Multiple Forms

Naturally Occurring Cultural Districts (NOCDs) can take multiple forms, including:

  • Creative Industries
  • Sustainable Communities and Hub Organizations
  • Cultural Districts, Community Networks & Placemaking





Creative Industries

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Some NOCDs contain clusters of high-skilled, artisanal and niche manufacturers who rely on advocates and trade specialists to recruit businesses, quantify their economic impacts and protect them from external financial and developmental pressures.

For example

Where North Brooklyn meets Newtown Creek, GREENPOINT MANUFACTURING & DESIGN CENTER (GMDC) fosters a thriving creative manufacturing industry.  Operating two buildings in the North Brooklyn Industrial Business Zone and one in East Williamsburg, GMDC recently acquired two new multi-tenant spaces in Crown Heights.

Sustainable Communities & Hub Organizations

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Some NOCDs prioritize the holistic engagement of local residents, businesses and other stakeholders in a process of building and sustaining community. Here, residents have equal access to the resources and knowledge that enable them to live out a safe, healthy, and culturally expressive lives.

For example

THE POINT Community Development Corporation puts youth development at the center of the cultural and economic revitalization of the Hunts Point section of the South Bronx.

In South Williamsburg, EL PUENTE takes a healthful approach to enrich youth.

Cultural Districts, Community Networks & Placemaking

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Some NOCDs develop over time to represent the needs and goals of an arts, cultural or ethnic constituency that is united by geographic area, creative practice or shared advocacy.

For example


Originally founded by theaters and dance companies in response to the threat of their displacement from City owned buildings,
FOURTH ARTS BLOCK (FAB) now works with a network of 24 arts organization throughout the Lower East Side.


The Queens Museum of Art (QMA) spearheads the Corazón de Corona/Heart of Corona initiative with community based organizations, health groups, and local business to activate and beautify Corona’s public space, thereby creating a better climate for residents and businesses alike.

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