Back

LVEDC has Federal Grant Funds Available for Redevelopment Projects

By Colin McEvoy on June 17, 2016

The Trifecta Technologies building, formerly the vacant Schoen’s Furniture Store in Easton, is among the Lehigh Valley's recent redevelopment success stories.

The Trifecta Technologies building, formerly the vacant Schoen’s Furniture Store in Allentown, is among the Lehigh Valley’s recent redevelopment success stories.

The Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corporation (LVEDC) has federal grant funds available for assessment and planning for regional redevelopment projects.

Those funds are available through LVEDC’s redevelopment program, the Lehigh Valley Land Recycling Initiative (LVLRI), which is focused on promoting economic development through the reuse of abandoned and underutilized commercial and industrial properties, also known as brownfields.

“We have federal dollars available, and perhaps more importantly, we have the knowledge and resources to help market and develop brownfields into sustainable development projects for the Lehigh Valley,” said Andrew Kleiner, LVEDC Director of Redevelopment and External Affairs.

Andrew Kleiner

Andrew Kleiner

Funds are currently available for Phase I and Phase II environmental site assessments, as well as site cleanup planning. LVLRI works directly with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) throughout the project process to streamline redevelopment efforts.

For more information about how to take advantage of these funds, contact Kleiner at 610-266-7619 or akleiner@lehighvalley.org.

LVLRI has been in operation since 1998, and in that time more than $400 million of project cost has been leveraged by using assistance from the program, with nearly 2,000 acres assessed and planned for to facilitate redevelopment.

The program is currently managing eight active redevelopment projects in various stages, Kleiner said, and in the past has assisted with such successful projects as the Trifecta Building and Bell Hall restaurant in Allentown, the Slate Belt YMCA, the ArtsQuest Center in Bethlehem, and the Easton Public Market, as well as the ongoing Allentown Waterfront project.

“We experienced one of the busiest and most successful years LVLRI’s history last year, and we’re seeing similar project and prospect volume this year as well,” Kleiner said. “The success stories we’re helping to facilitate are major catalyst projects that will create a lot of new jobs in the Lehigh Valley.”

LVLRI has consistently won federal and state grant funding opportunities to promote redevelopment, with recent examples including a $500,000 EPA hazardous assessment grant, and a $468,000 Growing Greener DEP grant for cleanup and redevelopment activities at the Allentown Waterfront.

The program has previously been recognized by the EPA in national success stories for Bell Hall, the Easton Public Market, and the Allentown Waterfront, and last year the program was among the few chosen to present in the National Brownfields Conference in Chicago.

LVLRI accomplishes brownfields redevelopment in several ways, including helping site owners and developers identify financial assistance for environmental assessment and remediation work at brownfield sites, and by assisting on technical matters such as grant/loan application preparation, environmental work plan preparation, and the completion of buyer/seller agreements.

Additionally, LVLRI serves as an intermediary between all parties involved in a brownfield transaction, and maintains an inventory of underutilized commercial/industrial properties throughout the Lehigh Valley.

LVLRI is an advisory committee comprised of municipal officials from cities, boroughs and townships in both Lehigh and Northampton counties, as well as brownfield experts, regulatory agency representatives, private developers, engineers, and consultants.

Lehigh University Student-Turned-Entrepreneur Creates Innovative ZYX Sticks

Shannon Varcoe didn't realize she was an entrepreneur until she came to Lehigh University. “Now I’m sort of obsessed with it,” Varcoe laughed. “I read those articles lik[...]

Continue to Next Page

Lehigh ValleyQuick Facts

  • Industry Spotlight

    13.8% of Labor Force
    Employed in Professional & Business Services
    Q4 2016

  • By the Numbers
    $39.1 Billion

    Gross Domestic Product
    2016

  • Investor Spotlight
    City Center Lehigh Valley
  • Industry Spotlight

    9.8% of Labor Force
    Employed in Manufacturing
    Q4 2016

  • By the Numbers
    $3.44 Billion

    Exports
    2015

  • Investor Spotlight
    Air Products
  • Industry Spotlight

    1,504 Total Office Buildings
    Q2 2017

  • By the Numbers
    $57,510

    Median Household Income

  • Investor Spotlight
    PPL Electric Utilities
  • Industry Spotlight

    1,770 Total Industrial Buildings
    Q2 2017

  • By the Numbers
    24,400

    New Jobs Created Over Past 5 Years

  • Investor Spotlight
    National Penn
  • Industry Spotlight

    5.0% Industrial
    Vacancy Rate
    Q2 2017

  • By the Numbers
    658,477

    Population

  • Investor Spotlight
    Olympus
  • Industry Spotlight

    7.7% Office
    Vacancy Rate
    Q2 2017

  • By the Numbers
    342,493

    Labor Force

  • Investor Spotlight
    Lutron Electronics
  • Industry Spotlight

    17.2% of Labor Force
    Employed in Health Care & Social Assistance

  • By the Numbers
    5,073

    Technology Patents from 2000-2015

  • Investor Spotlight
    Mack Trucks
  • Industry Spotlight

    9.1% Increase in exports
    Among top 20 markets nationally in export growth

  • By the Numbers
    25.8 Million

    Total Office Inventory (Square Feet)
    Q2 2017

  • Investor Spotlight
    UGI
  • Industry Spotlight

    10.1% Industrial rent growth
    Second highest in the U.S.

  • By the Numbers
    115.5 Million

    Total Industrial Inventory (Square Feet)
    Q2 2017

  • Investor Spotlight
    NFI