Another point about the Community Benefit Agreement in Allentown: it should include free trolley buses.
A bus rapid transit system to get people around the city could be mostly as good as a a subway system if planners make the correct right-of-way and land use choices, but it would cost a small fraction of the price.
I’ve read a number of people saying they’re worried that all this new development will raise residential rents and push poor people out of the downtown area. And some of that is obviously going to happen if all this development does succeed in making downtown a lot nicer.
The best way to really help people then is to take away some of the money and time costs of getting around the city through free bus transit, paid for with an increase in the land millage rate in th NIZ. No fares, completely free to the users.
This would help alleviate traffic on hockey nights, reduce the cost of living for Allentown residents, and enable more intense development so that building a bunch of tall buildings won’t choke off growth with car traffic.