Berkeley Heights is a township in Union County, New Jersey, United States. As of the 2010 United States Census, the township's population was 13,183, reflecting a decline of 224 (-1.7%) from the 13,407 counted in the 2000 Census, which had in turn increased by 1,427 (+11.9%) from the 11,980 counted in the 1990 Census.
Berkeley Heights was originally incorporated as New Providence Township by the New Jersey Legislature on November 8, 1809, from portions of Springfield Township, while the area was still part of Essex County. New Providence Township became part of the newly formed Union County at its creation on March 19, 1857. Portions of the township were taken on March 23, 1869, to create Summit, and on March 14, 1899, to form the borough of New Providence. On November 6, 1951, the name of the township was changed to Berkeley Heights, based on the results of a referendum held that day. The township was named for John Berkeley, 1st Baron Berkeley of Stratton, one of the founders of the Province of New Jersey.
The township has been ranked as one of the state's highest-income communities. Based on data from the American Community Survey for 2013–2017, township residents had a median household income of $147,614, ranked 15th in the state among municipalities with more than 10,000 residents, almost double the statewide median of $76,475.
In Money magazine's 2013 Best Places to Live rankings, Berkeley Heights was ranked 6th in the nation, the highest among the three places in New Jersey included in the top 50 list. The magazine's 2007 list had the township ranked 45th out of a potential 2,800 places in the United States with populations above 7,500 and under 50,000.
In its 2010 rankings of the "Best Places to Live", New Jersey Monthly magazine ranked Berkeley Heights as the 19th best place to live in New Jersey. In its 2008 rankings of the "Best Places To Live" New Jersey Monthly magazine ranked Berkeley Heights as the 59th best place to live in New Jersey.
The Lenape Native Americans were known to inhabit the region, including the area now known as Berkeley Heights, dating back to the 1524 voyage of Giovanni da Verrazzano to what is now the lower New York Bay.
The earliest construction in Berkeley Heights began in an area that is now part of the 1,960 acres (7.9 km2) Watchung Reservation, a Union County park that includes 305 acres (1.23 km2) of the township.
The first European settler was Peter Willcox, who received a 424 acres (1.72 km2) land grant in 1720 from the Elizabethtown Associates.