Roads and highways
As of May 2010, the city had a total of 199.94 miles (321.77 km) of roadways, of which 145.43 miles (234.05 km) were maintained by the municipality, 35.95 miles (57.86 km) by Passaic County, 14.06 miles (22.63 km) by the New Jersey Department of Transportation and 4.50 miles (7.24 km) by the New Jersey Turnpike Authority.
Major roadways in the city include Route 3 (which crosses from east to west along the southern portion of the city), Route 21 (along the Passaic River), Route 19 in the city’s northwest and U.S. Route 46. The Garden State Parkway crosses the city, connecting Bloomfield in Essex County to the south to Elmwood Park in Bergen Countyin the north. Parkway interchanges 153 (signed for Route 3 and Route 46 West) / 153A (for Route 3 East) / 153B (for Route 3 and Route 46 West), 154 (for Route 46), 155 (for Clifton) / 155P (for Clifton / Paterson) and 156 (to Route 46).
NJ Transit trains at the Clifton station and Delawanna station follow the NJ Transit Main Line to Suffernand Hoboken Terminal. Until 1966, the Newark Branch of the Erie-Lackawanna Railroad served several stations in the town, Athenia (Colfax Avenue) and Allwood.
NJ Transit provides bus service on the 190, 191, 192 and 195 routes to the Port Authority Bus Terminal in Midtown Manhattan, to Newark on the 13, 27and 72 routes, and local service on the 74, 702, 703, 705, 707, 709, 744 routes.
The Clifton Public Schools serve students in kindergarten through twelfth grade. As of the 2011–12 school year, the district’s 17 schools had an enrollment of 10,992 students and 790.0 classroom teachers (on an FTE basis), for a student–teacher ratio of 13.91:1. Schools in the district (with 2011–12 enrollment data from the National Center for Education Statistics) are 14 elementary schools serving grades K-5 — School One (304 students), School Two (434), School Three (295), School Four (161), School Five (370), School Eight (219), School Nine (333), School Eleven(454), School 12 / Annex (602), School Thirteen (464), School Fourteen (331), School Fifteen (344), School Sixteen (195) and School Seventeen (553) — Christopher Columbus Middle School (1,209 students; grades 6-8), Woodrow Wilson Middle School (1,360; 6-8) and Clifton High School / Annex (3,364; 9-12).
With more than 3,300 students enrolled, Clifton High School is the largest single-facility high school in New Jersey; Elizabeth High School had more students, but they were spread over multiple campuses before the school was split into separate academies. An additional overflow site, the Clifton High School Annex, was constructed at a cost of $17 million and opened in September 2009 to accommodate 540 of the school year’s 850 incoming Freshman to alleviate overcrowding.
Classical Academy Charter School of Clifton, a charter school for Clifton residents that provides an education based on the classics to students in sixth through eighth grades, was recognized in 2008 by the National Blue Ribbon Schools Program.
Private schools in Clifton include Saint Andrew the Apostle School, Saint Brendan Catholic School and Saint Philip Preparatory School, all of which are K-8 elementary schools that operate under the auspices of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Paterson.
People who were born in, residents of, or otherwise closely associated with Clifton include:
- Jay Alford (born 1983), defensive lineman and long snapper for the Super Bowl XLII champion New York Giants.
- Nina Arianda (born c. 1984), film and theatrical actress.
- William J. Bate (1934–2011), a politician who served as a state senator, assemblyman, and judge.
- Jonathan Borrajo (born 1987), soccer wingback / defensive midfielder who played for the New York Red Bulls and the Norwegian team Mjøndalen IF.
- Rubin Carter (1937–2014), professional boxer, author, motivational speaker and activist who was the subject of the Bob Dylan song “Hurricane“.
- David Chase (born 1945), creator of The Sopranos.
- Bartolo Colón (born 1973), pitcher for the New York Mets.
- Dow H. Drukker (1872–1963), represented New Jersey’s 6th congressional district from 1914–1919.
- Vera Farmiga (born 1973), actress and director.
- Hector Fonseca (born 1980), deejay and music producer.
- Dan Garrett, head football coach for Kean University Cougars football team.
- Tommy James (born 1947), musician, singer / songwriter and record producer, best known as the leader of the 1960s rock band Tommy James and the Shondells.
- Father Mychal F. Judge (1933–2001), FDNY Chaplain, who was the first official death of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center.
- Ernest Mario (born 1938), a pharmaceutical executive.
- Ronald F. Maxwell (born 1949), movie director.
- Matt Miazga (born 1995), defender for Chelsea F.C. in Premier League.
- David Najem (born 1992), soccer player who plays as a midfielder for the New York Red Bulls II in the USL.
- Chris Opperman (born 1978), modern composer who performed on Steve Vai‘s Grammy-nominated composition “Lotus Feet” grew up in Clifton and attended CHS.
- Morris Pashman (1912–1999), New Jersey Supreme Court Justice.
- Angelo Paternoster (1919–2012), offensive tackle for the Washington Redskins who went on to practice dentistry in Clifton.
- Norman M. Robertson, local Republican Party politician who served on the Passaic County Board of Chosen Freeholders and later in the New Jersey State Senate from 1997 until 2001.
- Giuseppe Rossi (born 1987), Italian American soccer player.
- Miriam Sandler, singer and dancer who was a prolific backup singer during the 1990s for Latin pop artists such as Jon Secada and Gloria Estefan.
- Jon Seda (born 1970), the actor is best known for his roles in NBC‘s Homicide: Life on the Street and the movie Selena.
- Steve Smith (born 1985), wide receiver for the Philadelphia Eagles.
- Jimmy Snuka (1943-2017), semi-retired professional wrestler.
- William Staub (1915–2012), inventor of the home treadmill.
- Walt Szot (1920–1981), football tackle who played five seasons in the National Football League with the Chicago Cardinals and Pittsburgh Steelers.
- Dave Szott (born 1967), former NFL offensive lineman who played for the New York Jets.
- Patricia Travers (1927–2010), classical violinist
- Joe Lynn Turner (born 1951), singer.
- Lawrence Tynes (born 1978), kicker for the New York Giants.
- Dave White (born 1979), Derringer Award-winning mystery author and educator.
- Ivan Wilzig (born 1956), techno musician.
- Gerald H. Zecker (born 1942), a member of the New Jersey General Assembly who served as mayor of Clifton from 1978–1982.