The Powerhouse Arts District, formerly known as WALDO, is not that hard to find. The nabe is comprised largely of historic warehouses located in-between Exchange Place and Harsimus Cove. As is au-courant, many of the warehouses have been converted to loft apartments, studios, and eateries to sustain a largely artistic crowd. The Powerhouse Arts District is highlighted by the city and developers to be one of the next big things, which gives the exciting impression that here, anything is possible.
Powerhouse Arts District Data : Neighborhoods & Travel – Score out of 100
Worth the wait.
I want to agree with the other reviews, as Jersey City really could use more of an arts scene, but I think that if you look at this realistically it gets more complicated. So much of Jersey City development in recent years has been marred by under-conceived and over-paced (not to mention over-priced) building. WALDO was another ill-thought-out development strategy of heavy-handed city planners and developers, an attempt to force growth in an area that obviously wasn’t ready, which is why it is still mostly empty. That said, now that that strategy has failed, it is starting to develop on its own in a more piecemeal, organic fashion. This is a good thing, but it will take time – probably more than a few years.
The Powerhouse District doesn’t have the feel of a traditional neighborhood, but that’s what a lot of younger, artistic people are looking for these days. The large buildings, warehouse lofts, and open, post-industrial spaces somehow exude a sense of new community. While there is that sort-of liberal-arts sense that “together, we can make this place into anything we want,” it’s not yet as entitled as Williamsburg. Overall the feeling is one of hopeful, but still muted excitement, and will attract those who want to be part of making a new cultural milieu in Jersey City (and that is what we need most of all). I’m sure that this area is going to be really cool in a few years.
Lots of potential but still a work in progress
I live on the border of Grove Street and the Power Arts District (PAD) and I am very excited about what is going on there. A few years ago it was a wasteland but now there are clusters of apartment conversions and slowly restaurant/bars are opening. There is a lot of potential in this nabe BUT it is still in the early stages of developing. Ammenties are few and far between, and it still feels like a work in progress.