EASTON, Pa. -- The Easton Planning Commission approved the North 4th Street subdivision and land development plan for a parking garage on Wednesday night, but not without conditions.
The commission, voting 5-1-1, approved a draft resolution for the proposed nearly 28,000 square foot parking garage, with six conditions.
Casting a no vote was Commissioner Robert Sun. Commissioner Charles Elliott recused himself from the vote saying that he owns a property directly across from the proposed garage.
Commissioners added a sixth condition that the plan can proceed provided the Lehigh Valley Planning Commission’s review return with a satisfactory or no negative comment within 30 days. Officials said the commission had not reviewed the proposed plan as of yet. But the LVPC could provide feedback as soon as nine days from Wednesday night.
“I don’t want to make it a habit to move forward on things without the LVPC input,” said Commissioner Jaime Kulick. “I for one would like to wait and hear with the Lehigh Valley Planning Commission input.”
Plans call for consolidating four parcels located at 37-43 North 4th Street making one nearly 34,000 square foot lot. The parking garage itself will add nearly 500 parking spots and stand six stories tall.
“This project is at least a decade in the making,” said City Administrator Luis Campos.
According to Campos, adding a parking garage on North 4th Street has been discussed prior to the 2012 parking study. The lot was acquired by the city in 2013 and last year, the city council voted in favor of moving ahead with the project. Officials say the parking lot is needed due to the Pine Street parking garage’s age and deteriorating condition.
“You may think this is fast and we’ve been talking about this for five years,” said Mayor Sal Panto.
Commissioners also approved a special exception request from the Presbyterian Senior Living on Wednesday.
Plans call for a four-story, 50-unit independent living low-to-moderate income housing units at 40 S. Warren Street. Land development and subdivision plans still have to be submitted for the housing and parking lots. The homes will be constructed next to the existing Easton Home on Northampton and Tenth streets. In addition to the homes, there will be an additional parking lot constructed for residents and visitors.