Everyone knows Plainfield is a historic city. We have the most historic districts in New Jersey and architecture ranging from Victorian to Colonial style can be found within its 10 historic districts. The Downtown has two historic districts: the North Avenue Historic District and the Civic Historic District. They are the only commercial historic districts in Plainfield.
The North Avenue Historic District is anchored by the train station, post office, and Plainfield National Bank (now PNC Bank). The architecture of the district is distinct to the 19th and early 20th century, and many buildings still have their original exteriors unaltered. The North Avenue Historic District is at the epicenter of Plainfield's redevelopment and represents the core of our transit village.
The Civic Historic District is unmistakable and grand with the City Hall building, YMCA, City Hall Annex, and World World I monument towering on Watchung Avenue with strong City Beautiful Movement cues that are character of the turn-of-the-century. Both North Avenue and the Civic historic districts are on the Registry of Historic Places, being added in 1984 (locally in 1981) and 1993 respectably.
Both districts host a variety of events each year, including the annual Fire Safety Fair, Mayor's Wellness Walk, Holiday Tree Lighting, and Queen City 5k.
North Avenue Historic District
North Avenue Historic District location (Grey)
Plainfield Train Station | Built 1902
Plainfield Post Office | 201-221 Watchung Avenue | Built 1916 | Neoclassical Revival
The Marsh Building | 201-209 Park Avenue | Built 1886 | Italianate
The Hetfield Building | Built 1886 | 100- 110 North Avenue | Late 19th Century Commercial Building
Former State Trust Company Building | 215-223 Park Avenue | Built 1916 | Neoclassical Revival
The Quaker Meeting House | 223-233 Watchung Avenue | Built 1788 | Colonial
Espinoza/Sterling Building | 226-232 Park Avenue | Built 1909 | Early 20th Century Commercial Building
The Courier-News/Frost Building | 234-238 Park Avenue | Built 1896 | Late 19th Century Commercial Building
North Avenue | Late 19th Century Commercial Buildings
PNC Bank (Formerly Plainfield Trust Company Building) | 200-224 Park Avenue | Built 1905, 1926 | Neoclassical Revival
City Hall | Built 1917-1918 | 515 Watchung Avenue | Georgian Revival
City Hall Annex (Formerly Seventh Day Baptist Denominational Building) | Built 1929 | 510 Watchung Avenue | Jacobethan Revival
WWI Memorial | 600-623 Crescent Avenue | Built 1927
The Salvation Army Building (near District) | 615 Watchung Avenue
The Plainfield YMCA | 1922-1923 | 518 Watchung Avenue | Neoclassical
Crescent Presbyterian Church (In nearby Crescent Area Historic District) | 700-722 Watchung Avenue | Built 1934 | English Gothic
For more information on Historic Plainfield, please visit the Plainfield Historic Preservation Commission and Plainfield Historical Society online:
Other Architecturally Significant Buildings
We also have many buildings scattered throughout Downtown that are of historic significance but are not in a historic district. Some may be individually registered as a local, state or national historic structure while others remain unregistered.