Maplewood Municipal Building added to the National Register of Historic Places

MAPLEWOOD, NJ — The Maplewood Municipal Building has been listed in the National Register of Historic Places and a bronze plaque noting this status will be unveiled at the regularly scheduled Township Committee meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 18. The plaque was funded by a grant from the Open Space Trust Fund. Listing in the National Register of Historic Places is an honor that indicates the significance of the Maplewood Municipal Building to the community, state and nation. This beloved building is also listed in the New Jersey Register of Historic Places and is a Maplewood Historic Landmark.

The Municipal Building was designed in the Georgian Revival style by the firm of Guilbert & Betelle, Architects, a prominent Newark firm that designed schools and government buildings throughout the Northeast. Guilbert & Betelle also designed many of Maplewood’s school buildings, including Columbia High School and Tuscan Elementary.

By the mid-1920s, the rapidly growing township was in desperate need of a new Town Hall and police station, and began to acquire land for new municipal buildings and uses. Early plans combined the police station and jail with Town Hall. These plans were altered due to pressure from neighbors; therefore, the township constructed a separate police station on Dunnell Road near the new firehouse. The result was a new civic center, with municipal buildings located around the Memorial Park — the heart of the township.

Despite concerns about the costs of construction during the height of the Depression, the township, under the leadership of Mayor John. S. DeHart, continued with plans for the new building. The Maplewood Municipal Building was dedicated in 1931 to the “promotion of good government and civic consciousness” and completed in 1932. The Maplewood Municipal Building is a testament that lofty ideals can be achieved even during difficult times.

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