy
The New Jersey Safe Routes Program is hosting "lunch and learn” webinars on four Thursdays this month to help participants make their communities more walk- and bike-friendly for all users of all abilities. The first of the four sessions, held on September 8, covered temporary demonstration projects to test pedestrian and bicyclist safety improvements. The second session, held on September 15, was a special training on grant applications for the Transportation Alternatives (TA) Set-Aside Program, which is a federal aid program administered by the NJ Department of Transportation in partnership with the state's Metropolitan Planning Organizations. The third session will focus on walkability and bikeability assessments, and the fourth will focus on school travel plans. Past session recordings and registration links for future sessions can be found here.
Next month marks the 10th Anniversary of Hurricane Sandy. This is a time to reflect and acknowledge the work that has been done to recover, rebuild, and make our communities more resilient to future storms. Organizations across the region have come together to create a shared calendar of events taking place between September-November, beginning now with Climate Week and ending with the November 8 vote on the NYS Clean Water and Jobs Act. Join in recognizing the 10th Anniversary by attending an event near you or by contributing an event to the calendar through this form.
Coming Up
  • September 28: The Lead-Free NJ Membership Meeting will take place virtually on Zoom from 5:30–7:30 p.m. Register in advance.
Smart Growth for Everyone
Smart Growth is equitable growth. It is also restorative, as smart growth and redevelopment can help correct systemic racial and economic disparities. As New Jersey Future drives land use decision-making toward more equitable outcomes, we will be sharing useful resources and lessons in this monthly spotlight. Please give us your feedback and share with us any particularly insightful articles, talks, events, or videos that you come across.

Our new report “Promoting and Maintaining Racial Integration: Lessons from Selected New Jersey Towns,” NJF developed a prospective list of “stable and integrated” municipalities through consultation with colleagues who had professional experience in promoting integration. From an initial list of 59 eligible municipalities, we zeroed in on seven places that offered lessons on how to promote and maintain racial integration. They are as follows:

  • Montclair: The legacy of redlining recedes as demand grows for walkable and transit-oriented development–and raises concerns about displacement.
  • Asbury Park: A town with a recent history of inclusion now struggles to maintain its diversity in a changing market.
  • Cherry Hill: A former destination for “white flight” embraces diversity.
  • South Orange and Maplewood: A coalition of residents from two neighboring towns demonstrates the value and importance of active and continuous engagement on integration.
  • Jersey City: The state’s most diverse municipality finds that diversity is not a static concept.
  • Pennsauken: Community engagement is important – and so is diversity in leadership.

Through this qualitative analysis of case-study towns in New Jersey, integration revealed itself to be the result of factors including more affordable housing, rent control, inclusionary zoning ordinances, engagement on behalf of organizations and community bodies like police and school boards, and the creation of spaces in communities that promote casual interactions among people of diverse backgrounds. Read all about this new report and what it means to be a stable and integrated community in our new report.
Come Work with Us
  • Advocacy Campaign Manager: New Jersey Future’s Advocacy Campaign Manager will provide strategic direction on campaign oriented programs, oversee the creation and management of select advocacy campaigns and staff, and identify strategic programmatic and grant opportunities.
New Jersey Future in the News
Featured Resources

This quarterly primer from the JWW Lead in Drinking Water Task Force provides key information on how lead pipes can be replaced quickly, cost-effectively, and with community support.

New Jersey Future has prepared Creating Great Places To Age: A Community Guide to Implementing Aging-Friendly Land Use Decisions to provide communities with a step-by-step process to make designing for the needs of older residents easier.

We are proud to partner with New Jersey's leading environmental and social justice organizations to promote this Green in '21 policy guide.

The New Jersey Stormwater Utility Resource Center is a one-stop shop housing technical, legal, and financial information, case studies, and helpful guidance on stormwater solutions, community process, and public engagement.

The Developers Green Infrastructure Guide 2.0 breaks down New Jersey’s Stormwater Rule amendments and helps developers and decision-makers more clearly understand green infrastructure options and advantages, compare alternatives, and evaluate costs and benefits.
Founded in 1987, New Jersey Future is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that promotes sensible and equitable growth, redevelopment, and infrastructure investments to foster healthy, strong, resilient communities; protect natural lands and waterways; increase transportation choices beyond cars; provide access to safe, affordable, and aging-friendly neighborhoods; and fuel a strong economy for everyone. New Jersey Future does this through original research, innovative policy development, coalition-building, advocacy, and hands-on strategic assistance. Embracing differences and advancing fairness is central to New Jersey Future’s mission and operations. New Jersey Future is firmly committed to pursuing greater justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion through its programs, internal operations, and external communications.