Allentown Economic Development Corporation
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Monthly Archives: January 2014

Business Incubator Awarded Second Grant for Roof Replacement

Pennsylvania Awards the Bridgeworks Enterprise Center $500,000 RACP Grant

Allentown Economic Development Corporation (AEDC) has been awarded $500,000 in Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program (RACP) funds as part of $133 million in projects that were approved by the Commonwealth on December 23. The RACP funds will be used to match $500,000 of Economic Development Administration (EDA) grant funds that AEDC received from the U.S. Department of Commerce in August 2012.

Both the EDA and RACP funds will be used to pay for the roof replacement project at Bridgeworks Enterprise Center, the business incubator located in the former Mack Trucks 4A Plant. Before the project began, the north-facing sawtooth roof peaks of the nearly 100 year old building were covered in transparent corrugated plastic panels.

“When we went through the design phase of the project, we calculated energy efficiency improvements in the range of 30 to 60 percent,” explained Scott Unger, Executive Director of AEDC. “The potential cost savings for the organization means that we will have more funds available to direct into the incubation program. For a self-funded program like ours, a project like this is huge.”

“The Bridgeworks Enterprise Center is successfully helping startup businesses get off the ground,” said Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski. “The roof replacement project will greatly improve energy efficiency at the site. The savings generated go back into programs at the center to assist those entrepreneurs and ultimately create jobs in those growing businesses.”

The replacement efforts began in August 2013 and were completed by the first week of December. Walter Brucker & Company was the general contractor on the project that was not without challenges. In addition to the nontraditional construction of the sawtooth roof, more than 300 feet of the replaced roof was on the building’s northern-most peak, requiring three story high scaffolding.

The results were immediate.

Roof - Before & After_792x296

Old roof on the left – new roof on the right.
Darker colors represent colder temperatures.

Photo courtesy of Make Lehigh Valley.

“Our space is definitely more comfortable this winter,” said Matthew Sommerfield, President of MTS Ventures, a design engineering firm located at the Bridgeworks Enterprise Center.

“We have already seen an improvement in our heating bill,” adds Ajay Khatri, Vice President of Engineering for ColdEdge Technologies, another business incubator client. “This project is having an immediate positive economic impact on our company’s bottom line.”

About the Allentown Economic Development Corporation

AEDC is an independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to a mission of identifying, encouraging, developing and managing strategic business opportunities for the benefit of Allentown, its citizens, and the Lehigh Valley.

Our goal is to improve vacant and underutilized properties by assisting manufacturers, business owners and entrepreneurs in obtaining the resources and opportunities they require for success in the City of Allentown. AEDC offers access to financing and incentives, assistance with brownfield remediation, and support for growing businesses within the City.

For more information, please visit our website: http://allentownedc.com/