Mays Landing in Hamilton Township, Atlantic County is the second largest municipality in land size in the entire State of New Jersey. At 113 square miles, Mays Landing is a unique mix of two worlds. To the west there are thousands of acres of blueberries (Atlantic Blueberry Company) and tens of thousands of acres of pristine pine forests.
Traveling eastward, closer to Atlantic City, a thriving modern suburb. The Federally protected Pinelands National Reserve dominates 3/4 of the western portion of the municipality. Restrictive Pinelands Commission Regulations from unelected officials have surreptitiously prevented development of privately owned lands.
Large tracts of forested land have been preserved by public purchase or by regulatory default to mixed reviews. Property owners to the east, with property in the Regional Growth Area (RGA) zone have been the financial beneficiaries of huge infra-structure installations for roadways, public water, and sewer. The Municipal Master Plan has created extreme inequities in land values between the forested zone and the RDA as evidenced by high land values to the east and gutted land values for property owners in the western Pines.
Mays Landing has a good vibe about it. Excellent access provided by the AC Expressway and the Black Horse Pike (US Route 322), the Garden State Parkway is also close-by. Mays Landing is home to excellent education (Pre-K to Atlantic Cape Community College). At the core of Mays Landing is the County Government. Many residents are employed by the various government agencies at the Atlantic County Campus. Finding Mays Landing homes for sale is relatively easy in a growing market. Some Mays Landing "High End" waterfront opportunities are available on the the Great Egg Harbor River and Lake Lenape. The easy access by boat to the Bay and and Atlantic Ocean drives demand.
THE COUNTY SEAT
Mays Landing is the governmental hub of Atlantic County. Home to:
Many major judicial offices are located at the Atlantic County campus located at 4997 Unami Blvd in Mays Landing. The Criminal Division is responsible for processing and managing all indictable criminal cases involving Atlantic County adult offenders.
The Atlantic County Sheriff’s Office consists of about 100 officers and approximately 35 civilian staff positions. The Sheriff’s Office mission is to protect the lives, property and rights of all people and to maintain order and to enforce the law. In that pursuit, officers conduct community policing and bicycle patrol, as well as traffic safety. The Sheriff’s Office still provides officers for the security of the courts. Officers still serve legal process but now also do traffic enforcement. The Sheriff conducts the auction for foreclosed homes, Atlantic County Sheriff Sales.
The Gerard L. Gormley Justice Facility (Atlantic County Jail) opened in 1985 and enables pretrial detention for male and female inmates and sentenced County offenders awaiting dispatch to State facilities. Many Correction Officers are employed here, many of which I have had the honor of representing. The facility has expanded over the years and currently houses over 1000 inmates. The facility also home to the Correction Officers Academy which opened in 1997, and has been at the forefront of computer tracking and cross referencing criminal data bases State-wide. The overwhelming majority of County employees reside in the the area buying homes in Mays Landing maintaining strong community ties and character.
THE GREAT EGG HARBOR RIVER and PINELANDS NATIONAL RESERVE
Much of Hamilton Township (08330) is within the Federally Established Biosphere named the Pinelands National Reserve, conceived in 1979. The Biosphere commonly described in short as the "Pinelands" is one of 56 South Jersey municipalities that are impacted (pro and con) within the New Jersey Pinelands National Reserve. The Pinelands, through municipal real estate zoning master plans regulate, and many times prohibit development in specified areas. A balance has not yet fully been achieved between those who own real estate in the heavily restricted Pineland areas, whose owner have been generally stripped of value without just compensation, as compared to land owners in the favorable high density zoning areas. Environmental Protection and Property Owner rights continue to be a hot debate.
The western three-quarters of Hamilton Township-Mays Landing is very rural pine forest. The eastern quarter of the township are part of the Regional Growth Area (RGA). Development here is "allowed and encouraged" as major funding has been provided for public water and sewer infra-structure enabling spill-over growth from the Atlantic City casino industry. The majority of the township's residents (27,000+) live in the RGA. Mays Landing real estate in this area is "Modern Suburbia" with every imaginable chain store and dozens of great restaurants, including the regionally renowned Maplewood II Italian Restaurant.
Hamilton Township’s founding is directly tied to the Great Egg Harbor River. The lower 10 miles, beginning in Mays Landing at the Sugar Hill Inn is navigable all the way to the Great Egg Harbor Bay, leading to the Atlantic Ocean. This Gateway to the ocean is a huge draw for boaters to purchase Mays Landing real estate.
In 1992, the United States Congress designated 129 miles of the river and its tributaries as the Great Egg Harbor Scenic and Recreational River. The brackish waters of the river is a part of the National Wild and Scenic River System. This is the longest canoeing river within the Pinelands. It can be paddled for 47 miles up river from New Brooklyn, near Route 536, all the way to Beesley’s Point. The Windng River Campground provides canoes, kayaks, and tubing for an intimate view of long portions of the river's natural beauty. The river provides a valuable habitat for abundant water fowl, fish populations, and other rare estuary species.
MAYS LANDING MATRICULATION
For Pre-K to 8th grade, public school students attend the Hamilton Township Schools.
Joseph C. Shaner Memorial School (grades K - 1)
George Hess Educational Complex (Pre-K and grades 2 - 5)
William Davies Middle School (grades 6 - 8)
Oakcrest High School (grades 9 to 12)
Oakcrest High School is located in Hamilton Township, and serves students from Hamilton Township (08330). The high school is part of the Greater Egg Harbor Regional High School District. The two other high schools affiliated are Absegami High School (Galloway Township) and Cedar Creek High School (Egg Harbor City).
ACIT serves high school students from Atlantic County that have an acclivity for vocational studies. ACIT was established in 1974 on a sprawling 58 acre campus located on 5080 Atlantic Ave, Mays Landing, NJ 08330. Hamilton Township students can also attend the Charter-Tech High School for the Performing Arts, located in Somers Point.
Saint Vincent de Paul Regional School (grades Pre-K to 8th)
St Vincent's is a Catholic elementary school in Mays Landing. Founded in 1961, St. Vincent's is operated under the jurisdiction of the Diocese of Camden.
ACCC was the second community college to be established in New Jersey, and moved to its campus in
Mays Landing in February 1968 where it now serves students from both Atlantic County and Cape May County. ACCC provides a two year education with a strong focus on Aviation, Culinary Arts, Nursing, and the Hospitality Industry. Students can earn a Bachelors Degree or Master degree by attending the ACCC campus through partnerships with Stockton University, Rutgers University and Fairleigh Dickinson University. Local students can continue their higher education on campus at ACCC while staying close to home.
GREAT SHOPPING IN MAYS LANDING
Hamilton Mall is the largest indoor mall in all of Atlantic and Cape May Counties. The mall is the heart of a major commerce center. Over 140 stores and restaurants, an international food court, and Macy’s as an anchor store. Located adjacent to the Atlantic City Expressway and on the Black Horse Pike, the Hamilton Mall is a favorite stop for area shoppers. Another massive retail complex is located adjacent to the mall is Consumer Square, and just a minute away is the Hamilton Commons. All told, Mays Landing has over 3.5 million sq feet of first class retail shopping.