After over 20 years of planning and more than 3 different versions of fully approved plans, groundbreaking occurred earlier this year for the Apartments in the Parkway project. The project includes two 5-story buildings with 80 apartment units each for a total of 160 apartments on a 4-acre parcel situated in the beautiful Allentown Parkway.
This project was no easy task! Considering the total grade change through the project site exceeds 41 feet, the presence of industrial contamination and poorly drained soils, plus the site’s location in the floodplain (and floodway) of the Little Lehigh Creek, this was definitely a challenging project.
The project involved obtaining a NPDES Permit (with spray irrigation) and underground detention, PADEP/US Army Corps of Engineering permitting to allow the proposed buildings to be located within a floodplain and adjacent to a floodway stormwater management, Act 167 approval from the Lehigh Valley Planning Commission, a grading design requiring multiple retaining walls to create terraced parking lots, road realignment of Lehigh Parkway East and Lehigh Parkway North, water system and sanitary sewer main extensions, and an outfall swale to the Little Lehigh Creek. This project required imaginative and innovative solutions, and plain old fortitude to complete.
The project began in 2000 as a tower including a mix of retail and apartments, and structured parking, and then morphed into three midrise buildings, and then finally two 5-story buildings with 257 offstreet parking spaces.
Ott Consulting provided feasibility studies, boundary and topographic survey, full land development services, stormwater management design, erosion control and NPDES permitting design, PADEP/USACOE permitting as well as landscape design. Currently being built by the Serfass Construction Company of Allentown, PA, the completion date is May 2022.
-Jeffrey L. Ott, P.E., M.B.A., President