New Jersey was an important battleground during the American Revolution. Located in the heart of the bustling Atlantic corridor and nestled between New York and Pennsylvania, New Jersey has the highest population density of any U.S. state. New Jersey was named for the island of Jersey in the English Channel. Its long and beautiful coastline has long made New Jersey a popular vacation destination, with over 50 seaside resort towns including Asbury Park, Atlantic City and Cape May. The state also boasts an impressive musical legacy–Bruce Springsteen, Jon Bon Jovi and Frank Sinatra all hail from New Jersey. It is known as an industrial center, but earns its “Garden State” nickname–New Jersey is a leading producer of cranberries, blueberries and tomatoes.
It is surrounded on the north and east by the state of New York; on the east, southeast, and south by the Atlantic Ocean; on the west by the Delaware River and Pennsylvania; and on the southwest by Delaware Bay and the State of Delaware. New Jersey was awarded statehood on December 18, 1787, and Trenton is the state capital. The vibrant face of the state is embodied in the motto-Liberty and Prosperity.
NJ Transit operates large-scale rail service throughout the state. Now, NJ Transit has eleven commuter rail lines that run through different parts of the state. Most of the lines end at either Penn Station in New York City or Hoboken Terminal in Hoboken. One line provides service between Atlantic City and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It also conducts three light rail systems in the state. The Hudson-Bergen Light Rail connects Bayonne to North Bergen, through Hoboken and Jersey City. The Newark Light Rail is partially underground and connects downtown Newark with other parts of the city and its suburbs, Belleville and Bloomfield. The River Line connects Trenton and Camden.
The PATH is a rapid transit system consisting of four lines operated by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. It connects Hoboken, Jersey City, Harrison, and Newark with New York City. The PATCO Speedline is a rapid transit system that links Camden County to Philadelphia. Both the PATCO and the PATH are two of only six rapid transit systems in the United States to operate 24 hours a day.
Amtrak operates numerous long-distance passenger trains in New Jersey, both to and from neighboring states and around the country. In addition to the Newark Airport connection, other major Amtrak railway stations include Trenton Transit Center, Metropark, and the historic Newark Penn Station. AirTrain Newark is a monorail connecting the Amtrak/NJ Transit station on the Northeast Corridor to the airport’s terminals and parking lots.
The New Jersey Turnpike is one of the most known and heavily trafficked roads in the United States. This toll road, which overlaps with Interstate 95 for much of its length, carries traffic between Delaware and New York, and up and down the East Coast in general. Commonly referred to as simply “the Turnpike”, it is known for its numerous rest areas named after prominent New Jerseyans.
New Jersey has the connection with New York City via various key bridges and tunnels. The double-decked George Washington Bridge carries the heaviest load of motor vehicle traffic of any bridge in the world, at 102 million vehicles per year, across fourteen lanes. It adds up Fort Lee, New Jersey to the Washington Heights neighborhood of Upper Manhattan, and carries Interstate 95 and U.S.
Route 1/9 across the Hudson River. The Lincoln Tunnel connects to Midtown Manhattan carrying New Jersey Route 495, and the Holland Tunnel connects to Lower Manhattan carrying Interstate 78. New Jersey is also connected to Staten Island by three bridges—from north to south, the Bayonne Bridge, the Goethals Bridge, and the Outerbridge Crossing.
It is unlawful for a customer to serve themselves gasoline in New Jersey. It became the last remaining U.S. state where all gas stations are required to sell full-service gasoline to customers at all times in 2016, after Oregon’s introduction of restricted self-service gasoline availability took effect.
Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR) is one of the busiest and popular airports in the United States. Operated by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, it is one of the three main airports serving the New York metropolitan area. United Airlines is the airport’s largest tenant, operating an entire terminal there, which it uses as one of its primary hubs. FedEx Express operates a large cargo terminal at EWR as well. The adjacent Newark Airport railroad station provides access to Amtrak and NJ Transit trains along the Northeast Corridor Line.
Two smaller commercial airports, Atlantic City International Airport and rapidly growing Trenton-Mercer Airport, also operate in other parts of the state. Teterboro Airport in Bergen County, and Millville Municipal Airport in Cumberland County, are general aviation airports popular with private and corporate aircraft due to their proximity to New York City and the Jersey Shore, respectively.
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, the Delaware River Port Authority (with Pennsylvania), the Delaware River Joint Toll Bridge Commission (with Pennsylvania), and the Delaware River and Bay Authority (with Delaware) operate most of the major transportation routes in and out of the state. Bridge tolls are collected only from traffic exiting the state, with the exception of the private Dingman’s Ferry Bridge over the Delaware River, which charges a toll in both directions.
New York Waterway has ferry terminals at Belford, Jersey City, Hoboken, Weehawken, and Edgewater, with service to different parts of Manhattan. Liberty Water Taxi in Jersey City has ferries from Paulus Hook and Liberty State Park to Battery Park City in Manhattan. Statue Cruises offers service from Liberty State Park to the Statue of Liberty National Monument, including Ellis Island. SeaStreak offers services from the Raritan Bayshore to Manhattan, Martha’s Vineyard, and Nantucket.
The Delaware River and Bay Authority operates the Cape May–Lewes Ferry on Delaware Bay, carrying both passengers and vehicles between New Jersey and Delaware. The agency also operates the Forts Ferry Crossing for passengers across the Delaware River. The Delaware River Port Authority operates the RiverLink Ferry between the Camden waterfront and Penn’s Landing in Philadelphia.