Montclair Center Asks Your Opinions About Downtown

The Montclair Center BID is asking the public to take a short survey about downtown. The survey is available here. Responses will help guide Montclair Center’s programs and initiatives for the coming years.

Click here to take the survey.

“Thanks to the generous support of Main Street New Jersey, Montclair Center will be developing a strategic plan targeting how we can best serve our businesses, property owners and the community at large,” said Jason Gleason, acting executive director. “We ask that everyone take a minute or two to answer this short survey to help us develop the Montclair Center of the future.”

The survey is anonymous, and the responses are sent directly to the Main Street New Jersey program, with the results helping guide the strategic planning process.


  1. Montclair Center Downtown? Huh?

    If I live in town, and don’t want to call it downtown, we should say “I’m going to Montclair Center” or just say goin’ to the Center? Very HG Wells!

    Conversely, if I’m from another town, I’m not going to say I’m going to Montclair downtown. I would likely say I’m going to downtown Montclair…or Montclair Center. Certainly not Montclair Center downtown.

    Or as branding distinction, we could just take “Montclair” out of it and just rebrand ourselves “Center Downtown”.

    5 years. The BID can’t this figure out. It is just embarrassing.
    I’m going to call it downtown, avoid it whenever possible, and take the tax benefits. I’d rather drink in Tierney’s than a hotel bar. Most don’t, given free choice, choose hotel bars to drink.
    Yes, New Yorkers do this phase as a prerequisite to moving to the suburbs.

  2. Frank Rubacky woke up on the wrong side of bed…as he does every day it seems. Almost never a good word about anything.


  3. Yes, I was particularly cranky to comment on a press release. The same side of the bed every day, 365. It is my normal state.

    But, in my defense, I am pretty factual on the subjects where I struggle to find positive comments to offer. And really, would most read a blog if their wasn’t some edginess provided by you or I?

    Anyway, you have to wonder what the BID does. The Montclair Business Improvement District is rather infamous, for a very long time, for being a bunch of chiefs that can not agree on any one initiative. Their biggest initiative is having a bunch of vintage Ferraris revving their engines while parked on Church Street. Really! People actually come to listen. Of course, not terribly bright people come too with their infants and dogs. Nothing like 120 dB to make the little ones wince in pain. That’s the BID.

    As it was, we had to spend 6-figures of our capital funds on their cleaning needs…thanks Councilors Spiller & Baskewrville.

    The truth is the BID is geographic VAT tax. No one will ge this, but that is what it is.

  4. And I strongly feel that $158,000 expenditure was neither ethical or legal. But, that is just me and I realize Blue Wave values are just a different flavor of Trump World. But, I love their righteous indignation.

  5. Not everyone knows what the $158,000 cleaning is for…and not everyone reading gets the nuances of your “Blue Wave values” points above Mr. Rubacky. What capital expenditure…directed to whom?… Inferred but not clear for most not fully in the “know”.

    Even when being edgie..and writing with a provocative, creative quip..HS essay and journalism rules still prevail. That’s if you actually want readers to get it.

    You still need to think answering who, what, when, where, how and why…..most of the time.

  6. What “they” need to know is that Montclair is going through one of its ethical downturns. It’s all around to see if they want. People don’t want.

    A prominent application heard at last night’s Planning Board meeting was the most recent example of our ethics deficiencies. It should be disturbing to anyone trained in ethics – or has them – because the conflicts last night trampled ethics like those kids that drive a car though the Iris Garden’s plant beds years ago. I’m still trying to figure out what the attorneys actually do.
    The word for the night was INFLUENCE. Direct & indirect, blatant & subtle. The power signals exchanged between the various parties was amazing.

    We now regularly hear the case where the ends justifies the means. We see less and less transparency and more evidence of back-room antics. But, the real bold-face dip in responsible government is plain sight. So, $158,000 choice was a throw-away example. We’ll heap the very much deserved praise and attention on the Cameron family legacy, but understand a a part of that is driven by a guilt. The guilt that property owners and residents over their lack of civic involvement.

  7. Hi Frank Rubacky, Fresco hosts the car show on Church St., not the Montclair Center BID. But do you know what the BID actually does? Cleans the streets, purchases and maintains all of the plants and hanging baskets, purchases and maintains the street scape (benches, bike racks, garbage cans, etc), decorates the district for the holidays, organizes and runs events such as the Artwalk, Center Stage Concert series, Sidewalk Sale, Fashion Night, Ladies Night, etc.; partners and helps to support other great events such as Oktoberfest, Make Music Day, Tour de Montclair, the Tree Lighting, Family Jam, etc. The BID is an advocate for safe streets, pedestrians, and small businesses, and recently secured a grant that has funded a much anticipated mural project. The organization offers support and educational opportunities to its constituents, markets the district, creates a sense of community, and so much more. Also, the BID has over 30 active volunteers; made up of residents, property owners, and business owners, who love Montclair and want to see a healthy, diverse, and thriving business district. As one of those volunteers, I am proud of and in awe with everything that the Montclair BID has accomplished, and I look forward to the positive impact that it will continue to have on so many people.

  8. Thank you for clarifying who runs the show. Yes, I am fairly familiar with what the BID does…and some of what it doesn’t do. The BID does not clean the streets, the township does. Further, while you do supply the underpaid labor, the taxpayers provided the state-of-the-art $158K sidewalk sweeper last year. I realized the BID was about $25K short to buy it themselves, so the other taxpayers bought it – 100% – and gifted it to you. And you guys kept the piggy bank… and then gave yourselves a tax holiday!!! Wish the rest of us got one of those! Clearly, you are not in the financial side of the business.

    Then there are the state-of-the art garbage cans we bought for you…which I fully supported when the first purchase was being considered. Why? One reason was because the BID could not get its arms around the garbage problem downtown. So, the Township stepped in to fix it. But, the BID members now think that their public sidewalk cafe permit allows them to bus the garbage from their tables into these state-of-the-art garbage cans. And they don’t bother to even recycle. So, I appreciate all that you do for yourselves to drive foot traffic into your businesses, but when it comes to the community at large, your organization is not hitting on all cylinders. I’ll give you some attitude as you love Montclair. I’m a little befuddled why you would volunteer for a for-profit org?

  9. And for the record, I have no problem with the car show and the big revving of the engines. I’m saying there should be warnings before you enter Church St. Simple courtesy. If I set off an M-80 firecracker unexpectedly in the vicinity of your child, or puppy, or your senior parents, I’m guessing you would be rightly pissed.

  10. I’m a business owner in Montclair for 4 yrs and I walk these street daily they are filthy dirty!
    And as for Lisa how long has your term been at the BID? Oh I will answer that question for you forever isn’t it time that you come off the board? Why aren’t old board members being changed over “Frank” look into this you have Jason ex-manager from Pig and Prince and was the President of the Bid and has absolutely NO Bid experience now the acting Executive Director are they going to open the job back up for others to apply? The job description ask that the Executive Director has to have a 4 college degree we want to know does he it can easily be looked into.
    Also mostly ALL the event for this year were canceled this is what I was told by the Bid when I called on the phone as a business owner what happened to your staff I heard most of them left running ??‍♀️out of there? I want to know why? Where did the money for these events GO? I want to see the budget because money was but aside for these events!!
    The BID has a lot of explaining to do.

  11. Pam,
    I’m not a BID member. Ask your landlord who pays the BID or go to their meetings.
    My big point was they got precious our capital funds for something they are charged with handling. The BID has the authority to make capital acquisitions. They can buy land, buildings, equipment without the town’s help. They had the funds to buy this equipment. It was wrong.

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