Lehigh Valley Planning Commission

TIP TOPS $500 MILLION - April 2018

Matt Assad, Managing Editor

PA INVESTS IN LEHIGH VALLEY RAILS - April 2018

Matt Assad, Managing Editor

Route 22 will lead a long list of road projects to be done, 57 bridges will be rehabilitated and more than 100 LANTA buses are to be replaced as part of a four-year Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) unveiled Wednesday before the Lehigh Valley Transportation Study (LVTS).

 

The $534 million plan is a $76 million increase over the current TIP, as some of the region’s busiest roadways and bridges are slated for improvement.

 

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LEHIGH VALLEY LANDS FIRST PA FREIGHT SUMMIT - April 2018

Matt Assad, Managing Editor

Anyone who’s grown used to that telltale whistle bellowing every time a train rumbles through one of the 43 active Lehigh Valley railroad crossings knows that the rail freight industry is alive and well in the region.

 

Pennsylvania has decided to invest nearly $4 million to keep it that way, as part of an effort to improve safety and conditions along some of the region’s busiest rail lines.

 

 

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Anyone who needs further evidence that the Lehigh Valley has become a national epicenter for warehousing and logistics should know that Pennsylvania is about to hold its first ever Freight Summit – and it will be here.

The Eastern Pennsylvania Freight Summit is scheduled for June 21-22 at Lehigh University’s Iacocca Hall.

The two-day event will start Thursday with a series of panel discussions opened by state Secretary of Transportation Leslie Richards and led by freight industry experts to include CBRE Executive Vice President Bill Wolf and Majestic Realty Co. Senior Vice President Ed Konjoyan.

The second day of the summit will consist of a guided tour of several manufacturing and distribution facilities across the region.

 

 

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HOMES SALES UP WHILE MANY FLOCK TO APARTMENTS - April 2018

Matt Assad, Managing Editor

Houses are selling again, more people are renting and the cost of new homes are finally starting to rise, according to the Lehigh Valley Planning Commission’s new Housing Market Report.

An analysis of thousands of housing sales and rental unit data from 2012 through 2016 shows movement in the sale of homes, but the report’s most revealing look may be that the number of renters has been increasing steadily since 2012. Over those five years, the Lehigh Valley gained 6,561 renters, while the number of owner-occupied homes fell by 3,923.

 

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EASTON AND COOPERSBURG GET PENNDOT GRANTS - March 2018

Matt Assad, Managing Editor

Pedestrians will find it easier to cross Main Street in Coopersburg and bicyclists will feel more welcome on Easton’s Wood Avenue with help from two PennDOT grants designed to promote multimodal transportation.

 

Governor Tom Wolf announced 45 grants last month, including $175,000 to improve Coopersburg’s busy Main Street, and $450,000 to help fund a safety project along a half-mile section of Wood Avenue in Easton.

 

“Our multimodal investments support important projects that help residents and local economies,” said Governor Wolf. “We are making possible improvements that will bring significant benefits to these communities.”

 

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HELP SHAPE THE FUTURE - March 2018

Matt Assad, Managing Editor

ROUTE 145 TO GET SAFETY UPGRADE - March 2018

Matt Assad, Managing Editor

Should that patch of farmland or open space in your town be developed for warehouses, homes or just left alone? Should municipal planners spend money on bigger highways or more trails, and how soon should we prepare for driverless cars?

 

The future of the Lehigh Valley is being shaped right now, and this is your chance to weigh in.

 

The Lehigh Valley Planning Commission is distributing a 24-question survey to get public input that can help the LVPC as it writes a new Regional Comprehensive Plan that is designed to guide how the Lehigh Valley should grow in the coming decades.

 

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A strip of roadway that is the site of frequent vehicle crashes will soon get $3.5 million in upgrades designed to improve safety.

 

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation has awarded the money as part of the Highway Safety Improvement Program (HSIP) for a project to reduce crashes along Route 145, from Susquehanna Street to Emmaus Avenue in Allentown.

 

The nearly one-mile stretch of road passes in front of the Mountainville Shopping Center.

 

 

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HELP LESSEN THE IMPACT OF THE NEXT DISASTER - February 2018

Matt Assad, Managing Editor

There’s no predicting when the Lehigh Valley will see the kind of damaging floods it saw in 2006, or the punishing winds that Superstorm Sandy brought in 2012, but being prepared requires planning now—and your help is needed.

 

The first public meeting to help update the Regional Hazard Mitigation Plan is scheduled for 7 p.m. February 20, at Pinebrook Family Answers, 402 N. Fulton St., Allentown.

 

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DRIVERLESS CARS, $130M  AQUARIUMS AND 28,000 WAREHOUSE WORKERS - February 2018

Matt Assad, Managing Editor

The Lehigh Valley economy is growing fast, automated cars are coming sooner than you might think, and a $130 million aquarium that once seemed like a dream is now “doable.”

 

Those were among the subjects tackled during the most recent episode of Business Matters on WFMZ-TV, Channel 69. The 30-minute show featured a panel of experts consisting of Lehigh Valley Planning Commission Executive Director Becky Bradley, Discover Lehigh Valley President Michael Stershic, Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corp. President Don Cunningham and Air Products Community Relations and Philanthropy Manager Laurie Gostley Hackett.

 

The episode aired Monday, Jan. 29, but you can find it at: wfmz.com/businessmatters.

 

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LVPC FEATURED ON WDIY RADIO - February 2018

Matt Assad, Managing Editor

LVPC Executive Director Becky Bradley can’t seem to stop talking about the future – and that’s important to maintaining our quality of life and global competitiveness.

 

The LVPC and its two-year effort to write a new Regional Comprehensive Plan was featured during an hourlong radio show on WDIY-FM, the National Public Radio affiliate based in Bethlehem.

 

The show originally aired January 18, on WDIY-FM, 88.1.

 

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<<LINK TO SHOW RECORDING >>

 

A NEW CLASS OF CITIZEN PLANNERS - January 2018

Matt Assad, Managing Editor

Some were public officials looking to better understand their leadership role, some were professional planners bolstering their expertise and a few were private residents who were curious about how their community is run.

A new class of eight Citizen Planners was recognized Thursday for completing more than 30 hours of Lehigh Valley Government Academy courses offered at the Lehigh Valley Planning Commission offices.

“The Commission would like to recognize all the folks who have spent hours and hours and hours getting their planning certification,” said LVPC Chairman Stephen Repasch.

To be eligible, participants had to complete three of the four courses offered at the academy. Available courses are Community Planning, Subdivision and Land Development Review, Zoning, and Zoning Administration.

 

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AIRPORT AREA STUDY TO MEASURE WAREHOUSE IMPACT - January 2018

Matt Assad, Managing Editor

Hundreds of acres of land that not long ago were farmed for corn, soybean and wheat just north of the Lehigh Valley International Airport (LVIA) will soon be sprouting warehouses the size of a dozen football fields. Gone are the tractors that once tilled the fields, soon to be replaced by tractor-trailers delivering goods and cars driven by hundreds of new warehouse and distribution center workers.

 

The impact of all that change in the communities near LVIA is about to be put under a microscope during a six-month Airport Area Transportation Study being shepherded by the Lehigh Valley Planning Commission and the Lehigh Valley Transportation Study.

 

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PETER LEYDEN ENCORE - January 2018

Matt Assad, Managing Editor

If you missed renowned futurist Peter Leyden’s trip into the Lehigh Valley, here’s your chance to, well, go back to the future. Leyden’s 80-minute keynote presentation is now available here for anyone who missed his ground-breaking view of the future, or anyone who just wants to take another look.

 

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REPASCH ELECTED LVPC CHAIR - January 2018

Matt Assad, Managing Editor

The New Year brought new leadership at the Lehigh Valley Planning Commission, as Stephen Repasch takes over as Chair of the 37-member board after he was elected during the Commission’s annual reorganization.

 

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PEDESTRIAN AND BICYCLE PROJECTS GET $1.3 MILLION - December 2017

Matt Assad, Managing Editor

The Lehigh Valley Transportation Study (LVTS) issued $1.32 million in Transportation Alternatives Set-Aside (TASA) program grants Monday, after whittling more than $10 million worth of applications to five projects designed to make communities safer.

 

The grants are issued every two years for bicycle, pedestrian and transit-related projects not covered in the region’s four-year $458 million program that maintains the region’s road, bridge and transit networks.

 

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Lehigh Valley Planning Commission

961 Marcon Boulevard - Suite 310

Allentown, PA 18109

Phone: (610) 264-4544

Toll Free: (888) 627-8808

Fax: (610) 264-2616