Friday, March 02, 2007

$175 million waterfront project planned for Allentown

Artist Rendering: New Allentown Waterfront
Dunn Twiggar Co. plans the development on the former site of Lehigh Structural Steel, parallel to Brick Street. It would include a marina, half-mile riverwalk, amphitheater, hotel, offices, stores, restaurants, apartments, townhouses and condominiums. It would take 10 years to complete and be called The Waterfront.

Company officials said they have a contract to buy the property by mid-summer, pending zoning approvals from the city. They said the development would generate a total of $6.6 million in taxes annually for the city, county and school district, and create 460 new jobs.

"The Waterfront will offer something that no other urban project in the Lehigh Valley has yet been able to offer, a development that is directly on the water," said company principal Ryan Dunn.

Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski and Lehigh County Executive Don Cunningham lauded the project for incorporating the river as a focus point.

"It is a great, great asset for the city of Allentown," Pawlowski said of the waterfront. "It is something that needs to be developed."Artist Rendering: New Allentown WaterfrontArtist Rendering: New Allentown Waterfront

NET March Dine-Out at Conway's BBQ

Join the NET for its monthly Dine-Out at Conway's BBQ on Tilghman St. Conway's serves all types of barbecue from across the South and Midwest, where barbecue is king. Conway's smokes its meats fresh daily and serves them with a variety of from-scratch regional sauces and down-home dishes

Please RSVP to by Wednesday, March 14th.

When: Friday, March 16, 7 p.m.

Where: Conway's BBQ, Kuhnsville Station 22, 5924 Tilghman Street, Allentown, PA 18104

Cost: $8-20 depending on how much you order.

Contact: Wendy Gerlach at

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Ethnic Eats: Bridgeworks Irish Pub & Grill

Bridgeworks Irish Pub & Grille
4th & New St S
Bethlehem, PA 18015
(610) 868-1313

Type of food: American and Irish

Excellent pulled pork sandwich and you can get a Guinness here!

NET Connect: Business Card Exchange, focus on Allentown

Come help the Network of Young Professionals celebrate the acceptance of a $10,000 community initiative grant. State Senator Pat Browne will be presenting the grant to the Network of Young Professionals and addressing young professionals role in urban revitalization. Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski will also be on hand to address Allentown's ongoing urban renewal.

Help the Network celebrate, expand your network, exchange business cards, and meet Mayor Pawlowski and Senator Browne.

Light appetizers and refreshments will be provided.

Sponsored by Farr Lofts and The Network of Young Professionals.

When: Thursday, March 15, 6 p.m. - 8 p.m.

Where: Allentown Art Museum, 31 N. Fifth Street, Allentown

Admission: FREE

Contact: Abraham Nemitz at

NET Organizational Meeting & New Member Orientation

Tara Sommerfield, NET Membership Chair, will be on hand at 6:30 p.m. to review NET benefits and activities with new members. The meeting will begin at 7 p.m.

This is when we discuss the business side of the NET. Have a good idea? Want to volunteer? Have questions? Please attend to discuss.

All Members and non-members welcome.

When: Wednesday, March 14, 6:30 p.m. - 8 p.m.

Where: Wired Cafe, 520 Main Street, Bethlehem 18018

Admission: FREE!!

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

First Home Workshop

Join us at one of our First Home® Workshops and learn how you can build wealth through homeownership. You’ll learn what you need to know to make your dream come true. We’ll help you work through any challenges you may have and walk away with the tools to help you purchase your first home.

By attending this workshop, you’ll learn the fundamentals of financing your first home from Wells Fargo Home Mortgage consultants as well as other information from local real estate experts. You’ll receive a free First-time Homebuyer guide to help you start down the path to homeownership. Plus, our mortgage consultants will give you individual guidance on your specific situation. We'll include financing options to help you select the program that best fits your needs and help you apply for a pre-approval. It’s free. Register today!

Sponsored by Wells Fargo.

When: 7:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m., March 14

Where: Penn Corporate Center, 3001 Emrick Blvd., Bethlehem, PA 18020

Admission: FREE!!


Tuesday, February 27, 2007

New Affiliate Partner: Newcomer Magazine

Newcomer Magazine is a guide to the Lehigh Valley attractions and services for those new to the area. It is published twice a year and is distributed through local realtors, mortgage companies and banks. In addition it is mailed monthly to every home closing in the Lehigh Valley. Discounted ad rates are now available for NET members. For more information and ad rates please contact Melissa Danner at or at 610-923-8000 ext. 8127.

Not a member yet? Join now.

Monday, February 26, 2007

Animal emergency contigency plan being created

People with pets or livestock in Lehigh and Northampton counties will want to know three women who make up the counties' Animal Response Team, Laurie Bianco, Tory Schadler and Rosemary Scardion. They are putting together a disaster plan for tens of thousands of Lehigh Valley farm and domestic animals, including poultry, cattle, pigs, sheep, horses, dogs and cats.

Their charge is to prevent the kind of devastation that occurred most recently during Hurricane Katrina, when animals were left behind to run wild or die because there was no rescue plan for them.

The three-woman team has started to put together a database of information on where animals can be temporarily housed and who has the vehicles and know-how to rescue large or small animals in the event of large-scale catastrophe.

Animals are the No. 1 reason people refuse to evacuate their homes during an emergency, resulting in many deaths, said Bianco, who in addition to being a co-leader of CART has been an equine and canine rescuer for many years.

''People died because they didn't want to leave their pets. We need to be more proactive. Animals have to be provided for across Pennsylvania.''

The state's 67 counties were given guidelines by the Pennsylvania State Animal Response Team, formed in 2004 following 1999's Hurricane Floyd, which claimed the lives of millions of animals.

After Floyd, states were informed that they have to provide an animal rescue plan or face loss of federal funding under the Department of Agriculture's Emergency Management Disaster Relief and Preparedness program.

Lehigh and Northampton county emergency preparedness coordinators decided to combine their efforts. But only minimal progress was made until the nation took note once again — at the number of animals that perished after Hurricane Katrina.

Now there is an all-out push in the Lehigh Valley to get at least 40 volunteers on board by summer and have the participation of animal groups such as 4-H clubs, veterinarians, groomers, pet stores, farmers and animal shelters.

Bianco is confident they will get community support.

''I'm the organizer, Tory owns K-9 Kampus kennel [in Fogelsville] and is a 30-year firefighter and Rosemary is in the public eye [as a real-estate agent],'' Bianco said. ''We're a very good team.''

Another component is to develop an awareness campaign to educate pet owners on the importance of keeping up-to-date pet records and to micro-chip animals so they are easier to track if they are displaced. They plan to encourage pet owners to keep a ''pet emergency kit'' ready, which should include a few days worth of medication, medical and vaccination records, a leash, collar, identification, water, food, toys, bedding and a labeled pet carrier.

''This is a nationwide push,'' Bianco said.

For more information:

610-442-0128 or

Easton condo development approved

Ashley Development Corp.'s $40 million project to demolish the former Marquis Theatre on S. Third Street and build a 10-story high-rise with 143 condominiums and a three-level parking garage has been approved by Easton historic commission.

City Council now will consider a certificate of appropriateness for Ashley to complete the project called The Majestic in the downtown historic district. Council must also approve a $143,000 contribution from Ashley to refurbish nearby Riverside Park.

But the Historic District Commission made no decision on Ashley's $11 million project to convert the former seven-story Pomeroy's department store on Northampton Street into a 30-unit condominium complex with underground parking.

The two sites are less than three blocks apart, but one project will start from scratch while the other attempts to refurbish a more-than 100-year-old building that's been vacant since 1976. Ashley is trying to replicate Pomeroy's from the early 1900s.

Open Space takes spotlight in Cunningham speech

Lehigh County Executive Don Cunningham recently cited some goals in a speech to Allentown Rotary Club: making farming a viable career and promoting regional cooperation, an important one for him.

With his formation of the county's Council of Governments, an organization of local municipal leaders, ''we are sowing the seeds of trust and partnership that will some day grow into a very progressive government structure that moves beyond the parochial and thinks beyond our own backyards,'' Cunningham told the group at the Crowne Plaza in Allentown.

Developer donates land for open space in Bucks

Richard Zaveta, who runs Zaveta Construction Co. and lives on a 146-acre farm off Perry Auger Road in Tinicum Township, has agreed to donate a conservation easement to his land.

The deal means he still owns the land, but gives up any right he or future owners have to develop it. The easement is appraised at about $14,000 per acre, officials said, or a little more than $2 million overall.

He said it's important to preserve increasingly scarce farmland in the area; he also said his company has worked on several building projects recently that have developed less land than they could have by using larger lots and other methods.

Bucks County's government has spent years trying to conserve farms. Thus far, more than 9,000 agricultural acres have been preserved.

Canal park in Easton preparing for busy spring season

The federal government will provide about $300,000 to fix the most-recent flood damage at Hugh Moore Park in Easton.

Park officials want the work done by April 20 so they can begin running their canal boat tours in May, said Rob Rudd, executive director of the National Canal Museum, which operates the park.

The work includes repairing the Lehigh Canal bank and the parallel towpath. That needs to be done before the canal is filled with water for the tours.

The flood caused more damage to Hugh Moore Park than the two previous floods combined, Rudd said. Those floods, in August 2004 and April 2005, caused a total of about $176,000 in damage.

The 260-acre park is vulnerable to flooding because it rests on an island between the river and Lehigh Canal. The park's main attraction is a ride on the canal via a mule-drawn boat.

The park also has picnic areas and walking and biking trails. The National Canal Museum opened its Emrick Technology Center there last year, a museum of industrial and transportation history.

Oscar Wrap-up: Bye-bye gift bags, hello carbon neutral living

As you may be aware, usually stars at the Oscars get ridiculously lavish gift bags, valued at nearly $100,000. This year, the Academy decided to nix the gift bags and instead give each presenter and performer a year of carbon neutral living. The gift consists of a glass sculpture from designer Simon Pearce and 100,000 lbs of CO2 reductions from TerraPass. In addition, TerraPass included a energy conservation guide in the gift box which is also available online.

The Oscars went green last night with An Inconvenient Truth winning best documentary, and the green room going totally green with environmentally-friendly materials.