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Paterson is the largest city in Passaic County and the third most populous city in New Jersey. As of the 2019 American Community Survey (ACS) five-year estimates, Paterson’s population is 145,233. Citywide, Paterson’s population is 60.8 percent Hispanic or Latino, 26.1 percent Black, 8.5 percent white, 4.6 percent Asian, and 3.9 percent other.

The Paterson BHEC team’s geographic focus is on the Northside Neighborhood (part of the 1st Ward) and 4th ward of the city. These neighborhoods are historic, diverse, and primarily residential areas interspersed with neighborhood commercial corridors struggling due to abandonment, disinvestment, and underdevelopment.

Key issues facing these neighborhoods include lack of job opportunities, difficulty attracting and retaining businesses, high vacancy rates, poor quality housing, rising rental housing prices, crime, poor infrastructure, and poor health outcomes. The Paterson BHEC team is poised to build on cross-sector planning efforts in the city that already have impacted Paterson’s development and political environments.  The Paterson team’s work will leverage recent successes, elevating lessons learned and best practices, and building upon current cross-sector products and financial investments to create frameworks and strategies to support any Paterson-based supportive development project moving forward.

Several previous planning efforts inform work in the Northside Neighborhood and Fourth Ward Redevelopment Area, including the City’s Master Plan (2014), Fourth Ward Redevelopment Plan (2015), Fourth Ward Strategic Development Plan (2018), the Invest Health initiative (2016-2018), and the Northside Neighborhood Plan (2020-2021). The Paterson Master Plan, published in 2014, established a blueprint for the city to capitalize on existing assets and evolve existing land use policies and ordinances to facilitate the improvement of housing, transportation, economic development, sustainability, and open space. The Paterson Fourth Ward Redevelopment Plan, published in 2017, built on goals set by the Master Plan and identifies the following goals for the revitalization of the Fourth Ward: assemble parcels for larger development projects, reduce blight, provide quality new housing options, create a cohesive commercial district, promote mixed-use development, and increase opportunities for homeownership. The Northside Neighborhood Plan has identified similar goals.


City team organizations

  • Health Coalition of Passaic County (HCPC) is a NJ Regional Health Hub serving the Passaic County region with primary focus on cities of Paterson and Passaic. Founded in 2017, HCPC is a collaborative effort of 20 board members and 60+ community advisory board members from a wide range of community organizations who share the vision of improving the health of the underserved in the City of Paterson and the greater Passaic County area. HCPC’s work focuses on addressing the social determinants of health, asthma prevention, in-home management for vulnerable families, and increasing connections to health services. Notably, BHEC team members St. Joseph’s Health, NJ Community Development Corporation and the City of Paterson Department of Health and Human Services are all Board of Trustee members of the HCPC and CUMAC, Oasis, Paterson Habitat for Humanity, and the United Way of Passaic County are members of HCPC’s community advisory board. HCPC works in strong partnership with the three other NJ Regional Health Hubs in Camden, Newark, and Trenton to incorporate best practices and lessons learned.
  • Paterson Habitat for Humanity is the local affiliate of the nationwide nonprofit which works to eliminate substandard housing through the construction, rehabilitation, and preservation of homes. Habitat is also involved in advocating for fair and just housing policies and provides training and resources to families looking to improve their housing conditions. Paterson Habitat for Humanity selects families to participate in the housing program utilizing project based eligibility requirements. Paterson Habitat sells homes to eligible families at an affordable price with a Habitat financed zero-interest 30-year mortgage.
  • Eva’s Village is a nonprofit working to integrate and expand the supportive services to meet the most vulnerable neighbors’ urgent needs. At the beginning, Eva’s Kitchen served simple meals to 30 hungry guests. It quickly became a community hub offering free medical and mental health screenings, as well as referrals to substance use programs, social services, and job opportunities. A few years later emergency shelters were opened, followed by treatment and recovery programs for individuals suffering from addiction. Today, the Community Kitchen at Eva’s Village serves close to 1,000 meals a day and serves as a pathway to social services and behavioral health programs addressing hunger, homelessness, poverty, addiction and mental health issues, helping thousands of men, women, and children each year.
  • New Jersey Community Development Corporation is a private, nonprofit community development and social service agency focusing on education, youth development, housing, and community-building initiatives. Founded in 1994 by BHEC team member Bob Guarasci, NJCDC has grown into a $12 million agency employing 150 individuals that serve over 4,000 children, teens, and families daily. NJCDC has adopted a place-based approach serving residents in the Great Falls neighborhood, and its activities include teen centers, a charter school, building 200 units of affordable housing, and significant community outreach efforts..
  • Joseph’s University Medical Center is an academic tertiary care medical center and state-designated trauma center located in Paterson. St. Joseph’s is the Paterson BHEC team’s health services anchor and significantly contributes to addressing the social determinants of health by providing care outside hospital walls.
  • United Way of Passaic County is a community impact organization that works to advance the common good through the promotion of quality education, stable income, and good health for Passaic County residents.
  • New Jersey Community Capital (NJCC) is a nonprofit CDFI that provides financial products, programs, and services to advance equity and opportunity in New Jersey communities. A commitment to the principles of healthier places, economic mobility, community-driven strategies, and cross-sector partnerships guides its approach. NJCC offers flexible, hands-on financing in addition to real estate and development services.
  • City of Paterson is the municipal body of the city. Under the leadership of Mayor Sayegh, the city of Paterson has made it a priority to stabilize property taxes, improve public safety, and drive economic development. The director of economic development represents the city on the Paterson BHEC team.
  • Boys & Girls Club of Paterson and Passaic provides a safe and wholesome after-school environment for 1,100 kids daily ages five through 18 during the school year and programming during the summer months. In its nearly 60 years of service, the Club has provided academic mentoring, healthy meals, leadership training, and recreation to over 300,000 children and young adults.
  • CUMAC works to fight hunger and its root causes through a holistic, trauma-informed approach that provides groceries and necessities to families and individuals in need. CUMAC’s programs include a choice marketplace, a regional food hub for storing and distributing fresh food, a job readiness program, a community closet, and a permanent housing and case management program to support individuals experiencing chronic homelessness.
  • Oasis – A Haven for Women and Children is a nonprofit organization that carries out educational and social service programs that help women enter and succeed in the workforce and help children flourish academically. Oasis operates a soup kitchen and provides emergency food, clothing, and social supports to city residents in need. Program offerings include adult education, youth development, social services, and the provision of basic needs.
  • Passaic County Court Appointed Special Advocates (PC CASA) is a non-profit organization that champions the best interests of children who have been abused or neglected and placed into the child welfare system. PC CASA advocates for the best interests of each child throughout the legal and child welfare process until he or she has a safe, permanent, and loving home and is able to provide trauma-informed wrap-around support to every child in Passaic County’s foster care system.
  • Star of Hope Ministries, Inc., is a historic Paterson non-profit known over a century for helping to meet the needs of our neighbors in times of difficulty. Star of Hope partners with churches, Pastors and community leaders by providing them with tools and resources to maximize their capacities to promote the people’s well-being and build healthy, thriving neighborhoods.