Ok, I haven't completely explored the site yet, but so far here are the things that I like:
1. You've kept the classic portal, which is one of the defining images of the old Newgrounds, and feels familiar against the "unknown" of the massive changes.
2. The new design in general looks really good, with the neon-coloured, polished-steel, futuristic space shooter image. The classic design was appealing because of its dark/black theme, and I'm glad you've kept that on top of the classier additions.
3. As far as I can tell you've updated the search system, which used to be completely ineffective. This was actually the main thing I was looking forward to when I first heard the word "redesign" many years ago.
4. The integration of all the content on the site into the channels on the main page. Generally looks more organised.
Things that I don't like:
1. The large icons for displaying the content on the main page. It looks too bare and disorganised. I also miss the short author description alongside each submission on the main page. Personally, I was more interested by that, and also the name of the submission (in big Gold letters), than the image itself. The images can easily be misleading, and they don't tell you anything about the submission, so it might just as well be an art submission by the way it's presented.
I would prefer it if you kept the author descriptions, the name of the submission without having to hover over the image, and the name of the author as well. I think the age rating should keep its original colour scheme.
2.The main banner on the front page looks a little empty. This takes away from the whole "slick black" theme of the site. I think the original two tankmen can be replaced with something.
Also, as an idea, would it be possible to give each registered user to modify the wall art or the colour scheme like google does? Considering you've given more colour to the site compared to the more anodyne black and gold, it would be fair to give users some control over it.
I'm generally indifferent to the star system, although I do think it takes away from the individual feel of the site. Regardless I have to admit that it does give you a better idea than the number system. Also I noticed you've kept the old number-based rating banner, so I'm fine with that.
In conclusion, the redesign is a breath of fresh air. It is a symbol of the site's growing ambitions and a promising step towards their realisation. I believe it took a lot of courage and great planning to make such a change, while keeping the community's desires so close to the process.
I understand the redesign is not yet quite complete (mostly with all the bugs, from what I've heard), in which case this "draft" is an amazing success and close to perfect. I would like to thank humbly all the administrators in charge of this work, and express my appreciation of their undying support and loyalty to this community.
I trust all the organizers to listen closely to the community's opinions and suggestions about any more changes that might be needed (which they've always done, and I think we should treasure that.)
Otherwise, I think it's going very well. Congratulations to everybody!