Communities in the Lehigh Valley have actively pursued and received development grants from the Rendell administration that will convert brownfields, attract industry and provide jobs!
$4.5 millions dollars will be received to convert the former Dixie Cup factory in Wilson (Easton) into an apartment and condominium complex.
$2.5 million dollars will be received to create a waste-to-energy plant (sludge burning) in Allentown.
$10 million dollars will be received to lure a yet to be named Fortune 500 Company to the Lehigh Valley.
$1.5 million dollars will be received toward converting the Farr building in Bethlehem into an Irish pub and apartments.
In other news, Allentown is promoting green energy by placing solar panels on industrial roof space. 420 solar panels were placed on the roof of the Bridgeworks Industrial Center in March. Since their installation, the panels are generating enough energy to power five homes for a year (112,000 kilowatt hours a year)!
There are millions of square feet of roof space that solar panels can be placed on in the Lehigh Valley. This project was funded by a grant from the Pennsylvania Energy Development Authority. Can anyone think of another community that has a vast amount of industrial roof space that could benefit from a grant like this?
Excess energy is sold back to the power company. The city will make about $15,000.00 a year from selling the excess energy generated by the solar panels. Solar panels reduce the reliance on power plants and fossil fuels.
Another hint here… the state has funded 1,500 other projects across the state. What a neat way to use brownfields.