Cranford, New Jersey
|Cranford Township, New Jersey|
|— Township —|
|Coordinates: Coordinates: |
|Incorporated||March 14, 1871|
|• Mayor||Thomas H. Hannen, Jr. (term ends December 31, 2013)|
|• Administrator||Joseph M. Hartnett|
|• Clerk||Tara Rowley|
|• Total||4.869 sq mi (12.609 km2)|
|• Land||4.830 sq mi (12.509 km2)|
|• Water||0.039 sq mi (0.100 km2) 0.80%|
|Area rank||281st of 566 in state
10th of 21 in county
|Elevation||82 ft (25 m)|
|Population (2010 Census)|
|• Rank||112th of 566 in state
8th of 21 in county
|• Density||4,684.6/sq mi (1,808.7/km2)|
|• Density rank||117th of 566 in state
11th of 21 in county
|Time zone||Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)|
|• Summer (DST)||Eastern (EDT) (UTC-4)|
|GNIS feature ID||0882214|
Cranford is a township in Union County, New Jersey, United States. As of the 2010 United States Census, the township's population was 22,625, reflecting an increase of 47 (+0.2%) from the 22,578 counted in the 2000 Census, which had in turn declined by 55 (-0.2%) from the 22,633 counted in the 1990 Census.
Cranford was incorporated as a township by an Act of the New Jersey Legislature on March 14, 1871, from portions of the Townships of Clark, Linden, Springfield, Union and Westfield. Portions of the township were taken to form Garwood (March 19, 1903) and Kenilworth (March 13, 1907).
Cranford is located at United States Census Bureau, the township had a total area of 4.869 square miles (12.609 km2), of which, 4.830 square miles (12.509 km2) of it is land and 0.039 square miles (0.100 km2) of it (0.80%) is water.(40.656391,-74.30483). According to the
There are nine municipalities bordering the township: Garwood and Westfield to the west, Springfield Township to the north, Kenilworth to the northeast, Roselle and Roselle Park to the east, Linden to the southeast, Clark and Winfield to the south.
1930-1990 2000 2010
Census 2010 
As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 22,625 people, 8,583 households, and 6,154 families residing in the township. The population density was 4,684.6 inhabitants per square mile (1,808.7 /km2). There were 8,816 housing units at an average density of 1,825.4 per square mile (704.8 /km2). The racial makeup of the township was 91.85% (20,781) White, 2.62% (592) Black or African American, 0.08% (18) Native American, 2.84% (643) Asian, 0.02% (4) Pacific Islander, 1.03% (234) from other races, and 1.56% (353) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 6.51% (1,474) of the population.
There were 8,583 households out of which 33.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 60.2% were married couples living together, 8.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 28.3% were non-families. 24.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.61 and the average family size was 3.15.
In the township the population was spread out with 24.2% under the age of 18, 5.8% from 18 to 24, 23.6% from 25 to 44, 29.3% from 45 to 64, and 17.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 42.8 years. For every 100 females there were 91.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 87.2 males.
The Census Bureau's 2006-2010 American Community Survey showed that (in 2010 inflation-adjusted dollars) median household income was $107,052 (with a margin of error of +/- $5,725) and the median family income was $128,534 (+/- $7,200). Males had a median income of $81,979 (+/- $7,672) versus $61,649 (+/- $4,965) for females. The per capita income for the borough was $48,008 (+/- $2,581). About 2.1% of families and 3.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 3.9% of those under age 18 and 8.5% of those age 65 or over.
Census 2000 
As of the 2000 United States Census there were 22,578 people, 8,397 households, and 6,222 families residing in the township. The population density was 4,684.2 people per square mile (1,808.6/km²). There were 8,560 housing units at an average density of 1,775.9 per square mile (685.7/km²). The racial makeup of the township was 93.70% White, 2.58% Black or African American, 0.04% Native American, 2.15% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 0.67% from other races, and 0.84% from two or more races. 3.89% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 8,397 households out of which 32.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 63.0% were married couples living together, 8.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 25.9% were non-families. 21.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.62 and the average family size was 3.09.
In the township the population was spread out with 23.3% under the age of 18, 5.3% from 18 to 24, 29.4% from 25 to 44, 24.1% from 45 to 64, and 17.9% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females there were 90.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 86.2 males.
The median income for a household in the township was $76,338, and the median income for a family was $86,624. Males had a median income of $60,757 versus $41,020 for females. The per capita income for the township was $33,283. About 1.0% of families and 2.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 1.5% of those under age 18 and 6.3% of those age 65 or over.
Cranford has long been considered a center of commerce. The Cranford Business Park on the south side of town consists of a complex of office buildings housing a variety of major corporations and small businesses. Along North Avenue are a variety of buildings housing doctors and other businesses. Law offices predominate in small buildings around town. Banks are also extremely common throughout the town, which hosts at least half a dozen. Downtown Cranford is the main retail business district for the township. Consisting of a variety of small family owned businesses on both sides of the railroad tracks, there has been a debate in town over the direction of the downtown. With neighboring communities seeing downtown development and a focus on either recruiting chain store or upscale small stores, Cranford has been debating the issue. On the south side of town, the Centennial Avenue Business District is a small shopping district with a mix of neighborhood stores. There is a push to redevelop this business district.
The recent focus of downtown Cranford has been to recruit more restaurants into the downtown and allow for a nightlife to flourish. Amongst the existing nightlife, Cranford holds a number of local restaurant/bars: The Office, The Riverside Inn, Cranford Hotel, The Kilkenny House, Ye Olde Rathskellar, among others. On the south side of the community, the Cranford Crossings redevelopment project features retail space, apartments, and a new parking deck. The Riverfront redevelopment project is proposed on South Avenue to bring more business and housing into downtown Cranford.
In the 1980s the downtown was renovated to take on a Victorian feel. This included the installation of new light fixtures and cobblestone sidewalks, along with decorative planters and benches. A Victorian street clock was installed in the center of town, allowing for the creation of a small pocket park in the center of the downtown. The clock park has become a hangout for teenagers who are walking to and from school.
In the 1980s, Cranford founded the first special improvement district in New Jersey, which allows for the downtown district to have a special tax on building and business owners for downtown development and marketing which is managed by the Cranford Downtown Management Corporation. The DMC has used its budget for development projects, to recruit new businesses and to market shopping in Cranford. Various downtown sales and street fairs are administered by the DMC. The DMC is governed by a Board of Directors consisting of business owners and residents, which is appointed by the Township Committee. The DMC Board appoints a DMC Director, who runs the day-to-day operations of the corporation.
Local government 
Cranford is governed under the Township form of government with a five-member Township Committee. The Township Committee is elected directly by the voters in partisan elections to serve three-year terms of office on a staggered basis, with one or two seats coming up for election each year.
The Committee members elect a chairman of the committee who assumes the title of Mayor. Similarly, a Deputy Mayor is elected. Both positions carry one-year terms. Four of the commissioners take on departmental oversight assignments as Commissioner of Finance, Commissioner of Public Safety, Commissioner of Public Works and Engineering, and Commissioner of Public Affairs. The Mayor of Cranford does not take on a departmental assignment. The commissioners are part-time officials and the township government is run day to day by the Township Administrator and various department heads. The Chief of Police is Eric G. Mason.
As of 2013[update], members of the Cranford Township Committee are Mayor Thomas H. Hannen, Jr. (D, 2013), Deputy Mayor Edward O'Malley (Commissioner of Public Works and Engineering; D, 2013), Lisa Adubato Nesi (Commissioner of Public Affairs; R, 2014), Kevin Campbell (Commissioner of Public Safety; D, 2013) and Andis Kalnins (Commissioner of Finance; R, 2014).
Women in elected office 
As of 2012, eight women have been elected to the Cranford Township Committee and three women have served as Mayor of Cranford. Barbara Brande was the first woman elected to the Township Committee and the first woman mayor of the township. Mayor Brande was elected to the Township Committee in 1974 and reelected in 1977, serving a total of six years. She was Mayor of Cranford in 1977. Carolyn Vollero, who served the longest length of time for a woman on the Township Committee - nine years - was Cranford's second female Mayor in 1994. Barbara Bilger, the township's third female mayor in 2002 and 2004, was also the first woman to serve two terms as the township's mayor. Mayor Bilger is the first Republican woman to serve as a Township Commissioner and as mayor.
Union County Freeholder Bette Jane Kowalski is a Cranford resident and the first woman from Cranford to be elected to the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders. Freeholder Kowalski was an unsuccessful candidate for Cranford Township Committee in 1999 and served as Union County Freeholder Chairwoman in 2007.
- Female Township Commissioners in Cranford
- Barbara Brande (Democrat) - 1975 to 1980 (Mayor in 1977)
- Sandy Weeks (Democrat) - 1982 to 1984
- Mary Lou Farmer (Democrat) - 1984 to 1986
- Carolyn Vollero (Democrat) - 1988 to 1996 (Mayor in 1994, Deputy Mayor in 1993)
- Barbara Bilger (Republican) - 1990 to 1992 and 2002 to 2004 (Mayor in 2002 & 2004, Deputy Mayor in 1992 & 2003)
- Ann Darby (Republican) - 2003 to 2005 (Deputy Mayor in 2004)
- Martha Garcia (Republican) - 2008 to 2010 (Deputy Mayor in 2010)
- Lisa Adubato (Republican) - 2012 to present
Federal, state and county representation 
New Jersey's Seventh Congressional District is represented by Leonard Lance (R, Clinton Township). New Jersey is represented in the United States Senate by Frank Lautenberg (D, Cliffside Park) and Bob Menendez (D, Hoboken).
The 21st Legislative District of the New Jersey Legislature is represented in the State Senate by Thomas Kean, Jr. (R, Westfield) and in the General Assembly by Jon Bramnick (R, Westfield) and Nancy Munoz (R, Summit). The Governor of New Jersey is Chris Christie (R, Mendham Township). The Lieutenant Governor of New Jersey is Kim Guadagno (R, Monmouth Beach).
Union County is governed by a Board of Chosen Freeholders, whose nine members are elected at-large to three-year terms of office on a staggered basis with three seats coming up for election each year, with an appointed County Manager overseeing the day-to-day operations of the county. At an annual reorganization meeting held in the beginning of January, the board selects a Chairman and Vice Chairman from among its members. As of 2013[update], Union County's Freeholders are Chairman Linda Carter (D, Plainfield, term ends December 31, 2013), Vice Chairman Christopher Hudak (D, Linden, 2014), Bruce Bergen (D, Springfield Township, 2015), Angel G. Estrada (D, Elizabeth, 2014), Mohamed S. Jalloh (D, Roselle, 2015), Bette Jane Kowalski (D, Cranford, 2013), Alexander Mirabella (D, Fanwood, 2015), Daniel P. Sullivan (D, Elizabeth, 2013) and Vernell Wright (D, Union Township, 2014). Constitutional officers elected on a countywide basis are County Clerk Joanne Rajoppi (D, Union Township, 2015), Sheriff Ralph Froehlich (D, Union Township, 2013) and Surrogate James S. LaCorte (D, Springfield Township, 2014). The County Manager is Alfred Faella. Freeholder Bette Jane Kowalski is a Cranford resident.
As of March 23, 2011, there were a total of 15,649 registered voters in Cranford Township, of which 4,887 (31.2% vs. 41.8% countywide) were registered as Democrats, 3,701 (23.7% vs. 15.3%) were registered as Republicans and 7,046 (45.0% vs. 42.9%) were registered as Unaffiliated. There were 15 voters registered to other parties. Among the township's 2010 Census population, 69.2% (vs. 53.3% in Union County) were registered to vote, including 91.2% of those ages 18 and over (vs. 70.6% countywide).
In the 2012 presidential election, Democrat Barack Obama received 6,236 votes here (51.0% vs. 66.0% countywide), ahead of Republican Mitt Romney with 5,772 votes (47.2% vs. 32.3%) and other candidates with 141 votes (1.2% vs. 0.8%), among the 12,223 ballots cast by the township's 16,332 registered voters, for a turnout of 74.8% (vs. 68.8% in Union County). In the 2008 presidential election, Democrat Barack Obama received 6,513 votes here (49.6% vs. 63.1% countywide), ahead of Republican John McCain with 6,371 votes (48.6% vs. 35.2%) and other candidates with 164 votes (1.3% vs. 0.9%), among the 13,120 ballots cast by the township's 16,145 registered voters, for a turnout of 81.3% (vs. 74.7% in Union County). In the 2004 presidential election, Republican George W. Bush received 6,455 votes here (50.4% vs. 40.3% countywide), ahead of Democrat John Kerry with 6,160 votes (48.1% vs. 58.3%) and other candidates with 111 votes (0.9% vs. 0.7%), among the 12,795 ballots cast by the township's 15,822 registered voters, for a turnout of 80.9% (vs. 72.3% in the whole county).
In the 2009 gubernatorial election, Republican Chris Christie received 4,787 votes here (52.3% vs. 41.7% countywide), ahead of Democrat Jon Corzine with 3,421 votes (37.4% vs. 50.6%), Independent Chris Daggett with 793 votes (8.7% vs. 5.9%) and other candidates with 82 votes (0.9% vs. 0.8%), among the 9,146 ballots cast by the township's 15,871 registered voters, yielding a 57.6% turnout (vs. 46.5% in the county).
The Cranford Township Public Schools are a comprehensive and successful public school system, which is governed by a nine-person elected Board of Education. The district's high school, Cranford High School was ranked 51st among all high schools in New Jersey in 2012 by New Jersey Monthly magazine after being ranked 13th in 2010 and has won a series of national and statewide awards for its innovative curriculum. Cranford High School has a curriculum which has a strong push for technology in the schools, along with stressing service learning. The high school is recognized for its work in service learning and for being a national school of character. Cranford High School students are regularly admitted to some of the nation's top private and public universities, with over 90% of each graduating class going onto college.
Schools in the district (with 2010-11 from the National Center for Education Statistics) are Bloomingdale Avenue School (241 students in grades K-2), Brookside Place School (432; K-5), Hillside Avenue School (768; K-8), Livingston Avenue School (227; 3-5), Orange Avenue School (774; 3-8), Walnut Avenue School (309; PreK-2) and Cranford High School (1,139; 9-12).
Lincoln School, which is the home of the district's administrative offices, also houses the districts two alternative education programs, CAP and CAMP.
In addition to the public education system, Cranford houses several religious and private schools. Saint Michael's School, located in downtown Cranford, is a Roman Catholic parochial school which offers Nursery through Grade 8 and is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Elementary Schools, operating under the auspices of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Newark.
The main campus of Union County College, New Jersey's oldest community college dating back to 1933, is located in Cranford. The Cranford campus, one of four county locations, was established in 1956.
Historic sites 
The Cranford Historical Preservation Advisory Board was established in 1993 to record and help preserve historic buildings in the town.
Local media 
Cranford has long been a newspaper community. The Cranford Chronicle (formerly the Cranford Citizen & Chronicle) is a longtime newspaper serving the Township. Owned by the Ray Family and published in town, the Chronicle served as the center of community journalism. Stu Awbrey purchased the Chronicle and continued as the town's newspaperman. Awbrey sold the paper to Malcolm Forbes, whose publishing company published the paper for several years before the paper changed hands to other community newspaper publication companies. The Chronicle's office left Cranford for Somerville and later Clark. The Chronicle now also features coverage of Garwood and Kenilworth.
The Cranford Eagle started publishing in 1999 as another community newspaper. Owned by Worrall Community Newspapers, the Eagle focused solely on Cranford and other neighboring towns. Edited and reported by several people in its history, the Eagle quickly became a fixture in the community. The Eagle's sports page is shared with the Clark newspaper, published by the same company.
Cranford Patch is a daily online news source dedicated strictly to local Cranford news.
Cranford also has its own channel, TV-35, which is available to cable and Verizon FiOS television subscribers. The channel was founded in 1986.
Cranford.com is The Official Website of the Township of Cranford, NJ and has been in operation since the summer of 1996.
The Cranford station offers service on the New Jersey Transit Raritan Valley Line, formerly the mainline of the Central Railroad of New Jersey. NJ Transit also provides bus service on the 112 and 113 routes to the Port Authority Bus Terminal in New York City and on the 59 and 66 to Newark. The 56, 57 and 58 routes provide local service.
The southern section of the township is bisected by Conrail's freight-only Lehigh Line (jointly owned by CSX and Norfolk Southern) along the tracks of the former Lehigh Valley Railroad. The former Staten Island Railway connects with the Raritan Valley Line in Cranford. That line has been rehabilitated but is rarely used.
The Garden State Parkway passes through Cranford, with access at Exit 136 for County Route 607 and Exit 137 for Route 28. Exit 136 is known as the "four corners", where Clark, Winfield, Cranford and Linden meet.
Cranford in film and television 
- Several episodes in the third season of the popular 1990's television show, The Adventures of Pete & Pete were filmed in Cranford. One episode was shot at Cranford's Orange Avenue Pool and another at Cranford High School and Brookside Place School. Another episode was filmed at Modern Barber Shop.
- Cranford is the setting of the 2005 film, Guess Who starring Bernie Mac and Ashton Kutcher.
- Portions of the films Garden State, Far from Heaven and September 12 were shot in Cranford.
Notable people 
Notable current and former residents of Cranford include:
- Carol Blazejowski (born 1956), member of Basketball Hall of Fame and 1974 Cranford High School graduate.
- Curtis G. Culin (1915–1963), Sgt in the 2d Armored Division during WWII who developed the rhino tank to cut through hedgerows during the battle of Normandy.
- Hugh S. Delano (born 1933), sports journalist for the New York Post and author honored by induction into the Hockey Hall of Fame with the Elmer Ferguson Memorial Award.
- Jordan White (born 1982), rock musician and American Idol contestant.
- William C. Dudley (born 1952), President and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and Vice Chairman of the Federal Reserve Open Markets Committee.
- Charles N. Fowler (1852–1932), represented 5th congressional district in the United States House of Representatives from 1895 to 1911.
- Gary Kott, television and advertising writer, who was a writer and supervising producer of The Cosby Show.
- May Li (born 1967), finalist in 2006 in China Central Television's Win In China and founder of the non-profit North American Chinese Entrepreneur Association (NACEA).
- N. Gregory Mankiw (born 1958), Harvard professor who chaired the Council of Economic Advisers under President George W. Bush.
- Thomas Sperry (c. 1864-1913), co-founder (the "S") of S&H Green Stamps.
- Ralph J. Marra, Jr. (born c. 1953), former Acting United States Attorney for the District of New Jersey.
- Jennifer Westhoven (born 1971), business & finance correspondent on HLN's Morning Express with Robin Meade.
- Jordan White (born 1981), rock musician.
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- "Spotlight: Carol Blazejowski", SI for Women, May 28, 1999. Accessed May 4, 2007. "In 1974, while a student at Cranford High (NJ), Blazejowski told the school's athletic director (who was also the coach of the boys basketball team) that she would play on boys basketball team if no girls team was created. It wasn't long before Cranford had a girls basketball team."
- Staff. "CURTIS CULIN 3D, INVENTED 'RHINO'; Creator of Tank Attachment at Normandy Is Dead", The New York Times, November 22, 1963. Accessed January 22, 2012.
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- Ragonese, Dana. "Cranford native Jordan White featured at Rev It Up concert starring Crystal Bowersox", Cranford Chronicle, August 4, 2011. Accessed February 20, 2013. "At least half of the profits from the concert will go towards juvenile diabetes. The benefit concert will also feature Hawthorne Heights, Carmen Magro, and Cranford, native Jordan White."
- Murray, Leslie. "Cranford resident appointed president and CEO of the NY Federal Reserve", The Cranford Chronicle, February 4, 2009. Accessed February 7, 2009.
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- About, Gary Kott's Creative Warehouse. Accessed July 17, 2012. "I grew up in Cranford, New Jersey -- exit 137 on the Garden State Parkway -- twenty-one miles from the Lincoln Tunnel and New York City."
- Andrews, Edmund L. "Economics Adviser Learns the Principles of Politics", The New York Times, February 26, 2004. Accessed July 17, 2012. "He describes himself as a lifelong Republican, which sets him apart from many Harvard colleagues. He distributed campaign literature for Richard Nixon in the early 1970's, and he grew up in Cranford, a fairly affluent suburb in New Jersey, the son of an engineer and a teacher."
- Staff. "SPERRYS FLEE FROM FLAMES BY LADDER; Their Country Home at Cranford, N.J., with Its Valuable Paintings, Destroyed.", The New York Times, June 8, 1912. Accessed October 29, 2008.
- Staff. "Federal prosecutor Ralph Marra joins N.J. Sports and Exposition Authority as top lawyer", The Star-Ledger, February 18, 2010. Accessed July 17, 2012. "In a special meeting of the Sports Authority today morning, Marra, 56, of Cranford, was named senior vice president for legal and governmental affairs. He will be paid $190,000."
- Jennifer Westhoven, HLN (TV channel). Accessed March 28, 2013. "Westhoven earned a bachelor of arts degree in history and political science from Bryn Mawr College and grew up in Cranford, NJ."
- Staff. "Cranford native Jordan White featured at Rev It Up concert starring Crystal Bowersox", Cranford Chronicle, August 4, 2011. Accessed July 17, 2012. "At least half of the profits from the concert will go towards juvenile diabetes. The benefit concert will also feature Hawthorne Heights, Carmen Magro, and Cranford, native Jordan White. "
- Staff. "Meet Jordan White", The Valley Beat. Accessed July 17, 2012. "Jordan White was born in Cranford, New Jersey, but raised in Nazareth where he learned to play guitar and classical piano. At age 19, White first began writing songs, by the age of 28 he has landed a song with a national label."
- Cranford Township home page
- Cranford Township Public Schools
- Cranford Township Public Schools's 2010–11 School Report Card from the New Jersey Department of Education
- Data for the Cranford Township Public Schools, National Center for Education Statistics
- Narrated history of Cranford by Cranford resident Bernie Wagenblast
- Hometown Memories - Cranford Page
- Cranford Elks Motorcycle Club
- Cranford Track
- CNN Money Best Places Contender 2005
- NJ Monthly Top Towns 2006 - Ranked 12th