Forums & Conferences

Downtown New Jersey Annual Conference, Oct. 12, 2017

The Downtown New Jersey annual conference is back! Please join us on Oct. 12, 2017, at the South Orange Performing Arts Center for a full day of learning, networking and awards! Agenda, registration and sponsorship information.

New Jersey Future Redevelopment Forum Session, March 9, 2017:
The Changing Downtown Retail Paradigm

Session details:

  • Date and time: Friday, March, 9, 11:00 am – 12:30 pm
  • Location: Garden State C, Hyatt Regency New Brunswick

People are coming to downtowns for new reasons. This panel of experts in downtown development will share their insights on the changing nature of retail and how to attract the diverse yet complementary mix of uses that will be found in the downtowns of the future. They will explore how to increase customer and business interest in downtowns by attracting restaurants, entertainment venues, services, and special placemaking features like art installations. Is your downtown ready to embrace this new frontier?


  • Debra Tantleff, TANTUM Real Estate (moderator)
  • David L. Bieber Esq., Newmark Associates
  • Sherry Cronin, Downtown Westfield
  • Patrick Schiavino, Asbury Underground

More information

Downtown New Jersey League of Municipalities Session, Nov. 15, 2016:
How To Make Your Downtown a Success

Session details:

  • Date and time: Tuesday, Nov. 15, 3:45 – 5:15 pm
  • Location: Room 318, Atlantic City Convention Center

Every downtown has its own character and issues. Recognizing your obstacles and your opportunities – not copying another municipality –is the key to success. Learn how to embrace your town’s identity; understand your trade area; understand the ever-changing world of retail; how to attract unique downtown retailers; and the value of independently owned businesses and how to support them.

Among the questions this session will address:

  • How do we know what retail will be successful in our communities?
  • How do developers evaluate a downtown to ensure project success? Are financial or other incentives necessary incentives to make the project financially feasible?
  • What are examples of proactive downtown recruitment techniques?
  • How has the downtown rental market changed or recovered since the 2007-8 recession?
  • How can new temporary/semi-permanent uses (for example: pop-up uses, parklets, “take back the streets” bicycle- and pedestrian-only days, etc.) offer added value to owners and other tenants?

Hear from the following expert panelists:

  • Hon. Pasquale Menna Esq., Mayor, Borough of Red Bank (Moderator)
  • Joe Getz, President, Community InsightsSM, JGSC Group LLC
  • James Hughes, Keller Williams Realty – New Jersey Metro Group
  • Stephen Santola Esq., General Counsel, Woodmont Properties
  • Bob Zuckerman, South Orange Village Center Alliance

Full conference information

New Jersey Future Redevelopment Forum Session, March 11, 2016:
Reinventing Downtown

Session details:

  • Date and time: Friday, March 11, 10:45 am – 12:15 pm
  • Location: Hyatt Regency New Brunswick

Downtowns today do not function as they did 100 years ago — people live, work and play differently and downtowns need to adapt in order to compete. This panel of experts will share their techniques and strategies for strengthening downtown activity through branding; improving retail mix including entertainment, restaurants, services, and traditional soft goods; and identifying a trade area and demographic strengths. Effective marketing techniques, including social media and special events, will be addressed, and most importantly, the panelists will share their insights on how to get all decision makers on the same page and how to manage expectations.

Downtown NJ League of Municipalities Session, November 17, 2015
“How to Encourage and Enhance Investment in Your Downtown – From Infrastructure to Management and Marketing”

Tuesday, November 17, 2015
Atlantic City Convention Center
3:45 pm -5:15 pm – Room 318

Overview This session will introduce municipal leaders to the techniques they should consider to encourage and enhance investment in Downtowns. Panelists will address: how to create a welcoming and safe downtown environment (i.e. design guidelines, policing, Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design: CPTED); best practices of downtown management (i.e. SIDs, marketing campaigns, special events, art in the downtown, etc.); and the retailer and developer strategy to success.

Hon. Victor DeLuca, Mayor, Maplewood Township, Moderator
Paul Camella, Director of Development, WELCO Realty, Inc.
Marc Perel, President, ARC Properties
Alex Fanfarillo, Chief of Police, Glassboro, NJ
Beth Lippman, President Administrative Resources, Inc. and Executive Director, Livingston and Springfield BIDs
Stuart Koperweis, Millennium Strategies

Click here for a Session Overview

2015 Annual Conference, Thursday, June 11, 2015
“Your Downtown: The New Frontier” From Main Street to the Highway

We are pleased to announce the Downtown New Jersey, Inc. (DNJ) annual conference “Your Downtown: The New Frontier” From Main Street to the Highway focusing on programs, initiatives and creative ways to improve the economic vitality of the downtown retail environment.

This year’s conference will be held on Thursday, June 11, 2015 at Union County Performing Arts Mainstage Theater in Rahway, NJ from 8:30am to 3:30 pm. In addition to the two conference sessions and a special counseling session with Dr. Downtown, we have set aside ample time for attendees to visit our sponsor exhibits.

Keynote Speakers: Kennedy Smith

DNJ’s annual conference is always a wonderful opportunity to network with public officials, real estate and legal professionals, developers, business and property owners, industry leaders, community volunteers and downtown managers in an informative and dynamic atmosphere.

A big thank you goes out to this year’s sponsors:

Investors Bank
Ben Shaffer & Associates
Woodmont Properties
Greenbaum Rowe Smith Davis
Peter Primavera Partners
NJ Economic Development Authority
Spire Group
My Downtown Mobile
Mill Creek Trust
Millenium Strategies
Raliegh Outdoor Decor

This year’s sessions:

Session 1– SID Relevancy and the new Paradigm – Government, Retail, pop-ups, entertainment/arts, Redevelopment/PACE, Economic Development; plus Land Use, Parking and Planning.

Session 2– Best Practices – Boards, OPRA, Government Relations, Stakeholders.

Conference Downloads / Session Downloads:

Workshop on BID Manager Contracts and Performance Agreements
PPP, BID & Managed Business District Performance Survey

Pre-Conference Downloads:

Welcome Letter