Neptune City, New Jersey

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Neptune City, New Jersey
Borough of Neptune City
Center of Neptune City along Sylvania Avenue
Center of Neptune City along Sylvania Avenue
Map of Neptune City in Monmouth County. Inset: Location of Neptune City highlighted in the State of New Jersey.
Map of Neptune City in Monmouth County. Inset: Location of Neptune City highlighted in the State of New Jersey.
Census Bureau map of Neptune City, New Jersey
Census Bureau map of Neptune City, New Jersey
Coordinates: 40°12′02″N 74°01′58″W / 40.200539°N 74.032896°W / 40.200539; -74.032896Coordinates: 40°12′02″N 74°01′58″W / 40.200539°N 74.032896°W / 40.200539; -74.032896[1][2]
Country United States
State New Jersey
CountyMonmouth
IncorporatedOctober 4, 1881
Named forNeptune, Roman water deity
Government
 • TypeBorough
 • BodyBorough Council
 • MayorAndrew Wardell (R, term ends December 31, 2023)[3][4]
 • AdministratorAl Jardine[5]
 • Municipal clerkTamara Brown[6]
Area
 • Total0.90 sq mi (2.32 km2)
 • Land0.90 sq mi (2.32 km2)
 • Water0.00 sq mi (0.00 km2)  0.00%
 • Rank516th of 565 in state
43rd of 53 in county[1]
Elevation23 ft (7 m)
Population
 • Total4,626
 • Rank384th of 566 in state
33rd of 53 in county[11]
 • Density5,162.95/sq mi (1,994.33/km2)
  • Rank108th of 566 in state
12th of 53 in county[11]
Time zoneUTC−05:00 (Eastern (EST))
 • Summer (DST)UTC−04:00 (Eastern (EDT))
ZIP Code
Area code(s)732[14]
FIPS code3402549920[1][15][16]
GNIS feature ID0885315[1][17]
Websitewww.neptunecitynj.com

Neptune City is a borough in Monmouth County, New Jersey, United States. As of the 2010 United States Census, the borough's population was 4,869,[18][19][20] reflecting a decline of 349 (−6.7%) from the 5,218 counted in the 2000 Census, which had in turn increased by 221 (+4.4%) from the 4,997 counted in the 1990 Census.[21]

The Borough of Neptune City was incorporated on October 4, 1881, based on a referendum held on March 19, 1881. The boundaries included all of present-day Neptune City, along with what is now Avon-by-the-Sea and the southern portion of Bradley Beach. On March 23, 1900, a bill approved in the New Jersey Legislature created the Borough of Avon-by-the-Sea. On March 13, 1907, the eastern portion of Neptune City was annexed to the Borough of Bradley Beach.[22] The borough was named for Neptune, the Roman water deity, and its location on the Atlantic Ocean.[23][24]

The earliest borough hall was erected in 1902 at the northwest corner of Evergreen Avenue and Railroad Avenue (now Memorial Drive).

Geography[edit]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the borough had a total area of 0.90 square miles (2.32 km2), all of which was land.[1][2]

Unincorporated communities, localities and place names located partially or completely within the township include Neptune Heights and Ocean Grove Heights.[25]

The borough borders the Monmouth County municipalities of Avon-by-the-Sea, Bradley Beach and Neptune Township.[26][27][28]

Demographics[edit]

Historical population
Census Pop.
19001,009*
1910488*−51.6%
192053910.5%
19302,258318.9%
19402,3925.9%
19503,07328.5%
19604,01330.6%
19705,50237.1%
19805,276−4.1%
19904,997−5.3%
20005,2184.4%
20104,869−6.7%
20204,626−5.0%
Population sources: 1900–1920[29]
1900–1910[30] 1910–1930[31]
1930–1990[32] 2000[33][34] 2010[18][19][20]
* = Lost territory in previous decade.[22]
[10]

Census 2010[edit]

The 2010 United States census counted 4,869 people, 2,133 households, and 1,220 families in the borough. The population density was 5,105.0 per square mile (1,971.1/km2). There were 2,312 housing units at an average density of 2,424.0 per square mile (935.9/km2). The racial makeup was 78.00% (3,798) White, 10.62% (517) Black or African American, 0.23% (11) Native American, 4.46% (217) Asian, 0.02% (1) Pacific Islander, 3.88% (189) from other races, and 2.79% (136) from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 10.08% (491) of the population.[18]

Of the 2,133 households, 22.4% had children under the age of 18; 38.8% were married couples living together; 13.2% had a female householder with no husband present and 42.8% were non-families. Of all households, 35.8% were made up of individuals and 11.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.24 and the average family size was 2.95.[18]

18.4% of the population were under the age of 18, 7.1% from 18 to 24, 27.4% from 25 to 44, 31.7% from 45 to 64, and 15.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 43.1 years. For every 100 females, the population had 89.5 males. For every 100 females ages 18 and older there were 86.9 males.[18]

The Census Bureau's 2006–2010 American Community Survey showed that (in 2010 inflation-adjusted dollars) median household income was $50,154 (with a margin of error of +/− $14,050) and the median family income was $72,313 (+/− $16,796). Males had a median income of $48,257 (+/− $3,972) versus $43,365 (+/− $7,250) for females. The per capita income for the borough was $31,172 (+/− $2,830). About 3.0% of families and 5.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 6.7% of those under age 18 and 5.5% of those age 65 or over.[35]

Census 2000[edit]

As of the 2000 United States Census[15] there were 5,218 people, 2,221 households, and 1,330 families residing in the borough. The population density was 5,742.8 people per square mile (2,213.9/km2). There were 2,342 housing units at an average density of 2,577.5 per square mile (993.7/km2). The racial makeup of the borough was 83.38% White, 9.52% African American, 0.23% Native American, 2.72% Asian, 2.11% from other races, and 2.03% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 5.31% of the population.[33][34]

There were 2,221 households, out of which 25.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 42.0% were married couples living together, 13.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 40.1% were non-families. 33.5% of all households were made up of individuals, and 11.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.29 and the average family size was 2.96.[33][34]

In the borough the population was spread out, with 21.5% under the age of 18, 6.5% from 18 to 24, 31.7% from 25 to 44, 24.0% from 45 to 64, and 16.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females, there were 87.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 83.2 males.[33][34]

The median income for a household in the borough was $43,451, and the median income for a family was $46,393. Males had a median income of $39,578 versus $34,044 for females. The per capita income for the borough was $22,191. About 5.0% of families and 5.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 5.8% of those under age 18 and 8.3% of those age 65 or over.[33][34]

Parks and recreation[edit]

The Neptune City Community Center offers a recreation center with a gym, game room, exercise room, computer room, TV room and a special occasion room.[36]

Neptune City has four parks: Memorial Park, located along the Shark River; Laird Avenue Park, the first playground built in Neptune City; Joe Freda Park, located on Third Avenue; and Adams Field, located on West Sylvania Avenue.[37]

Government[edit]

Local government[edit]

Neptune City is governed under the Borough form of New Jersey municipal government, which is used in 218 municipalities (of the 564) statewide, making it the most common form of government in New Jersey.[38] The governing body is comprised of the Mayor and the Borough Council, with all positions elected at-large on a partisan basis as part of the November general election. A Mayor is elected directly by the voters to a four-year term of office. The Borough Council is comprised of six members elected to serve three-year terms on a staggered basis, with two seats coming up for election each year in a three-year cycle.[7] The Borough form of government used by Neptune City is a "weak mayor / strong council" government in which council members act as the legislative body with the mayor presiding at meetings and voting only in the event of a tie. The mayor can veto ordinances subject to an override by a two-thirds majority vote of the council. The mayor makes committee and liaison assignments for council members, and most appointments are made by the mayor with the advice and consent of the council.[39][40]

As of 2022, the mayor of the Borough of Neptune City is Republican Andrew Wardell, whose term of office ends December 31, 2023.[3] Members of the Neptune City Borough Council are Council President Brian Thomas (R, 2022), Scott Dellett (R, 2024), Dana A. Farley (R, 2024), Glen Kocsis (D, 2023), Danielle Pappas (R, 2022) and Pamela Renee (D, 2023).[41][42][43][44][45]

With Republican Richard Pryor and Democrat Michael Skudera tied at 602 votes after the November 2015 general election for the second of two seats,[46] the two candidates faced off in a March 2016 special election, won by Pryor by a 511–478 margin.[47]

Federal, state and county representation[edit]

Neptune City is located in the 4th Congressional District[48] and is part of New Jersey's 11th state legislative district.[19][49][50] Prior to the 2010 Census, Neptune City had been part of the 6th Congressional District, a change made by the New Jersey Redistricting Commission that took effect in January 2013, based on the results of the November 2012 general elections.[51]

For the 117th United States Congress, New Jersey's Fourth Congressional District is represented by Chris Smith (R, Manchester Township).[52][53] New Jersey is represented in the United States Senate by Democrats Cory Booker (Newark, term ends 2027)[54] and Bob Menendez (Harrison, term ends 2025).[55][56]

For the 2022–2023 session, the 11th Legislative District of the New Jersey Legislature is represented in the New Jersey Senate by Vin Gopal (D, Long Branch) and in the General Assembly by Kimberly Eulner (R, Shrewsbury) and Marilyn Piperno (R, Colts Neck Township).[57]


Monmouth County is governed by a Board of County Commissioners comprised of five members who are elected at-large to serve three year terms of office on a staggered basis, with either one or two seats up for election each year as part of the November general election. At an annual reorganization meeting held in the beginning of January, the board selects one of its members to serve as Director and another as Deputy Director.[58] As of 2022, Monmouth County's Commissioners are Commissioner Director Thomas A. Arnone (R, Neptune City, term as commissioner and as director ends December 31, 2022),[59] Commissioner Deputy Director Susan M. Kiley (R, Hazlet Township, term as commissioner ends December 31, 2024; term as deputy commissioner director ends 2022),[60] Lillian G. Burry (R, Colts Neck Township, 2023),[61] Nick DiRocco (R, Wall Township, 2022),[62] and Ross F. Licitra (R, Marlboro Township, 2023).[63][64][65] Constitutional officers elected on a countywide basis are County clerk Christine Giordano Hanlon (R, 2025; Ocean Township),[66][67] Sheriff Shaun Golden (R, 2022; Howell Township)[68][69] and Surrogate Rosemarie D. Peters (R, 2026; Middletown Township).[70][71]

Politics[edit]

As of March 23, 2011, there were a total of 2,967 registered voters in Neptune City, of which 715 (24.1%) were registered as Democrats, 809 (27.3%) were registered as Republicans and 1,443 (48.6%) were registered as Unaffiliated. There were no voters registered to other parties.[72]

In the 2012 presidential election, Democrat Barack Obama received 55.6% of the vote (1,183 cast), ahead of Republican Mitt Romney with 42.2% (897 votes), and other candidates with 2.2% (46 votes), among the 2,147 ballots cast by the borough's 3,211 registered voters (21 ballots were spoiled), for a turnout of 66.9%.[73][74] In the 2008 presidential election, Democrat Barack Obama received 49.4% of the vote (1,212 cast), ahead of Republican John McCain with 42.4% (1,040 votes) and other candidates with 4.9% (119 votes), among the 2,451 ballots cast by the borough's 3,195 registered voters, for a turnout of 76.7%.[75] In the 2004 presidential election, Republican George W. Bush received 52.8% of the vote (1,185 ballots cast), outpolling Democrat John Kerry with 45.9% (1,031 votes) and other candidates with 0.7% (23 votes), among the 2,245 ballots cast by the borough's 3,106 registered voters, for a turnout percentage of 72.3.[76]

In the 2013 gubernatorial election, Republican Chris Christie received 66.6% of the vote (898 cast), ahead of Democrat Barbara Buono with 32.0% (432 votes), and other candidates with 1.4% (19 votes), among the 1,373 ballots cast by the borough's 3,247 registered voters (24 ballots were spoiled), for a turnout of 42.3%.[77][78] In the 2009 gubernatorial election, Republican Chris Christie received 56.0% of the vote (841 ballots cast), ahead of Democrat Jon Corzine with 35.3% (530 votes), Independent Chris Daggett with 7.1% (106 votes) and other candidates with 1.3% (20 votes), among the 1,501 ballots cast by the borough's 3,032 registered voters, yielding a 49.5% turnout.[79]

Education[edit]

The Neptune City School District serves students in kindergarten through eighth grade at Woodrow Wilson School. As of the 2018–2019 school year, the district, comprised of one school, had an enrollment of 272 students and 32.0 classroom teachers (on an FTE basis), for a student–teacher ratio of 8.5:1.[80] Before Woodrow Wilson School was constructed, students attended Roosevelt School on Third Avenue, which was demolished after being deemed beyond repair and became the site of Joe Freda Park.[81] The district is classified by the New Jersey Department of Education as being in District Factor Group "CD", the sixth-highest of eight groupings. District Factor Groups organize districts statewide to allow comparison by common socioeconomic characteristics of the local districts. From lowest socioeconomic status to highest, the categories are A, B, CD, DE, FG, GH, I and J.[82]

Public school students in ninth through twelfth grades attend Neptune High School as part of a sending/receiving relationship with the Neptune Township Schools; in a study published in May 2015, the district looked at modifying its relationship with the Neptune Township district, considering leaving the agreement unchanged, adding students in grades 6–8 to the sending arrangement or a regionalization of the two districts.[83] As of the 2018–2019 school year, the high school had an enrollment of 1,317 students and 106.0 classroom teachers (on an FTE basis), for a student–teacher ratio of 12.4:1.[84]

The district also provides students with the opportunities to attend other high schools, such as the schools of the Monmouth County Vocational School District Academies which include: the Marine Academy of Science and Technology (MAST) located on Sandy Hook, High Technology High School located on the campus of Brookdale Community College in Lincroft, the Academy of Allied Health & Science in Neptune Township and affiliated with the Jersey Shore University Medical Center, the Communications High School located on the property of Wall High School, and Biotechnology High School located in Freehold Township.[85] Neptune City also provides the students with the opportunity to attend the Performing Arts Program at Red Bank Regional High School for Performing Arts in Little Silver or to the Academy of Information Technology and the Academy of Finance both located at the Red Bank Regional High School for Performing Arts.[86]

Landmarks[edit]

Steiner and Son's Pajama Factory was the first factory built in Neptune City, constructed in 1891 on land donated by James A. Bradley. Immanuel Steiner was a silk dealer in Austria when he emigrated to New York City in the late 1860s. He began manufacturing pajamas and nightgowns in New York City shortly thereafter. With his sons Edwin and Clarence, they sought to expand operations, opting to construct the flagship factory at the corner of Fourth and Railroad Avenue (now Memorial Drive.) The construction costs were $17,590 and the brickwork was carried out by A.A. Taylor of Asbury Park. Their flagship product, "The Universal Nightshirt" became enormously popular throughout the country. Within two years time, they constructed another nearly identical factory three blocks north (since the 1930s this has been the home of The SS Adams Novelty Company). Their first national slogan was "We Put the World To Sleep".

By 1918, Steiner and Sons had nearly 2,000 employees in factories in Neptune City, Neptune, Asbury Park, Long Branch, Keyport, Freehold, Manasquan and Toms River. They built a baseball park on the land between the two factories on Fourth and Seventh Avenues. In the spring of 1922, Babe Ruth and other members of the New York Yankees played an exhibition game there. Edwin Steiner assumed control at his father's death, and he expanded the original building considerably. The Steiner corporation had a reputation for spotlessly clean working conditions, and the quality of their products is attested to in countless period advertisements stretching all the way to California.

The first ever murder in Neptune City occurred in 1929, as part of a payroll robbery. George Danielson, a 65-year-old courier from the First National Bank in Bradley Beach was shot point-blank at the employee entrance on 4th Avenue. The bandits got away with the payroll of $7,280 and were later caught and tried.[87]

In the late 1920s, the Steiner corporation purchased and merged with the Liberty Nightshirt Company, headquartered in Baltimore. The decline in demand for nightshirts was one of the reasons for the acquisition. The same circumstances forced the company to shutter most of their other area operations. Tax squabbles with the Borough of Neptune City led them to close their long-time headquarters in Neptune City in 1939 and move to Shrewsbury, Pennsylvania. They eventually went out of business.

Mario Mirabelli and his brother Michael were running a military clothing manufacturing outfit in Elizabeth at the time when they purchased the building in 1940. They expanded their operations and won considerable government contracts during the Second World War. They produced close to $11 billion worth of military clothing during the war. The Mirabelli Company continued to win military contracts after the war. Mario Mirabelli was called to testify before Congress in the late 1950s when government suppliers were accused of forcing the company to manufacture items using second-rate materials that were deemed unusable by other government manufacturing outfits. The scandal hurt Mirabelli's business and reputation. They continued to win small government contracts until the early 1960s, but eventually sold the building and went out of business.

Flea markets were held on the first floor in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Outerama, a company founded by Zenek Lapinsky in the late 1960s, continued to manufacture suits and jackets in the building until 1975 on the 2nd and 3rd floors. The bankruptcy of many of Outerama's clients led to the company's demise. The building was shuttered in 1976 and remained so for the next 25 years.

For nearly 20 years, the Borough of Neptune City sought to have the property revamped. In the early 1990s plans were underway to convert the building to retail shops and apartments, but funding was short, and the Borough foreclosed on the owners before they could realize their goal. In 2000, the building was razed and condominiums were constructed. A demolition crane was destroyed when it fell into the side of the building during the wrecking operations.

The one and only motel in the Borough of Neptune City was the Charline Motel, located on Steiner Avenue.

Transportation[edit]

Roads and highways[edit]

Route 33 eastbound along the northern border of Neptune City, viewed from Route 18

As of May 2010, the borough had a total of 18.76 miles (30.19 km) of roadways, of which 14.12 miles (22.72 km) were maintained by the municipality, 3.43 miles (5.52 km) by Monmouth County and 1.21 miles (1.95 km) by the New Jersey Department of Transportation.[88]

Route 35 passes directly through Neptune City, while Route 33 runs along the northern border of the city. The Route 18 freeway is immediately west of the city, and both I-195 and the Garden State Parkway are close by.

Public transportation[edit]

NJ Transit offers local bus service on the 836 route. Train service on the North Jersey Coast Line is available at the Bradley Beach.[89]

Climate change[edit]

Neptune City is projected to suffer substantial impacts from sea level rise caused by human-caused climate change,[90][91] including a long-term loss of half its current population.[90] Sea level rise has already resulted in flooding in Neptune City, with the period 2005–2014 experiencing 39 days of coastal flooding, over three times the average number of coastal flooding days for the decades between 1955 and 2004.[91] In moderate sea level rise scenarios, Neptune City is projected to suffer a 68% chance risk of at least one major flood by 2050, and annual risk of flooding is projected to increase exponentially over the 21st century, with 100% risk of annual flooding for the years after 2100.[91]

Religion[edit]

Neptune City had one church, the Memorial United Methodist Church. The building is now for sale.

Notable people[edit]

People who were born in, residents of, or otherwise closely associated with Neptune City include:

References[edit]

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