The New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC) in Newark has big plans to diversify its campus with residential developments and a dining venue, as well as the construction of an arts and education center. The proposed buildings are part of the performing center’s goal to become a city lifestyle destination and further the cultural hub’s impact on the downtown neighborhood. L + M Development Partners has teamed up with NJPAC and Larchmont for the 7.3-acre campus expansion. Skidmore, Owings & Merrill is responsible for the design of the buildings and streetscapes. NJPAC purchased the property from the state of New Jersey in December 2018.
As reported in Daily Newark News, NJPAC will soon break ground on a 20-story residential tower on a vacant lot east of the performing center and a 60,000-square-foot Cooperman Family Arts Education and Community Center on a parking lot at the intersection of Mulberry and Center Streets. The campus is within walking distance of the Newark Light Rail system, as well as a few blocks from Newark Penn Station with access to Amtrak, NJ Transit, and PATH services.
The first phase of the residential component will consist of the high-rise and two low-rise apartment buildings with ground-floor retail and grocery tenants. Approximately 20 percent of the homes will be designated as affordable housing for low- and middle-income families, and up to 15 apartments will be for sale. The second phase of the project will yield three further residential towers and an additional low-rise apartment building, for a total of 1,200 residential units over the next decade.
According to renderings, the NJPAC building will need a second entrance to the theater on the east side of the brick-and-glass clad structure to better tie it into the streetscape. It is unclear if that alteration will take place in the first or second phase.
The first developments are expected to open in 2024.