Reading Redevelopment Authority Minutes 07/21/10

View the Full File: 





The Redevelopment Authority of the City of Reading held its monthly meeting in the Redevelopment Authority Conference room of City Hall. 815 Washington Street, Reading, Berks County, Pennsylvania. on 21st July 2010.


The following members were present:


Ms. Michele Lauter    Chairwoman

Mr. Philip Coles      Vice Chairman

Mr. Dan Luckey        Member

Mr. Theo. Auman       Member

Mr. Geo. Viener       Member


Absent: None



Adam Mukerji , Executive Director. Dennis Witwer. Executive Assistant. Keith Mooney, Esq., of Barley Snyder and a representative from the Reading Eagle were also present.


Noting that all members were in attendance for a quorum at 5:32 p.m., the Chairwoman called the meeting to order.


Minutes and Bills payable


The minutes were reviewed and were unanimously approved.


Mr. Witwer distributed the bills payable and financial report and after a brief overview both were approved.


Hotel/Garage Project


Mr. Mukerji updated the board on the progress of the Hotel parking garage construction. He said that the groundbreaking for the HoteI shouId be in September , no Iater than October . He stated that he' s been busy marketing the BuiId America Bonds (B. A. B.) , WelIs Fargo has shown interest. The bond counciI is Barley Snyder. He gave a break down of the cost of the project which is totaI wouId be around 59 miIIion. RRA wiII own the HoteI .


GoggleWorks Apts.


Mr . Mukerji gave a rundown on the GoggleWorks Apartment project . He stated that after an F.H. A. delay the project is now moving forward and the groundbreaking shouId be a matter of weeks . The Reading Housing Authority is very active with this project .


Mr . Luckey toId the board that the R. H. A. just soId a house in the neighborhood for $100,000.00 which is a great sign that the housing market in the area is improving.


Mr. Mukerji stated that he and others are working closely with some restaurateurs who are interested in moving into the vacant store fronts across the street from GoggIeWorks and the IMAX, under the parking garage.


Mr. Mukerji toId the board that he had been working with the Community DeveIopment office with the NSP II grant. That office wiII be working on defining an artist house neighborhood, which should surround the GoggIeWorks and GoggIeWorks Apartments. Once this has been defined the RRA couId then stat the process to create a new Redevelopment Zone which would give the RRA the abiIity to control the zoning for the parcels.


Market House fencing


Mr . Mukerji and Mr. Witwer discussed the issues with the proposed fencing around the erstwhile Market House at 6th and Bingaman. Mr. Witwer toId the board that before any fence couId be put around the properties, HARB would have to approve the fence style. If HARB would not approve the type of fence proposed by the RRA, zoning wouId not sign off on the permits.


The question of how long is "temporary" considered, 3 months or year or more. Mr. Mukerji stated that RRA is still actively looking for the highest and best use for the property.


Mr. Witwer advised the board that a chain link fence with a coating on the metal, might be acceptable to the HARB, but couldn't guarantee that.


The board did not see a need to have a fence put around the parking lot across the street from the Market House.


626 S 7th Street (Jason Fox property)


Mr. Mooney handed out a packet of legal documents concerning the sale of 626 S 7th St. He explained to the board that this is a matter that he has been working on since 2006 when Mr. Fox first came to the board and asked to purchase the small sliver of land which was believed to be owned by the RRA. Mr. Mooney stated that after do much research on title searches it was discovered that the RRA was no longer the owner of the property. The RRA had sold the property back in 1985 and for some reason the property was not properly recorded by the County.


Mr. Mooney asked the board to consider doing a Quick Claim Deed so that Mr. Fox could purchase the property from the correct owner. Mr. Coles made a motion to approve the Qui ck Claim Deed which was seconded by Mr. Luckey.


Executive Session


There being no further business to be brought before the board, Mr. Luckey made a motion to adjourn the meeting a11 members were in favor.


The next regular monthly meeting of the Reading Redevelopment Authority wi11 be held on Wednesday, 18th August 2010 at 5:30 p.m. in the Redevelopment Authority Conference Room 2-53, 815 Washington St., Reading, PA.


Respectfully submitted by :


Executive Assistant