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Bradley Beach, New Jersey
Borough
Borough of Bradley Beach
Public Library
Public Library
Motto(s): 
"New Jersey's Family Resort"
Map of Bradley Beach in Monmouth County. Inset: Location of Monmouth County highlighted in the State of New Jersey.
Map of Bradley Beach in Monmouth County. Inset: Location of Monmouth County highlighted in the State of New Jersey.
Census Bureau map of Bradley Beach, New Jersey
Census Bureau map of Bradley Beach, New Jersey
Coordinates: 40°12′06″N 74°00′43″W / 40.201604°N 74.012056°W / 40.201604; -74.012056Coordinates: 40°12′06″N 74°00′43″W / 40.201604°N 74.012056°W / 40.201604; -74.012056
Country  United States
State  New Jersey
County Monmouth
Incorporated March 13, 1893
Named for James A. Bradley
Government
 • Type Faulkner Act (small municipality)
 • Body Borough Council
Area
 • Total 0.63 sq mi (1.64 km2)
 • Land 0.61 sq mi (1.58 km2)
 • Water 0.02 sq mi (0.05 km2)  3.33%
Area rank 535th of 565 in state
44th of 53 in county
Elevation
16 ft (5 m)
Population
 • Total 4,298
 • Estimate 
(2019)
4,148
 • Rank 399th of 566 in state
37th of 53 in county
 • Density 7,023.6/sq mi (2,711.8/km2)
 • Density rank 60th of 566 in state
4th of 53 in county
Time zone UTC−05:00 (Eastern (EST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC−04:00 (Eastern (EDT))
ZIP Code
07720
Area code(s) 732
FIPS code 3402506970
GNIS feature ID 0885167

Bradley Beach is a borough in Monmouth County, New Jersey, United States. As of the 2010 United States Census, the borough's population was 4,298, reflecting a decline of 495 (-10.3%) from the 4,793 counted in the 2000 Census, which had in turn increased by 318 (+7.1%) from the 4,475 counted in the 1990 Census. The summer population can reach 30,000.

History

Bradley Beach was named for James A. Bradley, the developer responsible for the creation of the Bradley Beach and Asbury Park. In 1871, William B. Bradner, with James A. Bradley as an investor, acquired 54 acres (22 ha) of land north of Avon-by-the-Sea, and south of Ocean Grove. At the time the area where they had purchased their land was known informally as Ocean Park and was part of Ocean Township and later became part of Neptune Township.

Citizens appealed to the New Jersey Legislature for a referendum to separate Bradley Beach from Neptune Township, and on March 13, 1893, Bradley Beach was incorporated, based on the results of a referendum held on March 6, 1893. The borough's incorporation was confirmed on March 13, 1925.

It was the first location in the United States to charge sea bathers for beach access when it began minting its own tin badges starting in 1929.

Sand dunes were constructed on the borough's beaches in the mid-1990s at a cost of $10,000, using snow fences and discarded Christmas trees to build a base of wind-driven sand that rose 15 feet (4.6 m), atop which dune grass was planted. These dunes helped provide significant protection to Bradley Beach from the havoc wreaked by Hurricane Sandy in October 2012, blunting the impact of the storm surge and limiting damage in the borough to beach areas and homes near the shore to $3 million, while neighboring communities that hadn't constructed such dunes suffered much more extensive damage.

The borough had gone into decline after World War II, with growth returning around 2000 as seasonal visitors and new residents purchased properties, which borough regulations require that they must be renovated on the same footprint as the original home.

Geography

Bradleybeach
The beach and boardwalk of Bradley Beach

According to the United States Census Bureau, the borough had a total area of 0.633 square miles (1.639 km2), including 0.612 square miles (1.585 km2) of land and 0.021 square miles (0.054 km2) of water (3.32%).

The borough borders the Monmouth County municipalities of Avon-by-the-Sea, Neptune City and Neptune Township.

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1900 982
1910 1,807 84.0%
1920 2,307 27.7%
1930 3,306 43.3%
1940 3,468 4.9%
1950 3,911 12.8%
1960 4,204 7.5%
1970 4,163 −1.0%
1980 4,772 14.6%
1990 4,475 −6.2%
2000 4,793 7.1%
2010 4,298 −10.3%
2019 (est.) 4,148 −3.5%
Population sources: 1900-1920
1900-1910 1910-1930
1930-1990 2000 2010

Census 2010

As of the census of 2010, there were 4,298 people, 2,098 households, and 980 families residing in the borough. The population density was 7,023.6 per square mile (2,711.8/km2). There were 3,180 housing units at an average density of 5,196.6 per square mile (2,006.4/km2)*. The racial makeup of the borough was 85.06% (3,656) White, 4.96% (213) Black or African American, 0.42% (18) Native American, 1.81% (78) Asian, 0.02% (1) Pacific Islander, 5.21% (224) from other races, and 2.51% (108) from two or more races. [[Hispanic (U.S. Census)|Hispanic or Latino of any race were 19.54% (840) of the population.

There were 2,098 households out of which 17.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 32.0% were married couples living together, 10.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 53.3% were non-families. 42.2% of all households were made up of individuals, and 10.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.05 and the average family size was 2.80.

In the borough, the population was spread out with 14.8% under the age of 18, 7.2% from 18 to 24, 32.8% from 25 to 44, 31.3% from 45 to 64, and 14.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 41.5 years. For every 100 females there were 98.6 males. For every 100 females ages 18 and old there were 99.9 males.

The Census Bureau's 2006-2010 American Community Survey showed that (in 2010 inflation-adjusted dollars) median household income was $59,792 (with a margin of error of +/- $10,658) and the median family income was $75,575 (+/- $7,930). Males had a median income of $51,250 (+/- $12,410) versus $39,902 (+/- $12,133) for females. The per capita income for the borough was $35,446 (+/- $4,420). About 2.5% of families and 14.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 5.7% of those under age 18 and 2.9% of those age 65 or over.

Census 2000

As of the 2000 United States Census there were 4,793 people, 2,297 households, and 1,086 families residing in the borough. The population density was 8,097.6 people per square mile (3,136.6/km2). There were 3,132 housing units at an average density of 5,291.4 per square mile (2,049.6/km2). The racial makeup of the borough was 88.15% White, 3.86% African American, 0.17% Native American, 1.46% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 4.01% from other races, and 2.34% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 12.83% of the population.

There were 2,297 households, out of which 18.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 32.4% were married couples living together, 10.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 52.7% were non-families. 42.5% of all households were made up of individuals, and 8.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.09 and the average family size was 2.91.

In the borough the population was spread out, with 18.0% under the age of 18, 8.0% from 18 to 24, 38.6% from 25 to 44, 23.1% from 45 to 64, and 12.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females, there were 99.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 98.3 males.

The median income for a household in the borough was $40,878, and the median income for a family was $49,688. Males had a median income of $37,164 versus $31,276 for females. The per capita income for the borough was $25,438. About 5.7% of families and 9.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 14.9% of those under age 18 and 6.3% of those age 65 or over.

Transportation

Roads and highways

As of May 2010, the borough had a total of 14.31 miles (23.03 km) of roadways, of which 10.90 miles (17.54 km) were maintained by the municipality, 2.56 miles (4.12 km) by Monmouth County and 0.85 miles (1.37 km) by the New Jersey Department of Transportation.

Route 71 (Main Street) is the main road that runs through the town. Route 18 is in neighboring Neptune Township, and both the Garden State Parkway and I-195 are too far away.

Public transportation

NJ Transit provides rail service at the Bradley Beach station connecting the borough to Hoboken Terminal, Newark Penn Station, Secaucus Junction and New York Penn Station on the North Jersey Coast Line.

NJ Transit bus service is available between the borough and Philadelphia on the 317 route, with local service offered on the 830 route.

Education

The Bradley Beach School District serves public school students in pre-kindergarten through eighth grade at Bradley Beach Elementary School. As of the 2017–18 school year, the district, comprising one school, had an enrollment of 318 students and 36.8 classroom teachers (on an FTE basis), for a student–teacher ratio of 8.6:1.

For public school students in ninth through twelfth grades, the school district maintains sending/receiving relationships with the Asbury Park Public Schools and Neptune Township Schools under which 93% of Bradley Beach students are sent to Asbury Park High School and the other 7% are sent to Neptune High School. As of the 2017–18 school year, the high school had an enrollment of 415 students and 43.5 classroom teachers (on an FTE basis), for a student–teacher ratio of 9.5:1; Neptune High School had an enrollment of 1,336 students and 105.3 classroom teachers (on an FTE basis), for a student–teacher ratio of 12.7:1.

An application program with Red Bank Regional High School or the schools in the Monmouth County Vocational School District are alternatives available for students from the borough attending public high school.

Public school students also have the option to attend Academy Charter High School in Lake Como, which accepts students on a lottery basis from the communities of Allenhurst, Asbury Park, Avon-by-the-Sea, Belmar, Bradley Beach, Deal, Interlaken and Lake Como.

Public high school students may also apply to attend one of the magnet schools in the Monmouth County Vocational School District — Marine Academy of Science and Technology, Academy of Allied Health & Science, High Technology High School, Biotechnology High School, and Communications High School.

The Bradley Beach Public Library is located at 511 Fourth Avenue, on the corner of Fourth Avenue and Hammond Avenue. In early 2017, a building expansion was added to the south elevation of the circa 1927 built library building. The structural design was performed by the Structural Engineering department of French Parrello Associates (FPA). There are many activities at the library for people of all ages including various story times, a writing group and weekly Overeaters Anonymous meetings. In the spring of 2014 the library introduced a book bike which a librarian or volunteer rides around town and on the boardwalk to give books and to tell residents about the opportunities and activities coming up at the library and around the borough.

Notable people

People who were born in, residents of, or otherwise closely associated with Bradley Beach include:

  • James A. Bradley (1830–1921), New Jersey State Senator, philanthropist and real estate developer, who developed Asbury Park and was the namesake of Bradley Beach.
  • TJ Lubinsky (born 1972), radio host.
  • James D. Melville Jr., American diplomat who served as the United States Ambassador to Estonia.
  • Jeannette Mirsky (1903–1987), author who was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1947 for her biographical writings on the history of exploration.
  • Pat Pacillo (born 1963), former Major League Baseball player who pitched for the Cincinnati Reds in 1987 and 1988.
  • Christine Quinn (born 1966), Speaker of the New York City Council.
  • Cesar Romero (1907–1994), actor.
  • Philip Roth (born 1933), author of Goodbye, Columbus and Portnoy's Complaint.
  • Isaac Schlossbach (1891–1984), polar explorer, submariner and aviation pioneer.
  • Bruce Springsteen (born 1949), musician.
  • Thomas Vezzetti (1928–1988), 33rd Mayor of Hoboken, New Jersey.
  • Tommy West (1942–2021, born as Thomas Picardo), singer-songwriter and record producer.
  • Murray A. Wiener (born 1909), polar explorer.

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