Thursday, December 13, 2012

Long-Vacant Northampton Street Buildings to Be Renovated

By Christina Georgiou

118-120 Northampton St., next door to Kaplan's awnings,
are finally going to be renovated after 30 years of being vacant
and falling into major disrepair.
Two buildings in the 100 block of Northampton Street that have been vacant for nearly 30 years are about to finally be put to good use again.

Borko Milosev, principal for Post Road Management, has entered into an agreement with the Easton Redevelopment Authority (ERA) to rehabilitate the severely dilapidated properties at 118-120 Northampton Street.

Easton City Council members unanimously approved a resolution authorizing the ERA to pursue a $500,000 Keystone Community Funding-Anchor Building Grant to support the revitalization project.

Milosev said he intends to convert the two structures to house 12 apartments on the upper floors, with commercial retail space at the ground level.

"If the grant goes through, we'll consider scaling down the number of units to six to nine," he said.

The buildings' sale agreement also include off-street parking at a lot the city purchased across the street at 129 Northampton St.

Local architect Jeff Martinson, who has managed numerous local antique building restorations including the soon-to-open Two Rivers Brewing Company, said he and Milosev have already been speaking to neighbors about the project, and while the specific use of the commercial space on the ground floor has not yet been decided, they've offered both the Grand Eastonian and Kaplan's Awnings space if they would like to expand.

"I think it's always good to be friends with the people you're going to be neighbors with," Martinson said.

Borko Milosev, principal for Post Road Management, said the
company will be upgrading and beautifying the back view of
the long-disused buildings too.
Milosev and Martinson said that regardless of whether the grant is approved by the state, construction should begin in early spring of 2013. They expect the project will be complete in about nine months.

Milosev, who said his company is based in Allentown and specializes in rehabbing older buildings, added that he's excited to come to Easton and restore the long-neglected buildings into useful spaces.

"There's a lot of opportunity and potential here, and we're a Lehigh Valley-based company," he said.

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