The Newark Visitor’s Center is a point of interface between Newark and its waterfront park along the Passaic River. The Center houses exhibits highlighting local museums as well as other public and private sites of interest. The architecture borrows from nearby industrial rail structures, with corten steel comprising the lamella roof. This roof geometry is generated by two sets of overlapping arcs offset in plan from the Passaic River and Raymond Boulevard. The neighboring Ironbound district extends through the Center into the riverfront park as paved walkways. Visible from Raymond Boulevard, New Jersey Transit and PATH trains, and Newark Liberty International Airport flight paths, the Center is an icon for Newark in the 21st Century.
The riverfront park is incorporated into the structure, with green and paved areas extending onto the roof, which becomes an amphitheater for viewing fireworks, films, etc. The interior program sits on a series of sheltered terraces stepping down to the park. Exhibition areas between the enclosed spaces and support functions can be used as an event space which will generate income for operations. An auditorium is configured as a venue for both film and performance, with an operable rear wall opening to the park.
At park-level the Visitor’s Center provides a sheltered exterior space, allowing for seasonal green markets and other retail opportunities.