CATASAUQUA, Pa. - A major revitalization project is headed for a Lehigh County community.
The borough of Catasauqua could see one of its oldest industrial sites reborn with a much more modern spin.
Catasauqua purchased the former brownfield site situated along the Lehigh River and D&L trail last year. The borough now plans to use the site to build its new municipal complex.
"We're crowded. The police are bursting at their seams," said Eugene Goldfeder, borough manager.
The current borough hall is shared with a public housing complex and the police station, but Goldfeder said the most immediate concern is the fire station.
"Right now, we are housing our trucks in buildings that were built in 1900. They don't really fit in the buildings. They are too old for the weight of the buildings currently there," Goldfeder said.
The borough has hired on an architectural firm and is looking at building a 30,000-square-foot facility to house borough hall and the fire and police headquarters.
The idea is that the rest of the former F.L. Smidth site near Front and Pine Streets would be for private use -- a mix of residential, commercial, and recreational facilities.
Current projections estimate about 200 homes, some with businesses underneath.
"Many of the apartments over commercial property. I believe the plans last night had 20,00 to 25,00 square feet of commercial," Goldfeder said.
The borough plans to selling that idea to a private developer, transforming the downtown into a thriving hotspot.
"The project is a major initiative of the borough," Goldfeder said.
The borough is working with Spillman Farmer Architects. The firm is currently working with developers to create a final master plan to present to council in about a month.
Goldfeder said he hopes crews will break ground on the new municipal complex by next spring.
Allentown, PA 18102