In its final meeting of the year, the board governing Lancaster’s City Revitalization and Improvement Zone voted to allot the $3.5 million remaining from the program’s total 2023 “increment” of $13 million.
That follows the allocation of $9.5 million at the board’s meeting in November.
In keeping with the board’s priority of paying down publicly held debt, the largest portion of the remaining increment will go to the Marriott Hotel at Penn Square ($1.86 million).
Another $602,244 will go toward renovations at Clipper Magazine Stadium, which is owned by the Redevelopment Authority of Lancaster County and home to the Lancaster Barnstormers baseball team.
Barnstormers General Manager Mike Reynolds told the board that the conversion of the stadium field to artificial turf, a project which stalled last season, had both unforeseen and overrun costs. Among other things, the initial cost projection had not taken into account the flooring which will be used to cover and protect the artificial turf when the stadium is used for concerts or other non-sporting events.
The Lancaster Parking Authority will receive two separate allocations ($303,532 and $265,042) for two projects tied to the Christian Street Garage project at Ewell Plaza. The first will be used for additional fit-out of the retail space now occupied by Busy Bodies Cafe, while the second will go toward stormwater management infrastructure beneath the plaza.
Marshall Snively, president of the Lancaster City Alliance and executive director of the CRIZ, gave a year in review presentation, mentioning increased scrutiny of project applications by the state.
Jeremy Young, the alliance’s director of community and economic development at the Lancaster City Alliance, said the CRIZ Small Business Financial Assistance Program had a successful year. He noted that 24% of its grants and loans went toward minority-owned businesses in 2023 and 38% went toward woman-owned businesses.
In 2024, John Reed will vacate the position of board chair. The new lineup will be as follows:
2024 CRIZ Authority Board
- Christina Diehl (Chair)
- Mark Vergenes (Vice Chair)
- Shelby Nauman (Secretary)
- Rebecca Addington (Assistant Secretary)
- Olivia Atlasik (Treasurer)