Monday, October 1, 2012
National Magnetics Group wins appeal to build two 5,000-square-foot additions. Zoning Hearing Board also grants variance for new home construction on E. Fifth Street.
The president and CEO of National Magnetics Group, Inc. appealed his own case before the Bethlehem Zoning Hearing Board Wednesday night for a dimensional variance to construct additions to an existing industrial building, and was granted unanimous approval. Paul Overbeck, head of the manufacturer of technical ceramics and powdered iron cores at 1210 Win Drive, told the board he wants to build two additions of approximately 5,000 square feet. One addition received approval in 1998 but was not built at the time. He requested a variance for 12-foot side yard setback instead of the zoning code’s required 15-foot side yard setback. Overbeck said he wants to keep the same setback as the existing line. According to its website, National …
Thursday, September 27, 2012
Objectors tell Zoning Hearing Board that proposed affordable housing on Atlantic Street in South Bethlehem would make neighborhood too dense.
“It’s surprising,” responded attorney William F. Kerr Jr. after hearing that a developer’s latest affordable housing project linked to the reuse of South Bethlehem’s vacant St. Stanislaus Church was turned down unanimously by the Bethlehem Zoning Hearing Board. Non-profit Housing Development Corp. MidAtlantic, represented by Kerr, sought variances Wednesday night to add 18 housing units and 22 parking spaces on vacant property at 420-424 Atlantic St., a block from the church at 419-429 Hayes St. The church project, which would raze the rectory for construction of mostly one-bedroom loft-style rentals to attract artists, had been granted variances by the zoning board in October 2011, despite lacking required parking spaces. The church …
Thursday, September 20, 2012
A controversial plan to open two drug and alcohol treatment centers in Bethlehem draws about 65 residents to the Zoning Hearing Board meeting Wednesday.
At least half of the approximately 65 residents who showed up for a Bethlehem zoning hearing Wednesday night were sworn in en masse to testify regarding plans to build two drug and alcohol treatment centers. But they never got the chance. Most of the hearing, which ran intermittently from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., was spent with a representative of developer Abraham Atiyeh outlining the proposals for the facilities. Residents and a passle of lawyers who object to the centers are expected to have their say when the hearings resume at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 16 and again Thursday, Oct. 18. David Harte, vice president of Atiyeh's company, Pennsylvania Venture Capital, said one of the treatment centers would be a 28-bed facility in a new building on …
Friday, September 14, 2012
Developer Abe Atiyeh revives plans to build new treatment centers at Center & Dewberry and at former Moose & Bug Flower Shop.
Friday, September 14, 2012
The Bethlehem Zoning Hearing Board has scheduled yet another hearing exclusively devoted to projects proposed by controversial developer Abraham Atiyeh, who is still trying to build substance abuse treatment centers in the city. The applications under consideration would mean a treatment center in a new building at 2110 Center St. at the corner of Dewberry Avenue and the former Moose & Bug Flower Shop at 2349 Linden St. The hearings have been scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. Wednesday in the second-floor meeting room of the Bethlehem Area Public Library. Town Hall is unavailable because City Council is also scheduled to meet that night. The Express-Times is reporting that these applications will be considered under the city’s old zoning law…
Wednesday, September 5, 2012
William Fitzpatrick was allegedly stabbed in the back three times by his nephew, apparently upset with uncle's attempts to evict him from family home.
- POLICE & FIRE
- Daryl Nerl
Wednesday, September 5, 2012
A member of the Bethlehem Zoning Hearing Board was stabbed in the back multiple times on Monday by his nephew, who has been charged with attempted homicide, according to court papers. The victim, William Fitzpatrick, was talking to police after the incident and is expected to recover from his injuries, barring any complications, according to The Express Times. The suspect, John E. Bragg Jr., might have been upset that Fitzpatrick had been trying to evict him from his home at 256 E. Goepp St., where the stabbing occurred, according to court records. Fitzpatrick told police that he is the executor of the estate of Jack Bragg Sr., who was his brother and the suspect’s father. Two weeks earlier, Bragg was ordered to leave the house but …
Thursday, August 30, 2012
Bethlehem Zoning Hearing Board approves conversion of Bethlehem Inn after more than 3 hours of testimony.
A hotly contested appeal to convert a bed and breakfast in Bethlehem’s Central Historic District into offices was unanimously approved by the city’s Zoning Hearing Board Tuesday after more than three hours of testimony that at times drew the board solicitor’s strong admonition to refrain from repetitive and “gotcha” cross-examination. Sixteen people, more than half against the conversion of The Bethlehem Inn at 476 N. New St. into offices, were sworn in, with each side stating the negative or positive impact the change would have on the residential zoning district. This is the second time John Brew and 262 Paradice Found LLC sought board approval to relocate his community banking consulting firm from 968 Postal Road, Hanover Township (…
Lehigh Valley Health Network will lease three-story office building to be built on site of demolished Jack Jones Buick.
The Bethlehem Zoning Hearing Board gave unanimous approval Tuesday for variances requested by Novak Broad Street Ventures LLC to construct medical offices on the former Jack Jones Buick dealership site on the condition that an offsite parking lot at 532 Fourth Ave. be used only by employees. Lehigh Valley Health Network will lease 17,040 square feet in a new three-story building at 325 W. Broad St. for general practice by its affiliated physicians and laboratory use. The development is expected to cost about $5 million, and plans call for the building to open in spring 2013. Demolition of the 91-year-old building that housed the dealership and apartments at the corner of W. Broad Street and Third Avenue was completed earlier this week. …
Thursday, July 5, 2012
The proposed conversion of The Bethlehem Inn to offices to be heard again in August after City Council's anticipated adoption of new zoning law.
Two Bethlehem Zoning Hearing Board appeals pertaining to the conversion of The Bethlehem Inn into professional offices and to the erection of an electronic advertising sign at 2224 Industrial Drive will be heard Aug. 22 after City Council is expected to adopt its new zoning ordinance on Aug. 7. John Brew of 262 Paradice Found LLC is seeking a special exception to convert a corner property at 476 N. New St., at the intersection with Market Street, into professional offices. The 1845 three-story building has housed a bed and breakfast establishment owned and operated for the past 25 by Robert and Suzanne Virgilio, who wish to sell it to Brew. Brew appealed last month to zoners for variances from the city’s off-street parking requirements …
Monday, July 2, 2012
West Bethlehem neighbors complain that shop where electronics are bought and sold is a nuisance.
The Bethlehem Zoning Hearing Board denied an appeal for a variance to establish a retail business for buying and selling used goods at 1025 W. Broad St. at a hearing last week where about a half-dozen neighbors characterized the business as a “nuisance” and out of character with the neighborhood. Business owner Gerardo Garcia III testified, along with Dean Nguyen, the building owner, at a hearing Wednesday night to request a variance from the required four off-street parking spaces to total on-street parking. The area is zoned commercial. Under questioning by the board, Garcia said he had been operating a small business -- “only enough to feed my family,” he said, -- at the location for about two years. He said the business is not a …
Thursday, June 28, 2012
With Bethlehem on the verge of adopting new zoning law and pending decisions facing legal uncertainty, developer decides to continue hearing until a later date.
Because the Bethlehem Zoning Hearing Board is in technical “limbo,” as its counsel, Mickey Thompson, pointed out, two applicants seeking variances at a meeting Wednesday night – including the developers who want to demolish the former Jack Jones Buick car dealership – decided to continue their appeals to later dates. Thompson cautioned the applicants that because the board is operating under the pending new zoning ordinance, which is expected to be adopted Aug. 7, they should consider the risk of having their cases heard before the zoning code is formally adopted. He characterized the situation as “a bit of a sticky wicket.” Thompson explained that the applicants could have their cases heard under the pending ordinance and receive a …