Somerset County is at the hub of Central New Jersey. Its 21 municipalities, which encompass 305 square miles, contain a diversity of landscape, population, and development that reflects the varied lifestyles of its estimated 332,568 residents.
As one of America’s oldest counties, Somerset is steeped in colonial and Revolutionary War history. The county was established by charter on May 22, 1688, with land conveyances dating to 1651. Historic sites, monuments, and buildings are found in virtually every town, preserved for future generations.
Located in the heart of the nation’s largest metropolitan area, Somerset County contains a balance between urban and suburban neighborhoods and rural country-sides. Fine residential communities, beautiful parks, excellent shopping areas, extensive farmlands, numerous historic sites and outstanding business and industry all make Somerset County a desirable place to live, work, and play.
The county’s 14,382 acres of parkland include golf courses, picnic areas, hiking and bicycling trails, stables, a swimming pool, an Environmental Education Center, and the County Fairgrounds, which each year hosts the Somerset County 4-H Fair. The county has preserved 8,239 acres of farmland through its Agriculture Development Program, and another 3,253 acres of greenways through the County/Municipal Open Space Partnership Grant Program.
The higher educational facilities – Raritan Valley Community College and Somerset County Vocational & Technical Schools – are among the finest in the state. The college, a two-year school in Branchburg, includes a library/theater complex, a convention center, and a planetarium; it also has satellite campuses in Bridgewater and Franklin.
Many boards, commissions, and advisory groups help the Freeholders determine priorities and procedures in areas ranging from farmland preservation to human services delivery. Members, who serve without compensation, perform a valuable service to their community.
Environmental protection, conservation of resources, shared services, and proper planning for future growth and development – all are major goals for county government. The Board of Chosen Freeholders remains dedicated to serving the residents of Somerset County and to maintaining the county’s nationwide reputation for excellence.