Saturday, March 17, 2018

Brownfields for Housing initiative

SCHWEIKER ADMINISTRATION Launches Brownfields for Housing initiative in Lycoming County

Department of Economic Development and Planning Services

48 West Third Street Williamsport, PA  17701 (Mailing Address)
CONTACT: William Kelly, 320-2134

WILLIAMSPORT, Lycoming County (April 24) -- On behalf of Gov. Mark Schweiker, Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) Secretary Sam McCullough today announced $5 million for Pennsylvania’s new “Brownfields for Housing” initiative, which promotes affordable housing activities in core communities on previously developed sites. Those sites may include property that was previously developed for residential, commercial or industrial use.

Secretary McCullough launched the new initiative as part of the “DCED on the Road… Again” tour during a stop at a Habitat for Humanity site in Williamsport, Lycoming County.

Alice Fox, Board President for Williamsport/Lycoming Habitat for Humanity is joined by Habitat volunteers
Alice Fox, Board President for Williamsport/Lycoming Habitat for Humanity is joined by Habitat volunteers and a Habitat family.
Used with permission of Williamsport Sun-Gazette Photograph by Mark Nance.

The program will provide an allocation of State Housing and Redevelopment Assistance funds to every county in the Commonwealth that administers an Act 137 Housing Trust Fund.  The Act 137 Housing Trust Fund law, enacted in December 1992, gives all Pennsylvania counties, except Philadelphia, the ability to increase recording fees for deeds and mortgages to fund affordable housing activities for people whose income is at or below the median income of the county.

The recipient county must also identify matching funds of at least $1 for each $4 of state “Brownfields for Housing” funds.

Funds for the new program will be distributed through the Communities of Opportunity Program, which is administered by the DCED’s Center for Community Building.

Secretary McCullough presented a check for $85,082 -- Lycoming County’s allocation of the Brownfields for Housing Initiative for fiscal year 2001-02 -- to assist in the construction of homes on two approved sites located in the County.

DCED check presentation ceremony
(From Left to Right) Attending the DCED check presentation ceremony are Bill Kelly - Lycoming County Planning Department, Bob Yoder - Principal Partner Pennsy Commons Project, Rebecca Burke - Commissioner, Joe Neyhart - Commissioner, Dick Nassberg - Commissioner, Alice Fox - Board President for Williamsport/Lycoming Habitat for Humanity, Sam McCullough - DCED Secretary, Larry Segal -Principal Partner Pennsy Commons Project.
Used with permission of Williamsport Sun-Gazette Photograph by Mark Nance.

“This Administration is committed to community revitalization,” Secretary McCullough said.  “We’re helping communities rebuild and revitalize their neighborhoods so that every citizen can have a better place to live, work and raise a family.  This new initiative will help to improve the quality of life of all Pennsylvanians.”

The Williamsport/Lycoming affiliate of Habitat for Humanity is constructing two homes side-by-side on the former Buckeye Pretzel Company manufacturing site.  One of the homes is being built entirely by women; the other is being built by the local Habitat collegiate chapter from Lycoming College.

The funds awarded to Lycoming County also will be used to support the Pennsy Commons project, a mixed-use, mixed-income development calling for the construction of 26 duplex units, 24 quad-plex units and an 11,200-square-foot retail commercial building.  The project will be located on the ground of an abandoned Conrail right of way in the heart of Newberry, a western section of Williamsport.

“We are delighted to be able to partner with the state to help bring funding assistance to some of the housing programs in our county,” Commissioner Rebecca A. Burke said. “Both of the projects we advanced this year will help address the pressing need for more affordable housing. This is a great start and noteworthy first step, but solving the housing challenge is clearly a long-term process.”


Last Updated: 12/24/2007 9:42 AM
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