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Creating vibrant neighborhoods to live, work, and play - by design - for the way you roll!

Neighborhood Commercial Areas are areas identified as a possible choice location for a new breed of retail, artisanal manufacturing, creative services and unique gathering spaces. Which neighborhood fits your business plan?

Downtown Improvement DistrictDowntown Norfolk   link 

2019 Neighborhood Task Force Calendar    link

Chelsea - Eclectic Foodie Destination

The Chelsea neighborhood located near West Ghent is one of Norfolk's most exciting new commercial districts, featuring new businesses that appeal to foodies and fans of craft breweries. The Bakehouse at Chelsea, which opened in 2014, features wood-fired European hearth breads and flat bread pizzas using organic flour and locally sourced produce. Next door is The Birch, a beer garden, bar and restaurant. Smartmouth, an award winning brewery is located nearby on Raleigh Avenue. Other restaurants include the Torch Bistro. These businesses coexist comfortably with older, established industrial businesses located nearby. Ride your bike and hit the Elizabeth River Trail. Click here for a taste of the Chelsea experience.

Ghent – One of Five Great Neighborhoods in America

Named by the American Planning Association in 2018 as a neighborhood area with exceptional character, quality and planning. Visit the Business Association website at https://ghentnorfolk.org

East Little Creek – Corridor Connects Military Facilities

This business association is currently forming and when complete will provide representation for more than 1000 businesses.

Norfolk Arts District - Get Energized

The Norfolk Arts District features artists, musicians, the breathtaking Chrysler Museum and a working glass studio, performing arts, comedy, holistic healing. In a nutshell, you'll find just about every art form there is coming alive and you can talk about it all at The Plot, an urban park. And, it's happened in just a short time. Our world-class institutional assets have welcomed entrepreneurial adventures. This area is in downtown and connects the core to the historic Ghent area. Click here to keep up with what's happening in the Arts District.

North Colley

The North Colley Business District is one of Norfolk’s newest.  The area encompasses more than 155 businesses and several of the trendiest restaurants in town. This area is in walkable distance to Old Dominion University and the Lafayette River flows by. 

Ocean View - Vacay 24/7

If Bay breezes and a vacation lifestyle are attractive to you, consider Ocean View. Ocean View is a seven mile coastal strip running between Norfolk Naval Station and the Little Creek Amphibious Base. Major housing projects and an award-winning coastal village have transformed this area - attracting families, young professionals and retirees alike. Going to and from work by boat is an option.

Railroad District

The Railroad District Business Association is the foremost advocate and steward of the Railroad District, effecting change through strategy development, goal setting, and capacity building that promote business and economic growth while fostering a healthy community. Click here to see with what's happening in the Railroad District.

Riverview – The Archway Welcomes Businesses and Customers Alike

One of Norfolk’s oldest communities revived its business area with an archway at the Granby Street Bridge and 38thStreet in 2018. Riverview hosts “Village Days” and draws hundreds to the Lafayette Park to its expanded farmer’s market. Nestled alongside the Virginia Zoo, Riverview has eclectic restaurants and shops. 

Visit their Facebook page for happenings here

Click Here to search Norfolk Open Data for detailed information by address, zoning districts and land use zones.

Norfolk Department of Economic Development Mission

Generate wealth for the City of Norfolk through business expansion, enhancement, and new business development complementary to our neighborhoods.

Contact Info

(757) 664-4338
999 Waterside Drive
Suite 2430
Norfolk, VA 23510

Staff Details

Jared Chalk
Interim Economic Development Director 

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