Monroe Township is a Township in Middlesex County, New Jersey, United States. As of the United States 2000 Census, the township population was 28,000. Monroe was incorporated as a township by an Act of the New Jersey Legislature on April 9, 1838, from portions of South Amboy Township, based on the results of a referendum held that same day. Portions of the township were taken to form East Brunswick Township (February 28, 1860), Cranbury Township (March 7, 1872) and Jamesburg (March 19, 1887).
Clearbrook Park, Concordia, Rossmoor and Whittingham are census-designated places and unincorporated areas located within Monroe Township. They are also age-restricted communities.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the township has a total area of 42.0 square miles (108.9 kmē), of which, 41.9 square miles (108.6 kmē) of it is land and 0.1 square miles (0.3 kmē) of it (0.24%) is water. It is the largest municipality in Middlesex County in terms of total land area.
Monroe Township borders the Township of South Brunswick, Cranbury Township, Helmetta, Spotswood, East Brunswick Township, the Township of ld ridge, and completely surrounds Jamesburg in Middlesex County, Manalapan Township and Millstone Township in Monmouth County, and East Windsor Township in Mercer County.
Though Monroe is not officially broken down into neighborhoods (the Census-designated places oriented around active adult communities notwithstanding), over the years residents have given names to various parts of the township. Three common names heard in the township are Mill Lake Manor (an area centered around Monmouth Road and 10th Avenue) and Outcalt (in the northern part of the township, near Spotswood and Helmetta).
For those who have lived in Mill Lake Manor, the area is broken down further into the "Old" and "New" Manor (split by Monmouth Road on the east and west sides, the Old being east and the New being the west side). The Manor also encompasses the developments of Inwood.
he neighborhood east of Spotswood-Englishtown Road, centered around Monmouth Road, extending down to 1st Avenue, is called the North Manor, or Manor Heights.
The Monroe Township School District serves students in kindergarten through twelfth grade. Schools in the district (with 2005-06 enrollment data from the National Center for Education Statistics) are Barclay Brook Elementary School (K-2; 664 students), Mill Lake Elementary School (K-3; 642), Brookside Elementary School (3-6; 805), Woodland Elementary School (4-6; 483), Oak Tree Elementary School (K-6), Applegarth Middle School (7&8; 664) and Monroe Township High School for grades 9-12 (1,395)
During the 1991-1992 academic school year, Mill Lake Elementary School received the Blue Ribbon Award from the United States Department of Education, the highest honor that an American school can achieve. This honor was followed during the 1998-99 academic school year, to Barclay Brook Elementary School across town. Both of Monroe Township's pre-K through third grade schools received such an esteemed honor.
Students from Jamesburg attend Monroe Township High School as part of a sending/receiving relationship with the Jamesburg Public Schools
Some of the age-restricted communities, such as Rossmoor and Concordia, have their own transportation services within the communities. In addition, Middlesex County runs shuttles to Jamesburg from East and New Brunswick (the New Brunswick shuttle schedule is at ). Since Monroe entirely surrounds Jamesburg, Monroe Township also benefits from the shuttles.
Route 33 runs through the southern part of Monroe, which then travels through Millstone Township and East Windsor Township. Monroe has various bus stops that allow passengers to take a bus to the Port Authority Bus Terminal, adjacent to the Lincoln Tunnel. Monroe's most busiest roads during the peak hours are Applegarth Road, Forsgate Drive and Route 32, which connects to the New Jersey Turnpike (Interstate 95) (the busiest road despite peak hours). Exit 8A is located on the western edge of Monroe Township, with a 9-lane toll gate, featuring a "modified" double trumpet interchange (with a few ramps continuing into the Township of South Brunswick).
Monroe Township is known for the Turnpike's division (where it divides into Inner Car Lanes & Outer Truck Lanes) and its dangerous (and often-congested) merge, where the dual-dual configuration ends (5 lanes each direction; 2-3-3-2) and becomes a single roadway, consisting of three lanes in each direction (3-3); the merge is particularly difficult to travel through on Friday afternoons, summertime and on holidays. When the turnpike is congested (in the 8A vicinity), many motorists exit in Monroe Township at 8A and use 32 West to U.S. Route 130 south. Since 8A has become so busy, the turnpike interchange has been upgraded. The ramp (from the Turnpike) that merges onto 32 west, has been destroyed; a new two-lane ramp is now open that connects to County Route 535 (with a traffic signal) in South Brunswick Twp. Motorists must then take 535 south to gain access to 32 westbound.
The New Jersey Turnpike Authority had proposed to construct a west-east spur of the Turnpike, NJ 92. It would begin at US 1 just north of the intersection with Ridge Road in the Township of South Brunswick and would terminate at Exit 8A in the area of the 8A toll gate in Monroe Township.
On December 1, 2006, the New Jersey Turnpike Authority terminated its plans to build the spur from Ridge & 1 in South Brunswick to 8A in Monroe. The Authority's main focus will now be on widening the Turnpike between Exit 6 (in Mansfield Township) and Exit 8A (in Monroe Township).
At the present time, there are plans to widen I-95/New Jersey Turnpike between Exit 9 in East Brunswick Township to Exit 8A in Monroe Township. This would change the dual-dual configuration (from 2-3-3-2) to "3-3-3-3."