York authority lands $1M from state to clean up blighted factory site

Affordable housing units are planned for the site post-cleanup

The Wolf administration this week said it would provide $1 million to the York Redevelopment Authority to clean up a former Danskin clothing factory that is slated to house affordable apartments.

The money, made available through the state’s Industrial Sites Reuse Program, will be used to remove asbestos-containing materials, contamination debris, demolition debris and other hazardous materials from the site at 300 N. State St. in the city of York.

The Redevelopment Authority plans to build 56 affordable housing units once the remediation of the site is finished.

At a city council meeting on Sept. 5, members unanimously approved a measure to change zoning on the site from EC (employment center) to UN-2 (urban residential neighborhood district).

Authority officials could not immediately be reached for details regarding a timeline for the site’s remediation and redevelopment.

The Business Journal reported in June 2016 that Philadelphia-based Pennrose Properties LLC had proposed plans to oversee the housing construction. Pennrose has submitted its plans for the site to the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency and hopes to qualify for the federal low income tax credit program, Lee Reedy, vice president of marketing and communications, said. Pennrose hopes to hear back in the spring, Reedy said. 

Run by the Pennsylvania Department of Community Development, the Industrial Sites Reuse Program provides grants and loans to support the environmental cleanup of former industrial sites with the goal of turning blighted areas into usable space.

Along with money to remediate York’s Danskin factory, the program is providing $153,382 for the city of Easton to complete a Phase II environmental assessment of the 3.9-acre Black Diamond Silk Mill industrial site in Northampton County.

“It’s exciting to look at what the developers have planned for these sites,” DCED Secretary Dennis Davin said in a statement. “These projects will help transform vacant brownfields into flourishing cornerstones for community and economic development like housing.”

Becca Oken-Tatum
Becca Oken-Tatum is the web editor for the Central Penn Business Journal. She also coordinates and writes for CPBJ's monthly Young Professionals e-newsletter. Email her questions, comments and tips at btatum@cpbj.com.

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