May 24, 2011

A Better Arena Site


As a boy growing up three blocks from the Mack assembly plant, I was always fascinated by the giant doors at the S. 12th and Lehigh Street end. Only recently did I learn that Catalina Flying Boats were assembled there during the War (Second World). What I did see everyday was endless Mack trucks, in every color, filling the huge yard next to the plant. They would be driven away, piggyback, to destinations all over the country. That plant has been gone now about fifty years, with only the footprint still visible in the above photo. Since that time, Route 78 now intersects with Lehigh Street, 1.5 miles away. Imagine a public arena fronting on a major road, with easy access to a main highway. Ed Pawlowski probably doesn't know about the old Mack parcel, but he's welcome to use the idea. It sure beats destroying center city with an illegal arena. I do think it's illegal; At Wednesday's meeting, City Council indicated it had full knowledge of the arena plans. This secret knowledge allowed them to approve the location, and permit eminent domain with no due diligence between the first reading of the resolution and the passing of the vote. Although public comment was permitted, there was no public input or discussion. In an unusual move, the City Solicitor was there, instead of an assistant. Despite Attorney Snyder's presence, there appears to be multiple violations of the Sunshine Act of 1976.

UPDATE: Councilman Michael Donovan elaborates on Arena

Sign electronic petition against eminent domain

22 comments:

gary ledebur said...

It looks like a better site to me with less disruption. I am afraid that unless the hockey team is from Ponce, most folks will drive in and out and the economic benefits anticipated by a downtown arena will be lost. It too bad MM and his fellow travelers cannot get out in front of these kind of issues before all the action is taken.

Anonymous said...

I'm just curious, is there any way the citizens could stop this with a ballot issue against it, much like Gracedale supporters?

Anonymous said...

This whole issue is so wrong, from top to bottom, I just want to vomit.
BUT, I had never heard of the Catalina flying boat.
A beautiful aircraft.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Consolidated_PBY_Catalina.
Something good happened today.
Thanks, MM

Anonymous said...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Consolidated_PBY_Catalina

Anonymous said...

GL,

Mr. Molovinsky and others DID speak out before the dog-and-pony Rubber Stamp Council show.

Who do you think you are kidding?

Certainly not this non-Apologist...

Anonymous said...

I wonder which know-it-all, holier-than-thou Progressive BUREAUCRAT will drop the ceremonial biscuit at the very first ice hockey game for Pawlowski's Pucksters at the City With No Limits' PALACE OF SPORT?

Patrick McHenry said...

MM -

So how do we bring an action against council and the Mayor for violating the Sunshine Act?

michael molovinsky said...

patrick, as currently discussed on donovan's blog, the city can change it's mind at any time and cancel the project. this of course is also a hardship for the merchants. some will fight, others will relocate unnecessarily. i don't think this project will turn out well for the city, in any case. pawlowski has greatly exaggerated the benefit of the arena, and underestimated the tenacity of the merchants. a half baked idea, frosted with arrogance.

Anonymous said...

Frosted?

I disagree, respectfully.

I find the arrogance to be a MAJOR ingredient with this latest concoction from our 'esteemed' City "Leaders".

Anonymous said...

The citizens of Allentown Have been
hoodwinked by greedy men.
/
Hubris ( /ˈhjuːbrɪs/), means extreme haughtiness, pride or arrogance. Hubris often indicates a loss of contact with reality and an overestimation of one's own competence or capabilities, especially when the person exhibiting it is in a position of power.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Molovinsky,

I just read Donovan's post.

I don't believe a word of it.

Actions speak louder than words and we all saw how Donovan voted.

Mr. Progressive Liberal and all his standard, typical PL rhetoric is now suddenly in favor of Corporate Welfare for a hockey rink.

Some of us have better memories than the Mayor, City Council and The Morning Call clearly want people to have.

Sincerely,

NOT FOOLED FOR A SECOND

Anonymous said...

So...if the city cancels the project in the future...

HOW MUCH OF THE CITY's MONEY (i.e., the Taxpayer's Money) HAS ALREADY BEEN BLOWN ON RESEARCH STUDIES, CHARTS and SURVEYS, CONSULTING FIRMS, POWER-POINT PRESENTATIONS, ETC.?

Do the consulting firms, etc., give this money back, or what?

Sincerely,

NOT IMPRESSED

Burned said...

Michael Donovan , on his blog, Said:
"So, let’s do this together. Let’s ask ourselves — what would an investment like this do for the city: good or bad? What do we lose if it is abandoned? What are the opportunity costs involved? Let’s be creative."
Any one attending the council meeting knows that the "let's do this together part is a bald faced lie. This is the man claiming to speak for 118,000 people, yet how many of us 118,000 citizens knew anything about this life changing travesty? Was he speaking for Allentown's 40% hispanic community?
He sure was not speaking for me or for that matter any one else present at last wednesdays council meeting.
If this administration is so sure that they speak for the people of Allentown why is this still a general secret?
ASK US, ALL THE PEOPLE of ALLENTOWN
whether or NOT we want our money spent in this manner.
COWARDS!

uno mas said...

When I hear "public comment, I think "input".
That was not the case with the council meeting concerning the proposed arena.
The administration treated this like a done deal and barely tolerated the many people speaking on that evening.
Shameful!

Anonymous said...

I doubt the TIF district would generate enough revenue to pay for the thing at this locations.

michael molovinsky said...

anon 7:56, actually the area is surrounded by commercial with large parking lots, i.e. parkway shopping center, and vacant land is taxed at a higher rate.

Anonymous said...

Your argument to put the arena off a major highway is supported by going to Wilkes Barre's Mohegan Sun arena easy on off. It is way better then going into the snarled up streets of Phildelphia to the Wells Fargo center. It really is beyond me why they want to put the arena in the rat invested downtown.

Hamilton Merchant said...

Hamilton Property Owner:

Thank you so much for all your support...the residents, merchants and property owners have shed many tears over this. We are so thankful and truly feel blessed, even in this situation because of all your support.

There is an on-line petition against this. Please help us and sign it. Thank you, again!!!!

http://www.change.org/petitions/say-no-to-ed-eminent-domain-and-help-save-hamilton-street-from-outside-interests#updates

barber shop drug dealer said...

Since the Downtown is the perfect spot, why don't we raze the PPl building or the 800 block while we are at it? I'm sure Butz and the gang would trade in their present facilities for a promised new office overlooking the ice.
Oh wait, Butz will likely get the construction work, won't they? Pawlowski contributor? Nuff said!

Anonymous said...

I wonder if Chairman Pawlowski and the rest of the Rubber-stamp Politburo will have their own special center ice box at the new People's Palace of Sport, much like Brezhnev and the Apparatchik Elite did at the Luznikhi back in the good ole' USSR?

Anonymous said...

Have lived in Allentown a long time. Last Weds was sad. The undoing of community dignity. I will never forget the corporate arrogance of Slopberg, Swnindlewyer and Duncemore. These poor pathetic souls cannot think beyond their own selfish needs. They rally around that mayor of ours whose whole life appears to be the epitome of the word oxymoron. Hamilton St. is fast becoming "ghostville" under this newest rendition of the Butzification of the downtown area.

Anonymous said...

These Progressive Liberal, union-thug supporting, Losers WILL have to pay a particular price for this latest piece of work...

...even the Base cannot help but be outraged and sickened by their arrogant and obnoxious antics.

Before too long, these very same Bureaucrats will be telling everyone all the children are starving and so they must raise taxes to combat racism.

This corporate welfare for a hockey rink WILL hamper and hinder their efforts as even the Base will have a hard time (as they are now) supporting the standard, typical BS from their heroes.