Catty approves sale of property on Pearl Street
A borough-owned property once considered for the location of a new fire station has now been approved for sale by the Catasauqua Borough Council. The land is located at the corner of 13th and Pearl streets.
It has been on the market for an extended period of time.
In the past, the council has rejected bids near $100,000. The approved bid was $141,000.
When council first contemplated a sale, which was around 2008, near the peak of the housing market, the property had appraised at $375,000.
“The appraisal reflected the value at the time, but this property has been on the market long enough to get a feel for its actual value,” said Council President Vincent Smith at the Feb. 1 council meeting. “I think this is a fair price. We could hold out and hope for something better, but we need to get this done.”
Although no plans have been submitted by the developer, it is anticipated residential homes will be built.
“Adding more residents to the area will increase the tax base, adding to our [development] efforts with Iron Works,” borough Manager Eugene Goldfeder said.
Resident and former council member Alfred Regits contended the council had made a commitment to get a new appraisal, but Smith disputed the claim.
NAI Summit handled the sale. NAI is a realty company specializing in commercial properties. The council had granted them an exclusive contract to market the property.
In a related action, the council reviewed a request by the Catasauqua Area School District to consolidate several parcels it owns on either side of 14th Street, near Sheckler Elementary School. There are five parcels on either side of 14th Street that are consolidated into two parcels. At issue was the need for a dedicated right-of-way.
In discussions before the council meeting, council decided not accept an offer from the developer for dedicated right-of-way on Race Street. Race Street is a state highway and not within the purview of council.
To allow the measure to go forward, borough Solicitor Thomas Dinkelacker modified the resolution to indicate the borough would defer making a decision on the right-of-way.
The developer asked for similar conditions on 14th Street. The borough will investigate the matter to determine what entity owns the right-of-way along 14th Street.
According to the resolution, the developer is aware of the restrictions and has until Feb. 11 to respond to the borough.
The consolidation plan was originally proposed in June 2012.