Pittsburgh-Based Firm Started Small, Grew Into A U.S. Job Creator

A map of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with its nei...

A map of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with its neighborhoods labeled. For use primarily in the list of Pittsburgh neighborhoods. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Fourteen years after Chuck Sanders opened a small storefront in Bellevue providing title and settlement services to people buying houses, that single business has mushroomed into a nationwide empire of about 13 companies, with some 2,400 employees and annual revenues this year that will be in the neighborhood of $200 million.

His flagship company, Urban Lending Solutions, headquartered Downtown in the Federated Investors Tower, provides back office support servicing mortgages for major financial institutions such as Bank of America, Wells Fargo and SunTrust.

New York-based Inc. magazine, which publishes an annual list of the 500 fastest growing companies in the U.S., this year ranked Urban Lending Solutions as the eighth-top job creator in the U.S. for creating 1,022 new jobs within the prior 18 months. Black Enterprise Magazine, known for its annual list of the country’s largest African-American owned firms, ranked ULS the nation’s 16th largest with 2012 revenue of $183.5 million.

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/business/2013/12/25/Built-on-drive-and-trust-City-based-firm-started-small-grew-into-a-U-S-job-creator/stories/201312250056#ixzz2obVTR97y

Pennsylvania Climbs To 18th On Business Climate List

Map of Pennsylvania

Map of Pennsylvania (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Pennsylvania’s business climate has improved to 18th best in the nation, according to Site Selection magazine.

The magazine’s annual top-25 ranking was published in its November issue.

Pennsylvania was unranked last year.

In the new ranking, Georgia was first, bumping last year’s leader, North Carolina, into second place.

A state’s ranking depends on its score on a multifaceted appraisal.

Read more: http://lancasteronline.com/article/local/914816_Pa–climbs-to-18th-on-business-climate-list.html#ixzz2joHpLV2a

Downtown Carlisle Businesses Welcome Urban Redevelopment Initiative

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Cumberland County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Cumberland County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

When new development projects surface, the logical question for surrounding business owners is: How will this affect my business?

Downtown Carlisle business owners are optimistic when asked the same question about the borough’s highly anticipated urban redevelopment plan.

If the right balance of businesses and residences land on the three large abandoned industrial sites targeted for redevelopment in the borough’s northwest quadrant, there should be more than enough room for existing and new businesses not only to coexist, but to mutually benefit each other, Carlisle proprietors said.

“I’m on the fence. I’d love to have that [part of Carlisle] built up, because Carlisle has no more room for building extra tax revenue [downtown],” said John Bogonis, who owns the Carlisle Bakery at 35 S. Hanover St. with his wife Nadeen. “I want to see how they plan on getting people from [the development site] to here.”

Read more: http://www.pennlive.com/midstate/index.ssf/2013/09/downtown_carlisle_businesses_w.html#incart_m-rpt-2

York County Warehouse Boom?

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting York County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting York County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A company may invest roughly $60 million to build a large distribution center in Fairview Township.

What’s needed is approval from the township’s board of supervisors.

In Manchester Township, another group of investors are deep into the construction of a $34 million warehouse near the interstate’s Emigsville exit.

The future occupants of both colossal facilities are still up in the air.

Read more: http://www.ydr.com/business/ci_23826648/warehouse-boom

PNC To Restore Splendor Of Former Lord & Taylor Building In Pittsburgh

A map of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with its nei...

A map of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with its neighborhoods labeled. For use primarily in the list of Pittsburgh neighborhoods. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Welcome to the correction.

That is Geoffrey Leah’s way of saying that the old is being used again inside the former Mellon Bank on Smithfield Street, the ornate building controversially stripped of much of its grandeur when it was converted into a Lord & Taylor department store more than a decade ago.

The new owner, PNC Financial Services Group, is hoping to restore some of that splendor — piece by piece, in some cases — as part of its plan to reuse the city historic structure as a call center.

“What we’re trying to do is take the bones of the building and keep the architectural and historic significance, and do whatever we can to not disrupt the original structure in any way,” said Gary Saulson, PNC executive vice president and director of corporate real estate.

While PNC has no way of fully restoring the majestic four-story, open air bank hall with its marble Ionic columns — Lord & Taylor turned the structure into four floors of department store retail — the bank intends to incorporate as many original architectural features as possible into the new design.

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/local/neighborhoods-city/bank-to-restore-splendor-of-former-lord-taylor-building-693468/#ixzz2XX1pKCpE

Pittsburgh Urban Redevelopment Authority Advances Plan To Fund East Liberty Improvements

Locator map with the East Liberty neighborhood...

Locator map with the East Liberty neighborhood in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania highlighted. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The city’s Urban Redevelopment Authority board is pushing ahead with a plan to divert a large portion of real estate and parking tax revenue from a host of projects in or near East Liberty to help fund road, pedestrian and other improvements in the area.

Board members will vote Thursday on a proposal to create an East Liberty Transit Revitalization Investment District in which 75 percent of the new real estate and parking tax revenue generated by development within half a mile of the East Liberty stop on the East Busway would be used for infrastructure improvements.

Also Thursday, the board is expected to vote on $500,000 in loans to help clear the way for Fifth Avenue Pub and Lofts, a proposed restaurant and apartment development across the street from Consol Energy Center. It would mark the first major private development to take place in that area since the arena opened in 2010.

The transit revitalization investment district in some ways works like a tax increment financing district, only it typically involves a broader area and is utilized for a host of projects, not just one.

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/business/news/urban-redevelopment-authority-advances-plan-to-fund-east-liberty-improvements-686742/#ixzz2SlF96I2J

Developer To Buy Former Harley-Davidson West Campus In York County

A developer has signed a sales agreement for Harley-Davidson‘s 58-acre west campus.

Earlier this month, the York County Industrial Development Authority approved the deal with Hillwood Development Company, a Texas-based venture chaired by Ross Perot Jr., the son of former presidential candidate H. Ross Perot.

“The IDA’s goal is to have jobs on that site and employment,” said Blanda Nace, senior manager of development for the York County Economic Alliance and project manager for the authority. “We aren’t real thrilled about it being a parking lot or a storage area.  We want real jobs created there. Hillwood recognizes that.  They have the same goals in mind … that’s part of the reason why they were selected.”

Read more:  http://www.ydr.com/business/ci_22604005/developer-buy-former-harley-davidson-west-campus-york