Wednesday, May 04, 2016
Has NIZ Fizzed?
Finally, some good news from Downtown Allentown and perhaps the truth, too. According to the latest Morning Call report by multiple reporters (to let you know they're really, really important) developer J. B. Reilly has shelved City Center Five, at least for now.
"For us to build Five City Center Innovation Tower we need a large anchor tenant," City Center CEO J.B. Reilly said Tuesday. "We don't have a large anchor tenant committed."
Here's what J. B. Reilly meant:
"There are just no major office users left in the Lehigh Valley for us to poach and move to Downtown Allentown. We also can't find another major user like National Penn Bank to steal from another Pennsylvania location and relocate them to Allentown using the NIZ subsidy to do it. They just aren't there. We are disappointed and we are hoping that my good friend Pat Browne will come up with a solution to our problem, I know he can do it."
Senator Browne commented that perhaps the NIZ wasn't enough to help a now struggling City Center and Allentown. "We may need to provide Allentown with more subsidies to help them attract the kinds of businesses that don't appear to be interested in Allentown any longer." One option would be to allow Redevelopment Capital Assistance dollars to now be used in the NIZ, said Browne. "We can't let, City Center, I mean, Allentown, down. They are, too big to fail."
This is oh so-so do-so-pa.
(Note: My "quotes" are parody.)