Allentown Toy Manufacturing building could become affordable housing | Lehigh Valley Regional News

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ALLENTOWN, Pennsylvania — The Allentown City Council Wednesday night approved a plan to raise funds to rehabilitate and reuse the old Allentown Toy Manufacturing Co. building.

The City of Allentown is requesting $1.5 million for use by the Allentown Redevelopment Authority to repurpose the lot at 725 N. 10th St. It plans to build a 20-unit affordable housing development, according to Leonard Lightner, the city’s chief operating officer.

The project – which will prioritize low-income residents – will be funded entirely by a grant from U.S. Representative Susan Wild Community Project Funding if the city is successful.

The building, which is currently vacant, has not yet been acquired. Allentown Toy Manufacturing announced in December 2021 that it would be closing its doors after 70 years in business, more than 50 of which were spent in the 10th Street building.

New cops

In other news, the council approved the hiring of seven police officers. Each of the patrol officers receives an annual salary of $64,511.

One of the seven officers, Stephen Rowe, is from the city. Chandler Wilson, Dalton DeRosa, Keegan Connelly, Allen Strohl, Elias Roman and Michael Bramble make up the total approved contingent.

Mayor Matt Tuerk’s administration indicated that the hires “would benefit the city of Allentown with additional police presence.”

The officers had already been hired, but Wednesday night’s action makes them officially active.

“This is the resolution to put them on the streets,” Lightner said.

City Contracts

The council also approved four separate contracts. One is with Qualtrics of Provo, Utah to conduct an employee engagement survey. Qualtrics was the second-lowest bid, but won because it “beats” the lowest bidder – Beyond Feedback – in four categories. The deal will pay Qualtrics a total of $39,688.

A second includes a pact with Philadelphia-based Materials Conservation Co. to manage the maintenance of two of the city’s existing public works of art. The contract is for $58,750.

art commission

Eventually, Jane Heft and Mercy Mackenzie were reappointed and appointed to the Art Commission, respectively. Both terms run until January 2, 2027.

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