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  #41  
Old Posted May 30, 2004, 5:08 PM
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Dave, I read these in the paper today...thanks for posting. It amazes me as well, when I see new development around here that I had no idea was taking root. With a 93% or better occupancy rate for commercial buildings the economy here in the Harrisburg area is doing REALLY well. Much better than the rest of the state and even many other regions across the country. Albert, your right about attracting new business with commuter rail. I can't wait till public rail transit is developed here. I've read posts on this site about how rail has greatly helped places like Portland. Infill development here will be awesome when this project takes off! It can only be a positive thing. Dave I forgot to tell you, there is a booth near the Front St/Walnut St Bridge entrance that is providing information about the reconstruction of the western span of the bridge. Info is provided by the People's Bridge Coalition and highlights the current status of the project, as well as the history of the bridge. Really cool
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  #42  
Old Posted May 31, 2004, 5:46 PM
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Yeah, I know the President of the PBC. She is a really determined lady and PennDOT just kicked in $34K+ for a study on the bridge thanks to her hard work, so I think it will get done. And if Wormtown gets the Bridgeport complex rolling, it will be sure to get done then IMO. I sure hope so, because it is a terrible eyesore now. Plus, how many people (like myself) would be using the western span of the bridge when we are down there? The last study the PBC did said it was something like a $1 to $1.50 ratio. For every $1 spent on the bridge, $1.50 is given back to the merchants via people using the bridge. I could easily believe that...
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  #43  
Old Posted Jun 1, 2004, 5:00 PM
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Originally Posted by EastSideHBG
Yeah, I know the President of the PBC. She is a really determined lady and PennDOT just kicked in $34K+ for a study on the bridge thanks to her hard work, so I think it will get done. And if Wormtown gets the Bridgeport complex rolling, it will be sure to get done then IMO. I sure hope so, because it is a terrible eyesore now. Plus, how many people (like myself) would be using the western span of the bridge when we are down there? The last study the PBC did said it was something like a $1 to $1.50 ratio. For every $1 spent on the bridge, $1.50 is given back to the merchants via people using the bridge. I could easily believe that...
yes i could believe that as well. i remember walking across that bridge quite a lot when i was younger, as did many others i'm sure. it's an historic icon for the city and nation, and it deserves to be rebuilt. it will definately provide an economic boast to west shore and city island and i'm sure the bridgeport project will add to that as well. HATS has it ranked #4 on the 12 tip plan so hopefully it will recieve funding soon and construction will be underway in next couple years.
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  #44  
Old Posted Jun 1, 2004, 5:01 PM
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here you go Dave...looks like Walmart and Holy Name hit a temporary snag. but i'm sure this will be resolved at next months planning meeting.

<b>Church to revise plans for complex
West Hanover raises concerns about project </b>

Tuesday, June 01, 2004
BY PHYLLIS ZIMMERMAN
For The Patriot-News

The Holy Name of Jesus Roman Catholic Church is still planning to build a parish and school in West Hanover Twp., but its plans have hit a snag.

Project architects are going back to the drawing board after township officials raised several concerns about blueprints.

Based in Lower Paxton Twp., the church has more than 8,600 members.

Wal-Mart is seeking to build a store at the church's site in Lower Paxton, but can't move ahead until the church wins approval for its buildings in West Hanover.

West Hanover planning commission members were set to review plan revisions last month. But the matter was tabled at the May 20 meeting for a second time. Township officials and church representatives agreed to table it, said attorney Charles Suhr, who represents the church.

"We're revising all plans with comments from the township boards taken into consideration. We're trying to get our plans in order. Hopefully, we'll be back next month," Suhr said.

A zoning board hearing for May 13 also was canceled because church officials are working on plan revisions, according to Jim Zeiters, chairman of the township's planning commission.

If approved, Holy Name of Jesus would build its church and school at Oak Grove and Sterling roads, next to Resurrection Cemetery. The land is owned by the Diocese of Harrisburg.

Church officials have asked West Hanover officials to grant a 60-day deadline extension for the plans. Without an extension, plan applications would expire July.

The plans for the Wal-Mart were approved last month by Lower Paxton Twp. Planning Commission. The Lower Paxton township supervisors must sign off on the plan.

Church officials have asked the West Hanover Planning Commission to consider a subdivision of the cemetery's 77 acres -- also owned by the diocese -- to supplement an adjacent 33-acre empty tract with an additional six acres.
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  #45  
Old Posted Jun 1, 2004, 5:09 PM
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at first this article talks about a restaurant and retail shop...but the residents are voicing opposition to a distributor??? so which is it? why are they not opposed to the restaurant which will probably result in more traffic, patrons, and alcohol related incidents. i especially like this quote
Quote:
He said that his parents have lived across from that property for 80 years.
my oh my...how things have NOT changed in 80 years! maybe a restaurant and distributor is exactly what this town needs lol.

<b>PAXTANG
Rezoning request draws objections</b>

Tuesday, June 01, 2004
BY MARY KLAUS
Of The Patriot-News

For years, Paxtang residents didn't seem to mind that the former Dauphin Consolidated owned and occupied property in the 3600 block of Derry Street.

But now that the land has been sold, and Borough Council is considering expanding its commercial zoning to allow a restaurant and retail shop there, residents are voicing concerns.

Some residents, worried that a beer distributor could open on the tract, plan to have their say at 7 tonight when council holds its second hearing on the matter.

Elizabeth Grace of Camp Hill recently bought the property, then submitted an application for a Paxtang zoning hearing board appeal for a use variance. In that application, she proposed putting a beer distributorship on the property.

"I don't want to make any comments about it," Grace, whose family owns Olde Towne Beverage in New Cumberland, said when asked about her request for the variance.

The land is zoned commercial/office, Paxtang Borough Council President James R. Schmidt said during an informational hearing on the proposed zoning change.

Several neighbors of the property said they opposed changing the zoning, saying that restaurant and retail stores, including a beer store, would increase traffic and decrease their property values. Many said the area is better suited to offices.

"People are talking about what it would mean to have a beer distributorship there," said Brett Kern of 3666 Derry St. "This strikes at the nature of Paxtang."

He said that his parents have lived across from that property for 80 years.

"They don't want this [beer distributorship] across from their home," he said. "Our part of Paxtang is a forgotten part of the borough."

Former council member William Smith, who has lived at 3747 Derry St. for 66 years and has his law office there, said, "It's appalling to think of changing the zoning. Paxtang is a family community, and we want to keep it that way."

Glenn Dalton of 3654 Derry St. expressed concern because his three sons, ages 15, 12 and 10, play in the park across from the property.

"I can't imagine any community deciding it's best to put a beer distributorship across from a children's park," he said.

Dawn Deaner of 3661 Brisban St. said that the borough would get property tax from the land whether it's occupied by a restaurant and store, doctors' offices or townhouses. Doug Reynolds of 3623 Brisban St. said that "professional offices are a better use and bring better revenue."

Council members told residents that they are just looking at the proposed zoning change.

Resignations accepted:

In other action, the council accepted resignations from two of the three Paxtang Civil Service Commission members, Dennis Beaver and Mary Krautheim.

The council also accepted resignations from Paxtang Police Officers Scott Rupert and Jason Cleck.

In addition, the council voted to "opt in" to Pennsylvania's Uniform Construction Code, which replaces local standards with a state standard based of rules on how structures can be designed and what materials can be used.

By taking that action, the borough is agreeing to administer and enforce the building code. The law goes into effect this summer.

MARY KLAUS: 255-8113 or mklaus@patriot-news.com
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  #46  
Old Posted Jun 1, 2004, 10:03 PM
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Yeah that's some weird shit, Chris. And did you notice how many people resigned from various positions in Paxtang? Something odd going on there for sure. :sly

Quote:
In other action, the council accepted resignations from two of the three Paxtang Civil Service Commission members, Dennis Beaver and Mary Krautheim.

The council also accepted resignations from Paxtang Police Officers Scott Rupert and Jason Cleck.
Okay, now on to the whole Wal-Mart issue *sigh*

I think I MAY have changed my tune a little. A gentleman wrote a pretty good editorial in the paper on Sunday that really got me thinking. In a nutshell his comments were about if not Wal-Mart on that site, then what? We all know something is going to be built there...is Wal-Mart the lesser of the evils? Apparently Harley-Davidson has been looking at the site for a "motorcycle testing area" (they have that new showroom/shop not even a block down that was built a few years ago). Look at all the warehouses that have opened up around there in the last few years. Is that what we will get instead of Wal-Mart, another warehouse and/or yet another trucking firm? Is that a risk we should take? We all know Holy Name is leaving, so who do we want there is the question. IMO "if Holy Name leaves" isn't even an option...they WILL be leaving.

With all the building on Rt. 22 a Wal-Mart there is inevitable, especially the closer you get to/in West Hanover Twp. With all the new housing developments and offices springing up there, you know a Wal-Mart and/or other big-boxers are bound to follow. Are we just pushing the inevitable even further down, resulting in even more sprawl?

The guy in the editorial also brought up a good point: if we don't get that Wal-Mart, we will be wasting gas to get to the other one. Without getting into all that he said, he was basically saying that no matter what choice is made, we will be supporting some type of evil corporation. Sadly, the man is dead on...

I don't know how to feel on this matter. I would absolutely HATE to see another warehouse there or something to do with trucks. On the same token, I'd hate to see Karns driven out of business (they are right across the street). Will a Wal-Mart Supercenter push them out of business? Who knows, but it seems like a risky situation. I think we LP citizens will lose no matter what we choose.
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  #47  
Old Posted Jun 2, 2004, 5:56 PM
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I doubt it'll drive it out of business. Where the current Wal-Mart is now, there is a relatively close Weis Markets in plaza on the other side of Mushroom Hill. So it'd doubtful it'd displace Karns, though I'm sure it'd affect the business. I mean look at Union Deposit - Weis, Giant, and Foxes. Three supermarkets across the street from each other basically. I think there's enough people who eat enough to sustain them both.
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  #48  
Old Posted Jun 2, 2004, 8:57 PM
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Hopefully you're right, PaSkyX. Karns is a great local business and I'd hate to see them get hurt in the process.


In other news, I found out yesterday that the city is attempting to buy a bunch of properties along Cameron St. near the Farm Show for a hotel. I can't comment on too much of it now because it's not really public yet, but my one friend's business was one of the ones the city approached. I knew there was going to be a hotel built to service the Farm Show, but that was supposed to be on their site in [what is left of] the Farm Show's parking lot. But another hotel along Cameron? Yeah, I think 2 hotels in that area could easily work...
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  #49  
Old Posted Jun 2, 2004, 8:59 PM
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Jobless rate stabilizes

Wednesday, June 02, 2004

The unemployment rate in the Harrisburg region was 3.6 percent in April, unchanged from March and down from 4 percent a year ago.

The jobless rate in the region -- Cumberland, Dauphin, Lebanon and Perry counties -- continued to be among the lowest in the state in April, behind the State College area at 3.4 percent and tied with the Lancaster area at 3.6 percent. The unemployment rate in the York area in April was 4.7 percent.

Cumberland County had the lowest unemployment rate in the state at 3 percent during April. The overall jobless rate in the south-central region, which includes Harrisburg, Lancaster and York, was 3.9 percent.

The statewide unemployment rate in April was 5.3 percent, and the national rate was 5.6 percent.

In the Harrisburg region, the total number of jobs increased by 2,300 from March through April and were up by 1,300 from April 2003. Goods-producing jobs were up by 600 from March, with all of the growth coming from construction and mining-related industries. Manufacturing jobs were flat on a month-to-month basis and are down by 500 from April 2003.

Manufacturing wages in the Harrisburg region averaged $15.36 an hour in April, compared with the statewide average of $15.08. The average manufacturing work week in the region was 40.2 hours.
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  #50  
Old Posted Jun 3, 2004, 2:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EastSideHBG
Hopefully you're right, PaSkyX. Karns is a great local business and I'd hate to see them get hurt in the process.


In other news, I found out yesterday that the city is attempting to buy a bunch of properties along Cameron St. near the Farm Show for a hotel. I can't comment on too much of it now because it's not really public yet, but my one friend's business was one of the ones the city approached. I knew there was going to be a hotel built to service the Farm Show, but that was supposed to be on their site in [what is left of] the Farm Show's parking lot. But another hotel along Cameron? Yeah, I think 2 hotels in that area could easily work...
hmmm...i definately think one hotel would work quite well...maybe two. i hope they are highrise buildings

let's say 10 or more floors, connected to the farm show complex by overhead or underground walkways :scraper:
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  #51  
Old Posted Jun 3, 2004, 11:38 PM
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Hell yes, that would be awesome!!! I could easily see some mid/high-rises happening too, with the 7th St. "Northern Gateway" corridor set to expand the DT Northward. This section of Cameron St. would blend in so well with that.


Now look at this garbage:

Rail summit reaches no consensus

Counties split on best approach to project

Thursday, June 03, 2004
BY MATT MILLER
Of Our Carlisle Bureau

Commissioners from six midstate counties staged their second summit yesterday, hoping to reach a consensus on the proposed Corridor One commuter rail system.

Instead, they left divided.

After three hours, Dauphin County commissioners said they are leaning in favor of building the full $75.8 million first phase of the line from Lancaster to Harrisburg to Mechanicsburg.

Cumberland County commissioners repeated their call for a $30 million multiyear test of commuter rail on Amtrak's Lancaster-to-Harrisburg line before any commitment is made to Corridor One.

Lancaster County commissioners said they can stomach either option, so long as their county remains an integral part of the system.

The only real agreement during the meeting in Dauphin County's administration center was voiced by Dauphin County Commissioner Nick DiFrancesco.

"There will be absolutely no local tax dollars going into this," DiFrancesco told officials of the Modern Transit Partnership, the group promoting Corridor One. Also, he said, local elected officials must have a controlling voice on an authority MTP wants to form to run the system.

Commissioners from Lebanon, York and Perry counties also attended the meeting.

MTP is urging construction of the first phase of Corridor One with federal and state money.

Bruce Barclay, Cumberland County commission chairman, said the test would be a cost-effective way to see if people will use commuter rail.

DiFrancesco and fellow Dauphin County Commissioner George Hartwick said they aren't sure a test would be useful, but they agreed with MTP President John Ward that the West Shore must be part of any evaluation.

A 6-mile leg of the line would run from Harrisburg to just east of Mechanicsburg.

A test was recommended by a panel that reviewed the Corridor One plan. Two panel members, Jerry Lutin of the New Jersey Transit Authority and Jim Ryan of the Federal Transit Administration, attended yesterday's meeting.

Ryan said there is no data on whether commuter rail will work in a metropolitan area as small as the midstate. A test would be a "low risk" means of getting that information, he said.

Ward said an Amtrak test wouldn't gauge vital West Shore ridership.

About 76,000 commuter trips are made from the West Shore to the East Shore daily, and the Susquehanna River bridges are the region's major traffic "choke points," he said. About 12,000 trips are made daily between Lancaster and Harrisburg, he said.

Cumberland County Commissioner Gary Eichelberger said he fears building Corridor One would devour federal money that could be better used to improve highways.

"It's good to have alternatives," Eichelberger said. "But highways are still going to be carrying the bulk of our traffic."



Okay, now my rants:

Will it work in a metro as small as ours? So I guess the 400,000+ in Lancaster Co., the 230,000+ in Cumberland Co. and the 320,000+ in Dauphin Co. isn't enough people? I know I just did a rough, off the top of my head estimate, but that's nearly 1 million people in those 3 counties alone. Now factor in the people from York, Adams, Lebanon, etc. counties that may use the system... Now is this system going to be serving a smaller area?

Wow, a few of the sprawl-rific NIMBY commisoners are at it again:

Quote:
Cumberland County Commissioner Gary Eichelberger said he fears building Corridor One would devour federal money that could be better used to improve highways.
HELLO!!! Does somebody not see what is going on in the world around us?!? Sky high gas prices that show no sign of dropping. A very unstable Middle-East. Federal funding drying up. A concrete shortage... We need to develop alternatives NOW because (IMO) highways and cars are the old way. No they will not totally disappear, but they will be a harder and harder thing to have and maintain.


I can go on and on about this but you get my drift. In the grand scheme of things, I don't think Cumberland Co. will have much to say about anything anyway; they aren't as big of a fish as they think they are. I just wish that county would get with the times.
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  #52  
Old Posted Jun 4, 2004, 2:34 AM
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Yeah, it's kinda ridiculous. Sprawl is TERRIBLE in the midstate. It's one of the things I can't stand so much about being home - I can walk NOWHERE. It pains me to see them not make a single attempt to tackle sprawl.
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  #53  
Old Posted Jun 4, 2004, 3:13 AM
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i completely agree with you Dave and PaSkyX...everything you are saying is on point. i have no problem with spending the required $75 million to do this first project and to even raise taxes if need be. if it pulls in even 20,000 riders or more, it will serve as a reasonable dent to congestion over the bridges IMO. i travel over the harvey taylor and market street bridges every day for school and work and waste at least 30 min or more sitting in traffic. if there was rail, believe me i would be using it! besides, with a station on the riverfront and on city island, you have the option of using it to go to the events, ballgames, recreation, etc: provide bike racks on the trains and at stations and you got a real no brainer here folks extend the rail project to Hershey, Lebanon, Carlisle and other points and you have the potential of a 100,000 daily ridership. that will crush NJ transits new 1 billion dollar light rail project serving the camden/trenton corridor which only gets around 20,000 riders daily. small area my ass....
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  #54  
Old Posted Jun 4, 2004, 2:00 PM
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More exciting news for the area. Harrisburg is getting more and more attractive with each new project!!!


HACC breaks ground for $12 million health center

Friday, June 04, 2004

BY DAVID WENNER
Of The Patriot-News

Harrisburg Area Community College broke ground yesterday for a health education center that will feature improved facilities for training nurses.

The college expects to begin using the $12 million Select Medical Health Education Pavilion in the fall of 2005. Select Medical Corp., based in Lower Allen Twp., donated $1.2 million to help build the center.

Officials said the center will enable HACC to accept more nursing students and should help ease the shortage of registered nurses in hospitals and nursing homes.

HACC accepts 160 students annually for its two-year associate degree program for training registered nurses. Enrollment will eventually rise to 180, said Ron Rebuck, director of nursing programs.

The new, two-story building will be attached to Blocker Hall at HACC's Wildwood campus in Harrisburg. It will feature a 20-bed nursing laboratory and classrooms equipped with state-of-art equipment. The existing nursing lab has seven beds.

The HACC nursing program outgrew its space at Wildwood, and nursing students since January have studied off campus in leased space at Penn Center in Harrisburg.

The new facility also will house HACC's other health-career programs, including respiratory therapy and dental assistant and dental hygienist. The dental hygiene clinic, which has 12 chairs, will expand to 20 chairs.

The college is conducting a capital campaign it hopes will raise $7 million for the facility. Former Gov. George Leader and his wife contributed $500,000 to the nursing portion of the center.

Although HACC plans to expand its nursing program after the center opens, space hasn't been a primary concern, Rebuck said. He said enrollment has been limited by fewer opportunities for nurses to obtain clinical training at local hospitals.
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Old Posted Jun 4, 2004, 2:57 PM
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People Take A Stand On Wal-Mart Issue

Thursday June 03, 2004 4:37pm Posted By: Katie McCarthy

The Midstate - The proposed Wal-Mart would be built along Route 22 on property owned by the Holy Name of Jesus Church and School. There's no doubt the world's largest retailer would be stiff competition for other businesses here but some say they're up to the challenge.

"The supercenter they're talking about, roughly 220-230 thousand square feet. That's a huge store." Lower Paxton Township Manager George Wolfe says public interest in the proposed Wal-Mart is just as big. The Holy Name of Jesus Church and School would sell the land to Wal-Mart and then construct a new church and school. No zoning change would be needed. George Wolfe/Lower Paxton Twp. Manager, "The parcel of ground, parcels of ground in question, primarily owned by the Catholic Diocese of Harrisburg has been zoned general commercial for I'm expecting at least 30 years."

The Wal-Mart supercenter would include a supermarket. Across the highway at locally owned Karns Foods, they're keeping an eye on the proposed project, but there's no emergency here. Assistant Manager Courtney Conrad says Karns is confident it can offer something Wal-Mart can't. "Customer service is a big thing here. There's always somebody walking the aisles talking to people. Need help? Someone's here to help you." Specialized areas, like a large custom meat department have already helped Karns survive the big supermarket chains. They hope to have the same success versus a mammoth Wal-Mart. At the next Lower Paxton Township Supervisors meeting on July 6th at 7:30 PM, the proposed Wal-Mart for the site will be further discussed.

And there's a Wal-Mart feud in York County which has led to a police investigation. We told you about the controversy on the proposed Wal-Mart in Dauphin County, but in York County - a Wal-Mart dispute there has led to a theft. There used to be a huge sign hanging on the side of a barn in Windsor Township that said "Stop Wal-Mart." But late Sunday night, someone cut the sign down and put up a "Pro Wal-Mart - smiley face sign." The barn owner then took that sign down and called Sgt. Rodney Varner of the York Area Regional Police. "It's very unusual for us to be involved in an investigation concerning a business sign. It was an anti-slogan that was on it. It's unusual, but there are many unusual things that occur in police work and this is just one of them."

York Area Regional Police say they have a few leads they're checking out. So, in York County, it's the battle of the smiley face signs when it comes to this Wal-Mart business.
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  #56  
Old Posted Jun 4, 2004, 3:05 PM
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Originally Posted by PaSkyX
Yeah, it's kinda ridiculous. Sprawl is TERRIBLE in the midstate. It's one of the things I can't stand so much about being home - I can walk NOWHERE. It pains me to see them not make a single attempt to tackle sprawl.
PaSkyX, you're not in NYC anymore?
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Old Posted Jun 4, 2004, 3:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PaSkyX
Yeah, it's kinda ridiculous. Sprawl is TERRIBLE in the midstate. It's one of the things I can't stand so much about being home - I can walk NOWHERE. It pains me to see them not make a single attempt to tackle sprawl.
PaSkyX, you're not in NYC anymore?
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Old Posted Jun 5, 2004, 5:37 PM
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Wow, big change LOL


Harrisburg East Mall to get new name

Saturday, June 05, 2004
BY TOM DOCHAT
Of The Patriot-News

Harrisburg East Mall is changing its name to Harrisburg Mall as part of an ongoing makeover at the 35-year-old Swatara Twp. shopping center.

The new name is intended to call attention to renovations at the 850,000-square-foot complex and to serve as a locator for out-of-town shoppers lured to the Bass Pro Shops outdoor-products store scheduled to open in November.

Mark Nobile, the mall's general manager, said Feldman Lubert Adler Harrisburg LP, the property owner, wanted "to do something to signify that this was a rebirth of the center."

He said Bass Pro Shops expects as many as 70 percent of its customers to come from outside the Harrisburg area, and it needed a clear identification point for its store.

"Harrisburg East implies there's a Harrisburg west," Nobile noted.

Nobile said about 20 names were initially considered for the mall, and seven or eight were tested in a survey conducted in the Harrisburg, Allentown, Hazleton and Wilkes-Barre markets. He said Harrisburg Mall was preferred "overwhelmingly" among survey respondents, especially those outside the Harrisburg area.

The name leaves "a local flavor, but it helps people coming from an hour away," Nobile said.

The new name will be on signs installed at the mall's main entrance on Monday.

Many upgrades are planned at the retailing complex, which was the region's first enclosed shopping mall when it opened in 1969. Feldman Lubert bought the property last year and is spending more than $40 million for renovations.

The parking lot is being resurfaced, and Nobile said about two-thirds of that work should be complete in a couple weeks. Work on the exterior facade of the mall fronting Paxton Street also has started.

Last month, Boscov's opened a 185,000-square-foot department store in space once occupied by J.C. Penney.

The 225,000-square-foot Bass Pro Shops store is expected to open in mid-November at the east end of the mall where Lord & Taylor had been located. A new entrance from Paxton Street is planned at the east end of the property, Nobile said.

"It's hopping," he said of all the changes.
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  #59  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2004, 1:45 AM
wrightchr wrightchr is offline
joining the rail club
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Harrisburg, PA
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i don't see how the new name will make much of a difference. i think people are still going to call it the east mall for quite some time. it's just more familiar to everyone...
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  #60  
Old Posted Jun 6, 2004, 5:51 AM
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EastSideHBG EastSideHBG is offline
Me?!?
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Philadelphia Metro (Norristown, PA)
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I agree. I know I will for a long, long time LOL
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