West Orange, NJ

What We Love About West Orange

  • Half-hour drive to NYC
  • Good school district
  • Lots of parks and golf courses
  • Thomas Edison National Historical Park
  • Lively Valley Arts District 

West Orange is located in Essex County, New Jersey.

West Orange is part of The Gateway Region of NJ and is only a short car ride from New York City at just 30 minutes.

The Gateway Region is home to major stadiums for soccer, football and hockey. Some of the most expensive and luxurious real estate in New Jersey can be found here along the Hudson River having incredible views of New York City and the Statue of Liberty. The Gateway Region also houses major transportation routes via water, air, road and rail, as well as being home to several major industries that play a vital role in the state's economy. Transportation hubs include Port Newark–Elizabeth Marine Terminal, Newark International Airport, The New Jersey Turnpike, Route I-80 (which runs all the way to San Francisco) and also major local, regional and national freight and passenger train lines. Many jobs are available here in healthcare, hospitality, transportation, warehousing, government, finance, insurance, wholesale trade, retail, technology and science, petrochemical and other manufacturing. These and other industries keep the economy strong in The Gateway Region. Being the closest NJ region to New York City means The Gateway Region includes a lot of the more densely populated towns, such as Jersey City, Patterson, Hoboken and Newark and, of course, the shortest commute times.

Featured Agents

Top Agent

casey kittel headshot photo real estate agent
Casey Kittel
(908) 809-8800

Real Estate Agents

Your Name
Your Email Here
Your Name
Your Email Here

Ratings and Reviews

Coming soon!

Quick Facts

West Orange is located in Essex County, New Jersey – Gateway Region

Skip to full story

Quick facts about West Orange:

COMMUTE TIME (Hour:Minutes) ⓘ

These times are based on info from New Jersey Transit and Google Maps. Shortest times are given. Use our map above to calculate more accurate commute times to any address.


Car ride to NYC.


Train service to NYC.


Bus service to NYC.


People per square mile gives you an idea of how much breathing room a town has. NYC has around 27,000 while a well equipped walkable town might have around 5,000. Smaller towns with more single family homes and large yards usually have under 1,000. Click on more info below to see where we get our data. 


Population estimate, July 1, 2019


Square miles


People per square mile


Median cost to rent or own is basically the average cost of renting or owning per month in any given town. It’s not exact. Median values include the most expensive dwellings and the cheapest dwellings all averaged together, but with some weight added to higher concentrations in the data set. Just gives you some basic basis of comparison between towns. Click on more info below to see where we get our data.


Median gross rent, 2014-2018


Median selected monthly owner costs – with a mortgage, 2014-2018


Median value of owner-occupied housing units, 2014-2018


Approximate tax on $100K of home value. Ex: If you pay $500K for a house, multiply the number in the left column by 5 to get an idea of what you will have to pay each year in property taxes.


Property taxes per $100,000 in home value.


Gives you the ability to quickly see how much of a town has graduated from high school or higher ed. Click on more info below to see where we get our data.


High school graduate or higher, percent of persons age 25 years+, 2014-2018


Bachelor’s degree or higher, percent of persons age 25 years+, 2014-2018


Gives you an idea of how much people make in this town compared to other towns you look at. Click on more info below to see where we get our data.


Median household income (in 2018 dollars), 2014-2018


Gives you an idea of how old your neighbors might be. Click on more info below to see where we get our data.


Persons under 18 years


Persons 65 years and over



School Scores – click on schools please

Walking and Biking Score – any score over 50 is good​

The Full Story of West Orange, NJ

What is it like living in West Orange, NJ?

Covering 12 square miles along both sides of—and in the valleys between—two long ridges known as the first and second Watchung Mountains (they are actually hills, rising to about 500 feet), West Orange is large and spread out. In the oldest and densest part of town, downtown Main Street has specialty shops and small restaurants and bars. Much of the rest of West Orange is sprawling and auto-oriented (not so walkable), peppered with small shopping malls and shopping strips. The largest of these shopping complexes is Essex Green, currently undergoing some major renovations. West Orange is proud to be home to Thomas Edison National Historical Park, comprising the famous inventor’s laboratory and family home, going so far as to incorporate the lightbulb into the town logo.

That’s West Orange in a nutshell!

Click to read more

Thanks to West Orange’s hilly terrain, a great deal of land has remained undeveloped and green, including two large wooded regional parks and five golf courses. One of these parks, South Mountain Reservation, has one of NJ’s best zoos, an ice-skating arena, and an elaborate miniature golf course.  



West Orange has a good public school district. The Betty Maddalena Early Learning Center, with 84 students, is a public preschool available to West Orange residents through a lottery system. Elementary schools are Gregory Elementary (467 students; K-5), Hazel Avenue Elementary (332 students; K-5), Kelly Elementary (460 students; K-5), Mt. Pleasant Elementary (364 students; K-5), Redwood Elementary (533 students; K-5), St. Cloud Elementary (377 students; K-5), and Washington Elementary (428 students; K-5). All 493 sixth graders attend Thomas A. Edison Middle. For grades 7-8, there’s Liberty Middle (512 students) and Roosevelt Middle (535 students). West Orange High has 2,118 students for grades 9-12.

Private schools in West Orange include Golda Och Academy (a Jewish day school) and Seton Hall Prep, a Catholic high school for boys.


Parks and Recreation

West Orange is blessed with ample parkland, most notably the northern section of the 2,047-acre South Mountain Reservation. In recent years, Essex County has invested large amounts of money into transforming the West Orange end of the Reservation into the county’s largest recreation complex, which includes Turtle Back Zoo (arguably NJ’s finest zoo), a large ice-skating and hockey arena, a safari-themed miniature golf course, a treetop ropes/adventure course, and a large former reservoir with paddle boats and a popular walking/running path. The reservation also has 20 miles of trails for walking and hiking, 27 miles of carriage roads, natural areas with waterfalls, and a dog park. Because it sits on a ridge 500 feet above sea level, the reservation offers spectacular views of the NYC skyline. 

Eagle Rock Reservation offers miles of wooded hiking trails. West Orange also has five golf courses and nine smaller municipal parks. Degnan Park (right by the highschool) has a duck pond and a playground. Colgate Park has a playground, walking paths, ballfields, and tennis and basketball courts; the town pool is nearby. O’Connor Park has the O’Connor Ecosystem—a hands-on, living science exhibit  that includes a wetlands area and a stream-fed pond—in addition to tennis courts, handball courts, a basketball court, and a street hockey court. Stagg Field has a playground, fields, tennis courts, a basketball court, and a fieldhouse. 


Dining and Nightlife

West Orange’s most famous upscale restaurant is also well-known as a wedding/special event venue: Highlawn Pavilion serves American fare in a 100-year-old Florentine Villa, on a ridge-top with great views of Manhattan. Tops among Italian eateries are Primavera and Nicholas Anthony’s Family Kitchen. Two small, informal popular Mexican places on or near Main Street are Folklore Artisanal Taco and Benji’s Taqueria. Kim’s Sushi is also highly regarded. Chit Chat Diner and Jimmy Buff’s Italian Hot Dogs are local institutions.

The Dome Lounge at the Manor (a high-end catering complex) offers cocktails and dining, with dancing to a DJ on Friday and Saturday nights. Popular bars include The Shillelagh Club’s Pub at the Club, an Irish Pub with live music Fridays and Saturdays, Oak Barrel Pub (downtown on Main Street), and Bonds Tavern for beers and burgers.


Arts and Culture

The Valley neighborhood has a trendy arts district (extending into neighboring Orange) with outdoor sculpture and murals, as well as Luna Stage, one of NJ’s most notable small theaters mounting new and innovative plays, and West Orange Arts Center, a nonprofit fostering the arts with a poetry group, film society, workshops, and other arts programming. Near Eagle Rock Park is the Oskar Schindler Performing Arts Center, a nonprofit-run outdoor amphitheater presenting live music and theater, usually for a small fee. JCC MetroWest has a fitness center as well as a wide variety of cultural, educational, and arts programming for all ages.

At the Essex Green Shopping Center, the AMC Essex Green is a 9-screen multiplex featuring full service, in-theater dining (the theater has been open on a limited schedule during the pandemic).

Attracting both locals and tourists, Thomas Edison National Historical Park consists of the large laboratory complex where many of Edison’s inventions were developed, and the mansion where he lived with his family. Black Maria, the nation’s first moving picture studio, is also here.


Housing Stock 

West Orange offers an extremely wide variety of housing options, from modest to luxurious single-family homes to post-WW II condominium and townhouse complexes. In addition to single-family subdivisions, the Pleasant Valley and Pleasantdale neighborhoods have a number of high-end townhouse condominium developments with spacious grounds and shared recreation amenities, including Belair, Crystal Woods, The Pointe at Crystal Lake, and West Essex Highlands. Some of these developments, such as Crown View and the Vizcaya, contain both townhouses and a large apartment building.

In 2020, Edison Lofts, the town’s largest housing development to open in a decade, started occupancy. On downtown Main Street in a renovated 100-year-old factory (which was part of Thomas Edison’s manufacturing complex), the development features 300 rental apartments and 34 adjacent new townhouses.   


The Commute

NJ Transit offers direct service to NY Penn Station and Newark from the adjacent towns of Orange and South Orange. A small percentage of West Orange homes—mainly in the Valley and Gregory neighborhoods—are within walking distance of a NJ Transit train station, and the Township of West Orange provides free jitney service to several train stations from several sections of town. Nearby train stations are Orange (32 minutes to NY Penn Station; $6.75 one-way, monthly pass $184), Highland Avenue also in Orange (37 minutes to NY Penn Station; $7.25 one-way, monthly pass $210), and Mountain Station in South Orange (40 minutes; $7.25 one-way, monthly pass $210). 

Rte. 280 cuts right through West Orange, and the Garden State Parkway is nearby. You can drive to NYC from West Orange in a half hour with no traffic. Newark Airport is 20 minutes by car.


West Orange contains a large and varied mix of neighborhoods. Best known may be the prestigious Llewellyn Park, designed in 1853 as one of the nation’s first planned suburbs. A state and national historic district, this gated community contains 175 houses (many of them mansions) spread out on a forested 425-acre hillside. Also containing many 19th- and early-20th-century residences are the fairly dense working-class neighborhoods of Downtown/Main Street and the Valley (once home to the nation’s largest number of hat factories). The Valley neighborhood shares portions of the Valley Arts District with the town of Orange.

On the slope of the first Watchung ridge is the picturesque Gregory neighborhood which, with its early-20th-century single-family homes and tree-lined streets, resembles adjacent South Orange. North of Gregory is the St. Cloud neighborhood. 

West of Eagle Rock Reservation (at the top of the first Watchung Mountain), you’ll find a variety of neighborhoods and large developments consisting mainly of post-World War II homes.These neighborhoods include Pleasant Valley and Pleasantdale.