Jersey City, bordered by the Hudson River on the east and the Hackensack River and Newark Bay on the west, is the second largest city in New Jersey and one of the most racially diverse cities in the world. Jersey City was the first stop for many immigrants entering the USA through Ellis Island. Downtown Jersey City is the 12th largest in the nation, with over 18 million square feet of office space. The city has benefited from its proximity to lower Manhattan, and many Jersey City companies are extensions of New York City based companies. Jersey City is also home to a large number of professional artists who are attracted by city incentives, a lower cost of housing and easy access to Manhattan. The city encourages artists by offering affordable live/work studio spaces among the many shops and restaurants on Central Avenue. While traditionally the economy of Jersey City was primarily based on transportation and distribution of goods, the city is now focused on service industries, with emphasis on finance, insurance, and real estate.
Jersey City History
European settlement in what is today known as Jersey City began in the 1600’s with the first settlement established in 1630 by the Dutch West India Company. The English asserted control over the settlement in 1674, holding the territory until they were driven out of America in 1783. Jersey City was incorporated in 1820. In 1836, the construction of a canal and railroad lines connecting with the city’s shipping ports established Jersey City as a transportation and distribution center for raw materials and finished goods. Between 1950 and 1980, Jersey City’s population fell from 299,000 to under 224,000 as factory workers moved from their urban dwellings to newly built suburbs. Today, Jersey City’s population is 254,000. Learn more about Jersey City history with the following link.
Jersey City Weather
Jersey City experiences four distinct seasons with a cool and damp spring, a somewhat humid summer, a dry autumn, and a cold winter. The historical average winter snowfall is 22 inches, but that number can vary greatly from year to year. Precipitation averages 41 inches per year, and is distributed evenly throughout the year. Daytime temperatures are typically 20 °F higher than nighttime temperatures throughout the year. July is the hottest month, with average high temperatures around 85 °F and January is the coldest month, with average low temperatures in the low 20’s. Learn more about Jersey City weather conditions using these links.
Jersey City Transportation
Jersey City benefits from a highly accessible public transit system operated by the Port Authority Trans Hudson (PATH) mass transit service. This 24-hour service has four light rail stations in Jersey City with routes to Hoboken, Lower Manhattan, Midtown Manhattan, and Newark. Bus service provides transportation on local routes throughout the city, and water taxis and ferries provide alternative routes to lower Manhattan. When flying, travelers have the options of Newark Liberty International Airport, LaGuardia Airport, or John F. Kennedy International Airport.
Cost of Living in Jersey City
The cost of living in Jersey City is 7% lower than the New Jersey average, but it is still 19% above the national average. The amenities, quality housing, and proximity to lower Manhattan make Jersey City a convenient place to live. Compare your budget to living in Jersey City with the following links.
Jersey City Schools
The Jersey City Public School System is operated by the State of New Jersey and serves more than 30,000 students in 31 elementary schools, 26 middle schools, and 7 high schools. Additionally, there are 10 schools providing selective programs to suit a wide range of interests and talents.
Jersey City Hospitals
Hackensack University Medical Center is located in nearby Hackensack, New Jersey. This general medical center and teaching hospital is ranked as the number one hospital in New Jersey and the number four hospital in the New York City metropolitan area. If you’re planning a move to Jersey City, find out about all the medical resources available to you:
Jersey City Real Estate
Jersey City has a variety of neighborhoods with different characters. Greenville is quiet and residential, the Heights is increasingly more artsy and eclectic, and the Waterfront is great for those who enjoy fine dining restaurants and nightlife. The median home value in Jersey City is around $360,000 and those who wish to live and work in Jersey City may qualify for special incentives from the State of New Jersey. Explore properties for sale using the following links.
Jersey City Hotels
People who travel on a budget know that hotels are cheaper when you cross the Hudson River. Jersey City has several nice hotels that are clean, accommodating and convenient, while costing less than their NY counterparts. You can choose from among name brands like Hyatt, Westin, Marriot, and DoubleTree. Families and large groups might also consider a short-term apartment rental, a surprisingly affordable option. Start exploring your accommodations in Jersey City with these links.
Jersey City Restaurants
With a diverse ethnic population, Jersey City offers a world tour of dining experiences! From the exotic flavors of Rumi Turkish Grill to the Cuban dishes at La Conguita and Vietnamese cuisine at Saigon Cafe you will find plenty of choices to keep your appetite satisfied. NYC pizza has nothing on Razza Pizza Artigianale where farm-to-table artisan pizzas are baked in a brick oven and served with an array of beverages that include imported Italian craft beer. For breakfast, City Diner offers an upscale atmosphere and a convenient location near the major hotels along the waterfront in the Paulus Hook neighborhood. Locate your next dining discovery using these links.
Things to Do in Jersey City
As an artist enclave, Jersey City has a number of galleries centered around the Powerhouse Arts District, but further west in Journal Square, the Mana Contemporary building also features working artist studios, galleries, and exhibitions. A few blocks east on Newark Ave is the area known as Little India, where it is fun to go window-shopping among the sari shops and henna studios. At the top of any Jersey City visitor’s list is a trip to the waterfront and Liberty State Park. Opened in 1976, the park features a spectacular view of the Manhattan skyline, and excellent views of Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty. The Central Railroad Terminal at Liberty State Park is a magnificent building that was once where immigrants would board trains to their new homes in America. From the terminal you can take a ferry to Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty. The museum at Ellis Island features artifacts, photos, videos, and displays that chronicle a history of American immigration. The Liberty Science Center is fun and educational for the entire family, and has the nation’s largest IMAX dome-screen theater. Explore events and activities in Jersey City with these links.