Jan 28, 2008

Mistake of Parking Authority/Lanta

At the Allentown Speak Out forum, Zee, an elderly neighborhood woman, referred to the new Lanta Terminal as Port Authority. She has a point, did Allentown need a Port Authority? In reality the mission of both the Parking Authority and Lanta has become political and distorted, to the detriment of those whom they were intended to serve. I have referred to the Parking Authority in previous posts as a Frankenstein monster who preys on Allentown's poorest residents. Its appetite has recently expanded to include poorer merchants. If it wasn't enough for Lanta to remove the transfer stations from the historical stops near Hamilton Street, the Parking Authority now provides eating and shopping venues for their captured bus riders at the "Terminal". Once upon a time, in Allentown's heyday, the parking meters were monitored by two meter maids in golf carts, employed by the police department. The original mission of the Parking Authority was to facilitate parking for the merchants' behalf. Lanta was suppose to provide the public with transportation to those destinations which enhanced the economic well being of both the riders and the community. The new Allentown Transportation Center fails to serve both the merchants and the riders, conversely, it serves itself by being a mini-mall with virtual prisoners. Allentown City Council now has a member who is on the Lanta Board. The previous Council had a member on the Parking Authority. All the merchants are suffering on Hamilton Street, and already three are closing their doors; City Line Creamery, Hamilton Perk Cafe, and Mish Mash Boutique. The Terminal, new or not, should be closed, and the transfer stops on Hamilton Street should be restored. The public interest is better served by the survival of the Hamilton merchants, than the utilization of the parking deck's adjacent Lanta Terminal.

Jan 25, 2008

Mayor has it Backwards

The Mayor thinks the city should be involved in the sale of your home, and you should help fight crime. Here's an idea, instead of hiring more inspectors to intrude on our property rights, hire more police and protect the homeowners. Speak out saturday at noon, Faith Baptist Church, 219 N. 12th St.

Jan 24, 2008


Some of the people most affected by the Lanta changes and the Home Inspection Ordinance are the elderly. They enjoyed shopping on Hamilton Street the most. Over the years they became on a first name basis with the managers and owners who served them. Two long term business's are shutting their doors as a result of Lanta; Mish Mash Boutique and the Hamilton Perk Cafe. Drive by the new Lanta Transportation Center and see the elderly sitting on cold metal benches waiting for the bus, not too stimulating. Imagine being an 83 year old widow, struggling with the need to sell your house and move into assisted living. Your reward for being a long-term conscientious taxpayer is now the city mandates upgrades you never enjoyed or could really afford, all the years you lived there. Speak out this Saturday, 12 noon, Faith Baptist Church, 219 N. 12 St., Allentown
photo credit molovinsky

Jan 19, 2008


Speak out about issues in Allentown that affect our quality of life. Speak out about the new Home Inspection Law that most homeowners do not know about. Speak out about the Parking Authority and Lanta. Speak out about crime being under reported. Are you concerned about rising school taxes? Are you frustrated by zoning that negatively impacts our school system? Are you tired of City Hall and The Morning Call framing the issues. It's our house, it's our garden, it's our future. Please join us next saturday, Jan. 26, 12 noon, at the Faith Baptist Church, 219 N. 12th St. (between Turner and Chew) and speak out!

Jan 14, 2008

On Vocation

My agenda for the meeting at Faith Baptist Church on Saturday, Jan. 26, at 12 noon, is to question Allentown's moral authority to step between a taxpaying homeowner and his buyer. City Council will be invited to the meeting. I welcome all to come, and expand the agenda to your concerns.
I took the above photograph, so we are not the couple shown.

UPDATE: Apparently, The Parking Authority and Lanta, in addition to the Dunkin Donuts, will have a convenience store. In
addition to my concerns about the Home Inspection Ordinance 109, I will expand the meeting to again rally against
the arrogance of Lanta and the Parking Authority in their disregard of the Hamilton Street merchants.

Jan 10, 2008

Who will Watch the Inspector

The departure of Mr. Banuelos, because of the revelation of his own code violations, illustrates on what shaky authority Community and Economic Development will begin inspecting private houses for sale next month. Perhaps it would be more appropriate for Allentown to concentrate on providing homeowners clean, safe streets. Perhaps it would be better for the city to not expand its menu of operations until which time a proven chain of command has been established. A realtor who endorsed the ordinance stated he liked having his liability lessened by the city inspection; will debt ridden Allentown have to be liable for any inspection oversights? Should an exiting City Council, have passed an ordinance which will sooner or later effect every homeowners rights and wallet, with such little deliberation during the last meeting of the year?

Jan 8, 2008

A Peak Inside the New City Council

According to today's Morning Call, Michael D'Amore and Tony Phillips became president and vice president respectively, with no opposition. Hardly, in truth, it is the first crack in the Pawlowski facade. The opposition, my term, otherwise referred to by the administration and its sycophants on the blogosphere as nay-sayers, whiners, crybabies, nutz and emotionally unstable, managed to wedge D"Amore's ambition to be president with the election of Phillips. Although the new council are all democrats, I'm encouraged that more due diligence will be exhibited.

Jan 6, 2008

A Peak Inside the Art Scene

In the late 1970's I operated Allentown Photographic, a custom darkroom, at 12 N. 8th St., in the old Strand Movie Theatre Lobby. As mentioned in an earlier post, Greg Weaver routinely hosted large gatherings and showings at his studio. Larry Fink was an up and coming photographer and Jett Ulaner Sarachek was taking her first photo's. Barnaby Ruhe began doing portrait marathons while Gary Hasey encouraged the jazz scene. There was no art park, no art district banners.
The above image is from a series a photographs I took for Channel 39 for a program entitled "Accent on Aging".

A Personal Journey

I was at a party where the host recently acquired a lawn sculpture. Unknown to him, it was essentially comprised of an old Jewish tombstone of a wife and mother who died at the age of 25 in 1918. It's a beautiful carving of a branchless tree trunk, symbolizing a life ended prematurely. I became concerned as to where this stone had come from. Who would know if their great-grandmothers stone was taken?
I had no idea where my great-grandmother was buried. I searched for this young woman's grave. Finally, Rabbi Juda directed me to the old Agudath Achim Cemetery in Fountain Hill. There I found the woman, M. Azrilian, with a new grave marker. Next to her lies Jeannie Molovinsky, my great-grandmother. Now I know!
My thanks to Rabbi Juda and M. Azrilian (1893-1918)

I wrote the above piece on July 18, 1997. In my search for M. Azrilian, I discovered Mt. Sinai Cemetery inside Fairview Cemetery on Lehigh St., subject of one my early posts. The photograph above is the Mt. of Olives in Jerusalem.

Jan 2, 2008

Defend Your Home Jan. 26

Rally against Allentown's new law inspecting all private homes for sale. Let the city first make the streets clean and safe, before intruding on private property rights. Say no to mandatory inspection fee's. Meeting at Faith Baptist Church, 219 N. 12th St. (between Turner and Chew Sts.) at 12 noon on Sat. Jan. 26.