New Report Shows Suburbanization of NJ Has Picked Up Pace Since 2002
A joint Rowan-Rutgers report, co-released today by New Jersey Future, shows that New Jersey is losing open space at an increasing pace. Between 2002 and 2007, 16,061 acres per year, an amount equal to 34 football fields each day, were developed in New Jersey. This is a 7% increase from the previous rate of 15,123 acres per year between 1995 through 2002.
New Jersey has long been the nation’s most developed state, but the data show it is now more developed than anything else: As of 2007, developed land covered 30% of the state and surpassed forest land as the dominant land-use type in New Jersey. The Garden State now has more acres of buildings, parking lots and lawns than it has of upland forests – including the Pinelands and all the state’s parks and reserves.
Accompanying the report are a fascinating series of interactive maps, which allow users to track land-use changes between 1985-2007 for any area of the state. New Jersey Future’s full press release on the report can be seen here.