HISTORY OF THE MEADOWLANDS:
Pre-Historic ConditionsEuropean SettlementSeventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries |
Nineteenth Century | Twentieth Century | The Advent of Comprehensive Planning
Twenty First Century

European Settlement

The historic period, beginning with the European settlement of the area began in the seventeenth century, has centered on two interrelated land use themes:

1) Exploitation through resource extraction. The appearance of Europeans resulted in attempts to alter the Meadowlands through land reclamation and fixed development.

2) The development of transportation networks. From the seventeenth century, the Meadowlands has been a significant part of the major transportation networks that brought resources from the country’s interior to the international ports lining New York Harbor. Beginning with the early turnpikes and railroads which led to ferries on the Hudson River and continuing with today’s interstate highways leading to international airports and through tunnels to New York City, the culture and history of the Meadowlands have been intimately tied to developments in local and regional transportation systems.


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