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Tenafly, New Jersey
Borough of Tenafly
Elizabeth Cady Stanton House
Map highlighting Tenafly's location within Bergen County. Inset: Bergen County's location within New Jersey
Map highlighting Tenafly's location within Bergen County. Inset: Bergen County's location within New Jersey
Census Bureau map of Tenafly, New Jersey
Census Bureau map of Tenafly, New Jersey
Coordinates: 40°55′06″N 73°57′02″W / 40.918309°N 73.950521°W / 40.918309; -73.950521Coordinates: 40°55′06″N 73°57′02″W / 40.918309°N 73.950521°W / 40.918309; -73.950521
Country  United States
State  New Jersey
County Bergen
Incorporated January 24, 1894
 • Type Special Charter
 • Body Borough Council
 • Total 5.184 sq mi (13.428 km2)
 • Land 4.601 sq mi (11.917 km2)
 • Water 0.583 sq mi (1.510 km2)  11.25%
Area rank 272nd of 566 in state
12th of 70 in county
217 ft (66 m)
 • Total 14,488
 • Estimate 
 • Rank 172nd of 566 in state
21st of 70 in county
 • Density 3,148.6/sq mi (1,215.7/km2)
 • Density rank 206th of 566 in state
43rd of 70 in county
Time zone UTC−5 (Eastern (EST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC−4 (Eastern (EDT))
ZIP code
Area code(s) 201
FIPS code 3400272420
GNIS feature ID 0885417

Tenafly is a borough in Bergen County, New Jersey, United States. As of the 2010 census, the borough's population was 14,488, reflecting an increase of 682 (+4.9%) from the 13,806 counted in the 2000 Census, which had in turn increased by 480 (+3.6%) from the 13,326 counted in the 1990 Census. Tenafly is a suburb of New York City.

The first European settlers in Tenafly were Dutch immigrants, who began to populate the area during the late 17th century. The name "Tenafly" itself is derived from the early-modern Dutch phrase "Tiene Vly" or "Ten Swamps" which was given by Dutch settlers in 1688. Other derivations cite a Dutch language connection to its location on a meadow.

Tenafly was incorporated as a borough on January 24, 1894, by an act of the New Jersey Legislature from portions of the now-defunct Palisades Township, based on the results of a referendum held the previous day. The borough was the first formed during the "Boroughitis" phenomenon then sweeping through Bergen County, in which 26 boroughs were formed in the county in 1894 alone. Portions of Palisades Township were acquired based on legislation approved on April 8, 1897.

New Jersey Monthly magazine ranked Tenafly as the 7th best place to live in New Jersey in its 2013 rankings of the "Best Places To Live" in New Jersey.


Hillside Avenue, Tenafly, New Jersey, circa 1913-1916
Hillside Avenue, c. 1913–1916

According to the United States Census Bureau, the borough had a total area of 5.184 square miles (13.428 km2), including 4.601 square miles (11.917 km2) of land and 0.583 square miles (1.510 km2) of water (11.25%).

The borough borders Alpine, Bergenfield, Cresskill, Englewood and Englewood Cliffs, and The Bronx in New York City, across the Hudson River.

Tenafly's street plan and overall development were largely determined by its hills and valleys. The eastern part of the borough is referred to as the "East Hill" for its higher elevation in relation to the rest of the borough. There, the terrain rises dramatically to the east of the downtown area, terminating at the New Jersey Palisades, overlooking the Hudson River. Nearby is the Tenafly Nature Center, located at 313 Hudson Avenue.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1880 1,019
1890 1,046 2.6%
1900 1,746 66.9%
1910 2,756 57.8%
1920 3,585 30.1%
1930 5,669 58.1%
1940 7,413 30.8%
1950 9,651 30.2%
1960 14,264 47.8%
1970 14,827 3.9%
1980 13,552 −8.6%
1990 13,326 −1.7%
2000 13,806 3.6%
2010 14,488 4.9%
2015 (est.) 14,880 2.7%
Population sources: 1880-1890
1890–1920 1890–1910
1910–1930 1900–2010
2000 2010

2010 Census

As of the census of 2010, there were 14,488 people, 4,766 households, and 3,956 families residing in the borough. The population density was 3,148.6 per square mile (1,215.7/km2). There were 4,980 housing units at an average density of 1,082.3 per square mile (417.9/km2)*. The racial makeup of the borough was 69.31% (10,041) White, 0.88% (128) Black or African American, 0.03% (5) Native American, 26.22% (3,799) Asian, 0.00% (0) Pacific Islander, 1.23% (178) from other races, and 2.33% (337) from two or more races. [[Hispanic (U.S. Census)|Hispanic or Latino of any race were 5.36% (776) of the population. Korean Americans accounted for 15.4% of the population in 2010.

There were 4,766 households out of which 49.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 72.7% were married couples living together, 8.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 17.0% were non-families. 15.3% of all households were made up of individuals, and 8.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.02 and the average family size was 3.36.

In the borough, the population was spread out with 31.2% under the age of 18, 5.0% from 18 to 24, 20.2% from 25 to 44, 30.2% from 45 to 64, and 13.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 41.8 years. For every 100 females there were 93.4 males. For every 100 females ages 18 and old there were 87.6 males.

The Census Bureau's 2006–2010 American Community Survey showed that (in 2010 inflation-adjusted dollars) median household income was $125,865 (with a margin of error of +/- $23,612) and the median family income was $140,100 (+/- $26,372). Males had a median income of $102,645 (+/- $7,373) versus $60,871 (+/- $9,308) for females. The per capita income for the borough was $60,557 (+/- $5,176). About 1.8% of families and 2.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 1.4% of those under age 18 and 2.2% of those age 65 or over.


As of May 2010, the borough had a total of 64.55 miles (103.88 km) of roadways, of which 54.71 miles (88.05 km) were maintained by the municipality, 6.85 miles (11.02 km) by Bergen County, 1.50 miles (2.41 km) by the New Jersey Department of Transportation and 1.49 miles (2.40 km) by the Palisades Interstate Park Commission.

County Route 501, U.S. Route 9W and the Palisades Interstate Parkway all pass through Tenafly.

The Palisades Interstate Parkway runs above the Hudson River from Englewood Cliffs north towards Alpine. There are no exits on the parkway in Tenafly; the nearest interchanges are Exit 1 in Englewood Cliffs to the south, and Exit 2 in Alpine in the north.

U.S. Route 9W adjoins and runs parallel to the Palisades Interstate Parkway.

Public transportation

Local and express bus service to and from New York City is available via NJ Transit bus route 166 to and from the Port Authority Bus Terminal in Midtown Manhattan.

Rockland Coaches provides service to the Port Authority Bus Terminal on Route 14ET from Montvale, the 9/9A/9T/9TA from Stony Point, New York and the 20/20T routes from West Nyack, New York.

Saddle River Tours/Ameribus offers service on the 20/84 routes to the George Washington Bridge Bus Station.

The former Tenafly Station, currently a restaurant

From the mid 1850s until September 1966, Tenafly was served by rail along the Northern Branch, originally to Pavonia Terminal, and later to Hoboken Terminal. CSX now provides freight service along the line. The former Tenafly Station, currently a restaurant, was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1979; it is one of four surviving stations on the Northern Branch.

The Northern Branch Corridor Project, a proposal by New Jersey Transit to extend the Hudson Bergen Light Rail for nine stops and 11 miles (18 km) northward from its current terminus in North Bergen to two stations in Tenafly, the last of which would be a new terminus near the Cresskill town line, met with mixed reactions. Many residents and officials believed that the negative impact on the borough in terms of traffic and noise outweighed the benefits. In November 2010, voters rejected the plan to re-establish rail service to the town by a nearly 2-1 ratio in a non-binding referendum, with all of the borough council candidates opposing the restoration of commuter train service. There is continued resistance to New Jersey Transit's preferred alternative as described in the plan's December 2011 announcement. Despite local opposition, officials in Bergen County asked the North Jersey Transportation Planning Authority to support the proposal. In 2013, New Jersey Transit announced that the line would end in Englewood, after Tenafly officials estimated that as much in $8 million in commercial property valuation would be lost and residents raised strong objections.

Historic places

Historic locations in Tenafly include:

Points of interest

  • Tenafly has a Bowtie Cinemas movie theater, located on Railroad Avenue, with four viewing screens.
  • Clinton Inn Hotel, located on Dean Drive. It has 119 hotel rooms, banquet/meeting rooms, a fitness center, and Palmer's Crossing Restaurant and Bar.
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