Erie Bayfront’s Market Plan Gets $ 3M RACP State Grant
Erie Events’ plans for a year-round indoor market on the city’s west bay have received a huge financial boost from the state government.
State Senator Dan Laughlin of Millcreek Township, R-49th Dist., Announced Monday that the project has received a $ 3 million grant from the State’s Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program, which funds redevelopment efforts across the state.
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Erie Events plans to build the Waterfront Market House on the former property of GAF Materials Corp. of 12.5 acres just north of Bayfront Parkway and adjacent to the Bayfront Convention Center.
The project could cost up to $ 10 million.
Laughlin, in a statement, said the market house plan “has been a major development priority for the city to transform Erie’s waterfront into a vibrant, pedestrian-friendly mixed-use neighborhood that will help to the vitality of the city of Erie and the Region. “
According to preliminary plans, the market house would occupy approximately 22,000 square feet. Erie Events officials said the market would include a full-service grocery store as well as local vendors selling chocolates, wine, meats, produce, crafts and other goods.
It would use both indoor and outdoor spaces for vendors and would include performance space for musicians and other artists.
The market house is also expected to become a landing point for pedestrians using the proposed walkways on Bayfront Parkway, suggested as part of the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation’s $ 100 million planned improvements to the area.
The market house plan has already received a state grant of $ 1.5 million, awarded in 2019, and Erie Events was seeking up to an additional $ 3.5 million from Governor Tom Wolf for the project. .
Casey Wells, executive director of Erie Events, called the RACP grant award “fantastic news” that will move the project forward into construction.
Wells said he hopes construction will begin sometime in 2022.
âIt is our intention to put shovels in the ground as soon as possible,â Wells said. “We are already working on the design and will continue to work with potential tenants on this project.”
Erie Events is exploring other financing options for the project, including using income from a long-term rental agreement with key tenants to help secure bank financing.
Pieper O’Brien Herr Architects, which has offices in Pittsburgh and Alpharetta, Ga., presented new representations of the market house to the Erie County Convention Center Authority’s board of directors on September 16.
The board oversees Erie Events.
Renderings show a multi-story waterfront building dominated by red brick and glass, and also includes outdoor seating, above-ground parking, landscaped outdoor spaces, and a metal roof supported by wooden beams.
The Market House is also expected to become a landing point for pedestrians using the proposed walkways above the Bayfront promenade suggested as part of the The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation’s $ 100 Million Planned Improvements to this area.
The market house plan also includes a closed pedestrian walkway over the promenade.
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Potential tenants already in the works
Pieper O’Brien Herr is also meeting with two specific potential tenants for the market house to assess what they might need in terms of space, equipment and other amenities.
Wells declined to publicly identify interested companies. He said one of them is a grocer and the other a retailer.
Pieper O’Brien Herr has agreed to work up to $ 37,500 for Erie Events.
The project is a development priority for Erie Events, which operates the Bayfront Convention Center, Warner Theater, Erie Insurance Arena and UPMC Park.
The organization also oversees two waterfront hotels connected to the convention center: the Sheraton Erie Bayfront Hotel in West Dobbins Landing and the Courtyard Erie Bayfront Hotel, located on the pier on Sassafras Street.
Erie Mayor Joe Schember’s administration is supporting the market house project.
Schember said the Market House would “give Erie’s waterfront a huge boost” while attracting new businesses and visitors to the waterfront and providing a much-needed grocery option near the downtown Erie.
Laughlin added, âThe market is designed to operate year round and will include a full service grocery store as well as local vendors selling artisan, ethnic and freshly prepared foods, arts, gifts and other items. unique retail.
âThe market has the potential to help alleviate the lack of access to fresh, healthy food for many residents of downtown Erie,â Laughlin said.