Welcome to the Newark Downtown District, where placemaking is not just an idea—it’s a vibrant reality! Our ongoing efforts are dedicated to transforming our downtown into a dynamic hub of activity that attracts residents, visitors, and businesses alike. Through thoughtful design and community-focused initiatives, we’re enhancing the public spaces to foster social interactions, cultural experiences, and economic vitality. Join us in experiencing a reimagined downtown where every corner is infused with energy, creativity, and the spirit of Newark. Explore, connect, and thrive in our urban landscape as we collectively shape a lively and inclusive community for all to enjoy.


The NDD Parklet Program

The NDD Parklet Program is a cornerstone of our placemaking strategy, aimed at repurposing street space to create vibrant public mini-parks. These parklets convert parking spots into inviting, green areas where people can relax, socialize, and enjoy the urban environment. Each parklet is thoughtfully designed with comfortable seating, lush plants, and interactive elements, providing a serene oasis amid the bustling downtown streets. By fostering a pedestrian-friendly atmosphere, the Parklet Program not only enhances the aesthetic appeal of our streets but also promotes community engagement and local business patronage.

Learn more.


The NDD Street Activations Initiatives

Our Street Activations Initiatives are designed to animate the streets of Newark with a range of activities and events that encourage community participation and celebrate local culture. These initiatives transform ordinary streets into lively stages for performances, markets, and recreational activities, creating memorable experiences for residents and visitors alike. From pop-up markets and street festivals to live music and outdoor fitness classes, the Street Activations Initiatives ensure there’s always something happening in the heart of Newark.



The NDD Halsey Street Pedestrian Mall

Following the success of our first activation, the NDD Halsey Pedestrian Mall is back! Halsey Street, from Raymond Boulevard to Academy Street, has once again been transformed into a vibrant, pedestrian-friendly urban space, attracting downtown employees, residents, and visitors. By blocking off vehicular traffic, we’ve created an open, walkable environment that enhances access to local retail and eateries. During our initial activation, we saw an incredible response from the community. Lunchtime hours were bustling with people enjoying the diverse offerings of nearby businesses, and the positive feedback has encouraged us to bring back this dynamic program. The NDD Halsey Pedestrian Mall is part of our Sidewalk Access for Everyone (SAFE) initiative, demonstrating our commitment to creating more livable and accessible urban spaces for all.

Join us on Halsey Street this summer and experience the energy and excitement of this pedestrian mall, where the community comes together to explore, shop, and dine in a welcoming and traffic-free environment.

In light of the NDD’s expansion south of Broad Street, the NDD has introduced its Street Activations Initiatives to the newly expanded area of Pennsylvania Avenue. The NDD Rock the Block event transformed Pennsylvania Avenue from South Street to Thomas Street into a vibrant, family-focused urban space. Featuring a horticulture showcase, parklet display, mini-market, walking-club/fitness station, live musical performances, information tables, face painting, bouncy houses, and free popcorn stands, the event provided a dynamic mix of entertainment and educational activities for all ages. Following its success, Rock the Block is set to return each summer season with even more fun activities for children and families.

Placemaking - Newark Downtown District