ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT DISTRICT PLAN
The Borough of Glassboro retained a multi-disciplinary professional planning team including Urban Partners to prepare a program andschematic design the proposed Downtown Glassboro Arts and Entertainment District. The project is an extension of the Borough’s ongoing collaboration with Rowan University to redevelop its downtown as an exciting destination for South Jersey that successfully integrates residents, visitors, employees, and students. A portion of the downtown was designated an area in need of redevelopment under NJ redevelopment law and a Central Business District Redevelopment Plan has been adopted by the Borough. The Downtown Glassboro Arts and Entertainment District project complements the Redevelopment Plan by outlining a vision for new development that will bridge an underutilized divide between Rowan University and the downtown area and create a vibrant and walkable district with an expanded arts and entertainment focus.
Urban Partners assessed the cultural, entertainment, and arts-related retail market potential for Downtown Glassboro, identifying demand for a 300-350 seat performing arts venue as well as demand for a mixed use, visual arts-oriented space that could house a variety of University functions — including the relocated University Gallery, a black box theater, theater shop, and workspace – as well as affordable rental housing for visual artists. Opportunities for restaurant expansion within the downtown were also identified, which would support the arts and entertainment theme. Based on our market analysis, the consultant team proposed a range of potential development alternatives. We then assessed the financial feasibility of each, detailing the public and private actions requirement for implementation, and examined the impact of new development on the surrounding area. We prepared a detailed pro forma analysis for the preferred development approach. Identifying the actions necessary to implement the Plan’s key elements and identifying the financial resources available to facilitate implementation.