Clark, New Jersey

Clark, New Jersey
—  Township  —
Motto: Growth, Industry, History[1]
Map of Clark Township in Union County. Inset: Location of Union County in New Jersey.
Census Bureau map of Clark, New Jersey.
Coordinates: 40°37′13″N 74°18′34″W / 40.62028°N 74.30944°W / 40.62028; -74.30944Coordinates: 40°37′13″N 74°18′34″W / 40.62028°N 74.30944°W / 40.62028; -74.30944
Country United States
State New Jersey
County Union
Incorporated March 23, 1864
 – Type Faulkner Act Mayor-Council
 – Mayor Sal Bonaccorso (2012)[2]
 – Administrator John Laezza[3]
 – Total 4.49 sq mi (11.6 km2)
 – Land 4.34 sq mi (11.3 km2)
 – Water 0.14 sq mi (0.4 km2)  3.12%
Elevation[5] 56 ft (17 m)
Population (2010 Census)[6][7]
 – Total 14,756
 – Density 3,286.4/sq mi (1,272.1/km2)
Time zone Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 – Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP code 07066[8]
Area code(s) 732/848
FIPS code 34-13150[9][10]
GNIS feature ID 0882216[11]

Clark is a township in southern Union County, New Jersey, United States. As of the 2010 United States Census, the township population was 14,756.[7]



Robinson Plantation House

The territory that would become Clark was originally a part of several of the early villages, the Robinson Plantation House[12][13] and the The Squire Hartshorne House, buildings from the late 17th century[14] are remnants of the era. The Homestead Farm at Oak Ridge was the site of a skirmish preceding the Battle of Short Hills.[15] In 1858, after the City of Rahway was incorporated the area of present-day Clark was designated as the 5th Ward of Rahway. Clark was incorporated as a township by an Act of the New Jersey Legislature on March 23, 1864, from portions of Rahway.[16] The Township was named for Abraham Clark, a signer of the Declaration of Independence. Portions of the township were taken to form Cranford Township (March 14, 1871) and Winfield Township (August 6, 1941).[16]

New Jersey Monthly magazine ranked Clark as its 33rd best place to live in its 2008 rankings of the "Best Places To Live" in New Jersey.[17]


Clark is at 40°37′13″N 74°18′34″W / 40.620336°N 74.309340°W / 40.620336; -74.309340 (40.620336, -74.309340).[18]

According to the United States Census Bureau, Clark has a total area of 4.49 square miles (11.6 km2), of which, 4.34 square miles (11.2 km2) of it is land and 0.14 square miles (0.36 km2) of it (3.12%) is water.[4]


Historical populations
Census Pop.
1930 1,474
1940 2,083 41.3%
1950 4,352 108.9%
1960 12,195 180.2%
1970 18,829 54.4%
1980 16,699 −11.3%
1990 14,629 −12.4%
2000 14,597 −0.2%
2010 14,756 1.1%
Population sources:
1930- 1990[19] 2000[20] 2010[7]

As of the census[9] of 2000, there were 14,597 people, 5,637 households, and 4,126 families residing in the township. The population density was 3,359.6 people per square mile (1,298.6/km2). There were 5,709 housing units at an average density of 1,314.0 per square mile (507.9/km2). The racial makeup of the township was 95.61% White, 0.30% African American, 0.01% Native American, 2.75% Asian, 0.63% from other races, and 0.69% from two or more races. Also Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.67% of the population.[20]

There were 5,637 households out of which 28.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 61.4% were married couples living together, 9.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.8% were non-families. 24.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.56 and the average family size was 3.07.[20]

In the township the population was spread out with 20.8% under the age of 18, 5.4% from 18 to 24, 27.6% from 25 to 44, 24.5% from 45 to 64, and 21.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 43 years. For every 100 females there were 90.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 86.4 males.[20]

The median income for a household in the township was $65,019, and the median income for a family was $77,291. Males had a median income of $54,543 versus $36,361 for females. The per capita income for the township was $29,883. About 1.0% of families and 1.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including 2.0% of those under age 18 and 2.7% of those age 65 or over.[20]

Surrounding communities


Local government

Clark Township is governed under the Faulkner Act (Mayor-Council) system of municipal government. The Clark Township Committee consists of seven members, with three elected at-large from the township as a whole and four elected from wards. Four seats come up for election every two years on an alternating basis, with the three Council-at-large seats and Mayor coming up to vote, and then the four ward seats, all elected to four-year terms of office.[21][22]

As of 2011, the Mayor of Clark is Sal Bonaccorso, whose term of office ends December 31, 2012. Members of the Township Council are Council President Frank Mazzarella (First Ward, 2014), Council Vice President Sheila Whiting (at-large, 2012), Angel Albanese (at-large, 2012), Alvin Barr (at-large, 2012), Richard Kazanowski (Third Ward, 2014), Patrick O'Connor (Second Ward, 2014), Brian P. Toal (Fourth Ward, 2014).[3][23]

Federal, state and county representation

Clark is in the 7th Congressional district and is part of New Jersey's 22nd state legislative district.[24] The legislative district was kept unchanged by the New Jersey Apportionment Commission based on the results of the 2010 Census.[7]

New Jersey's Seventh Congressional District is represented by Leonard Lance (R, Clinton Township). New Jersey is represented in the United States Senate by Frank Lautenberg (D, Cliffside Park) and Bob Menendez (D, Hoboken).

22nd Legislative District of the New Jersey Legislature, which is represented in the New Jersey Senate by Nicholas Scutari (D, Linden) and in the New Jersey General Assembly by Jerry Green (D, Plainfield) and Linda Stender (D, Fanwood).[25] The Governor of New Jersey is Chris Christie (R, Mendham).[26] The Lieutenant Governor of New Jersey is Kim Guadagno (R, Monmouth Beach).[27]

Union County is governed by a Board of Chosen Freeholders, whose nine members are elected at-large to three-year terms of office on a staggered basis with three seats coming up for election each year.[28] As of 2011, Union County's Freeholders are Chairman Deborah P. Scanlon (Union, term ends December 31, 2012)[29], Vice Chairman Alexander Mirabella (Fanwood, 2012)[30], Linda Carter (Plainfield, 2013)[31], Angel G. Estrada (Elizabeth, 2011)[32], Christopher Hudak (Linden, 2011)[33], Mohamed S. Jalloh (Roselle, 2012)[34], Bette Jane Kowalski (Cranford, 2013)[35], Daniel P. Sullivan (Elizabeth, 2013)[36] and Nancy Ward (Linden, 2011).[37][38]


The Clark Public School District serves students in grades K - 12. Schools in the district (with 2009-10 enrollment data from the National Center for Education Statistics[39]) are Frank K. Hehnly Elementary School (K-5; 517 students), Valley Road Elementary School (K-5; 427), Carl H. Kumpf Middle School for grades 6 - 8 (544) and Arthur L. Johnson High School for grades 9 - 12 (874). Also, students that excel in middle school may choose to go to an advanced magnet school. Students from Garwood, attend the district's high school as part of a sending/receiving relationship with the Garwood Public Schools.[40]

Mother Seton Regional High School is an all-girls, private, Roman Catholic high school, operated under the auspices of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Newark.[41]

The Clark Scholarship Fund is a not-for-profit organization that has provided need-based scholarships to college-bound Clark residents since 1955, funded entirely by contributions from individuals and businesses.[42]


The Clark Circle currently connects Central Avenue, Brant Avenue, Valley Road, and the Garden State Parkway via Exit 135.

The Lehigh Valley Railroad served the town with a passenger station in the Picton section.[43] The rail line remains active under Conrail's auspices. A spur line, the Bloodgood Branch, still serves one customer.

New Jersey Transit provides bus service to New York City and points in-between. The 112 route provides service to the Port Authority Bus Terminal in Midtown Manhattan.[44]

Newark Liberty International Airport is approximately 11 miles (18 km) from Clark.

Notable residents

Notable current and former residents of Clark include:


  1. ^ "125th anniversary, Township of Clark, N.J., 1864-1989:growth, industry, history : let us celebrate, September 16 & 17, 1989", Township of Clark's 125th Anniversary Committee, 1989. Accessed July 11, 2011.
  2. ^ 2011 New Jersey Mayors Directory, New Jersey Department of Community Affairs. Accessed July 11, 2011.
  3. ^ a b Mayor & Council, Clark Township. April 15, 2011. Note that ward members are listed with a 2010 term-end date as of the date accessed.
  4. ^ a b GCT-PH1. Population, Housing Units, Area, and Density: 2000 for Union County, New Jersey -- County Subdivision and Place, United States Census Bureau. Accessed September 18, 2011.
  5. ^ U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Township of Clark, Geographic Names Information System. Accessed January 4, 2008.
  6. ^ Census 2010: Union County, Asbury Park Press. Accessed June 23, 2011.
  7. ^ a b c d 2011 Apportionment Redistricting: Municipalities sorted alphabetically, New Jersey Department of State, p. 2. Accessed July 11, 2011.
  8. ^ Look Up a ZIP Code, United States Postal Service. Accessed September 18, 2011.
  9. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  10. ^ A Cure for the Common Codes: New Jersey, Missouri Census Data Center. Accessed July 14, 2008.
  11. ^ "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  12. ^ "Dr. Wm. Robinson Plantation & Museum". Dr. Wm. Robinson Plantation & Museum. Retrieved 2011-06-01. 
  13. ^ "Robinson Plantation House". New Jersey Art and Architecture. Richard Stockton University. Retrieved 2011-05-31. 
  14. ^ Clark, New Jersey homes, Accessed July 11, 2011.
  15. ^ DiIonno, Mark, A Guide to New Jersey's Revolutionary War Trail for Families & History Buffs, Rutgers University Press, ISBN 0-8135-2769-4, 
  16. ^ a b "The Story of New Jersey's Civil Boundaries: 1606-1968", John P. Snyder, Bureau of Geology and Topography; Trenton, New Jersey; 1969. p. 237.
  17. ^ "Best Places To Live - The Complete Top Towns List 1-100", New Jersey Monthly, February 21, 2008. Accessed February 24, 2008.
  18. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23. 
  19. ^ New Jersey Resident Population by Municipality: 1930 - 1990, Workforce New Jersey Public Information Network, backed up by the Internet Archive as of May 2, 2009. Accessed July 6, 2011.
  20. ^ a b c d e Clark township, Union County, New Jersey, United States Census 2000. Accessed July 11, 2011.
  21. ^ 2005 New Jersey Legislative District Data Book, Rutgers University Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy, April 2005, p. 98.
  22. ^ Form of Government, Clark Township. Accessed April 15, 2011.
  23. ^ Remo, Jessica. "Clark Reorganization Meeting: On New Year's Day, the Clark town council met to swear in reelected council members, elect a council president and vice president, and announce appointments for 2011.", Clark Patch, January 18, 2011. Accessed April 15, 2011. "State Senator Nicholas Scutari was on hand to swear in the four reelected councilmen: Frank Mazzarella (R-First Ward), Patrick O’Connor (R-Second Ward), Richard Kazanowski (D-Third Ward) and Brian Toal (R- Fourth Ward)."
  24. ^ 2011 New Jersey Citizen's Guide to Government, New Jersey League of Women Voters, p. 56. Accessed July 11, 2011.
  25. ^ "Legislative Roster: 2010-2011 Session". New Jersey Legislature. Retrieved 2010-07-21. 
  26. ^ "About the Governor". New Jersey. Retrieved 2010-01-21. 
  27. ^ "About the Lieutenant Governor". New Jersey. Retrieved 2010-01-21. 
  28. ^ County Government, Union County, New Jersey. Accessed January 6, 2011.
  29. ^ Vice Chairman Deborah P. Scanlon, Union County, New Jersey. Accessed January 9, 2011.
  30. ^ Freeholder Alexander Mirabella, Union County, New Jersey. Accessed January 9, 2011.
  31. ^ Freeholder Linda Carter, Union County, New Jersey. Accessed January 9, 2011.
  32. ^ Freeholder Angel G. Estrada, Union County, New Jersey. Accessed January 9, 2011.
  33. ^ Freeholder Christopher Hudak, Union County, New Jersey. Accessed January 9, 2011.
  34. ^ Freeholder Mohamed S. Jalloh, Union County, New Jersey. Accessed January 9, 2011.
  35. ^ Freeholder Bette Jane Kowalski, Union County, New Jersey. Accessed January 9, 2011.
  36. ^ Chairman, Daniel P. Sullivan, Union County, New Jersey. Accessed January 9, 2011.
  37. ^ Freeholder Nancy Ward, Union County, New Jersey. Accessed January 9, 2011.
  38. ^ Board of Chosen Freeholders, Union County, New Jersey. Accessed January 9, 2011.
  39. ^ Data for the Clark Public School District, National Center for Education Statistics. Accessed July 11, 2011.
  40. ^ Clark Township Public Schools 2010 Report Card Narrative, New Jersey Department of Education. Accessed April 15, 2011. "The district enjoys a very positive and collaborative send/receive relationship with the Garwood Public Schools. Students from Garwood are educated in their local K-8 District, then attend Grades 9-12 at our Arthur L. Johnson High School here in Clark."
  41. ^ Union County High Schools, Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Newark. Accessed July 11, 2011.
  42. ^ About, Clark Scholarship Fund. Accessed July 11, 2011. "Since 1955, the Clark Scholarship Fund has honored outstanding Clark, NJ students. The Fund is supported entirely by contributions from businesses and individual citizens in the community. It has no endowment and does not receive support from government or foundation sources."
  43. ^ Berg, Walter Gilman. Buildings and structures of American railroads:A reference book for railroad managers, superintendents, master mechanics, engineers, architects, and students, p. 294. John Wiley & Sons, 1893. Accessed july 11, 2011.
  44. ^ Union County Bus/Rail Connections, New Jersey Transit, backed up by the Internet Archive as of May 22, 2009. Accessed July 11, 2011.
  45. ^ Eskenazi, Gerald. "PRO FOOTBALL; Jets Add Burger and Byars To Free-Agent Acquisitions", The New York Times, February 26, 1998. Accessed April 14, 2008. "Burger, a 300-pounder who grew up in Clark, N.J., idolizing Bill Parcells and the Giants, is the second instant starter on the troubled offensive line that the Jets have picked up in the last week."
  46. ^ Caroom, Eliot. "Clark native set to lead one of last NASA shuttle missions", The Star-Ledger, May 2, 2010. Accessed September 18, 2011. "A love of flight and a helpful guidance counselor led Kenneth Ham from his high school in Clark to a trip to the International Space Station next week. Ham is one of several Garden State natives who will be among the last astronauts on a space shuttle as NASA winds down the long-running program this year. For Ham, his path to the stars began in the early 1980s at Arthur L. Johnson High School."
  47. ^ Finn, Robin. "For a Lawyer Who's Angry, a Gotti Is Therapy", The New York Times, September 30, 2005. Accessed April 14, 2008. "Mr. Lichtman, unsurprisingly, was no fan of the mob turncoats the prosecution engaged as witnesses: "Arrogant." They reminded him, he says, of the bullies he grew up with in Clark, N.J., where his father was a meatpacker and fistfights trumped schoolyard conversations."
  48. ^ Matt Poskay, M, Boston Cannons. Accessed May 12, 2008.
  49. ^ Dooley, Ellen. "Clark native Spaziani takes over as Eagles coach at Boston College", Suburban News, September 2, 2009. Accessed April 14, 2011.
  50. ^ Longcope, Kay. "CENTERPIECE; EX-COP DAVID TOMA CRUSADES IN SCHOOLS AGAINST DRUG USE", The Boston Globe, February 23, 1981. Accessed April 14, 2011. "The only time he slows down is when he's home (in Clark, NJ)."

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