WATERFRONT DEVELOPMENT CONSTRUCTION TO GET UNDER WAY THIS SUMMER

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rendering-RiverWalk

An artist’s rendering of a Lehigh Riverwalk, planned as part of a planned $300 million redevelopment of the former Lehigh Structural Steel plant in the NIZ. (Courtesy/Jaindl Properties)

The redevelopment of Allentown’s waterfront will get under way this summer.

The Allentown Neighborhood Improvement Zone Development Authority has approved the application of The Waterfront Development Co. to obtain $92 million in Neighborhood Improvement Zone financing for the first part of The Waterfront, a $300 million mixed-use development that includes new office buildings and upscale apartments along the Lehigh River.

The first phase of the project includes construction of two office buildings, one apartment complex, the first of two parking garages, the first section of a River Walk and other infrastructure improvements.

“Redeveloping the Lehigh River waterfront is critical if we are to truly usher in a new renaissance in the city of Allentown,” said Mayor Ed Pawlowski. “This project should move us toward that goal.”

As planned, the site will ultimately include six Class-A office buildings, three residential apartment buildings with 172 units and two parking garages.

The 26-acre Waterfront site was once home to Lehigh Structural Steel Co., and has remained underused for years. Infrastructure work is expected to get under way on July 1.

Tax incentives from the NIZ, which has already helped bring $1 billion in new development to the downtown including the PPL Center and the City Center office buildings, allows developers to offer below market rents to tenants.