New Brunswick PAC and its Impact on the Community

Steve Adubato goes One-on-One with Christopher Paladino, President, New Brunswick Development Corporation, to talk about the recently opened New Brunswick Performing Arts Center and how the venue aims to transform the city’s arts district.

11/25/2019 #2260






"Hi, I'm Steve Adubato. This is One on One. We're at the NJTV Studio in Newark. The Agnes Varis NJTV Studio. Let me introduce, once again, doing more important things, Chris Paladino, president of an organization called New Brunswick Development Corporation, otherwise known as? DEVCO. So listen, we're taping in the Fall of 2019. You did a little project, the New Brunswick Performing Arts Center. How big? Just finished. 450,000 square feet. It's $174,000,000 worth of investment. 23 stories. It has two theaters, rehearsal spaces, office... collaborative office spaces for a variety of arts organizations, not just our resident companies, but arts organizations throughout Middlesex County and the region. And 207 luxury apartment buildings. 20 percent of them are set aside for affordable units. And we worked and we partnered with the Actors Fund in New York. They went out and recruited artists that qualified for that space. So we have ballet dancers, musicians, people who build stages, choreographers, living in the building. This is in New Brunswick? It's in New Brunswick. So devil's advocate. We do a lot of work with the folks at the Performing Arts Center here in Newark. The New Jersey Performing Arts Center. If someone says, "Hey, wait a minute! What's up with all these performing arts centers? Aren't they gonna be competing with each other?" You say? Not at all. I think they are complementary. I think what we're doing in New Jersey is growing the arts audiences, and I see people who don't necessarily have had a lot of exposure to maybe NJPAC, who come to our theater, really start to get hooked on a variety of different cultural, you know, offerings, and say, "Look, I'll check out what goes on at NJPAC." We're actually meeting with John... John Schreiber? ...Schreiber. A good friend. The CEO. Right. Next week, he's gonna tour our facility. You know, maybe we'll do some cross-marketing, let people know in New Brunswick what's going on in Newark, and hopefully in Newark what's going on in New Brunswick. How dare people in New Jersey collaborate? [laughter] Tell... you know, it's interesting. Chris is... understands government, the corporate world, the not-for-profit world, the arts, culture, and frankly, developing New Brunswick. And as a student of... a former student of Rutgers, I know what it was like, let's just say, in the 80s, in the early 90s, and it is a very different community today. And your organization's had a lot to do with that. Is that... am I exaggerating that? No. Look, it's... New Brunswick has been... it's been a long journey. It started back in the 70s. Johnson & Johnson decided to stay in New Brunswick. Rutgers continued to grow. RWJBarnabas, now the hospital, Cancer Center started to... continued to grow. So it's a busy place. Probably about 65,000 people..."