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Lehigh Valley

WELLS FARGO: 740 Hamilton St., Allentown

Wells Fargo Bank will hold a ribbon-cutting at its downtown Allentown branch starting at 11 a.m. on June 30. Registration for the event is free through the website of the Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce.

Wells Fargo, based in San Francisco, is one of "The Big Four Banks" in the U.S., along with JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America and Citigroup.

Elsewhere, the Wells Fargo news is not so good. The bank has closed its Lehigh University branch on Trembley Drive as it goes through the constant process of re-evaluating its network of offices. Students and staff who used the university office are within a mile of a Fourth Street branch in South Bethlehem, according to Wells Fargo. Get the full scoop.

WIZ KIDZ AT MADISON FARMS: 4817 Freemansburg Ave., Bethlehem Township

The Wiz Kidz outlet at the Madison Farms residential/retail development will hold a grand reopening and ribbon-cutting at noon on July 15, in conjunction with the Lehigh Valley Chamber.

An electrical fire closed the cheesesteak restaurant shortly after its first opening.

Wiz Kidz also operates at 65 E. Elizabeth Ave., Bethlehem. The restaurant is a Bayou Boys operation, run by Christian Duarte, Mo Taylor and Jeremy Straub.

SHIFT4PAYMENTS: 2202 N. Irving St., Allentown

Allentown-based Shift4 Payments has added a venue with more than 60,000 seats to its transaction-processing empire. The Tennessee Titans of the National Football League have chosen Shift4 to handle payments at Nissan Stadium, home to football games, concerts and other events.

Jared Isaacman founded Shift4 in 1994, and is now worth about $1.1 billion, according to Forbes. The company processes more than $200 billion in transactions annually. Read more about the company's new venture.

MERSIN ON MAIN: 200 Main St., Tatamy

A Turkish restaurant has relocated from one Main Street to another, taking its fresh ingredients and cozy atmosphere from Nazareth to Tatamy.

The restaurant first opened on Main Street in Nazareth in 2020 and closed in 2021. Now its new home in the heart of Tatamy opened its doors for a soft opening on Thursday, with a grand opening to come soon, according to its Facebook page.

The business's name comes from Mersin, a city in Turkey. The restaurant's website shows specialties including lamb shank, tabbouli and pureed lentil soup.

DLP CAPITAL: 835 W. Hamilton St., Allentown

DLP Capital, a real estate and finance firm, opened its Grand Plaza building downtown on Wednesday. The 254,782-square-foot eight-story building was acquired via auction in December. DLP Capital was founded by Don Wenner, a Lehigh Valley native.

The Hamilton Street building is on the site of the old Hess's Department Store. The current structure once was home to PPL Corp. offices. It sat vacant for years before DLP bought it for $15.3 million. Check out the ribbon-cutting for the opening.

HYMAN PROPERTIES: 938 Washington St., Allentown

Nat Hyman's bid to convert an old warehouse into 48 apartments did not win zoning hearing board approval this week after neighbors said more housing would make an on-street parking shortage worse. Hyman had approval for 36 units at the Washington Street site, but boosted his request to 48 after securing off-street parking for the apartments.

A board member said the city had already granted the maximum zoning relief for the property and that increasing housing density at the site would not be appropriate. Get all the details.

HABITAT FOR HUMANITY: South Mall, 3300 Lehigh St., Allentown

Habitat for Humanity has leased 30,000 square feet at the South Mall, according to the James Balliet Property Group. The nonprofit group that helps people become homeowners also operates "ReStores" that sell new and lightly used furniture, appliances, home goods, building materials and more.  

MEMBERS 1ST FEDERAL CREDIT UNION: 5605 Hamilton Blvd., Trexlertown

Members 1st Federal Credit Union opened a new branch this week, one of five planned for the Lehigh Valley. The Trexlertown branch is the first of five proposed locations, with others opening in Macungie, Whitehall, Bethlehem Township and Fogelsville.

"Our members tell us walking into our branches is like entering their home," the company's website says. "At a time when just about everything is going digital, we're opening new branches in new locations and creating a more personalized experience for you."

The five local branches will boost the Members 1st network to 61.

The credit union operates in Lehigh, Adams, Berks, Cumberland, Dauphin, Lancaster, Lebanon, Perry and York counties.

CURALEAF HOLDINGS INC.: 1801 Airport Road, Hanover Township

Lehigh County is going to gain a new cannabis outlet sometime soon. Curaleaf Holdings Inc., which operates in the U.S. and Europe, will open a medical-marijuana dispensary in the busy commercial area of Airport Road. The site was home to the Chess N Checkers bar for more than two decades.

Chess N Checkers closed late last year, providing a location for the Curaleaf store. As at any Pennsylvania cannabis dispensary, only people with valid state medical-marijuana cards may make purchases. Curaleaf sees the Keystone State as a key to its future and has opened five Pennsylvania dispensaries so far in 2022. Find out more.

AIR PRODUCTS AND CHEMICALS INC./PROLOGIS INC. WAREHOUSES: 7201 Hamilton Blvd., Upper Macungie Township

Air Products and Chemicals Inc.'s chosen warehouse developer, Prologis Inc., will have to wait until July 13 for a final decision by Upper Macungie Township's zoning hearing board on 2.61 million square feet of warehouses. The board wants to review multiple conditions places on the three warehouses at the former Air Products headquarters before ruling.

Prologis plans to use the former Air Products campus, with two entrances along Cetronia Road, for "speculative" warehouses — that is, new buildings without tenants secured. Neighbors have objected, but the land is zoned for light industry. Upper Macungie has become a center for warehouse development, to the dismay of some residents. Read the full story.

Berks County

FOOD TRUCK PARK: 6600 Perkiomen Ave., Exeter Township

Despite the excitement of local residents, an area businessman said he is no longer pursing a food truck park he previously proposed on the site of the former Sheetz convenience store and gas station in Exeter Township.

Hamid Chaudhry said township requirements for the proposal rendered it "not feasible" for the location at 6600 Perkiomen Ave. (Route 422 East).

Chaudhry said the plan, which he proposed to the township planning commission in April, would have put 10 food trucks from whom he had commitments on the lot of the former convenience store.

It would have been open mostly evenings on weekends for "grab-and-go dinner," Chaudhry said.

Sheetz vacated the property in 2019 for another property near Neversink Road in the township.

Chaudhry said he now has leased the site to a tenant who wants "to run a convenience store and a gas station" there. He also said he retained the rights to put up something else on the remaining 3 acres of the site. Get the full story.

FASTBRIDGE FIBER: 15 N. Sixth St., Reading

A new company is bringing some competition to the internet provider market in parts of Berks County.

FastBridge Fiber has announced it will build an all-fiber cable network that will offer ultra-fast internet to support remote working, distance learning, streaming, gaming, cloud connectivity and more to the Reading area.

The company will start construction on the network this fall, with internet and transport data services becoming available to residents and businesses in some areas in late 2022, company CEO Eric Warren said.

The greater Reading area will be the first market for FastBridge, Warren said. "And we're building it to neighborhoods where fiber isn't available," he said.

Prices will range from $50 to $95 a month, the website states. FastBridge also says it will have no data caps, free professional installation and simple month-to-month pricing plans. Find out when and where the fiber cable network will be available.

MAVIS DISCOUNT TIRE: Kutztown Road at Ivy League Drive, Maxatawny Township

The Maxatawny Marketplace on Kutztown Road could soon be getting a new tenant. The township planning commission has OK'd a proposal for a Mavis Discount Tire store in the shopping center that features a Giant supermarket.

The store would be in the Giant parking lot on the south side of Kutztown Road at Ivy League Drive. Planners on Thursday approved waivers to township ordinances regarding minor issues such as its stormwater system.

Developers did not have rendering of the store's architectural rendering for the store's design, but showed a "typical" store, which is a rectangular, flat-roofed building with a glass front and six bays.

New Mavis Tire stores typically are 7,000 square feet, but officials said this one will be 400 square feet larger than the company's Trexlertown store in order to have indoor space to store tires. Read more about plans for the new store.

BAD BISCUIT COMPANY: 16 Columbia Ave., Reading

Owners Michael and Stacey O'Brien announced on their restaurant's Facebook page that it will close after less than two years.

"We are devastated, but due to the declining economy, the cost of keeping our doors open is no longer reasonable," the post said.

The shop, which offered breakfast with scratch-made biscuits, freshly baked pastry and local, small-batch artisan coffee, said it will cease operations after its July 1 hours.

The post says that after the restaurant closes, its baker, Ashley, plans to continue to fulfill bulk pastry orders via Instagram and email requests. Bad Biscuit Company Website.

VALENTINO'S: 15492 Kutztown Road (Route 222), Maxatawny Township

This longtime favorite Italian restaurant has gotten the township planning commission's approval to remain open when the state transportation department takes one-third of its parking lot to build a traffic roundabout at the intersection of Route 222 and Long Lane.

The township zoning hearing board had previously given preliminary approval to plans by the restaurant to reconfigure its parking lot.

Owners of the restaurant, which has operated for more than 40 years at the site, said being in the path of the Route 222 widening and roundabout would have left its lot unable to meet zoning requirements and the business unable to continue.

The work is expected to take 1.1 acres of the lot, or about 35 parking spaces. Get all the details.

Poconos | Coal Region

SURGERY CENTER OF POTTSVILLE: 1544 Route 61, Pottsville

A Schuylkill County center that offered medical procedure services for 16 years in Cressona Mall will close June 28, it announced on its Facebook page.

"Sadly, The Surgery Center of Pottsville will be closing," the Tuesday post simply says. It adds, "Information regarding retrieval of medical records will be forthcoming."

The center, whose website lists 10 physician-owners, offered same-day surgical procedures. Its website lists affiliation with 14 doctors, including spinal/pain, general surgery, ophthalmology, orthopedic, gastroenterology, pediatric, glaucoma and cataract, head and neck surgery, obstetrician-gynecologist services, podiatry, urology and osteopathic medicine. Several of the doctors maintain additional private practices.

In a 2018 Facebook post, the center described itself as "an accredited AAAHC multispecialty state-of-the-art surgery center … specifically designed to perform same-day procedures — those requiring more care than can be offered in your doctor's office, but which do not require an overnight stay."

POCONO MOUNTAIN HARLEY-DAVIDSON: 10 Hill Motor Lodge Road, Tannersville

"Where one legacy ends, another begins," the dealership's Facebook page said in March. That's when former owners Jim and Linda Schlier retired and handed over the reins to Steve and Anne Deli of American Road Group.

Now, the Pocono Chamber of Commerce will hold a ribbon-cutting for the next chapter of the motorcycle dealership at 11 a.m. on July 8. The opening celebration runs from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.

The store will also hold a "Grand Re-Opening Bash" July 9 and July 10 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. That event will feature vendors, food trucks, demo rides, live music, giveaways and more.

SAUCE WEST END: 109 Marshal Lane, Brodheadsville

A new restaurant will feature the most popular dishes of a popular Monroe County food truck and more, as it plans to open in a former Rita's Italian Ice, just off Route 209 across from the Tractor Supply store in Brodheadsville.

Owner Margaret LaFiura, who says she turned her love for cooking into the LaFiura's Rice Around the World food truck, says she'll soon open the brick-and-mortar restaurant in about three weeks.

The new restaurant will feature LaFiuri's signature paella — flavored rice cooked with meats, seafood and vegetables — as well as other rice dishes and traditional Italian fare. And, as the name indicates, sauces.

For the past eight years, LaFiura has operated LaFiura's Rice Around the World food truck, which offered a broad variety of rice bowls as well as burgers, tacos and empanadas. Find out more about the new eatery.

Southeastern Pennsylvania

WELLS FARGO: 120 N. Pine St., Langhorne

The bank has closed its branch office in Langhorne, near the intersection with Maple Avenue.

The Bucks County branch shut down June 15, again part of the big bank's review of locations in light of increased digital banking and market factors.

There is a Langhorne branch just over a mile away from the closed site, according to Wells Fargo. Read more about the bank's closings.

Western New Jersey

TRACTOR SUPPLY CO.: 1280 Memorial Highway (Route 22), Pohatcong Township

The chain that describes itself as "the largest rural lifestyle retailer in the U.S." is having a soft opening today in Warren County in the former Toys 'R' Us store in Pohatcong Plaza. Its grand opening is scheduled for July 9.

Tractor Supply sells goods for the home, land, pets and animals. As of March 26, Tractor Supply operated 2,003 stores across 49 U.S. states.

The company's market value is $22.4 billion, based on Thursday's share price. Tractor Supply trades on the NASDAQ market under the ticker symbol TSCO.

PRIMOHOAGIES: 1930 State Route 57, Hackettstown

The latest PrimoHoagies location in New Jersey held a grand opening Tuesday. It's being run by first-time business owner Ryan Dougherty.

Primo outlets use Thuman meat and cheese and a proprietary blend of spices with fresh vegetables on seeded rolls that are baked fresh through the day.

The store gave its first 100 customers a free hoagie at the grand opening.

Dougherty is a Philadelphia native who worked as a golf course superintendent earlier. His 2,000-square-foot store will employ about 15 people, and offer dine-in, delivery and takeout options. Dougherty's hoagie shop will be open from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily.

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If you know of local business openings or closings, please notify us here.

PREVIOUS OPENINGS AND CLOSINGS

- Air Products & Chemicals Inc. plans to invest a half-billion dollars to produce environmentally friendly hydrogen in New York state.

- The Trexlertown Chick-Fil-A plans to add a second drive-thru lane as part of a plan to reduce traffic congestion.

- The Harrisburg-based Mid Penn bank has opened its first full-service branch in the Lehigh Valley in South Whitehall.

- The Allentown Planning Commission put off a decision on a new Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen at the site of the former Nostos Greek restaurant.

- The former Star Crete concrete plant at the intersection of Farmersville Road and Easton Avenue has been sold for $1.58 million, and that may clear the way for a medical office building. 

- The local business SuperSets Gym will open its third location in Allentown's South Mall, with no opening date set yet.

- The jewelry boutique Versant will close later this year, but the business will be consolidated at Gary Werkheiser's other location in Saucon Valley Square.

- The DSW Woodmill Commons has moved to Berkshire West, 1101 Woodland Road in Wyomissing.

- Trainer Michael Melendez has opened his new Reading Extreme Boxing Club where PacSun used to operate in the Berkshire Mall. 

- Frackville NAPA Auto Parts held a grand opening with the Schuylkill Chamber of Commerce and Frackville Business & Professional Association. 

- Fyzical Therapy & Balance Centers in North Manheim Township held a grand opening, in conjunction with the Schuylkill Chamber of Commerce and Pottsville Business Association.

- PDC Machines, a maker of hydrogen compressors, showed off a new plant in Lower Salford.

- Maya Capital Partners has acquired Amwell Valley Self Storage, a 265-unit storage business on Route 31 in Ringoes, New Jersey.

- Norwescap is buying the former Sullivan's on the Main restaurant in Phillipsburg to renovate the building and then use it for programs to help educate and feed people.

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