Guide to Opening a Business in Medford

Created by the Medford Township Economic Development Advisory Commission
This guide reviews the steps of opening a business, giving you an overview of who to call for common issues, and provide you with links to the necessary departments, forms, applications and documents. You can also find resources available to you as a business owner in Medford Township, including construction and permits department, planning and zoning department, inspections, and programs.  

Contact Information

The main township phone number is (609) 654-2608. Medford Township personnel in the Planning, Zoning and Construction offices will gladly assist you as you move forward with your business, and can be contacted Monday through Friday, 8:30AM – 4:30PM. Up to date contact information is available on the Departments and Services Page.

Getting Started

Medford Township and the Economic Development Commission (EDC) are ready to help you with business start-up or relocation.  You can find out more about the EDC, including contact information, on our EDC page.  The EDC can help you review Business Friendly Initiatives Medford Township has recently enacted.  

If you have not already located a location for your business, you can contact a real estate agent to find space.  You can also use these links to find current commercial spaces available for sale or lease. These links are not on the Medford Township website and are not guaranteed or endorsed by the township, nor guaranteed to be available: 

- FOR SALE
- FOR LEASE

Department of Planning and Zoning

Once you have found your space, you will need to work with the Zoning, Planning, and Construction departments.  Zoning regulates land use by designating districts - such as residential and commercial - where specific uses are permitted and others prohibited. The idea is to avoid incompatible activities in proximity to one another and to enhance and preserve the livability of our community. 

When a business wants to locate within the Township, the Zoning Office will issue a Zoning Permit to occupy the facility. This permit is available at the Zoning office.  The proposed use of the facility/building is reviewed for consistency with the Township Zoning Ordinances. After review and approval from the Zoning Office, applicants are required to apply with the Construction Department. Please note some proposed applications will be required to be approved by the Zoning Board of Adjustment. The Planning and Zoning office staff will be able to provide more detailed information to applicants.  Planning and Zoning Board meeting schedules are available here on our Meetings Calendar.

Appointments can be scheduled with the Zoning Officer to assist you in reviewing your proposed business and discussing where it may be permitted within the various commercial districts.

Permitted Uses and Variances
The permitted uses can be found by reviewing the Zoning Map for the Township to determine the Zone District of a specific location. In order to open a business within a Zone that does not allow that Use, a Zoning Variance must be obtained from the Zoning Board of Adjustment. Please consult with the Zoning Officer to assist you with a Variance request. Once you have determined that you are permitted to conduct your business within a Zone District, the building must adhere to the Bulk Area Requirements within that Zone. Bulk Area Requirements include items such as the distance of the building to the property lines, heights of structures, location and size of signage, etc. The Township has monthly staff meetings with the Planning & Zoning staff and professionals (Engineer, Planner, Attorney) where any preliminary application can be reviewed. At this staff meeting, the applicant will learn exactly what is expected and can expect the processes to be explained in detail before deciding to proceed.

Construction Department / Division of Inspections

The Medford Township Construction Department is responsible for ensuring that all construction work in the Township complies with the requirements of the New Jersey Uniform Construction Code. The Department consists of clerical staff and licensed inspectors to perform the duties of the office. Staff are available Monday through Friday from 8:30 AM – 4:30 PM. The Construction Official and Inspectors are available on weekday mornings between 7:30 – 8:00 AM for consultation.  Construction and Inspections contact information is available here.

Construction Forms and Permits
Construction Forms and Permits are now available for you to print and fill out so the applicant can bring to our office. For review, you can find these forms on our Forms and Applications page.  There is also a Reference List indicating what type of permits may be required for various construction projects.

 

Who to Call for Common Questions

Type of Work

Contact Person

Buildings or Structures

Build a new building or structure

Alter or add an addition to an existing building or structure

Relocate or demolish an existing building or structure.

 

Zoning Officer and

Construction Official

Electrical Work

Construction Official

Exterior Alterations

Make alterations to the exterior of your building (excluding painting)

 

Zoning Officer and

Construction Official

Fire and Security Systems

Install fire and other security alarm systems

 

Police / Construction

Handicapped Accessible

Make a new building or structure handicapped accessible

Make an existing building or structure handicapped accessible

 

Construction Engineer

Merchandise Display

Install new merchandise display

Make alterations to an existing merchandise display

 

Zoning Officer

Plumbing Work

Construction Official

Restaurants

Board of Health & Township Clerk

Sidewalk Restaurant

Make alterations to existing sidewalk restaurant

 

Zoning Officer

Signs – Permanent

Install a new permanent sign

Make alterations to an existing approved permanent sign

Relocate an existing approved permanent sign

 

Zoning Officer and

Construction Official

Signs – Temporary

Install a new temporary sign; Relocate an existing approved temporary sign; Install a new outdoor marketing graphic display, sandwich board or easel.

 

Zoning Officer

Trash and Trash Dumpsters

Install a temporary construction trash dumpster in the back of your building; Any other questions concerning commercial trash pick-up

 

TBD

Use of Building or Structure

Information about zoning on an existing lot & block, or what is permitted in a certain zone;

Change the principal use of a building or structure to a different principal use; Alter the principal use of a building or structure such as a non-conforming use, or accessory use.

Replace an existing business tenant with a new tenant

 

Zoning Officer

 

Construction Official

Pinelands Commission

The Mission of the New Jersey Pinelands Commission is to preserve, protect, and enhance the natural and cultural resources of the Pinelands National Reserve, and to encourage compatible economic and other human activities consistent with that purpose.  In Medford, all lands south of NJ Route 70 are within the Pinelands designated areas.  For development in Pinelands area, a Certificate of Filing issued by the Pinelands Commission or a preliminary zoning permit by the Zoning Officer will be required.  Medford Township staff can assist you with this requirement.

Once Your Business is Open

Medford Business Association

Medford Township maintains a close partnership with Medford Business Association.  We also host a significant amount of large-scale regional events throughout the year that offer potential sponsorship opportunities. The Medford Business Association is a not-for-profit organization that supports and promotes area businesses, creates opportunities for business people to meet and interact, and provides a voice for issues faced by the business community. www.medfordbusiness.org

Shop Burlington County First

“Shop Burlington County First” is a program promoting and marketing the local patronage initiative within the community.  Additional information is available at http://www.shopburlingtoncounty.com/Home.aspx.
  • Municipal Center Address: 17 North Main Street, Medford, NJ 08055
  • Phone: (609) 654-2608
  • Fax: (609) 953-4087
  • Hours: 8:30 am - 4:30pm