Thanks to cooperation from the Allentown Neighborhood Improvement Zone Development Authority, Developer Jeff Brown’s plan to revitalize the city’s Schoen’s building will proceed as scheduled, despite an unexpected increase in cost and decrease in projected tax revenue.
To ensure the project’s survival, Brown reduced the ANIZDA loan for the property from $8.6 million to $7.4. The new deal also includes an increase in ANIZDA’s income share. Originally, ANIZDA would receive 25 percent of any tax revenue exceeding $302,000. Now, the authority will take 35 percent of tax revenue above $475,000.
When explaining why costs have continued rising, Brown referred to the site as “highly irregular,” saying that rehabilitating the building’s façade is significantly more complicated than initially anticipated.
The former furniture store will be converted into a mixed-use building, with Trifecta Technologies and Shane Patrick Construction occupying the six-floor structure.
Brown said construction will begin in September.
Before ANIZDA agreed to revise the Schoen’s loan, it heard a brief update on the Allentown Arena project. Notwithstanding a few days off due to extreme heat, the project is on schedule and under budget.