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Nazareth, Pa., United States

Monday, December 28, 2015

Bethlehem Plaza Owner Prepared to Invest $15-20 Million

Owner Kirpal Saini with engineer Phil Malitsch
Bethlehem Plaza owner Kirpal Saini, along with engineer Phil Malitsch, have presented sketch plans for access improvements at Bethlehem Plaza, located along the west side of Nazareth Pike near Route 22.

The Plaza hosts a small office building, Dollar Store and a Hibachi restauraunt. But its anchor tenant, a K-Mart, closed in 2013.

Saini told Bethlehem Township Commissioners at their December 21 meeting that he is currently looking at between 15-20 prospects, and that he plans to invest between $15-20 million in improvements once he has secured a new anchor tenant. But he needs to make it easier for shoppers to get into and out of the shopping center. He noted he loses $1 million per year at this point.

"We are trying to survive," he told Commissioners. "We need your help."

A sketch plan is just an informal presentation at which no official action is taken. Commissioners had no negative comments.


John said...

Investments are speculative, based on an investor's best beliefs on what the future holds. Investors have a right to expect a return on their investments. Sometimes the returns on investments are negative.

Reality Bites said...

I strongly suggest that before spending government money to improve access to Mr Saini's shopping center, he provide information on the improvements he plans to make to the property first.

A low-end retail store replacing a closed low-end retail store may not benefit anyone but Mr. Saini by restoring his flow of cash from the rental of the retail space. Perhaps a Home Depot, or a Wigels, or developing it into a mixed retail/office park perhaps ?

Perhaps the bast use of the land may be with a complete redevelopment into something else

Anonymous said...

I don't know where these commenters came up with the notion that taxpayer money is being requested. It is not mentioned anywhere in the post. Mr. Saini wants to widen the entrance/exit at the traffic light to allow more traffic to flow in and out of the shopping center. He wants to modify/remove the concrete island at the light.

@7:38, You obviously have no concept of this property. There is a Home Depot across the street, and a new out building already houses office/retail space.

Anonymous said...

Spend $20-30 million? What are you going to do, knock the entire shopping center down and start over?

Whoever sold you the property did a good job of "selling" it with some far fetched dreams of grandeur.

Bernie O'Hare said...

That os correct. This guy has no IZ, CRIZ, KOZ or TIF. He wantsw to improve access to his site and is not seeking a handout. Yet he is being insukted. Anonymously. By stupid people who apparently do not know how to read. I am deleting all the hate.

Anonymous said...

I am not a hater, Bernie, and didn't see posts that were deleted, but your post is not clear on what is being requested. The person who commented at 8:36AM provided details that you didn't. Not trying to be "stupid", but it is hard to be informed when the information needed to be so is not at hand.

When I first saw the post, my guess was going to be that there was some kind of funding that was requested. I am still not clear on if the owner wants approval to modify something the town owns at his own expense, wants the town to pay for something related to the road and/or traffic control, etc. We were not at the meeting.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Nothing monetary was being requested. That should be abundantly clear. It was a sketch plan. No formal action is taken on sketch plans, and I said so in the body of my post. Sketch plans are submitted for feedback, not formal action. The owner sought input on his idea for improving access to his shopping center. He was seeking no handout from anyone. If you have difficulty understanding this, I can't help you, regardless whether you were at the meeting. Don't blame me for your own inability to understand what is very clear or the ignorant comments posted here anonymously. Had he wanted the township to foot the bill for something, I would have said so.

Bernie O'Hare said...

I just read through my post again and am amazed that anyone could reach the conclusion he wanted financial assistance. The headline indicates that the owner is going to spend $15-20 million of his own money. The body of the story indicates he is looking for tenants, and that this just involves a sketch plan. The only conclusion i can reach is that the anonymous cowards I deleted are stupid, and there is no need to revise a post that was already quite clear.

Anonymous said...

You have got to be kidding me O'Hare, just about any commercial development these days has tax dollars involved, it's a given. Please prove me wrong.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Your statement is completely ignorant. Almost none of the development in the LV involves tge expenditure of public Dollars. I am not going to waste my time proving this point to someone who lacks the integrity to sign his name..

Anonymous said...

I just shit my pants I laughed so hard!

Anonymous said...

Any alterations to this parcel should include provisions for wind and solar power generation in addition to substantial green space along with restoration of the degraded riparian buffer along the Monacacy Creek. The industrial revolution has not been kind to Gaia if politicians want to be part of the solution for preserving humanity's existence they must not make decisions based upon maximum economic growth.

Blue Badger

Anonymous said...

nothing makes it in this area. in fact , the word is/was,that we might see a gas sattion belonging to giant pop up here. they would put it right in the middle of this mess of a property closer to mcdonalds.

for 30 plus years , with the exception of a few stores, this retail space has been a complete waste. even in its hay day this location attracted very few customers, including kmart/sears.

so this developer/owner wants no public cash to develop? Finally a developer who is willing to risk his own cash to build with out political and union scams and political and union bribes, political and union kick backs and pay to play scandals.
can someone tell me what will be located in the new plans?

Anonymous said...

Not too sure about the Giant gas station on that lot. They approached the township several years ago about erecting one in the parking lot of their store. That never came to be.
The retail space was doing well until the shopping center across the street was built. In typical WalMart behavior, they opened across the street from the Kmart. Food Lane was doing fine until they ceased to be. Another grocery store would probably do ok there, it's just that the size is a bit smaller than your average grocery. The best thing for that property would be to demolish the department store, the grocery store, everything that's vacant, and start over.

Anonymous said...

Or do what Ricky Bartolloci did up in Forks---- cut a big swath in the middle of the building and create more frontage for smaller types of stores. He changed the complexion of his building and now has good tenants in a revitalized strip mall.