Elizabeth City


Purpose of the NJI

Project Management Areas and Criteria

Questions and Answers about the NJI

The Maxwell School at Syracuse University

The Eagleton Institute at Rutgers University


Findings and Results



In Union County

Mayor J. Christian Bollwage

Population of 120,568


Founded in 1664, the City of Elizabeth was the first capital of New Jersey. Elizabeth is located at the center of a powerful transportation network that includes international airports, an international seaport and convenient access to several interstate highways and an interstate rail system. The city, which is the seat of Union County, is the site of intense urban redevelopment and revitalization – a renewal effort that started in the 1980s with the reopening of the historic Ritz Theatre, which dates to 1926.

The city’s award-winning Urban Enterprise Zone boasts such multi-million-dollar projects as the Elizabeth Center at 13A – a major retail development at Exit 13A of the New Jersey Turnpike – the Jersey Gardens shopping and entertainment complex, and the Midtown Redevelopment program – a mixed-use development offering residential, commercial and office space. Elizabeth is also home to the nation’s largest indoor sports and recreation center, RexPlex.

Mayor Chris Bollwage has managed the city for the past eight years.  The 12-square-mile city has about 120,600 residents and is the state's fourth largest urban center. 

Municipal Statistics

  • Change in population: 10,566 or 9.6% [120,568 in 2000; 110,002 in1990]

  • Ethnic and racial composition:

    • White – 56% (67,250)

    • Black – 20% (24,090)

    • American Indian or Alaska Native – less than 1% (580)

    • Asian – 2.3% (2,830)

    • Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander – less than 1% (55)

    • Hispanic or Latino – 49% (59,627)

  • Form of government: Mayor-council

  • Per capita assessment: $29,772

  • Annual income per taxpayer: $12,150

  • Property tax rate: $2.83 per $100 of assessed valuation

Source: U.S. Census Bureau and 2000 New Jersey Legislative District Data Book, Center for Government Services, Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy, Rutgers University