Skyline West will “nestle in the woods”

Latest post in a series on Skyline West/143 W. Broad

Gadfly’s major focus at the April 8 Planning Commission meeting was on the new 404 E. 3rd St. apartment project.

But ’tis the time when older and deferred projects are now starting to come back on line in the seeming race to glut Bethlehem with apartments.

Followers will remember this one, Skyline West.

There was controversy on demolishing this kind of odd, interesting house at 143 W, Broad to make way for the new project.

This house sits on an isolated, narrow sliver of property virtually abutting Rt. 378.

The historical folks voted against demolition. Council reversed and approved. And in such cases there is always the whiff of favoring the developer, who is, as we say, “prominent.”

Anyway, the house will go, and the new project will sit behind it on what is an oddly shaped piece of land on a hill.

The proposed building — 40-50 apartments — is a kind of marvel of construction, tucked into an island of land on a hill.

One big issue last time around the bureaucratic horn, as Gadfly remembers it, was how this very new modern looking structure would look from the historic industrial area below and across the Monocacy.

This was the scary picture. From Monacacy level.

Gadfly is happy to say that the discussion this time around the horn took into consideration Bethlehem’s position as a finalist as a World Heritage site.

Nobody wanted to bum our chances.

The developers explained that the building was not planned to be as glaringly “white” as the rendering makes it appear.

Instead the plan is to make it more subdued and to have it “nestle in the woods.”

The wooded topography was said to have a “lot of character,” and the developer planned minimal earth disturbance, as little tree removal as possible, and always sensitivity to topography.

Good luck. Looks like a building hard to nestle, doesn’t it?

One thought on “Skyline West will “nestle in the woods”

  1. Very obtrusive, could demolish chances for World Heritage recognition.

    Besides, it’s such an ugly building!

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