What is Red Bank River Center?
Red Bank RiverCenter is a 501(c)(3) non-profit formed in 1991 to manage the Borough of Red Bank’s Special Improvement District.
What is a Special Improvement District?
A special improvement district (SID) is a defined area, generally in the central business district of a downtown (or a mixed-use corridor in a larger city) that is authorized by state law and created by an ordinance of the local government to collect a special assessment on the commercial properties and/or businesses in that area. That assessment is granted to a District Management Corporation (DMC). In Red Bank, the Red Bank RiverCenter is the DMC.
What parts of town are included in Red Bank’s Special Improvement District?
The special improvement district includes the downtown shopping and business areas of town. Click here to see the RiverCenter map. Those areas shown in pink were the original boundaries formed in 1991. Those shown in blue were added when the district was expanded in 2007 in response to the wishes of businesses on the west side of town.
How is Red Bank RiverCenter governed?
RiverCenter is governed by a board comprised of at least 50% downtown property owners. This board and its committees set the agenda, priorities, and initiatives for RiverCenter. It also hires and supervises staff, and determines the annual budget and assessment amount. In a sense, Red Bank’s business community governs itself.
How is RiverCenter funded?
RiverCenter is funded in two ways. First, it is funded by the assessment paid by the property owners in the Special Improvement District. Second, it raises its own funds through special events like the International Flavor and Guinness and Oyster Festivals, grants, and an occasional donation. No taxes from individual residents are used to fund RiverCenter staff, events, or facilities. Additional details about funding sources can be found in our audited financial statement and IRS Form 990 (non-profit tax return), found on our web site.
How many employees does RiverCenter have?
River Center has 2 full-time staff: the executive director and the program manager. There is also a part-time operations manager and 2 part-time staff who handle litter control and other sidewalk/curbside maintenance.
What does RiverCenter do?
RiverCenter works to keep downtown Red Bank a clean, beautiful and vibrant place for residents, business and property owners, and visitors. To that end, RiverCenter:
- Helps recruit new businesses to fill commercial vacancies in town
- Helps new businesses navigate the various start-up procedures in town
- Promotes Red Bank businesses through special promotions like Restaurant Week, Girls Night Out, and the Red Bank Wedding Walk
- Promotes the Red Bank business community through e-newsletters, website, Facebook, and traditional advertising campaigns
- Holds festivals like the Guinness Oyster Festival and International Flavour Festival to bring thousands of people into town and raise money for local charities
- Funds and implements capital improvements like the Broad Street and Monmouth Street streetscape projects and the landscaping and seating improvements in front of Borough Hall.
- Keeps the sidewalks litter and weed free with sidewalk maintenance personnel and keeps them beautiful through its successful
- Horticulture program, a collaboration between RiverCenter, the borough, and local garden club volunteers that installs and maintains displays of attractive flowers and plants throughout the district.
- Creates a festive atmosphere to attract shoppers during the holiday shopping season by funding and maintaining decorations, lights, and activities in town. During the summer months, it runs the StreetLife program, which hires local musicians and visual artists to entertain passersby on downtown streets.
- Works with its members and local elected and appointed officials to create a more business-friendly environment in town.
What authority does RiverCenter have?
RiverCenter has no legal authority to enact or enforce laws, rules, or regulations. Through its Visual Improvement Committee, it has input on construction plans and proposals submitted to the borough. It also plays a role when ordinances that impact the special improvement district are developed or refined. Whatever actions it takes, it takes them on behalf of the business and property owners that govern it.
How is Red Bank RiverCenter related to the Red Bank Visitor’s Center?
The Red Bank Visitor’s Center is a separate 501(c)(3) non-profit organization formed to serve potential visitors to Red Bank by providing print, online, phone and in-person information about activities, events, amenities, directions, transportation, and just about anything else a person would need to visit Red Bank. Red Bank Visitor’s Center has its own board of directors. It is funded by a single line item in the Red Bank RiverCenter budget and thus is supported by the assessment paid by the business and property owners that form the Red Bank Special Improvement District. Red Bank RiverCenter works closely with Red Bank Visitor’s center and currently shares an office space, equipment and some services as a cost saving measure.