While Downtown Newark certainly is no stranger to the sight and sound of commercial airplanes descending into nearby Newark Liberty International Airport, the central business district of New Jersey’s largest city does not often see helicopters landing close by. However, that could possibly change in the near future amid plans to add a heliport atop one of the neighborhood’s largest attractions.
Devils Arena Entertainment is looking to construct the heliport on the roof of the Prudential Center and make “associated improvements,” according to a legal notice that was issued on December 7. The facility would measure 3,025 square feet, though few other details have been released yet about the project.
As of when the notice was issued, a hearing on the matter was scheduled for today, Monday, December 17, at 6:30 p.m. before the Newark Central Planning Board. Devils Arena Entertainment is looking to receive Site Plan approval in order to move forward with the heliport.
The Prudential Center has been open since 2007. The complex, which is located at 147-191 Mulberry Street near the Gateway Center and Newark Penn Station, is home to the New Jersey Devils, Seton Hall University’s men’s basketball team, the Metropolitan Riveters, and the Grammy Museum Experience. The Newark Housing Authority-owned arena also regularly hosts concerts and other entertainment events.
This is not the first time that the Devils team has been in the news in connection with helicopter landings in Downtown Newark. Back in 2015, Devils co-owner Josh Harris made headlines for landing and parking his private helicopter on the St. Benedict’s Preparatory School soccer field a few blocks away from the Prudential Center. The incident happened just before a youth soccer game was about to begin at St. Benedict’s while a hockey game was about to get underway at the Prudential Center. It was reported at the time that Harris had an agreement with St. Benedict’s to land helicopters on their soccer field, which doubles as a licensed heliport.