APA-NJ CPAP was invited to New Brunswick by the Esperanza Neighborhood Project and New Brunswick Tomorrow to create a vision plan to enhance the French Street commercial corridor using input and recommendations from community residents, businesses, and shoppers.
Planner volunteers worked with the Tri-City People’s Corporation to develop a strategic plan for this struggling neighborhood in Newark’s Central Ward. The community has a long list of challenges, including high crime, significant poverty, troubled schools, inadequate housing, mortgage and tax foreclosures, and little or no strong community organization to steer the strategic plan. Positive aspects of the neighborhood are several organizations with long term commitments to the neighborhood, such as Tri-City Peoples Corporation, many houses of worship willing to support the effort, a beautiful county park at its center, West Side Park, and a growing commercial district along Springfield Avenue, where Home Depot, a movie theater, a newly opened Shop Rite and a several restaurants have opened.
The Ironbound Community Corporation invited the APA-NJ CPAP program to support their efforts to create a South Ironbound Resiliency Plan. The area includes residential, commercial, and industrial properties, and suffers from an array of issues that have been identified by the community.
The Community Planning Assistance Program was invited by the Coalition to Preserve the Palisades, Inc. to develop a community vision plan for a 6.55 acre site that lies on the Palisades Cliffs, a line of steep cliffs formed about 200 million years ago. Part of the James J. Braddock North Hudson County Park, the site is owned by Hudson County, but is currently closed to visitors.
A team of volunteers worked with the City’s Planning Department to create a stakeholder driven, broad brush vision plan for the 22nd Street Hudson Bergen Light Rail Transit Station (HBLRT) Neighborhood – one that provides general direction for the City’s upcoming area redevelopment plan. The goal of the City of Bayonne’s municipal government is to encourage more transit oriented developments in this neighborhood.
Chapter volunteers have conducted two Community Planning Workshops to introduce planners and Community based groups to the benefits of developing community-driven plan for their areas. The goal of the workshops is to make community based organizations more aware of how a plan can support their overall objectives and to introduce planners to the needs of this relatively untapped market for planning.
CPAP was contacted by the Urban League to support their efforts to resist a plan by the local utility to place a major electric switching station in the middle of the Fairmount neighborhood in Newark’s Central Ward. The site being proposed for the switching station was identified the Fairmount neighborhood’s plan as for mixed use, job-generating commercial and residential development. Chapter volunteers advised the neighborhood on technical issues related to the utility’s proposal and supported their efforts prepare testimony to given to Newark’s Board of Adjustment.