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November 7, 2006-Toms River, N. J.
Residents of Dover Township voted to rename the Township for its historic downtown business district and seaport village, and the waterway that made its location ideal for shipbuilding, whaling, fishing, and iron and lumber production--Toms River. Incorporated in 1767, Dover Township's population center was generally concentrated in the unincorporated Village of Toms River, with other settlements throughout the Township. Through the mid twentieth century, residents generally gave their address as one of those settlements, such as Silverton, Gilford Park, Pleasant Plains, and of course, Toms River, rather than as Dover Township. As the Township became more developed with subdivisions and shopping centers after the 1950s, the many unincorporated sections of the Township became less defined and less identifiable. In fact, the Township's boundaries even extend across Barnegat Bay to Barnegat Beach Island and include the Normandy Beach section and the Ocean Beach and Ortley Beach sections, only to be interrupted jurisdictionally by Lavallette Borough in between. When the U. S. Postal Service officially designated the mailing address as Toms River for the entire Township, so started newer residents referring to their location as Toms River, particularly in the more newly developed areas. To further complicate matters, adjoining portions of Berkeley and Manchester Townships and South Toms River Borough also have a Toms River mailing address. Add to the mix the seasonal visitors priced out of the North Jersey real estate market who relocate permanently to the area that know the area only as Toms River, and a referendum for a name change seems even less threatening to a piece of the Township's history. Although the referendum passed with enough votes, the name change is by no means supported by an overwhelming majority. A similar referendum was put on the ballot back in 1987, but was voted down. The name change takes effect November 16.
The many identities of the Toms River name are discussed in the following article:
Brief History of the Village of Toms River
Some local opinions on preserving the Dover Township name are expressed in the following articles:
Manifesto Against a Dover Township Name Change
Changing Dover Township's Name is a Bad Idea
Community Plan showing original plan by Levitt and Sons with actual areas constructed shown in red.
Photo 1 Entering from Indian Hill Road; other developers followed Levitt and filled inthis section over the years. (5/8/2005)
Photo 2 Looking east near the westerly limit of the Levitt homes at Asheville Street. (5/8/2005)
Photo 3 Easterly end of Shenandoah Blvd. remains undeveloped. (5/8/2005)
Photo 4 Looking west from Cedar Grove Road. (5/8/2005)
Photo 5 Looking east from Cedar Grove Road. (5/8/2005)
Photo 6 At Port-au-Prince Street; note the vegetation that was preserved during construction. (5/8/2005)
Photo 1 Looking west from Canandaigua Road. (5/8/2005)
Photo 1 With 2-car Garage. (5/8/2005)
Photo 1 COMING SOON
Page last updated October 6, 2007.