Martin Tower: The City’s review response (15)

Ok, so you have taken the “Connecting Bethlehem” survey, but have you forced others?

(15th in a series on Martin Tower)

Martin Tower demolition May 19

Martin Tower Master Plan

Eaton Ave. north

1 – medical

2 – medical

3 – retail

4 – gas/convenience


8 – Offices

7 – Hotel (132 rooms)

6 – Restaurant

5 – Retail


9 –

528 apartments, 3 stories

1-2 bedroom

pocket park at bottom


Rt. 378 south

Gadfly is taking the April 11 Planning Commission meeting on the Martin Tower Master Plan one step at a time.

After Mr. Wagner presented the Master Plan for the developer, the City hit the high points of its detailed April 5 review of the plan, the “Martin Tower Complex Master Plan Review. “

Now’s the time we should spend some time reviewing the review.

Audio of this section of the meeting is here:

The highlights the City highlighted (Gadfly needs a rest!) “in a big picture kind of way” include:

  • minimizing parking
  • minimizing impervious coverage
  • allowing shared parking
  • increasing green space
  • moving buildings up to the street
  • mixed-use
  • residential uses on upper floors
  • greater variety of housing types
  • mixed use = more sustainable
  • active or passive outdoor recreational use
  • flat areas are developed for parking, beyond parking ground slopes off
  • pond and park on sloped area and wooded area, not good
  • trees removed must be replaced
  • need to retain as many trees as possible
  • thus more recreational space on interior of the lot
  • phasing of development
  • public roads? public utilities?
  • trail system is beautiful asset, has some funding, looking for other funding
  • connector to network of trails, very important
  • Burnside
  • sightlines
  • pedestrian and bicycle safety
  • connectivity to exterior sites as well as interior
  • need tree inventory
  • traffic numbers compared to Martin Tower unsure
  • but traffic patterns now will be much different for sure
  • variety of parking
  • matching street lighting

The City concluded highlighting (yuck) as important points: variety of uses (?), variety of housing types, cutting back on impervious uses.

Subsequent short discussion with Commissioners focused on parking, with the developer indicating that shared parking is not desired by tenants and thus is not acceptable, realistic, practical.

This is the first time Gadfly has had any concrete sense of the preliminary interaction between the City and a developer.


My sense is that the City is on to several concerns voiced by Gadfly followers.


Want to add anything else before we actually look at what people like “us” said during public comment?

Ok, so you have taken the “Connecting Bethlehem” survey, but have you forced others?

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