Delaware Valley

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Delaware Valley
MSA
Philadelphia
Camden
Wilmington
CountryFlag of the United States.svg United States
State - Flag of Pennsylvania.svg Pennsylvania
 - Flag of New Jersey.svg New Jersey
 - Flag of Delaware.svg Delaware
 - Flag of Maryland.svg Maryland
Principal citiesPhiladelphia, Reading, Camden & Wilmington
Area
 • Metro13,256 km2 (5,118 sq mi)
Elevation0 - 366 m (0 - 1,200 ft)
Population (2006 est.)[1]
 • Density1,138/km2 (439/sq mi)
 • Urban5,149,079(4th)
 • MSA5,826,742 (6th)
 • CSA6,398,896(8th)
 MSA/CSA = 2008, Urban = 2000
Time zoneEST (UTC-6)
 • Summer (DST)EST (UTC-5)
 
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Delaware Valley
MSA
Philadelphia
Camden
Wilmington
CountryFlag of the United States.svg United States
State - Flag of Pennsylvania.svg Pennsylvania
 - Flag of New Jersey.svg New Jersey
 - Flag of Delaware.svg Delaware
 - Flag of Maryland.svg Maryland
Principal citiesPhiladelphia, Reading, Camden & Wilmington
Area
 • Metro13,256 km2 (5,118 sq mi)
Elevation0 - 366 m (0 - 1,200 ft)
Population (2006 est.)[1]
 • Density1,138/km2 (439/sq mi)
 • Urban5,149,079(4th)
 • MSA5,826,742 (6th)
 • CSA6,398,896(8th)
 MSA/CSA = 2008, Urban = 2000
Time zoneEST (UTC-6)
 • Summer (DST)EST (UTC-5)

Culturally, the Delaware Valley is taken by various commercial media and advertising venues to mean the Philadelphia metropolitan area, but geographically, geologically, and historically the term used to refer to the valley through which the Delaware River flows. In geology and geography, a strict sense of the term would incorporate the Delaware River's main drainage basin, so encompass major tributaries such as the Schuylkill River and Lehigh River and their valleys or sub-basins. These extensions also apply culturally with decreasing degree gradually decreased by proximal distance because the ease of land travel enables a great deal of daily interaction; for example the large numbers of commuters which travel daily 45-90 minutes creates cultural blends and parallel values.

However, this article discusses the economic region centered on the cities on the tidal part of the Delaware Valley, including the metropolitan areas centered on Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Reading, Pennsylvania; Camden, New Jersey and Wilmington, Delaware. It is roughly the Philadelphia–Reading–Camden–Wilmington, Pennsylvania–New Jersey–Delaware–Maryland (PA-NJ-DE-MD) Metropolitan Statistical Area.

The Delaware Valley as discussed here is composed of several counties in Eastern Pennsylvania and Western New Jersey, one county in northern Delaware and one county in northeastern Maryland. The area has a population of over 6.1 million (as of the 2010 Census Bureau count). Philadelphia, being the region's major commercial, cultural, and industrial center, maintains a rather large sphere of influence that affects the counties that immediately surround it. The majority of the region's populace resides in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware.

As of March 2011, the Philadelphia–Reading–Camden–Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD[need quotation to verify] Metropolitan Statistical Area is the sixth-largest metropolitan area in the United States[2][3][4] and is located towards the southern end of the Northeast megalopolis extending from Boston to Washington, D.C.

Based on commuter flows, the OMB also defines a wider labor market region that adds Berks County, Pennsylvania to the Philadelphia–Camden–Wilmington CSA bringing the total metropolitan population to 6.53 million.

Philadelphia's media ranks fourth, behind New York City, Los Angeles, and Chicago, in Nielsen Media Market size rankings.

Such educational institutions as Delaware Valley Regional High School in Alexandria Township and Delaware Valley College in Doylestown Township are such examples of regional naming. Likewise, Frenchtown's now defunct newspaper The Delaware Valley News is another example of the usage.

Counties making up the Delaware Valley[edit]

Map of the Delaware Valley region

Delaware[edit]

Maryland[edit]

New Jersey[edit]

Mercer County, New Jersey, while part of the New York Metropolitan Area, has traditionally also been affiliated with the Delaware Valley. Mercer County, located on the northern fringe of the Delaware Valley MSA, is home to both New York and Philadelphia commuters. In recent years,[when?] however, growing numbers of New York commuters have migrated into Mercer. The two main towns in Mercer County are Princeton, located in the northern part of the county, and Trenton, located in the southern part of the county. Train and highway trips to Philadelphia are generally less than an hour from downtown Trenton, while trips to midtown Manhattan generally take over an hour by either highway or rail. Princeton identifies with New York because it is home to many New York commuters who began migrating into the area after World War II.[7] Furthermore, the commute time from Princeton to New York by train is different than the commute time from Princeton to Philadelphia. Mercer County is also its own metropolitan region, called the Trenton-Ewing MSA.[8]

Pennsylvania[edit]

Principal cities[edit]

The following metropolitan areas (MSAs) are included in the Combined Statistical Area (CSA). The principal cities in each MSA are as follows:

Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA)[6]

Reading Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA)

Vineland-Millville-Bridgeton Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA)

Atlantic City-Hammonton, New Jersey Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA)[9][better source needed]

Dover, Delaware Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA)

Ocean City, New Jersey Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA)

Character[edit]

The Delaware Valley is home to extensive populations of German Americans, Irish Americans, Ukrainian Americans, Italian Americans, Polish Americans, African Americans (over 40% of Philadelphia's residents are black), Asians such as Chinese, Indian, Korean and Vietnamese, Armenians, Arabs and Turks, Indians and Pakistanis, Israelis (while American Jews form a significant ethno-religious community), Hispanics. Within the Hispanic population, the vast majority are Puerto Ricans, though other groups include Dominicans and Mexicans.[10] There is a significant West Indian community. There is even a small Native American community known as Lenapehoking for Lenni-Lenape Indians of West Philadelphia. Along with their immigrant counterparts, the area sees revived internal migration. Once sending more people out then receiving, the Delaware Valley has now[when?] turned that around. This is most notable of the city of Philadelphia, which demonstrated an increase in population in the 2010 census. Most of the core suburban counties gained the bulk of their populations in the last few[which?] decades.

King of Prussia, Pennsylvania's and Cherry Hill, New Jersey's are two of the largest suburban shopping malls, each having at least 5,000,000 square feet (460,000 m2) of office space, and at least 600,000 square feet (56,000 m2) of retail. Philadelphia's suburbs contain a high concentration of malls, including the King of Prussia Mall, the largest on the East Coast, and the Cherry Hill Mall in Cherry Hill Township, New Jersey, the first enclosed mall on the East Coast. Malls, office complexes, strip shopping plazas, expressways, and tract housing are common sights, and more and more continue to replace rolling countryside, farms, woods, and wetlands. However, due to strong opposition by residents and political officials, many acres of land have been preserved throughout the Delaware Valley. Sprawling forests and farms can still be found throughout the region, providing a haven for pristine nature seekers. Older small towns and large boroughs such as Cheltenham, Norristown, Jenkintown, Upper Darby and West Chester retain distinct community identities while engulfed in suburbia. The fastest-growing counties[when?] are Chester, Montgomery, Bucks, and Gloucester. Upper Darby, in Delaware County is the largest township in the United States.[citation needed] Sometimes Reading is included in the Delaware Valley Metro Area.[citation needed]

The region also has a large and growing ethnic population, thanks to job growth and proximity to major cities other than Philadelphia,[citation needed] such as New York City (90 miles or a 1.5 hour trip away) and Washington D.C (140 miles and about a 2.5 hour trip away).

Sticker by the Delaware Valley's Lenape Indians in 2008 claiming West Philadelphia is their home.
Bassett's Ice Cream at Reading Terminal

Colonial history[edit]

The valley was the territory of the Susquehannock and Lenape, who are recalled in place names throughout the region. The region became part of the Dutch colony of New Netherland after the exploration of Delaware Bay in 1609. The Dutch called the Delaware River the Zuyd Rivier, or South River, and considered the lands along it banks and those of its bay to be the southern flank of its province of New Netherland. In 1638, it began to be settled by Swedes, Finns, Dutch, and Walloons and became the colony of New Sweden, though this was not officially recognized by the Dutch Empire who re-asserted control in 1655. The area was taken by the English in 1664.[11] The name Delaware comes from Thomas West, 3rd Baron De La Warr, who had arrived at Jamestown, Virginia in 1610, just as original settlers were about to abandon it, and thus maintaining the English foothold on the North American continent.

Transportation[edit]

Many residents commute to jobs in Philadelphia, Camden, and Wilmington with the help of expressways and trains. Commutes from one suburb to another are also common, as office parks have sprung up in new commercial centers such as King of Prussia, Fort Washington, Cherry Hill, and Plymouth Meeting.

Commuter rail[edit]

Philadelphia's 30th St. Station has SEPTA Regional Rail and Amtrak service

Major highways[edit]

Schuylkill Expressway

Pennsylvania

New Jersey

Delaware

Maryland

Delaware River Bridges

Ben Franklin Bridge

Airports[edit]

Philadelphia International Airport

Colleges and universities[edit]

University of Pennsylvania

Delaware[edit]

New Jersey[edit]

Pennsylvania[edit]

Culture[edit]

Sports teams[edit]

Citizens Bank Park, home of the Philadelphia Phillies

Listing of the professional sports teams in the Delaware Valley

Media[edit]

The two main newspapers are The Philadelphia Inquirer and the Philadelphia Daily News, owned by the Philadelphia Media Network. Local television channels include KYW-TV 3 (CBS), WPVI 6 (ABC), WCAU 10 (NBC), WHYY-TV 12 (PBS), WPHL-TV 17 (MyNetworkTV), WTXF 29 (FOX), WPSG 57 (CW), and WPPX 61 (Ion). Radio stations serving the area include: WRTI, WIOQ, WDAS (AM), and WIP (AM).

Area Codes[edit]

Lexicon note[edit]

Some believe that the term "Delaware Valley" is not entirely a synonym for "Greater Philadelphia". "Greater Philadelphia" implies that the region is centered on the city in an economic and cultural context, while "Delaware Valley" is a more generic geographic term that does not imply that any part is of more consequence than any other. Several organizations, such as KYW Radio and the Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation, consciously use the term "Greater Philadelphia" to assert that Philadelphia is the center of the region, referring to the less urbanized areas as "Philadelphia's countryside".[12] Others note that the customary media usage of the term omits the majority of the length of the Delaware River's valley that is not in metropolitan Philadelphia.

WPVI-TV uses the slogan, "The Delaware Valley's leading news program" for their Action News broadcast, since that program has led the ratings for news programs in the Philadelphia market for over 30 years.

The neighboring Lehigh Valley is considered to be an outlying area of the Greater Delaware Valley region, as it is part of the same media market. If included, it would increase the size of the Delaware Valley by approximately 821,623 people.[13]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 39°52′37″N 75°19′23″W / 39.877°N 75.323°W / 39.877; -75.323