Efforts to help Jersey City’s Powerhouse Arts District live up to its name have been hit-or-miss over the years. But despite the mixed success, a move back toward the neighborhood’s artistic roots, albeit in a modern building, will be showing up next year in the form of a new theater space for a local dance company.
Nimbus Dance Works, currently located at 165 Newark Avenue, is set to open a 14,200-square-foot multi-arts facility at 321 Warren Street in December 2019. The mixed-use residential project that will house the facility, dubbed The Lively, comes courtesy of Lennar subsidiary LMC and broke ground over the summer.
The new 18-story building falls within the Morgan Grove Marin Redevelopment Plan, a scheme that had aimed to facilitate new art spaces and theaters in the area. The Lively’s ground floor space is one of those successes, and it is set to include a 150-seat black box theater, studio and rehearsal space for Nimbus Dance Works, plus their administrative offices.
The future Nimbus Arts Center at The Lively is envisioned as a meeting point for artists of all genres, ages, and backgrounds. The endeavor is a partnership between Nimbus Dance Works and Saint Peter’s University, and Pro Arts Jersey City will be the resident visual arts organization and present a rotating calendar of art exhibitions, events, and professional development sessions.
The Lively development attempts to pay heed to the history and artistic identity of the Powerhouse Arts District, a neighborhood that has seen a fair share of what some dub tragedies. The notable demolition of an artist lofts building, 111 1st Street, and the continued lack of progress at the Powerhouse itself have discouraged some, so the new arts center at 321 Warren should come as welcome news.
Those wishing to assist in the process of building the theater out can donate to Nimbus Dance Works’ Capital Campaign, which aims to raise funds for theater outfitting costs and interior construction. Michael DeMarco, CEO of Mack-Cali Realty Corporation, is co-chair of the Capital Campaign committee.