Scenic Tinton Falls is small township in Monmouth County not far from the shore, Red Bank and a variety of parks and hiking trails, although none of these places are actually in Tinton Falls. From my perspective, Tinton Falls is a sleepy suburban town, wrapped around the parkway, whose residents spend their time driving to slightly more interesting places. So what is in Tinton Falls?

The Tinton Falls

Scenic Tinton Falls in Tinton Falls, New Jersey

Well, for one thing, the eponymous falls. The town has done an interesting job downplaying their namesake feature. Just to find this hidden chunk of nature one has to travel onto a somewhat hidden path off of the main road and down a creepily overgrown set of chain link fences and down a poorly maintained pathway. There’s very little signage to indicate the falls even exist. I had never visited it until just this summer, even though I only live about 600 feet away.  The main feature surrounding the falls is actually “downtown” Tinton Falls.

Over Tinton Falls

Intersection over the Falls

The more historic part of town, this intersection has existed since before the Revolution, when the entire area was farmland and mines. The building on the right overlooks the falls and was initially a Colonial era mill which then became the Grist Mill restaurant which was then bought out by the MJ’s pizza chain. (4/5 Pizza)

Slightly off camera is a small outlet that was constructed in the past 2 years, adding to the small handful of restaurants and delis surrounding the intersection, and every year, a memorial day event is held at the small park immediately to the right of the intersection. The event is potentially disruptive to local traffic, but slight detours are added causing very minimal traffic effects, making for a very successful intersection, if a little space consuming

Tinton Falls ImageA very unsuccessful intersection happens  mile down the road at the intersection of Hance and Sycamore, an accident prone road designed for about half of the traffic it receives. Purposefully or not, the road is a “collector” road for the various neighborhoods that surround it and every bus in the school system travels the road sooner or later. The road is narrow and uncontrolled, unlike adjacent intersections. IF you squint you may even see the traffic lights for the Sycamore/Hope Road intersection, which sees less traffic because who-honestly-uses-Hope-Road but for some reason has traffic lights. Also of note is this intersection further down, which connects to Rt 13.

Good Intersection.jpgThe Hance/Sycamore Intersection gets much of the above intersection’s thru traffic, at less than half the road width and no traffic lights. The intersection and surrounding roads is also incredibly pedestrian unfriendly, especially for a road so close to the various schools, as there is a distinct lack of sidewalks, crosswalk, or streetlights, making the road incredibly intimidating to walk down at night.