DATE March 10, 2021
CONTACT: Vincent Basara, 856-757-7200
City of Camden NJ, Office of the Mayor
Mayor Frank Moran And City Council Support
Camden Community Development Association Application For
Main Street New Jersey and Main Street America Designations
CAMDEN, NJ – At the March 9, 2021, Camden City Council meeting, a resolution was approved by the governing body in support of the Camden Community Development Association’s (CCDA) efforts to seek Main Street New Jersey and Main Street America designations. The nonprofit Camden Community Development Association is a coalition of neighborhood organizations working together to focus on support for the small businesses located in Camden’s commercial corridors. The targeted corridors include Haddon Avenue (Parkside), Broadway (Waterfront South) Federal Street, Westfield and Marlton Avenues (East Camden), River Avenue (Cramer Hill), the small scale grocery stores of North Camden, Fairview Village, Mt. Ephraim Avenue and Downtown retail. The CCDA’s growing list of participating neighborhood organizations is made up of Parkside Business and Community In Partnership (PBCIP), Camden Lutheran Housing, Inc. (CLHI), St. Joseph’s Carpenter Society, Heart of Camden, Latin American Economic Development Association (LAEDA), Camden Business Association and the Coopers Ferry Partnership.
“African American, Latino and Asian small businesses are suffering disproportionately in the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Camden Mayor Frank Moran. “In communities of color, these businesses are less likely to receive the assistance they need. We need to come together to help our small businesses, particularly those located in our neighborhood “Main Streets” in order to survive and ultimately thrive. I ask for our community stakeholders, local lenders, utilities, and corporate partners to help this coalition be successful in promoting economic growth citywide.”
“The NJ Main Street program will help to strengthen Camden’s communities by supporting and uplifting local businesses and neighborhood economies that are the engines of the city’s continued revitalization,” said Carlos Morales, Executive Director, The Heart of Camden, Inc.
“Camden’s coordinated Main Street initiative will help lead a powerful, grassroots network of communities committed to building stronger communities through restoration of economic development built environment assets,” said Bridget Phifer, CEO, PBCIP
“This initiative will give Camden’s small businesses the resources and attention they deserve, not only along designated Main Streets, but also in clustered areas where small businesses are critical to providing jobs, food, and economic redevelopment opportunities,” said Jessica Franzini, Executive Director, CLHI North Camden
“This coordinated Main Street effort will bring more of Camden’s revitalization to our vibrant neighborhoods in supporting our small businesses and residents in all corners of the City,” said Pilar Hogan Closkey, Executive Director, St. Joseph’s Carpenter Society
“Camden’s small businesses provide essential neighborhood services and contribute to the vibrancy and culture of the city. Cooper’s Ferry Partnership is proud to partner with the Camden Community Development Association and Camden’s successful community development organizations on a citywide response to ensure the long-term success of Camden’s commercial corridors,” said Kris Kolluri, President & CEO of Cooper’s Ferry Partnership.
“This Main Street strategy can be the bridge that connects our neighborhood business districts to the major investments made on the waterfront, downtown and throughout the city, setting the stage for resident-owned businesses and job creation,” said Ray Lamboy, President & CEO, LAEDA
“There’s strength in numbers, and a coordinated and collaborative effort with a citywide program such as Main Street New Jersey, would be a major tool for creating a vibrant business community in every Camden neighborhood, while creating much-needed home-grown job opportunities for our city residents,” said Ray Jones, President, Camden Business Association
The Camden Main Street New Jersey program (CMSNJ) is designed to be a catalyst to stimulate the growth and expansion of the African American, Latino and Asian small business community in the commercial corridors of the City of Camden. This mission is pursued through:
- The application of the Main Street 4-Points Approach to commercial district revitalization as developed by the National Trust for Historic Preservation and adapted to an urban setting.
- Targeting neighborhood commercial corridors where the social, physical and economic conditions are such that a grass roots effort to revitalize their districts will result in business creation, job growth and private/public investment.
- The coordination of a comprehensive curriculum of commercial revitalization educational training tools and hands on technical assistance support designed to empower merchants and stakeholders to guide a comprehensive commercial revitalization effort.
- Facilitate the development of these commercial districts as cultural and heritage tourism assets that showcase the local communities’ rich cultural tradition to the Greater Philadelphia Region.
- The coordination of business support services and educational opportunities through the LAEDA Business Services Center tailored to assist existing business owners in strengthening and growing their businesses.
- The development of partnerships with other organizations undertaking commercial corridor revitalization efforts to share best practices and real time market information and to collaborate on joint efforts regarding business technical assistance and marketing and promotion.
- The identification and rehabilitation of abandoned and/or underutilized commercial real estate in these commercial areas to maximize business growth potential and impact the overall physical environment.
More than three million visit Camden and its Waterfront every year. Attractions such as the Adventure Aquarium, the Battleship New Jersey and the BB&T Pavilion draw visitors from throughout the region. Vibrant commercial districts will not only enhance the quality of life for Camden residents but visitors provided built-in customers to support the local marketplace economy. Each neighborhood and corridor has unique assets of their own that can be leveraged to attract new customers and even more visitors to Camden. The lively mix of diverse retailers, eateries, bakeries, art venues, among others will offer a unique cultural experience which can be promoted throughout the region.