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Steelton in search of new developer for mixed-use project

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The Dauphin County borough of Steelton is looking for a new developer to take on a large mixed-use redevelopment project along its main thoroughfare.

The Dauphin County Redevelopment Authority, in conjunction with the Steelton Economic Development Corp., said this week it is hoping to attract a new buyer by July 27 to redevelop a six-block area at 102-230 N. Front St.

Last summer, Philadelphia-based Chariot Companies LLC was planning a project known as Renaissance Row, which would have included a 125,000-square-foot mixed-use project across from the Steelton Borough Hall. Chariot was planning about 80,000 square feet of commercial and retail space and 46 apartments in three three-story buildings.

According to the authority, an option on the property expired at the end of the year without a final deal in place, so the property is back on the market. Chariot's chairman and CEO was not immediately available for comment.

The minimum bid to buy the site has been set at $350,000, according to the authority. The economic development corporation owns the former steel mill land.

The authority and borough are hoping to see a mix of homes and commercial uses on the site, including a grocery store. The authority's request for qualified submissions also is asking developers to consider the borough's downtown parking needs and find ways to connect their proposed projects to surrounding neighborhoods. 

"With the envisioned mix of retail, offices, condos and apartments, the positive impact of this project will go far beyond Steelton's downtown and provide an economic shot in the arm for the entire borough," Steelton Borough Manager Doug Brown said.

George Connor, executive director of the Dauphin County Department of Community & Economic Development, said he hopes the strategy will attract a strong group of interested developers. The authority has pursued a similar strategy for the former Hummelstown municipal complex.

Connor also believes the borough's 10-year tax abatement program will help entice developers. Under the program, developers would pay property taxes at a property's pre-improvement rate for 10 years. The abatements temporarily eliminate real estate taxes resulting from increased property value because of new construction or renovations to existing property.

Here's the full request:

Request for Qualified Submissions, Front Street, Steelton on Scribd

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Jason Scott

Jason Scott

Jason Scott covers state government, real estate and construction, media and marketing, and Dauphin and Cumberland counties. Have a tip or question for him? Email him at jscott@cpbj.com. Follow him on Twitter, @JScottJournal.

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