Catasauqua Press

Friday, April 20, 2018

Borough expecting Iron Works proposals

Wednesday, November 29, 2017 by PAUL CMIL Special to The Press in Local News

Catty council hears concerns about conditions of George Taylor House

At Catasauqua Borough Council’s workshop session Nov. 27, borough Manager Eugene Goldfeder announced proposals for the Iron Works project are due by 4 p.m. Nov. 30.

Goldfeder said he has been actively responding to questions and clarifications.

“What we want to find out is who is interested, who can meet the requirements we have in the zoning ordinance and who has the financial capability. We are not asking for pricing in this go-around,” he said after the meeting.

Council set up a review committee to look at the proposals. An initial meeting is scheduled in early December. The deliberations will be private.

Goldfeder alerted council that Pennsylvania Department of Transportation is conducting traffic studies on municipal streets as part of its latest data collection effort.

Councilman Brian Bartholomew wants the solicitor to review the parameters on street repairs. New gas lines are being installed on many borough streets.

“When we visited this before, UGI was digging up a 10-by-10 block. They were going to make sure the streets met our standards,” he said. “Now we have streets with a repair running the length of the street.”

Bartholomew wants UGI to foot a high percentage of the cost to repave the streets.

“They are supposed to return them to good condition,” he said. “What we have now is far from good.”

Solicitor Thomas Dinkelacker will review the ordinance and begin negotiations with UGI.

George Taylor House was the subject of much conversation. The good news is the tree-lighting ceremony is Dec. 3. Revolution Church opens its doors 4 p.m. for arts and crafts. Catasauqua Band plays 5 p.m. until Santa, Mrs. Claus and Elfie arrive. Free cookies and hot chocolate will be offered.

Councilman Eugene Schlegel was concerned with the condition of the George Taylor House. Schlegel took a tour after listening to problems with peeling paint and damaged plaster.

“I went into the attic and there must be 30 areas where the ceiling is pooling water. I looked up, and there are places where the slate is gone. We need to repair the roof now before we lose everything in the building,” he said.

There is a standing bid for the slate roof with a quote at $53,000. Goldfeder will send the project out to bid.

Another concern are the historically correct windows.

“The three new windows don’t match the existing windows. The contractors took some of the trim off the older windows, exposing the wood to the weather,” Schlegel said.

Months ago, Bartholomew proposed buying historically approved windows from Marvin at lower prices. The three new historically correct windows had a cost approaching $20,000 each. The windows were funded by a grant.

Goldfeder has calls into the state to see what options the borough has available.

The windows were specified by historian Tom Jones.

“I need to find out if the new windows conform to what Tom Jones called for,” Goldfeder said. “If these are the windows in his spec, then we need to know why they don’t match the existing windows.”