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  #1841  
Old Posted Jun 22, 2007, 6:49 PM
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Originally Posted by moseley View Post
Harrisburg is cursed by the inability to change its border. In 1972 The PA Supreme Court struck down the annexation laws because the “new” constitution gave a deadline for the legislature to pass new rules on boundary changes. Our legislature shied from the mandated task and here we are 35 years later and legislature is still refusing to act on the issue.

As a result, PA is faced with layer over layer of political red tape making it difficult to attract companies. On top of that areas like Harrisburg are in a real bind. Virtually any tax base is outside of the City limits. Although Mayor Reed has done a good job at attracting new development to his little patch of land, he is still faced with a tax base that is largely based on the people who have the least per capita income in the region. The way that PA deals with school taxes only makes the issue worse. The densest and poorest area pays the highest taxes. Harrisburg’s faire department is often the first on the scene in surrounding areas where the volunteer fire fighters take too long to respond. Areas outside of Harrisburg use the incinerator water sewer and other essential services.

Harrisburg is doomed until the legislature acts on the law they were suppose to pass in 1970.

I grew up in Topeka, Kansas, A Capitol City like Harrisburg. Topeka’s Metropolitan Statistical Area has a population in excess of 229,000. Harrisburg’s MSA has a population of 652,000. So Topeka is a third the size of Harrisburg. But the population of the City of Topeka has a population of 122,000 which in over 150% the size of Harrisburg. There is a real disconnect here.

Cities like Harrisburg are doomed until PA starts following the same laws are the rest of nation.
Excellent post... I am impressed with your knowledge of the nuances of Pennsylvania's archaic system of municipal governance... which is one of the biggest contributing reasons for Pennsylvania's continued economic malaise, out-of-control sprawl and urban decline. Bravo.
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  #1842  
Old Posted Jun 23, 2007, 9:07 AM
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I don't mean to throw this thread for a loop, but I was wondering what Harrisburg's baseball attendance is like. Reason I ask, being in York Co., and the Revolution franchise started playing some home games.....attendance is NOT GOOD!

It isn't a good start, and people have already been saying that the 33 million dollars could have spent to spruce up downtown more or help the neighborhoods.

Again, didn't mean to throw the thread for a loop, but it seems York city was hoping to hit a home run, but this looks a foul ball for the town. Only 2,600 or so showed up for last night's game. Great weather, a Friday night, kids are out of school and only the 5th game in the new stadium.

Kinda sad with the rough start.
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  #1843  
Old Posted Jun 24, 2007, 4:02 PM
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kinda hard for me to say, but I live on 2nd street and when there is a home game in the summer parking becomes very difficult. I plan on going to a game next week so I could better tell you then.
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  #1844  
Old Posted Jun 24, 2007, 11:03 PM
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I am not surprised at all to see baseball failing in York (and Lancaster?). There are just far, far too many teams in a small area to make it worthwhile. IMO York wasted a lot of money, and sports cannot/should not be the savior of an area.

The Senators still draw a decent crowd but NOTHING like they did when I was younger. I'm sure a new stadium will help, though.
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  #1845  
Old Posted Jun 25, 2007, 2:22 AM
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Biz Journals just did a study ranking the 100 largest metros in the US on income growth over the past 25 years.

http://www.bizjournals.com/specials/pages/92.html

Harrisburg ranks 65th.

Here is how Harrisburg's income growth stacks up against other PA metros:

17. Philadelphia
19. Pittsburgh
47. Scranton - Wilkes-Barre
65. Harrisburg
85. Allentown-Bethlehem

Here is how Harrisburg's per capita personal income stacks up against other PA metros:

1. Philadelphia $40,727
2. Pittsburgh $36,530
3. Harrisburg, PA $35,188
National $34,426
4. Allentown - Bethlehem, PA $33,808
5. Scranton - Wilkes-Barre, PA $30,547
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  #1846  
Old Posted Jun 25, 2007, 4:05 AM
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Very interesting, thanks, Evergrey! This is one of the few lists that I agree with 100%. While income does not grow fast in Harrisburg (in most cases it...is...painfully...slow) you still make out pretty well, as the salaries are quite high in many cases and the cost of living is still fairly low. Pound for pound I made W A Y more in Harrisburg than I do here...

...but I don't care, and the move was well worth it.
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  #1847  
Old Posted Jun 25, 2007, 12:35 PM
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I'd have to agree with the cost of living as well. Harrisburg is an oddity in that living in the city of Harrisburg is much cheaper than living in the suburbs and towns around it. Housing on the east shore is about 30% less than close by.

Unlike you ESH I like the lower cost of living as it allowed me to buy a new car, a house and have cash to spare for renovations all by the age of 24...
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  #1848  
Old Posted Jul 3, 2007, 6:15 AM
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City apartments near completion
Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Developers are finishing work on 48 new apartments for families in the South Allison Hill neighborhood of Harrisburg.

Fourteen apartments are leased, said Mark Moseley, executive director of Tri-County Housing Development Corp. Ltd. The units are on properties in the 1400 block of Market Street and in the 1500 and 1600 blocks of Derry Street.

The Mount Pleasant apartments average about 1,000 square feet, and rents range from $440 to $660 per month. Families must meet federal low-income guidelines, such as a family of four earning $39,000 a year or less.


The apartments replaced 32 blighted properties. Funding for the $9.4 million project came from private sources and the city, state and federal governments.

Call 730-4141 for more information.
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  #1849  
Old Posted Jul 3, 2007, 5:43 PM
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From the Central Penn Business Journal:

Blighted Harrisburg market given new life
The former Emerald supermarket at 2304 N. Third St. in Harrisburg will open as a different supermarket.

C&Z Construction , based in Dauphin County, started construction in April and expects to wind up renovations to the 13,000-square-foot building in two weeks, said Anthony Zehring, vice president of C&Z.

The developer, York County-based In Suk Pak, paid C&Z between $300,000 and $400,000 for renovations. Pak did not immediately return phone calls seeking comment. - Eric Veronikis

Harrisburg getting another Starbucks
Harrisburg’s Colonial Building will serve up Starbucks coffee come September.

This will be the Seattle-based company’s second retail location in Pennsylvania’s capitol.

The café will open in 1,800 square feet of retail space inside the historic Colonial Building at 225 Market St.

Starbucks now has a retail store inside downtown Harrisburg’s Whitaker Center for Science and Arts. - CPENN Staff
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  #1850  
Old Posted Jul 6, 2007, 12:36 PM
MidtownMike MidtownMike is offline
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Home sales/listings year over year for 2nd Q 2007 v. 2006:

-- Home prices slightly higher (up 3.1 percent)

-- Number of homes sold down (down 1.4 percent)

-- Active listings up significantly (up roughly 40 percent)

-- Average days on market unchanged

________________________________________________________


Area home prices keep climbing
Friday, July 06, 2007
BY DAN MILLER
Of The Patriot-News

Sale prices of homes in the midstate are still going up, according to second-quarter figures released yesterday by Central Penn Multi-List Inc.

The average sale price was $183,400, an increase of 3.4 percent from the first quarter. The second-quarter average is 3.1 percent more than $177,744 a year earlier.

The midstate continues to buck national trends of prices falling slightly from historic highs. For example, the national median price of an existing home in May -- $223,700 -- was down 2.1 percent from the national median a year earlier, according to the National Association of Realtors.
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The median means half of the homes sold for more and half sold for less. The regional Central Penn Multi-List uses averages in its reports, so a direct correlation to the national figures can't be made.

However, local industry experts were encouraged by the second-quarter numbers.

"The south-central Pennsylvania market is still very strong" compared to the nation, said Cynthia Armour-Helm, broker/owner of Exit Realty Capital Area in Harrisburg.

The number of midstate homes sold in the second quarter -- 2,570 -- was more than in the first three months of the year. But it was less than the 2,607 homes that were sold in the Harrisburg area in the second quarter of 2006.

"While we may not be seeing large increases in the number of units sold, what we are seeing is continued strength in the market. Rising home sale prices, coupled with steady home sales and low mortgage rates, provide for that healthy market," said Jerrod Paterson, president of the Greater Harrisburg Association of Realtors.

Paterson noted an increased number of homes on the market -- active lists -- of 3,458 in the second quarter. That's nearly 600 more than in the first quarter and almost 1,000 more than the total in the second quarter of 2006.

The second quarter this year is the first time the number of homes on active lists have topped 3,000 in any quarter since at least before 2002.

The increase in active lists underscore the shift in local market conditions favoring buyers, Paterson said.

"With more active listings on the market, buyers now have the advantage," he said. "They have more options and choices when searching for a new home."

Days on market -- how long it takes for a listed home to sell -- was 54 in the second quarter, which is in line with quarterly trends of recent years.

In the first quarter, listed homes were on the market for 63 days.
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  #1851  
Old Posted Jul 9, 2007, 4:49 PM
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Musing on my recent trip

The fourth of July is always a great opportunity to travel. This year I decided to visit a friend in NYC. Free place to crash who can top that? I got out to see a large part of Manhattan. I visited many of the normal spots (the Met, Natural History, went for a run around the reservoir in Central Park) The following is the major comparisons I had to Harrisburg.

I've never thought of Harrisburg as a clean city, but my thoughts have largely changed. Everywhere I went there was trash laying around. Many of the side walks were stained from past garbage exposure.

Harrisburg is cheap!! Everything in NYC costs tons of money.

Harrisburg is in no need of a public transportation system. I walked farther just to get to subway stations than entire nights out in the 'burg

More trees. This is something both cities need more of. I don't mind walking when I am in the shade. Walking during the day on tree lined streets the walk is much more enjoyable. It helps to keep the temp down, nice feel to the neighborhoods, and helps to clean the air (slightly)

Well my thoughts for now. Thought I'd share!!
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  #1852  
Old Posted Jul 10, 2007, 4:18 AM
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Reed touts tech jobs as training firm opens office
Tuesday, July 10, 2007
BY DAVID DeKOK
Of The Patriot-News

It was less a ribbon-cutting ceremony than an opportunity to highlight one of Harrisburg's technology success stories.

Mayor Stephen R. Reed actually did cut a ribbon on the second floor of the Harrisburg Transportation Center yesterday. But he was much more interested in talking about how Corporate University Xchange fits into his vision of the 21st century knowledge-based economy.

Americans need to be educated for technology jobs, not the industrial jobs of the 19th century, Reed said. Instead of bringing in highly educated foreigners to do those jobs, as often happens now, he wants more Americans trained for those careers.

Corporate University Xchange, which helps large companies better train their work forces, adjoins the Technology Council of Central Pennsylvania. Both are across Market Street from a high-rise building being constructed to house classrooms and laboratories of Harrisburg University of Science and Technology.

Down the street is the Life Sciences Greenhouse of Central Pennsylvania, which provides financial and other help to start bio-technology companies. All of this will provide a global identity for Harrisburg, Reed argues.

"It's pretty exciting stuff," Reed said. "That interconnection does not exist in too many places in America."

Susan Todd is the president of Corporate University Xchange, and her brother, Alan Todd, is the chairman. He was the founder of KnowledgePlanet but no longer is connected with that company.

The Todds purchased Corporate University Xchange in 2004 and moved it here from New York City.

"Why are we in Harrisburg?" Alan Todd said. "Well, for one thing, it's my hometown. But Harrisburg brings access to capital, an unprecedented level of talent, and access to a good business environment."

He said it is no trouble to get to anywhere in the world from Harrisburg International Airport, citing his own six trips to the Middle East in the past 16 months.

"I don't believe there's a better place on earth to locate a business," Todd said.

Both Todd and Reed spoke of the need for America to develop a strategy to preserve its economic edge against competition from developing countries. Some countries, Todd said, are skipping the industrial stage and going straight to a knowledge-based economy.

"America needs to wake up," Reed said. "The disconnect between education and work-force development is a clear threat to national security."

DAVID DeKOK: 255-8173 or ddekok@patriot-news.com
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  #1853  
Old Posted Jul 10, 2007, 6:06 PM
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Very interesting (and good) news. I have been noticing a lot of businesses relocating to the HBG area from elsewhere. I'm sure as more come in, the word spreads bringing even more, etc. Good news for Harrisburg!
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  #1854  
Old Posted Jul 10, 2007, 7:07 PM
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Well now here is some crappy news! I popped over to a site I haven't visited in a while hoping to find some good news about DT HBG, and instead I find this:

Advice This Summer: Avoid Downtown

This may sound extreme, but after the latest incidents of violent crime downtown, I would advise anyone to stay away from Downtown Harrisburg for a while until the city can clean things up a bit.

When the entertainment district begins to see violent crime outside their door, something is wrong.For those of you who don’t know yet, a band performing downtown was mugged and pistol whipped after their show at Smalls last week. It was barely reported in the mass media, but local bloggers Jersey Mike and Justina, did make mention of it. CBS 21 only did a story after the online outcry became louder.

Smalls isn’t off the beaten path or in a bad part of town. It’s right in the heart of Restaurant Row on 2nd Street. Violent crime should not be happening where people come to frequent the city’s best bars and restaurants on a regular basis. If crime continues to flourish in Harrisburg like is has this year, more and more people will stay away from Harrisburg’s entertainment district.

The scene downtown has continuously gotten worse and I’ve discussed this with several area bloggers. The frat party mentality is out of control and the police do little to intervene or keep the peace outside of some presence outside the River Street Garage. When the bars let out downtown, it’s a drunken madhouse, especially between Locust and Pine. Reports of fights and verbal attacks do little to help the scene and the clubs that cater to this sort of element are fueling it.

My advice this year- stay away from downtown Harrisburg until the businesses, the city, and the police figure out a way to clean things up.

*************

My comments:

Wow, I am very saddened to hear this news but not at all surprised. The mentality in Harrisburg overall is very, very negative and many people can’t seem to figure out how to control themselves. I have traveled the U.S. extensively and now lived in many places, and the people in Harrisburg are a breed like no other…

I wish the city the best and I sure hope they can get things under control. Without DT Harrisburg, the area really is nothing…

*Oh and I am not surprised at all the media tried to sweep this all under the rug. There is a very conservative “speak no evil” mentality in Harrisburg and this is NOT a good thing, as this does nothing to help make the problems get better.

http://www.harrisburgnightlife.com/w...void-downtown/

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  #1855  
Old Posted Jul 11, 2007, 4:05 PM
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I would have to say that the majority of problems comes from customers of one particular nightclub. It is on the mayor's hit list from what I hear. When it empties at 2 all kind of evil goes down. Until then downtown is pretty chill. The mass of swirling people standing around waiting for God knows what for 30 to 40 minutes is not a good thing.

I was waiting for a friend to come out of Zembie's 2 weeks ago and witnessed an "individual" pull out a blut and start to toke up. Cops generally contain the crowd and weren't probably close enough to smell or see it. I expect that within several months that club will be closed down.
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  #1856  
Old Posted Jul 23, 2007, 8:07 PM
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Harrisburg's skyline to grow next year
An 18-story office, parking and retail building will go up between 200-212 N. Second St. in downtown Harrisburg.

The site is home to the Tom Sawyer Diner, Chilly Willy�s ice cream parlor, a hair salon and a psychic business.

The 210,500-square-foot building will feature retail business on the first floor, five floors of parking and 10 floors of class-A office space, said Greg Rothman, a partner with Harrisburg-based 200 N. Second Street Associates, which owns the property and will pursue the project.

The $35 million steel structure will sit on a third of an acre, will boast about 140,000-square feet of office space, 60,000 square feet of parking and will house a sky bar on the roof, said Andrew Giorgione, who is partners with Rothman, Sylvan Lutkewitte and Rick Galiardo in 200 N. Second Street Associates.

Plans have yet to be submitted to the city for approval. Giorgione expects to break ground on the building in early 2008. The project should take about 18 months to complete, Giorgione said. - Eric Veronikis, Central Penn Business Journal
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  #1857  
Old Posted Jul 23, 2007, 11:41 PM
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^ Thanks for posting that.
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  #1858  
Old Posted Jul 24, 2007, 2:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MidtownMike View Post
Harrisburg's skyline to grow next year
An 18-story office, parking and retail building will go up between 200-212 N. Second St. in downtown Harrisburg.

The site is home to the Tom Sawyer Diner, Chilly Willy�s ice cream parlor, a hair salon and a psychic business.

The 210,500-square-foot building will feature retail business on the first floor, five floors of parking and 10 floors of class-A office space, said Greg Rothman, a partner with Harrisburg-based 200 N. Second Street Associates, which owns the property and will pursue the project.

The $35 million steel structure will sit on a third of an acre, will boast about 140,000-square feet of office space, 60,000 square feet of parking and will house a sky bar on the roof, said Andrew Giorgione, who is partners with Rothman, Sylvan Lutkewitte and Rick Galiardo in 200 N. Second Street Associates.

Plans have yet to be submitted to the city for approval. Giorgione expects to break ground on the building in early 2008. The project should take about 18 months to complete, Giorgione said. - Eric Veronikis, Central Penn Business Journal
Thank GOD someone in that city has some sense...I always shook my head in amazement when I saw prime real estate being taken up by that silly diner!

Great news for the city! That skyline has sure been getting a major shot in the arm over the years!
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  #1859  
Old Posted Jul 24, 2007, 2:04 PM
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I agree. Looks good.
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  #1860  
Old Posted Jul 24, 2007, 8:03 PM
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New 19-Story Harrisburg Building (image)

The building, to be 19-stories including the "skybar," is just what Harrisburg needs.

How about someone remodel that ugly 333 Market St. beige tower from the 1970s and/or build something even bigger?
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