Teaneck, New Jersey
|Teaneck, New Jersey|
|Township of Teaneck|
Teaneck Municipal Building
Map highlighting Teaneck's location within Bergen County. Inset: Bergen County's location within New Jersey
Census Bureau map of Teaneck, New Jersey
|Coordinates: Coordinates: |
|Incorporated||February 19, 1895|
|• Type||Faulkner Act Council-Manager|
|• Body||Township Council|
|• Mayor||Elie Y. Katz (acting)|
|• Manager||William Broughton (effective May 13, 2009)|
|• Clerk||Issa A. Abbasi (acting)|
|• Total||16.127 km2 (6.226 sq mi)|
|• Land||15.557 km2 (6.006 sq mi)|
|• Water||0.570 km2 (0.220 sq mi) 3.54%|
|Area rank||253rd of 566 in state
7th of 70 in county
|Elevation||39 m (128 ft)|
|Population (2010 Census)|
|• Estimate (2014)||40,587|
|• Rank||54th of 566 in state
2nd of 70 in county
|• Density||2,556.8/km2 (6,622.2/sq mi)|
|• Density rank||71st of 566 in state
20th of 70 in county
|Time zone||Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)|
|• Summer (DST)||Eastern (EDT) (UTC-4)|
|GNIS feature ID||0882227|
Teaneck // is a township in Bergen County, New Jersey, United States, and a suburb in the New York metropolitan area. As of the 2010 United States Census, the township's population was 39,776, reflecting an increase of 516 (+1.3%) from the 39,260 counted in the 2000 Census, which had in turn increased by 1,435 (+3.8%) from the 37,825 counted in the 1990 Census. As of 2010 it was the second-most populous among the 70 municipalities in Bergen County, behind Hackensack, which had a population of 43,010.
Teaneck was created on February 19, 1895 by an act of the New Jersey Legislature from portions of Englewood Township and Ridgefield Township, both of which are now defunct (despite existing municipalities with similar names), along with portions of Bogota and Leonia. Independence followed the result of a referendum held on January 14, 1895, in which voters favored incorporation by a 46–7 margin. To address the concerns of Englewood Township's leaders, the new municipality was formed as a township, rather than succumbing to the borough craze sweeping across Bergen County at the time. On May 3, 1921, and June 1, 1926, portions of what had been Teaneck were transferred to Overpeck Township.
Teaneck lies at the junction of Interstate 95 and the eastern terminus of Interstate 80. The township is bisected into north and south portions by Route 4 and east and west by the CSX Transportation River Subdivision. Commercial development is concentrated in four main shopping areas, on Cedar Lane, Teaneck Road, DeGraw Avenue, West Englewood Avenue and Queen Anne Road, more commonly known as "The Plaza".
Teaneck's location at the crossroads of river, road, train and other geographical features has made it a site of many momentous events across the centuries. After the American defeat at the Battle of Fort Washington, George Washington and the troops of the Continental Army retreated across New Jersey from the British Army, traveling through Teaneck and crossing the Hackensack River at New Bridge Landing, which has since been turned into a state park and historic site commemorating the events of 1776 and of early colonial life. In 1965, Teaneck voluntarily desegregated its public schools, after the Board of Education approved a plan to do so by a 7–2 vote on May 13, 1964. Teaneck has a diverse population, with large Jewish and African American communities, and growing numbers of Hispanic and Asian residents.
- 1 History
- 2 Geography
- 3 Demographics
- 4 Economy
- 5 Arts and culture
- 6 Sports
- 7 Parks and recreation
- 8 Government
- 9 Education
- 10 Media
- 11 Public services
- 12 Transportation
- 13 Notable people
- 14 References
- 15 Sources
- 16 External links
The origin and meaning of the name "Teaneck" is not known, but speculation is that it could come from various Dutch or English words, or it could be Native American in origin, meaning "the woods". An alternative is from the Dutch "Tiene Neck" meaning "neck where there are willows" (from the Dutch "tene" meaning willow).
The earliest uses of the word "Teaneck" were in reference to a series of Lenni Lenape Native American camps near the ridge formed by what became Queen Anne Road. Chief Oratam was the leader of a settlement called "Achikinhesacky" that existed along Overpeck Creek in the area near what became Fycke Lane.
A neighborhood variously called East Hackensack or New Hackensack was established along a ridge on the east bank of the Hackensack River, site of a Native American trail that followed the river's path along what is now River Road, with the earliest known buildings constructed dating back as far as 1704. Other early European settlements were established along what became Teaneck Road, which is the site of a number of Dutch stone houses that remain standing since their construction in the 1700s, several of which have been added to the National Register of Historic Places.
Revolutionary War period
During November 1776, General George Washington passed through Teaneck in the aftermath of the Battle of Fort Lee, as part of the hasty retreat of ragtag Colonial forces from Fort Lee on the Hudson River in the wake of the successful British invasion and defeat of Continental Army forces in Manhattan on the opposite side of the river during the Battle of Fort Washington. Early on the morning of November 20, 1776, Washington rode by horseback from his headquarters in Hackensack through Teaneck and across Overpeck Creek to Fort Lee. There he watched as 6,000 British troops travel up the river by boat. He had his troops abandon their position on the Palisades in a poorly organized retreat in which most of their supplies were abandoned, with Washington's troops moving inland across Overpeck Creek and through Teaneck to New Bridge Landing (in what is now Brett Park) and crossing the bridge, one of the few available at the time. The soldiers, many poorly dressed, ill-equipped and without shoes, faced the cold rain, leading Thomas Paine to compose the pamphlet, The American Crisis, in which he captured the depth of the defeat by describing those days with the words "These are the times that try men's souls". Throughout the war, both British and American forces occupied local homesteads at various times, and Teaneck citizens played key roles on both sides of the conflict.
After the war, Teaneck returned to being a quiet farm community. Fruits and vegetables grown locally were taken by wagon to markets in nearby Paterson and New York City. New growth and development were spurred in the mid-19th century by the establishment of railroads throughout the area. Wealthy New Yorkers and others purchased large properties on which they built spacious mansions and manor houses. They traveled daily to work in New York City, thus becoming Teaneck's first suburban commuters.
The largest estate built in Teaneck belonged to William Walter Phelps, the son of a wealthy railroad magnate and New York City merchant. In 1865, Phelps arrived in Teaneck and enlarged an old farmhouse into a large Victorian mansion on the site of the present Municipal Government Complex. Phelps' "Englewood Farm" eventually encompassed nearly 2,000 acres (8.1 km2) of landscaped property within the central part of Teaneck, on which some 600,000 trees were planted. Subsequent development and house construction were focused along the perimeters of the township, with the central part of the community remaining a large property crisscrossed by roads and trails.
The Township of Teaneck was established on February 19, 1895 and was composed of portions of Englewood Township, Ridgefield Township and Bogota. Teaneck's choice to incorporate as a township was unusual in an era of "Boroughitis", in which a flood of new municipalities were being formed using the borough form of government. The other two municipalities formed in Bergen County in 1895 were both boroughs, in addition to the 26 boroughs that were formed in the county in 1894 alone.
At a referendum held on January 14, 1895, 46 of 53 voters approved incorporation as a Borough. Citizens of Englewood Township challenged the creation of a borough, but accepted the new municipality as a township, given its more rural character. A bill supporting the creation of the Township of Teaneck was put through the New Jersey General Assembly on February 18, 1895, and the New Jersey Senate on the next day. Governor of New Jersey George Werts signed the bill into law, and Teaneck was an independent municipality.
At its incorporation, Teaneck's population was 811. William W. Bennett, overseer of the Phelps Estate, was selected as chairman of the first three-man Township Committee, which focused in its early years on "construction of streets and street lamps (originally gaslights), trolley lines (along DeGraw Avenue), telephones and speeding traffic."
Growth in early 20th century
The opening of the Phelps Estate in 1927 led to substantial population growth. The George Washington Bridge was completed in 1931, and its connection to Teaneck via Route 4 brought thousands of new home buyers. From 1920 and 1930, Teaneck's population nearly quadrupled, from 4,192 to 16,513.
Rapid growth led to financial turmoil, and inefficiencies in the town government resulted in the adoption of a new nonpartisan Council-Manager form of government under the 1923 Municipal Manager Law in a referendum on September 16, 1930. A full-time Town Manager, Paul A. Volcker, Sr. (father of future Chairman of the Federal Reserve Paul A. Volcker, Jr.), was appointed to handle Teaneck's day-to-day business affairs. During his 20-year term, from 1930 to 1950, Volcker implemented prudent financial management practices, a development plan that included comprehensive zoning regulations, along with a civil service system for municipal employees and a professional fire department.
Development after World War II
Teaneck was selected in 1949 from over 10,000 communities as America's model community. Photographs were taken and a film produced about life in Teaneck, which were shown in Occupied Japan as a part of the United States Army's education program to show democracy in action.
After World War II, there was a second major spurt of building and population growth. The African American population in the northeast corner of Teaneck grew substantially starting in the 1960s, accompanied by white flight triggered by blockbusting efforts of township real estate agencies. In 1965, after a struggle to address de facto segregation in housing and education, Teaneck became the first community in the nation where a white majority voluntarily voted for school integration, without a court order requiring the district to implement the change. The sequence of events was the subject of a book titled Triumph in a White Suburb written by township resident Reginald G. Damerell (New York: William Morrow & Company, Inc., 1968).
As de facto racial segregation increased, so did tensions between residents of the northeast and members of the predominantly white male Teaneck Police Department. On the evening of April 10, 1990, the Teaneck Police Department responded to a call from a resident complaining about a teenager with a gun. After an initial confrontation near Bryant School and a subsequent chase, Phillip Pannell, an African American teenager, was shot and killed by Gary Spath, a white Teaneck police officer. Spath said he thought Pannell had a gun and was turning to shoot him. Witnesses said Pannell was unarmed and had been shot in the back. Protest marches, some violent, ensued; most African Americans believed that Pannell had been killed in cold blood, while other residents insisted that Spath had been justified in his actions. Testimony at the trial claimed that Pannell was shot in the back, and that he was carrying a gun. A police officer testified to finding a modified starter's pistol with eight cartridges in Pannell's jacket pocket. Spath was ultimately acquitted on charges of reckless manslaughter in the shooting. Some months after Spath had been cleared, he decided to retire from law enforcement. The incident was an international news event that brought Reverend Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson to the community and inspired the 1995 book Color Lines: The Troubled Dreams of Racial Harmony in an American Town, by Mike Kelly.
Teaneck, and the neighboring communities of Bergenfield and New Milford, has drawn a large number of Modern Orthodox Jews who have established at least fourteen synagogues and four yeshivas (three high schools and one for young men). It is the functional center of the northern New Jersey Orthodox community, with nearly twenty kosher shops (restaurants, bakeries and supermarkets). It is within ten minutes' driving time of Yeshiva University in New York City. This community tends to be involved with Religious Zionist causes and offers strong support of Israel.
Several homes in Teaneck date back to the colonial era or the period subsequent to American Revolutionary War and have been preserved and survive to this day. Teaneck sites on the National Register of Historic Places and (other historic homes) include:
- John Ackerman House – 1286 River Road (constructed 1734–1787)
- Banta-Coe House – 884 Lone Pine Lane (c. 18th century, added 1983)
- Brinkerhoff-Demarest House – 493 Teaneck Road (c. 1728, added 1983)
- Christian Cole House – 1617 River Road (constructed c. 1860)
- Draw Bridge at New Bridge – Main Street and Old New Bridge Road over Hackensack River (constructed 1888, added 1989)
- Adam Vandelinda House – 586 Teaneck Road (constructed 1830, added 1983)
- James Vandelinda House – 566 Teaneck Road (constructed 1805–1820, added 1983)
- Caspar Westervelt House – 20 Sherwood Road (constructed 1763, added 1983)
- Zabriskie-Kipp-Cadmus House – 664 River Road (c. 1751, added 1978)
- The William Thurnauer house – Designed by Edward Durell Stone, 628 North Forest Drive (constructed 1949)
According to the United States Census Bureau, the township had a total area of 6.226 square miles (16.127 km2), including 6.006 square miles (15.557 km2) of land and 0.22 square miles (0.57 km2) of water (3.54%).
Teaneck is bordered to the west by River Edge and Hackensack which lie across the Hackensack River, to the north by New Milford and Bergenfield, to the east by Englewood and Leonia, and to the south by Ridgefield Park and Bogota.
At the 2010 United States Census, there were 39,776 people, 13,470 households, and 10,129 families residing in the township. The population density was 6,622.2 per square mile (2,556.8/km2). There were 14,024 housing units at an average density of 2,334.8 per square mile (901.5/km2). The racial makeup of the township was 53.33% (21,214) White, 27.69% (11,013) Black or African American, 0.28% (113) Native American, 9.11% (3,622) Asian, 0.06% (25) Pacific Islander, 6.04% (2,403) from other races, and 3.48% (1,386) from two or more races. Hispanics or Latinos of any race were 16.53% (6,575) of the population.
There were 13,470 households, of which 34.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 58.0% were married couples living together, 13.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 24.8% were non-families. 20.8% of all households were made up of individuals, and 10.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.88 and the average family size was 3.37.
In the township, 25.0% of the population were under the age of 18, 9.4% from 18 to 24, 23.1% from 25 to 44, 27.7% from 45 to 64, and 14.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39.3 years. For every 100 females there were 89.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 84.7 males.
The Census Bureau's 2006–2010 American Community Survey showed that (in 2010 inflation-adjusted dollars) median household income was $92,107 (with a margin of error of +/- $3,556) and the median family income was $108,777 (+/- $5,024). Males had a median income of $74,055 (+/- $5,587) versus $54,959 (+/- $4,129) for females. The per capita income for the township was $42,335 (+/- $2,061). About 5.7% of families and 6.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 8.9% of those under age 18 and 7.2% of those age 65 or over.
As of the 2000 United States Census, there were 39,260 people, 13,418 households, and 10,076 families residing in the township. The population density was 6,486.2 people per square mile (2,505.5/km2). There were 13,719 housing units at an average density of 2,266.5 per square mile (875.5/km2). The racial makeup of the township was 56.3% White, 28.8% African American, 0.2% Native American, 7.1% Asian, <0.1% Pacific Islander, 4.2% from other races, and 3.5% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 10.5% of the population.
There were 13,418 households out of which 34.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 59.3% were married couples living together, 12.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 24.9% were non-families. 21.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.86 and the average family size was 3.34.
In the township the population was spread out with 25.8% under the age of 18, 8.5% from 18 to 24, 26.1% from 25 to 44, 25.3% from 45 to 64, and 14.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 89.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 84.9 males.
The median income for a household in the township was $74,903, and the median income for a family was $84,791. Males had a median income of $53,327 versus $40,085 for females. The per capita income for the township was $32,212. About 2.4% of families and 4.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 3.7% of those under age 18 and 6.7% of those age 65 or over.
Ancestry information reported in the 2000 Census reflects the diversity of Teaneck residents, with no single country accounting for more than a small fraction of the population. Residents listed Italian (6.2%), German (6.0%), Russian (5.3%), Irish (5.1%) and Polish (4.2%) as the most common countries of ancestry, and an additional 4.3% listed United States. 6.3% of residents identified themselves as being of West Indian ancestry, of which 3.4% were from Jamaica.
After its founding as a township, Teaneck saw rapid growth in its population during the first half of the 20th century. As Teaneck changed from a sparsely populated rural area into a suburb, particularly after development of property that had been part of the Phelps Estate started in the late 1920s, Teaneck's population grew rapidly, far outpacing the growth of Bergen County.
After World War II, the 1950 Census showed growth in Teaneck (33.6%) pacing Bergen County overall (31.6%). Starting in 1960, a substantial decline in the rate of growth compared to Bergen County occurred as Teaneck reached the limits of developable land, and the township neared its peak population. Population growth in the 1970 Census was small, but positive, with Teaneck reaching its historical maximum of 42,355. Absolute declines in population followed in both the 1980 (−7.9%) and 1990 (−3.0%) data. The 2000 Census showed recovery in Teaneck's population to 39,260, though growth (3.8%) was smaller than in Bergen County overall (7.1%).
With almost no land left to develop for housing, Teaneck's population is likely to remain stable for the foreseeable future. A reluctance to permit high-rise development as a means to increase population density also places a limit on growth. Changes in family size and the possibility of zoning changes to allow denser construction are some of the few influences that may affect population over time.
According to the FBI's 2011 Uniform Crime Report, there were 604 crimes in the township in 2011 (vs. 678 in 2010), of which 70 were violent crimes (vs. 79 in 2010) and 534 non-violent crimes (vs. 599 in the previous year). The 2011 total crime rate per thousand residents was 15.2 (vs. 17.0 in 2010), compared to 13.6 in Bergen County and 24.7 statewide. The violent crime rate was 1.8 per thousand in 2011 (down from 2.0 in the previous year), while the rate was 1.0 in the county and 3.1 in New Jersey.
Gang violence hit Teaneck in July 2006 with the death of Ricky Lee Smith, Jr., a teenager shot outside a house party by a member of the Bloods gang who had attended the party. In June 2007, the Township Council approved the hiring of five additional officers after the Chief of Police had requested the addition of 14 new officers to Teaneck's existing 98-member police force to establish a gang unit.
Teaneck has received attention in the media due to sexual crimes committed against minors by New Jersey educators. Joseph White, former principal of Teaneck High School, pleaded guilty to official child endangerment in June 2006 and was sentenced to one year in prison. White had been charged in 2002 with fondling a 17-year-old student and was subsequently acquitted. James Darden, an award-winning former eighth grade teacher at Thomas Jefferson Middle School, was charged with sexual assault and misconduct in June 2007. He pleaded guilty on December 2007 to a charge of aggravated sexual assault and faces up to 8½ years in prison when sentenced on January 18, 2008.
The December 1975 murder of Jean Diggs and her four children has never been solved. Police reported in 1977 that they had been unable to identify a perpetrator after two years and thousands of hours spent investigating the crime.
A pair of killings hit Teaneck in 2010, with council watcher Joan Davis and software engineer Robert Cantor both killed in their homes, in cases that had not been solved in more than a year after the incidents.
Major institutions in Teaneck include Holy Name Medical Center and the Metropolitan Campus of Fairleigh Dickinson University, the largest private university in the state. The Teaneck Armory is the home of the New Jersey National Guard's 50th Main Support Battalion.
Cognizant Technology Solutions Corporation, a major multinational provider of high-technology services, maintains its global headquarters operations in Teaneck, located in the Glenpointe Centre, Teaneck's largest single group of commercial ratable entities, which includes a 350-room Marriott Hotel and 650,000 square feet (60,000 m2) of Class A office space at the intersection of Interstate 95 and Interstate 80.
Teaneck has four main commercial districts: Cedar Lane, north Teaneck Road, West Englewood Avenue/The Plaza and Queen Anne Road/DeGraw Avenue. Cedar Lane underwent a $3.9 million Streetscape project, completed in 2006, designed to attract additional business to the area through new sidewalk paving with brick edging, bump-outs to allow easier pedestrian crossing, old-fashioned lamp posts and street plantings.
The Givaudan Fragrances Corporation Creative Fragrances Centre, a division of Givaudan, was constructed in 1972 from a design by Der Scutt, architect of the Trump Tower. Givaudan Roure vacated the building in 2009 and the facility was acquired by World of Wings, which renovated the building for use as a butterfly exhibition aimed at families.
Arts and culture
2013–14 will mark the 78th season of the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra, which performs in the auditorium of Benjamin Franklin Middle School, having been founded in 1938 as the Teaneck Symphony Orchestra.
The now-defunct Teaneck Cultural Arts Coalition had organized many community-wide cultural events, including an annual First Night community celebration of the arts held for several years through New Year's 2005.
The Garage Theatre Group, Bergen County's first non-profit, professional theatre company, stages fully professional productions, with members of Actors Equity, as well as youth conservatory productions at the Becton Theatre on the campus of Farleigh Dickinson University.
Teaneck New Theatre, founded in 1986, performs productions at St. Mark's Church in Teaneck and at the Hackensack Cultural Arts Center.
Black Box Studios is a theater group based in Congregation Beth Shalom, that has a relationship with the Bergen PAC in Englewood. The actors are mostly children and teens ages 10–16, with a 7–9 year old workshop, and an adult workshop. There are two to three performances presented in the first two or three weeks of January, and the first two weeks of June. Drama and musical theatre summer camps are offered.
Cedar Lane Cinema had been the township's lone movie theater, and had also hosted live performances on its stage by local performance groups, until it closed its doors in November 2012, with theater operator Majestic Entertainment citing costs that could run to as much as $500,000 to modernize the projection systems on all four screens to use digital technology rather than 35mm reels of film. New owner Matthew Latten signed a lease in April 2013 and undertook extensive renovations that included new seating, modern digital projection systems and digital signage. After hosting the Teaneck International Film Festival in November, the reopening of the renamed Teaneck Cineams was delayed until December 2013, with added time needed to complete the work needed to add modern features and conveniences while retaining the Art Deco character of a theater first constructed in 1937.
Teaneck has been the site of many films, including The Family Man, the 2000 film starring Nicolas Cage. The Teaneck Armory has been used for films including Sweet and Lowdown, and for interior scenes of You've Got Mail.
In 2007, two non-fiction volumes appeared dealing, inter alia, with Teaneck's Orthodox Jewish community. In Foreskin's Lament, writer Shalom Auslander describes living in Teaneck and finding the Jewish community stifling and claustrophobic. In contrast, Rifka Rosenwein, in Life in the Present Tense, describes the close-knit community as a gift she couldn't imagine when living in Manhattan.
The Brooklyn Nets NBA pro basketball team were founded as the New Jersey Americans in Teaneck for the 1967–68 season, as charter members of the American Basketball Association. The team played their home games at the Teaneck Armory for that one season, and was scheduled to play a one-game playoff at the armory. However, the circus had been booked for the week, and the game was relocated to a court in Commack, New York that was unplayable, and the game had to be forfeited. After the one season in Teaneck, the team relocated to Long Island and was renamed the New York Nets. Following the Long Island run, the Nets moved back to New Jersey in 1977 to be named as the New Jersey Nets until 2012 before they became the Brooklyn Nets.
Portions of Fairleigh Dickinson University's Metropolitan Campus are located in Teaneck, with most of the school's athletic facilities located across the river in Hackensack. The school's University Stadium, home for its men's and women's soccer teams, lies on the Hackensack River, just north of Route 4. The 1,100-seat stadium has hosted NCAA Men's Soccer Tournament games in recent years. The natural grass field was resurfaced with FieldTurf in 2004.
The Naimoli Family Baseball Complex is situated between Route 4 and University Stadium. Fairleigh Dickinson received a $1 million bequest from FDU alumnus Vince Naimoli, founding owner of the Tampa Bay Rays, to establish a 500-seat stadium with artificial turf and lighting on the site of the current facility.
Parks and recreation
Teaneck has 24 municipal parks, of which 14 are developed. Votee Park, the township's largest, covers 40.51 acres (16.39 ha), surrounded by Queen Ann Road, Palisade Avenue, Court Street and Colonial Court. Including baseball fields, soccer fields, playgrounds and the township's inground swimming facility, the park was renamed in honor of former mayor Milton Votee in 1958. A Sportsplex was opened at the southern end of Votee Park in 2014, which includes two synthetic turf full-size soccer fields, one of which is also lined for use for football.
The Friends of the Hackensack River Greenway Through Teaneck work to preserve and develop the 3.5 miles (5.6 km) greenway along the Hackensack River from Terhune Park at the Bogota border in the south north to Brett Park on the New Milford border, encouraging the growth of native plants and providing a verdant area along the river for residents and visitors. A series of 16 laminated signs were created by Teaneck artist Richard Mills along the Greenway, depiciting details of history and the flora and fauna of the river in a series called "Hackensack River Stories" that was installed in 2000. The Greenway in Teaneck became the fourth National Recreation Trail in the state when it received the designation by the United States Department of the Interior at ceremonies held in Brett Park in June 2009.
Established in 2001 in conjunction with the Puffin Foundation, the Teaneck Creek Conservancy has restored a plot of degraded land east of Teaneck Road near the intersection of Interstates 80 and 95, removing decades of debris and creating a network of 1.3 miles (2.1 km) of trails.
Overpeck County Park, along the shores of Overpeck Creek, a tributary of the Hackensack River, is more than 800 acres (3.2 km2) in size, of which about 500 were donated by Teaneck, and which is also in portions of Englewood, Leonia, Ridgefield Park and Palisades Park.
Teaneck is governed within the Faulkner Act (formally known as the Optional Municipal Charter Law) under the Council-Manager form of government (Plan 12), implemented by direct petition as of July 1, 1988. Following its founding in 1895, Teaneck used the traditional township form of government, led by a three-member Township Committee (later expanded to five seats) elected on a partisan basis. On September 16, 1930, Teaneck residents voted to establish a nonpartisan Council-Manager form of government under the terms of the 1923 Municipal Manager Law, with five members elected concurrently on an at-large basis. In 1962, the Council expanded to its current size of seven members and the position of Deputy Mayor was created. In 1987, a referendum to alter the form to a Faulkner Act Council-Manager form of government was approved, providing for staggered terms for the Council. With this change, Council elections now take place in even years on the second Tuesday in May. The Council's seven members are elected at-large in nonpartisan elections to serve staggered, four-year terms of office. The four seats elected in 2010 will expire in 2014 and the seats of the three who took office in 2012 will expire in 2016, etc.
The Township Council serves as Teaneck's governing body, setting policies and passing ordinances. It adopts an annual budget and approves contracts and agreements for services. The Council appoints the Manager, Clerk, Auditor, Attorney, Magistrate and Assessor. The Council appoints seven members of the Planning Board, the members of the Board of Adjustment, and all other statutory and advisory boards.
As of 2013[update], members of the Teaneck Township Council are Mayor Mohammed Hameeduddin (term as mayor ends June 30, 2014; term as council member ends June 30, 2016), Deputy Mayor Adam Gussen (2014), Elie Y. Katz (2014), Lizette Parker (2014), Henry Pruitt (2016), Mark Schwartz (2016) and Yitz Stern (2014).
In May 2000, three women ran for Township Council, and all three, incumbent Jackie Kates and newcomers Marie Warnke and Deborah Veach, were elected. Kates, Warnke and Veach completed their four-year terms and then ran for re-election in May 2004. Jackie Kates and Deborah Veach were re-elected and became Mayor and Deputy Mayor, respectively. Ms. Veach resigned her position in October 2005 and was appointed to be the Township's Municipal Prosecutor, a position in which she continues to serve.
On May 13, 2008, the township voted to re-elect Monica Honis to the council (with 2,981 votes). Elnatan Rudolph (2,852) lost his bid for re-election, falling 38 votes behind his running mate. Barbara Toffler (leading the voting with 3,356 votes) and Mohammed Hameeduddin (2,890) were elected and took office on July 1, 2008, filling the seats left by Rudolph and former mayor Jackie Kates, who did not run for re-election.
In the 2010 municipal elections, Adam Gussen, Elie Katz and Lizette Parker were re-elected to office, with former councilmember Yitz Stern taking the seat vacated by former mayor Kevie Feit, who did not run for a second term. At its July 1, 2010, reorganization meeting the council selected Mohammed Hameeduddin to serve as mayor, making him one of the state's first Muslim mayors, while Adam Gussen was chosen as deputy mayor.
In the May 2012 municipal election, Mohammed Hameeduddin won a second term in office (with 4,374 votes) and was the only incumbent to win re-election, with challengers Mark Schwartz (3,150) and Henry Pruitt (2,872) taking the seats of Barbara Toffler (2,526) and Monica Honis (2,238), who lost their bids for re-election and came in fourth and fifth respectively, while Alexander Rashin came in sixth (1,049).
On July 1, following a municipal election, the Township Council holds an Organizational Meeting where the candidates elected (or re-elected) to serve on the Council are sworn in and begin their terms of office. The newly inducted council selects one of its members to serve as Mayor, and another to serve as Deputy Mayor, who presides in the absence of the Mayor.
The Mayor, elected by the Council from among its members after each biennial election, serves for a two-year term of office which expires upon the selection of a mayor at the subsequent reorganization meeting. The Mayor presides over all meetings and votes on every issue as a regular member. The Mayor is an ex officio member of the Planning Board and the Library Board. The Mayor appoints the members of the Library Board, and one member of the Planning Board. The Mayor executes bonds, notes, contracts and written obligations of the Township and is empowered to perform marriages.
The Municipal Manager is appointed by the Council to serve as a full-time professional chief executive officer. The Manager implements Council policies, enforces ordinances and coordinates the activities of all departments and employees and is responsible for preparing and submitting a budget to the Council. The Manager makes recommendations to the Council on relevant matters, appoints and removes Township employees and investigates and acts on complaints. The Manager appoints the Municipal Courts Prosecutor and Public Defender, members of the Rent Board and one member of the Teaneck Economic Development Corporation, and one member of the Civilian Complaint Review Board.
Federal, state and county representation
Teaneck is split between the 5th and 9th Congressional Districts and is part of New Jersey's 37th state legislative district. Prior to the 2010 Census, all of Teaneck had been part of the 9th 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, making Teaneck one of 14 municipalities (and the only one in Bergen County) to be split across districts, down from the 29 that had been split after the 2000 Census. As part of the redistricting that took effect in 2013, 32,023 (about 80%) of Teaneck residents were placed in the new 5th District, with the remaining 7,753 residents (about 20%) mostly in areas of the township east of Teaneck Road and south of Bedford Avenue placed in the 9th District.
New Jersey's Fifth Congressional District is represented by Scott Garrett (R, Wantage Township). New Jersey's Ninth Congressional District is represented by Bill Pascrell (D, Paterson). New Jersey is represented in the United States Senate by Cory Booker (D, Newark, term ends 2021) and Bob Menendez (D, Paramus, 2019).
For the 2016–2017 session (Senate, General Assembly), the 37th Legislative District of the New Jersey Legislature is represented in the State Senate by Loretta Weinberg (D, Teaneck) and in the General Assembly by Valerie Huttle (D, Englewood) and Gordon M. Johnson (D, Englewood). The Governor of New Jersey is Chris Christie (R, Mendham Township). The Lieutenant Governor of New Jersey is Kim Guadagno (R, Monmouth Beach).
Bergen County is governed by a directly elected County Executive, with legislative functions performed by a seven-member Board of Chosen Freeholders. As of 2015[update], the County Executive is James J. Tedesco III (D, Paramus; term ends December 31, 2018). The seven freeholders are elected at-large in partisan elections on a staggered basis, with two or three seats coming up for election each year, with a Chairman, Vice Chairman and Chairman Pro Tempore selected from among its members at a reorganization meeting held each January. Bergen County's Freeholders are Freeholder Chairwoman Joan Voss (D, 2017; Fort Lee), Vice Chairman Steve Tanelli (D, 2015; North Arlington) Chairman Pro Tempore John A. Felice (R, 2016; River Edge), David L. Ganz (D, 2017; Fair Lawn), Maura R. DeNicola (R, 2016; Franklin Lakes) Thomas J. Sullivan Jr., (D, Montvale, 2015; serving the unexpired term of office that had been occupied by James Tedesco before he was sworn in as County Executive) and Tracy Silna Zur (D, 2015; Franklin Lakes). Countywide constitutional officials are County Clerk John S. Hogan (D, Northvale), Sheriff Michael Saudino (R) and Surrogate Michael R. Dressler (D, Cresskill).
As of March 23, 2011, there were a total of 24,862 registered voters in Teaneck Township, of which 12,646 (50.9% vs. 31.7% countywide) were registered as Democrats, 2,332 (9.4% vs. 21.1%) were registered as Republicans and 9,872 (39.7% vs. 47.1%) were registered as Unaffiliated. There were 12 voters registered to other parties. Among the township's 2010 Census population, 62.5% (vs. 57.1% in Bergen County) were registered to vote, including 83.4% of those ages 18 and over (vs. 73.7% countywide).
In the 2012 presidential election, Democrat Barack Obama received 13,875 votes (71.5% vs. 54.8% countywide), ahead of Republican Mitt Romney with 5,256 votes (27.1% vs. 43.5%) and other candidates with 136 votes (0.7% vs. 0.9%), among the 19,394 ballots cast by the township's 27,145 registered voters, for a turnout of 71.4% (vs. 70.4% in Bergen County). In the 2008 presidential election, Democrat Barack Obama received 14,785 votes (71.6% vs. 53.9% countywide), ahead of Republican John McCain with 5,621 votes (27.2% vs. 44.5%) and other candidates with 95 votes (0.5% vs. 0.8%), among the 20,642 ballots cast by the township's 26,294 registered voters, for a turnout of 78.5% (vs. 76.8% in Bergen County). In the 2004 presidential election, Democrat John Kerry received 13,254 votes (69.4% vs. 51.7% countywide), ahead of Republican George W. Bush with 5,672 votes (29.7% vs. 47.2%) and other candidates with 78 votes (0.4% vs. 0.7%), among the 19,088 ballots cast by the township's 24,466 registered voters, for a turnout of 78.0% (vs. 76.9% in the whole county).
In the 2013 gubernatorial election, Democrat Barbara Buono received 57.8% of the vote (6,197 cast), ahead of Republican Chris Christie with 41.4% (4,439 votes), and other candidates with 0.8% (90 votes), among the 10,991 ballots cast by the township's 25,615 registered voters (265 ballots were spoiled), for a turnout of 42.9%. In the 2009 gubernatorial election, Democrat Jon Corzine received 9,347 ballots cast (71.8% vs. 48.0% countywide), ahead of Republican Chris Christie with 3,242 votes (24.9% vs. 45.8%), Independent Chris Daggett with 343 votes (2.6% vs. 4.7%) and other candidates with 41 votes (0.3% vs. 0.5%), among the 13,027 ballots cast by the township's 25,513 registered voters, yielding a 51.1% turnout (vs. 50.0% in the county).
The Tax Foundation determined that Bergen County had the third-highest median property tax burden in the nation ($8,708 vs. a New Jersey median of $6,579 and a national median of $1,917) and the fourth-highest level of property taxes as a percentage of median income (8.59% vs. 7.45% statewide and 3.03% nationally), based on an analysis of data from the 2009 American Community Survey conducted by the United States Census Bureau for all 792 counties in the United States with more than 20,000 residents. As of 2010, Teaneck's effective tax rate of $2.492 per $100 of equalized value was the 12th-highest of the 70 municipalities in Bergen County, which had a countywide median effective rate of $2.115 per $100, ranging from a low of $.596 in Alpine to a high of $3.005 in Ridgefield Park.
As of 2013[update], just under 55% of a Teaneck property owner's real estate taxes goes to support the local school system, 36.7% goes to municipal taxes (including an open space tax) and the remaining 8.4% to cover county services (which also assesses an open space tax). In the decade from 2003 to 2013, municipal taxes had risen at an annual rate of just over 4.5% and school taxes by almost 2.8%, while the Consumer Price Index for the New York-Northern New Jersey-Long Island area had gone up 2.6% during that time span.
The 2013 tax rate was set at $2.486 per $100 of assessed value (an overall increase of 3.7% from 2012), which is composed of school taxes of $1.365 (up almost 3.3%), municipal taxes of $0.871 (an increase of 5.8%), a library tax of $.031 (down 3.1%) and county taxes of $0.206 (down 0.5%), plus a municipal open space tax of $0.010 and a county open space tax of $0.003 (both unchanged). The owner of a median-valued home in Teaneck, assessed at $465,300, paid 2011 property taxes of $11,190, which would include $6,244 in school taxes, $3,992 in municipal taxes and $949 to the county (including open space levies).
During 2006, Teaneck underwent a revaluation of all privately owned real estate, as required periodically by the state. This revaluation adjusted property values to market prices, ensuring that taxes are equitably allocated. The average property in Teaneck was assessed at approximately $417,900, an increase of 132.1% from the prior year's average. The new valuations took effect for the 2007 tax year. In the wake of the revaluation implemented in 2007, a wave of tax appeals hit the township, resulting in a loss of about $110 million in ratables and costs to the township of $2.2 million for the 2012 tax year. The township agreed to complete a revaluation by October 2014 that would go into effect in 2015, awarding a $710,000 contract to perform the necessary home visits and determine property values.
The Teaneck Public Schools had a Budgetary Per Pupil Cost of $18,417 in its 2012–13 budget, 26.8% higher than the average of $14,519 budgeted that year by districts in the same grouping of grades and enrollment, ranked as the 101st highest among the 106 K-12 districts in the state with more than 3,500 students.
At the April 2006 school elections, voters rejected the proposed $84.8 million budget for the Teaneck Public Schools for the 2006–07 school year by a 1,644 to 1,336 margin. Based on recommendations specified by the Township Council, the Board of Education approved $544,391 in cuts. The school budget was rejected again in 2009, with the Council cutting $1 million from the $94.8 million originally proposed. After the 2010 school budget failed, the Township Council removed $6.1 million from the $95 million budget proposed by the school district, zeroing out what would have been an 8.2% increase in the school tax levy. The school board eliminated 77 positions to meet the cuts approved by the council.
The Teaneck Public Schools serves students in pre-Kindergarten through twelfth grade. As of the 2011–12 school year, the district's 7 schools had an enrollment of 3,845 students and 333.8 classroom teachers (on an FTE basis), for a student–teacher ratio of 11.52:1. Schools in the district (with 2011–12 enrollment data from the National Center for Education Statistics) are Bryant School (344 students; pre-K and Kindergarten), Hawthorne School (344; 1–4), Lowell School (313; 1–4), Whittier School (368; 1–4), Benjamin Franklin Middle School (570; 5–8), Thomas Jefferson Middle School (598; 5–8) and Teaneck High School with 1,308 students in grades 9–12.
Longfellow Elementary school was closed in 1998. Other elementary schools that closed prior to 1998 included Emerson and Eugene Field School, which is used by the Board of Education for its Central Administrative Offices.
2011–12 total spending for the district was $91,382,911, a Total Spending per Pupil of $22,894 based on 3,991.6 students, ranking 96th highest of the 106 K-12 districts statewide with more than 3,500 students, with the average district spending $18,047 per pupil. Based on the 2012–13 budget, the district planned to spend a Budgetary Per Pupil Cost of $18,417 (a measure that excludes out-of-district tuition payments for special education, transportation costs, legal judgments and certain other expenditures), ranking 101st highest among its grouping of districts, compared to a statewide average of $14,519. Of the 2012–13 Budgetary Per Pupil Cost, $11,394 per student was allocated to classroom instruction (104th highest of K–12 districts in the state with more than 3,500 students, with a statewide average of $8,588), $3,012 per student to Total Support Services (ranked 96th, average of $2,338), $1,662 to Total Administrative Costs (ranked 93rd, average of $1,448) and $2,031 to Total Operations and Maintenance of Plant (ranked 89th, average of $1,787). The district's 2012–13 Median Classroom Teacher Salary of $77,614 is ranked 98th in the state in its grouping, the Median Support Service Salary was $92,539 (97th), while the Median Administrator Salary was $140,497 (95th).
As of the 2010 No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Report, Teaneck High School had satisfied the Adequate Yearly Progress measure and had a graduation rate of 97.0% for the class of 2009–10, compared to a statewide average of 94.7%. On the High School Proficiency Assessment (HSPA), 9.4% were partial proficient, 79.5% proficient and 11.1% advanced proficient in Language Arts Literacy (vs. statewide averages of 10.3% partial, 75.7% proficient and 14% advanced). In Mathematics, 24.8% were partial proficient, 61.8% proficient and 13.4% advanced proficient (vs. statewide averages of 18.4% partial, 57.9% proficient and 23.7% advanced).
The Teaneck Community Charter School (TCCS) had a 2011–12 enrollment of 306 students in Kindergarten through eighth grade with 26.0 classroom teachers (on an FTE basis), for a student–teacher ratio of 11.77:1. TCCS is a charter school that operates independently of the Teaneck Public Schools under a charter granted by the Commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Education, which was renewed for five years in 2012. Admission is open to the public for available slots (after returning students and siblings of existing students are entered) and offers an after school program and summer camp. As the school is a public school, no tuition is charged. Funding comes from the Teaneck Public Schools (and the home districts of non-resident students), which provides 90% of its cost per pupil in the district; the balance of funding comes directly from the state of New Jersey. The school moved to a new building at 563 Chestnut Avenue in the 2009–10 school year, from a space it had rented on Palisade Avenue.
2009–10 total spending for the TCCS was $5,050,613, a Total Spending per Pupil of $16,614 based on 304 students, ranking 51st highest of the 77 charter schools statewide, with the average district spending $17,836 per pupil. Based on the 2010–11 budget, the TCCS planned to spend a Budgetary Per Pupil Cost of $14,210, ranking 54th highest among the 77 districts, compared to a statewide average of $13,609. Of the 2010–11 Budgetary Per Pupil Cost, $8,112 per student goes to classroom instruction (57th highest of charter schools in the state, with a statewide average of $8,004), $1,124 per student to Total Support Services (ranked 14th, average of $2,116), $1,690 to Total Administrative Costs (ranked 4th, average of $1,453) and $3,282 to Total Operations and Maintenance of Plant (ranked 70th, average of $1,698). The district's 2010–11 Median Classroom Teacher Salary of $55,860 is ranked 57th in the state in its grouping, the Median Support Service Salary is $82,433 (54th), while the Median Administrator Salary is $103,750 (56th).
Public school students from the township, and all of Bergen County, are eligible to attend the secondary education programs offered by the Bergen County Technical Schools, which include the Bergen County Academies in Hackensack, and the Bergen Tech campus in Teterboro or Paramus. The district offers programs on a shared-time or full-time basis, with admission based on a selective application process and tuition covered by the student's home school district.
Teaneck is home to the Metropolitan Campus of Fairleigh Dickinson University, which straddles the Hackensack River in Teaneck and Hackensack. The campus served 4,114 undergraduates and 2,350 graduate students.
Private Orthodox Jewish day schools include the Torah Academy of Bergen County (for boys in grades 9–12) which completed an $8 million expansion project at the start of the 2013–14 school year that doubled the size of the school, adding new classrooms and an additional gym to accommodate the record enrollment of 293 students, with room for expansion for the several years ahead. Ma'ayanot Yeshiva High School serves girls in grades 9–12. Yeshivas Heichal HaTorah, another high school, opened in September 2013 at the Teaneck Jewish Center with an initial enrollment of 17 students.
Al-Ghazaly High School, a co-ed religious day school for seventh through twelfth grades founded in 1984, was located on 441 North Street, serving the Muslim community from the greater Teaneck area. The school relocated to a larger facility in Wayne and opened its doors to students in September 2013, with the Teaneck facility repurposed to serve students in pre-Kindergarten through third grade.
Although licensed to Oakland, a community in Western Bergen County, radio station WVNJ operating at 1160 kHz on the AM dial maintains its studios at 1086 Teaneck Road. WFDU FM-89.1 operates from studios at Fairleigh Dickinson University, and there was a defunct AM Carrier Current version of WFDU on 640 through some time in the 1980s.
The Teaneck Police Department had 96 sworn officers in 2012, in addition to 13 civilian employees, three parking enforcement officers and 25 school crossing guards out of a total of 106 authorized uniformed positions. Robert Wilson was named Chief as of July 2008, filling the acting chief role previously held by Deputy Chief Fred Ahearn, who had been serving in that position after the departure of Paul Tiernan in 2007. The department hired its first two officers in 1914; Freddie Greene, its first African-American officer, joined the department on September 15, 1962, and its first female officer began serving on January 4, 1981. In 2012, the Teaneck Police Department received accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA), following a two-year-long process that documented the department's compliance with 112 standards established by the organization as best practices. The department became the ninth in the state to receive CALEA accreditation.
The Teaneck Fire Department is a career fire department that has 91 uniformed members, out of a total of 99 authorized uniformed positions, including 31 officers and 60 firefighters. Teaneck's four fire stations are staffed around the clock by paid full-time fire fighters. Teaneck is one of four municipalities in Bergen County with a paid fire department, joining Englewood, Hackensack and Ridgewood. Robert J. Montgomery was named Chief of Department as of June 1, 2006, and retired in March 2010, when he was succeeded by Anthony Verley. The department operates four Engine Companies out of four strategically placed firehouses. Additionally, a Tower Ladder, Rescue Truck and Command vehicle responds out of the main Fire Headquarters on Teaneck Road. Reserve apparatus include two Engines, a Rescue and a Ladder Truck that can be manned as required during high service demands. The department responds to approximately 4,000 calls per year involving structure fires, vehicle fires, electrical emergencies, natural gas releases, carbon monoxide incidents, explosions, rescues, outside fires, vehicle extrications and first responder medical calls. The department celebrated its 100th anniversary in October 2015. The Box 54 Canteen Unit provides canteen and other support services at fire scenes, offering water, coffee and other snacks where firefighters have an extended presence. The unit was created in 1952.
The Teaneck Volunteer Ambulance Corps (TVAC) was created in 1939 to serve the residents of Teaneck. TVAC has always been Teaneck's only emergency ambulance service and includes over 100 volunteers and four ambulances, serving Teaneck and its residents around the clock, without pay. In 2011, TVAC responded to over 4,300 emergency calls, routinely saving lives and reducing suffering with their rapid response and application of Basic Life Support skills. Throughout the last 70 years, TVAC has never charged a patient nor the patient's family for service. The services of the Corps are entirely free of charge, whether the patients are residents of Teaneck, visitors, or individuals who need medical service while passing through the town. The Corps also renders service in nearby towns as part of a mutual aid system, again without charge.
The Richard Rodda Community Center, located near Route 4 at the south end of Votee Park, is a 50,900-square-foot (4,730 m2) community and recreation center completed in 1998. The facility includes two full sized gyms, a dance studio, a kitchen and several multipurpose rooms of different sizes. The Teaneck Recreation Department offers educational, sports and arts programs throughout the year. The Rodda Center is home to the Senior Citizens Service Center, which offers educational and fitness activities for adults ages 55 and up, and serves hot lunch daily, provided by the Bergen County Division of Senior Services. The Community Center also provides a WiFi access point, which resulted in a police investigation in January 2012 after its identifying name was changed to a racist slur.
Holy Name Medical Center is a fully accredited, not-for-profit community hospital. Founded and sponsored by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Peace in 1925, the hospital has grown to become a comprehensive 361-bed medical center. Affiliation with NewYork-Presbyterian Healthcare System further brings the advantages of large urban hospitals to the community, with access to clinical trials and expanded education for its physicians. Holy Name Medical Center has undertaken an ambitious effort to provide comprehensive health care services to underinsured and uninsured Korean patients from a wide area with its growing "Korean Medical Program", including attracting 1,500 people to its annual seventh annual Korean health fair in 2014. To accommodate the township's Orthodox Jewish community, the hospital offers a Shabbat elevator, a room prepared for families of patients staying at the hospital during Shabbat and Jewish holidays, as well as a lounge offering kosher food.
Roads and highways
Teaneck is situated along a number of major transportation routes, including the New Jersey Turnpike (a portion of Interstate 95) and Interstate 80. As of May 2010[update], the township had a total of 119.41 miles (192.17 km) of roadways, of which 103.95 miles (167.29 km) were maintained by the municipality, 10.70 miles (17.22 km) by Bergen County, 3.47 miles (5.58 km) by the New Jersey Department of Transportation, and 1.29 miles (2.08 km) by the New Jersey Turnpike Authority.
Teaneck is the eastern terminus of Interstate 80, which stretches west to San Francisco since the dedication of a segment in Salt Lake City on August 22, 1986, marking the completion of the first transcontinental portion of the Interstate Highway System. As the second-longest Interstate route, the highway stretches nearly coast-to-coast for 2,899.5 miles (4,666.3 km), shorter than only Interstate 90. The easternmost 0.9 miles (1.4 km) of Interstate 80 runs from Bogota to the junction with Interstate 95.
NJ Route 4 traverses east-west through Teaneck, running 2.5 miles (4.0 km) from Hackensack to Englewood. Unlike all other municipalities situated along the highway, there is no commercial development or billboards, with the open space along the highway maintained by the Township Council's Preserve the Greenbelt Committee. Route 4 narrows from three lanes in each direction on a section between Belle Avenue and Englewood, causing rush-hour traffic backups that may extend for miles. The New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) has discussed a series of proposed replacement projects for bridges over the highway, pending completion of feasibility studies and design work. While the township has indicated its willingness to cede space along the Greenbelt for a third lane, the lack of space for a shoulder may preclude the creation of a full three-lane route through Teaneck. In November 2013, NJDOT informed Teaneck officials that it had no plans to widen the highway, as the need to focus the limited funds available on replacing and repairing deteriorating bridges and infrastructure precluded the implementation of a widening project.
Interstate 95 heads north for 1.3 miles (2.1 km) through Teaneck from Ridgefield Park to Leonia. New Jersey's other main trunk route, the Garden State Parkway, can be reached just a few miles west of Teaneck. Access to New York City is available for motorists by way of the George Washington Bridge in Fort Lee (via Route 4 or Interstate 95), or through the Lincoln Tunnel in Hudson County (via the NJ Turnpike) into Midtown Manhattan.
County roads in Teaneck include Teaneck Road, Queen Anne Road, River Road and Fort Lee Road. Cedar Lane, another county road, crosses the Hackensack River and connects to Hackensack over the Anderson Street Bridge.
New Jersey Transit bus service is available in Teaneck, with frequent service on Teaneck Road, Route 4 and Cedar Lane, and less-frequent service on other main streets. NJTransit bus service is offered to the Port Authority Bus Terminal in Midtown Manhattan on the 155, 157, 165R, 167 and 168 routes; to the George Washington Bridge Bus Station in Upper Manhattan on the 171, 175, 178, 182 and 186 routes; and to other New Jersey communities served on the 83, 751, 753, 755, 756, 772 and 780 routes. Scheduled bus service is also available from Rockland Coaches to the Port Authority Bus Terminal, on the 21T from New Milford and on the 11T/11AT from Stony Point, New York. Saddle River Tours / Ameribus provides service to the George Washington Bridge Bus Station on route 11C. Spanish Transportation and several other operators provide frequent jitney service along Route 4 between Paterson, New Jersey and the George Washington Bridge Bus Station
While there is currently no passenger train operation in Teaneck, train service is available across the Hackensack River at the New Bridge Landing station in River Edge and at the Anderson Street station in Hackensack. NJTransit's Pascack Valley Line runs north-south to Hoboken Terminal, with connections to the PATH train from the Hoboken PATH station, and with NJT connecting service to Penn Station in Midtown Manhattan via the Secaucus Junction transfer station. At Hoboken Terminal, connections are also available to NY Waterway ferry service (to the World Financial Center and other destinations) and to the Hudson-Bergen Light Rail system (serving locations along the Hudson River in Hudson County).
Teaneck is split east and west by railroad tracks, which currently provide freight service by CSX Transportation. Until 1959, passenger train service was provided on these same tracks by the West Shore Railroad, with Teaneck stations at Cedar Lane and West Englewood Avenue. Commuter service was available from these stations, with 44 passenger trains operating daily to and from Weehawken, where Hudson River ferry service was available to New York City at 42nd Street and at the Financial District in Lower Manhattan. Train service from Teaneck was also available north to Albany, along the west shore of the river. Efforts are ongoing to restore some passenger train service on this line for commuters heading toward New York City, including extension of the Hudson-Bergen Light Rail service via the Northern Branch to Englewood or Tenafly.
Teaneck's closest airport in New Jersey with scheduled passenger service is Newark Liberty International Airport, 20 miles (32 km) away (about 27 minutes) in Newark / Elizabeth. New York City's LaGuardia Airport is 15 miles (24 km) away in Flushing, Queens via the George Washington Bridge, an estimated 22 minutes in ideal conditions. John F. Kennedy International Airport in Queens is 26 miles (42 km) and 34 minutes from Teaneck. Teterboro Airport offers general aviation service, and is a 9-mile (14 km) drive (about 13 minutes).
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- Staff. "PINBALL IN JERSEY BANNED BY COURT; Ruling, Upholding Teaneck Law, Terms Machines Ingenious Gambling Devices RAIDS START AT ONCE Essex Prosecutor Tells Police in 22 Municipalities to Seize the Games", The New York Times, February 25, 1942. Accessed January 22, 2012. "The New Jersey Supreme Court ruled today possession of pinball or bagatelle machines to be illegal and upheld the Township of Teaneck in banning their use under a local ordinance."
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- Fallon, Scott. "Vigil recalls a life ended far too soon", The Record (Bergen County), July 10, 2007. Accessed March 5, 2009. "Smith, 15, was shot dead by then 17-year-old Zechariah Eaton after a late night house party had broken up. Eaton and three alleged members of the Bloods street gang who also attended the party got involved in one of several scuffles that broke out in front of the house at the end of the night, police said at the time."
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- Salazar, Carolyn and Tsai, Jason. "Report: Police hype gangs to score funding", The Record (Bergen County), July 19, 2007. Accessed March 5, 2009. "Teaneck recently approved hiring five more officers to form an anti-gang unit. Police are seeking $500,000 in funding for the initiative, making them one of several departments that are looking to tap state and federal grants. 'We're definitely seeing an increase in gang activity over the years,' Teaneck Police Chief Paul Tiernan said Wednesday. 'But we realize that we're not going to arrest our way out of the problem. We're also doing a lot of outreach efforts and prevention efforts.' Retired Teaneck Officer Fred Greene said he, for one, isn't convinced. 'They are hyping the gang problem,' said Greene, who attended a recent gang presentation in town. 'It really has to do with getting more equipment and manpower than having an actual problem.'"
- Markos, Kibret. "Ex-principal in Teaneck gets 1 year", The Record (Bergen County), November 3, 2007. Accessed March 5, 2009.
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- Rimbach, Jean. "Unsolved killings haunt Teaneck", The Record (Bergen County), May 28, 2011. Accessed December 9, 2011. "Windows of the charred Elm Avenue home where Robert Cantor lived and died are boarded up. An orange sign declaring the house unsafe for occupancy is stuck on the padlocked front door and fading rhododendron blossoms hover over an untended lawn.... Nearly three months after Cantor was shot and his two-story house set ablaze, there has been no arrest in the case. Meanwhile, the August slaying of longtime political watchdog Joan Davis, who was found stabbed, hands bound in her burning home, also remains unsolved."
- Schemo, Diana Jean. "Tackling Foreign Students' Visa Troubles, Fairleigh Dickinson Finds Errors in I.N.S. Database", The New York Times, November 17, 2002. Accessed September 30, 2009. "The largest private university in New Jersey, Fairleigh Dickinson found itself tangled in bureaucracy over the last two months, as a problem in the I.N.S. computer system blocked foreign students accepted for admission this January from obtaining visas."
- 50th Main Support Battalion. Accessed January 15, 2007.
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- Waite, Thomas L. "POSTINGS: At Languishing Teaneck Retail Center; And Now, Offices", The New York Times, July 24, 1988. Accessed September 30, 2009. "At Glenpointe in Teaneck, N.J., Alfred Sanzari built 160 town houses and has sold all but five. He built 567,000 square feet (52,700 m2) of office space in two seven-story towers and has leased 95 percent of it."
- Glenpointe Centre: About The Property, Alfred Sanzari Enterprises. Accessed December 16, 2014. "A spectacular mixed-use complex featuring 650,000 square feet"
- Aberback, Brian. "Charting Teaneck's business growth", The Record (Bergen County), January 8, 2007. Accessed March 5, 2009. "The report includes various suggestions for each of the township's four business districts – Cedar Lane, north Teaneck Road, West Englewood/The Plaza, and DeGraw Avenue/Queen Anne Road – including that each district have an executive director."
- Aberback, Brian. "Work to start on Teaneck's Cedar Lane improvements", The Record (Bergen County), April 15, 2005. Accessed July 5, 2007.
- Chadderdon, Lisa. "The Sweet Smell of Success: A building in Teaneck, New Jersey is the source of some of the world's most popular fragrances. Meet Givaudan Roure's perfumers, the 'ghostwriters' behind your favorite scents.", Fast Company (magazine), March 1998. Accessed December 25, 2013. "In fact, more than 30% of the world's fine perfumes for women can be traced to Givaudan Roure – and to an inconspicuous brick building set back from the street in suburban Teaneck, New Jersey. Inside the building, designed by Der Scutt (architect of the Trump Tower) and constructed in 1972, is an environment that fosters creativity."
- Cohen, Noah. "Insect-themed Entertainment Center Planned for Windsor Road: Butterfly conservatory to be built at former Givaudan building.", TeaneckPatch, September 20, 2011. Accessed December 25, 2013. "An entertainment center featuring insect exhibits and a live butterfly conservatory is planned at the former Givaudan building on Windsor Road, near the Teaneck border with Bergenfield. The former fragrance company complex was sold to a “children's education organization called World of Wings,” according to Givaudan corporate spokesman Jeff Peppet."
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- Our History, Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra. Accessed December 18, 2013. "In 1936, a dream became a reality when the Teaneck Symphony Orchestra was formed."
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- Beckerman, Jim. "A First Night leap for Teaneck", The Record (Bergen County), December 19, 2004. Accessed March 5, 2009. "In fact, Teaneck's seventh annual First Night celebration will be chock-full of traditional after-dark events beginning at 6:30 p.m., and most of them, like the circus, illustrate this year's First Night theme, 'East Meets West.'"
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- Baker, Rebecca. "Cedar Lane Cinemas in Teaneck goes dark; owner says cost of going digital too high", The Record (Bergen County), November 30, 2012. Accessed December 18, 2013. "Teaneck’s iconic movie theater has shut down indefinitely, showing its last film a week ago, the latest in a string of small theaters across the country to close because they are unable or unwilling to upgrade technology."
- Cohen, Noah. "Teaneck Movie Theater Aims To Open by October; New owner working to modernize Teaneck’s lone cinema", TeaneckPatch, August 4, 2013. Accessed August 13, 2013. "The owner of the new Teaneck Cinemas, Matthew Latten, is aiming to open in mid-September, with a target opening set by Oct. 1, the post said. Latten told Patch in May that he initially hoped to open in July or August, but faced some paperwork delays."
- Beckerman, Jim. "Teaneck theater reopens Friday with new look and name", The Record (Bergen County), December 17, 2013. Accessed December 18, 2013. "Teaneck Cinemas – formerly Cedar Lane Cinemas – is slated to reopen Friday with a new name, a new management, new state-of-the-art digital projectors, new high-back seats, new marquee and a new retro art-deco look."
- Graham, Bob. "Cage's Wonderful Lives", San Francisco Chronicle, December 22, 2000. Accessed December 25, 2013. "Jack slowly discovers that he has traded Manhattan for Teaneck, N.J., his penthouse for a four-bedroom house and mortgage, his Ferrari for a minivan."
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- McGrath, Charles. "Shalom Auslander: An Orthodox Jewish outsider grapples with his past", International Herald Tribune, October 3, 2007. Accessed December 25, 2013.
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- Bondy, Stefan. "The Nets have finally found a home in Brooklyn;From Dr. J to Deron Williams, from Teaneck to Long Island, and through the swamps of Jersey, the Nets arrive at the Barclays Center", Daily News (New York), October 28, 2012. Accessed October 28, 2015.
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- "Fairleigh Dickinson University Installs FieldTurf at University Stadium; Knights' men's and women's soccer teams scheduled to begin play on new surface this fall.", Fairleigh Dickinson University press release, dated August 3, 2004. Accessed December 18, 2013. "The Fairleigh Dickinson University men's and women's soccer teams will have a new surface to play on at University Stadium this fall as installation of FieldTurf is underway. The project is scheduled to be completed in September. University Stadium has played host to NCAA Men's Soccer Tournament First Round games in each of the last two seasons as well as the ECAC Women's Soccer Tournament semifinals last year."
- Staff. "FDU baseball complex gets bequest", The Record (Bergen County), December 18, 2007.
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- Nash, Margo. "ART; With His Art, One Can Find A River's History on a Sign", The New York Times, September 10, 2000. Accessed December 18, 2013. "WHEN Richard Mills, a Teaneck artist and environmentalist, takes children on tours of the Hackensack River, he likes to ask them to draw pictures of what paradise looks like.... He did research, talked to old-timers and local historians, and created a series of 16 signs he calls Hackensack River Stories.The vinyl laminated signs will be posted this week near the river in Teaneck along the Greenway, which runs from Bogota to New Milford."
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- Johnson, Paul H. "5 candidates vying for 3 seats on Teaneck Council", The Record (Bergen County), May 8, 2004. Accessed December 3, 2014. "Five candidates are facing off for three seats.They are Mayor Jacqueline Kates, who is seeking her third term, Deborah Veach and Marie Warnke, who are both running for their second term, and challengers Monica Honis and Eric Cinotti."
- Aberback, Brian. "Teaneck's deputy mayor resigns to become its prosecutor – Veach first elected to council in 2000", The Record (Bergen County), October 9, 2005. Accessed December 3, 2014. "Deputy Mayor Deborah Veach has resigned her council seat to become the township prosecutor."
- Ax, Joseph. "Rivals split the vote", The Record (Bergen County), May 14, 2008. "Challenger Barbara Toffler surged to victory in Tuesday's bitterly contested council election, finishing first in a field of eight, and Councilwoman Monica Honis and newcomer Barbara Toffler also captured four-year terms."
- Ax, Joseph. "Teaneck picks first Muslim mayor", The Record (Bergen County)', July 1, 2010. Accessed July 7, 2010.
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- Superville, Denisa R. "Two challengers join Teaneck council", The Record (Bergen County), May 8, 2012. Accessed July 10, 2012. "Hameeduddin received the highest number of votes — 4,374, according to preliminary results from the township clerk’s office. He will be joined on the council by Mark Schwartz, a member of the Planning Board and the volunteer ambulance corps who received 3,150 votes, and Henry J. Pruitt, a school board member and retired educator who received 2,872 votes. Voters rejected the re-election bids of two councilwomen, Barbara Toffler and Monica Honis. Toffler, a retired professor, received 2,526 votes, while Honis, who teaches English as a second language in Clifton, received 2,238 votes. A sixth candidate, Alexander Rashin, a scientist in computational molecular biophysics, got 1,049 votes."
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- Sullivan, S.P. "Teaneck mayor: New congressional map, which splits town in two, 'a complete surprise'", The Star-Ledger, January 5, 2012. Accessed January 16, 2012. "The town of Teaneck finds itself, quite literally, in the middle of the confusion. The re-drawn congressional map splits the town between Garrett's 5th congressional district and the 9th, which is a combination of districts previously held by Rothman and Pascrell."
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- Ensslin, John C. "Labor leader Thomas J. Sullivan Jr. takes oath to fill Bergen County freeholder vacancy", The Record (Bergen County), January 28, 2015. Accessed January 28, 2015. "Bergen County’s newest freeholder, labor leader Thomas J. Sullivan Jr., was sworn in Wednesday, vowing to 'listen to everyone’s voice'.... He would next have to run in the November election to serve the last remaining year on Tedesco’s three-year term."
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- Prosnitz, Howard. "Teaneck Council approves $65M budget", Teaneck Suburbanite, May 18, 2011. Accessed November 18, 2011. "The owner of the average house in Teaneck assessed at $465,300 will pay $3,946 in municipal taxes in 2011, an increase of $111 over 2010."
- Aberback, Brian; and Sheingold, David. "Teaneck's seismic tax shift", The Record (Bergen County), February 13, 2007. Accessed March 5, 2009.
- Superville, Denisa. R. "Teaneck looks to ease tax-appeal pain", The Record (Bergen County), March 13, 2013. Accessed August 13, 2013. "The township is counting on state permission to spread the payment of about $2.2 million in tax appeal judgments over three years and avoid hitting homeowners with a much greater tax increase this year.... Tax appeals are proving to be extremely nettlesome to the township: Between 2012 and 2013, the borough’s ratables declined to $5.91 billion from $6.02 billion, largely as a result of reduced assessments from successful tax appeals."
- Burrow, Megan. "Teaneck approves revaluation contract", Teaneck Suburbanite, August 29, 2013. Accessed February 4, 2014. "After paying nearly $2.2 million in tax appeal refunds this year, the Teaneck Council awarded a $712,470 contract last week to Appraisal Systems Inc., which will perform a revaluation of properties in town next year.... But because of the number of properties in town and inspection requirements, the township has informed the county Board of Taxation it will not be able to complete the revaluation by the Oct. 1 deadline and requested an extension to Oct. 1, 2014 for the tax year of 2015."
- Taxpayers' Guide to Education Spending 2013, New Jersey Department of Education. Accessed December 19, 2013.
- Aberback, Brian. "Teaneck school board OKs budget cuts", The Record (Bergen County), May 18, 2006. Accessed March 5, 2009.
- Ax, Joseph. "Teaneck Council slashes $1 million from school budget", The Record (Bergen County), May 13, 2009. Accessed September 30, 2009. "The Township Council on Tuesday formally cut $1 million from the defeated $94.8 million school budget. "
- Prosnitz, Howard. "Teaneck cuts $6M from school budget", Teaneck Suburbanite, May 20, 2010. Accessed December 9, 2011. "The council cut the defeated $95 million school budget by more than $6.1 million, eliminating five assistant principals, several curriculum supervisors and staff development coordinators. In all, approximately 40 positions were cut, on top of 20 that had previously been eliminating by the Board of Education."
- Prosnitz, Howard. "Teaneck's BOE cuts $6.1 million from budget", Teaneck Suburbanite, June 20, 2010. Accessed December 9, 2011. "More than a hundred persons, including parents, current and former Teaneck High School students and teachers wearing union T-shirts, were present at the special board of education meeting on June 2, at which the board voted 8–0 to cut $6.1 million from the 2010–11 school budget.... A total of 77 positions were eliminated, including the director of School/Community Relations, two librarian/media specialists, two curriculum supervisors, the manager of information systems, three secretaries, three maintenance workers and 21 paraprofessionals."
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- Ax, Joseph. "Charter school plan killed", The Record (Bergen County), April 16, 2010. Accessed December 22, 2011. "The town's only charter school, the Teaneck Community Charter School, serves students from Kindergarten through eighth grade. The school's organizers had planned to house it in a rented space on Palisade Avenue formerly occupied by the Teaneck Community Charter School, which moved into a new building on Chestnut Avenue last fall."
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- Chasan, Aliza. "Heichal HaTorah Joins Ranks of Local High Schools", The Jewish Link of Bergen County, August 9, 2013. Accessed December 18, 2013. "Heichal HaTorah opens in Teaneck at the start of this upcoming academic year with 17 students who are making the most of it.... The school will be located in the Teaneck Jewish Center which is already outfitted with classrooms, laboratories, a gym and a pool."
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- Burrow, Megan. "Al-Ghazaly Elementary School in Teaneck readies for opening", Teaneck Suburbanite, August 29, 2013. Accessed December 19, 2013. "Iman El-Dessouky, a board member at Al-Ghazaly School, said the change was precipitated when the school secured a bigger building for its high school students in Wayne.... Originally, El-Dessouky said, the school planned to use the Teaneck campus for pre-kindergarten through first grade students, but after the school held an open house for parents and prospective students earlier this month, the board decided to expand its offerings up to third grade."
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- Ax, Joseph. "Teaneck fire chief retiring after nearly 40 years with department", The Record (Bergen County), March 31, 2010. Accessed January 16, 2012. "Fire Chief Robert Montgomery is retiring effective Thursday, capping nearly four decades as a member of the town’s fire department.... Deputy Chief Anthony Verley will take over as acting chief until Township Manager William Broughton makes a permanent appointment. Verley, who will earn $145,500 in the new post, would be the first black fire chief in town."
- Diduch, Mary. "Putting out Teaneck’s fires for 100 years", The Record (Bergen County), October 4, 2015. Accessed October 28, 2015. "To mark its centennial, the department is holding an open house today at its headquarters, at 1231 Teaneck Road. "
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- Feeney, Michael J. "WiFi signal with racist, anti-Semitic slur in Teaneck, NJ sparks police probe; signal came from rec center routerMom of two shocked, dismayed as iphone flashes hateful WiFi signal as daughter danced", Daily News (New York), January 18, 2012. Accessed December 18, 2013. "A bigot named their WiFi signal 'F--- All Jews and N----' — and now cops are investigating. The hateful signal I.D. popped up on the iPhone of a 28-year-old mom inside a Teaneck, N.J. recreation center, where her 3-year-old daughter was attending dance class. The offending signal was coming from a router connected in the Richard Rodda Community Center in the township, located 10 miles outside New York City."
- Morrison, Aaron. "Korean Medical Program draws 1,500 to Holy Name Medical Center in Teaneck", The Record (Bergen County), September 27, 2014. Accessed December 16, 2014. "Saturday marked the seventh year that the Korean Medical Program at Holy Name Medical Center in Teaneck hosted its health festival. It drew more than 1,500 Korean-Americans, who were seen by nearly 80 Korean-speaking physicians from the tri-state area."
- Williams, Barbara. "Annual Korean health fair draws crowds at Holy Name Medical Center in Teaneck", The Record (Bergen County), October 20, 2012. Accessed December 18, 2013. "Hundreds of Koreans, hailing from all parts of New Jersey, Manhattan and New York State, flooded Holy Name Medical Center in Teaneck on Saturday for the hospital’s annual Korean Medical Program’s health fair.... More than 1,000 Korean patients underwent blood tests two weeks ago — part of the hospital’s massive undertaking to provide health care to uninsured or underinsured Korean residents. By 10 a.m., more than 500 people had already entered the hospital and fair organizers were expecting between 1,500 and 2,000 by the end of the day."
- Larson, Hilary. "Teaneck’s Youth Movement; Modern Orthodox twenty- and thirty-somethings carving out their niche in established community.", Jewish Week, August 24, 2010. Accessed December 18, 2013. "Indeed, Holy Name has outreach programs tailored to its surrounding populations; for its large observant Jewish clientele, there is a Sabbath elevator and a Sabbath family room with a fully stocked kosher lounge, and it is the only area hospital accredited by Jewish Hospice, Kates noted."
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- Kleimann, James. "State refuses to widen Route 4 to clear bottleneck in Teaneck", NJ.com, November 13, 2013. Accessed December 18, 2013. "According to Teaneck Patch, in a letter to township officials who requested the change, the transit agency claims it doesn't have the funds available to relieve commuters of the congestion. Route 4 is only two lanes in both directions between Belle Avenue and Englewood before expanding to three lanes on each side. Between that stretch, the highway often resembles a parking lot."
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- Northern Branch Corridor Project, New Jersey Transit. Accessed December 22, 2011. "The Northern Branch is a freight rail line owned by CSX Transportation that runs through the Hudson and Bergen County communities of Tenafly, Englewood, Leonia, Palisades Park, Ridgefield, Fairview and North Bergen."
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