Replacing parking deck more difficult with loss of grant

The Midtown Parking Deck came down pretty quickly last week.

Getting the more modern replacement in place on West Third Street in Williamsport may not be as simple.

A $12 million grant for Trade and Transit Centre II from the U.S. Department of Transportation has fallen through, according to city officials.

They have high hopes that they will find the cash needed to replace the parking garage.

And they have a track record to lean on. The Campana administration has been very successful in putting together financial packages for the past several years, particularly concerning downtown developments. Regarding Trade and Transit Centre II, the city is negotiating with the state Department of Transportation on a separate loan.

There are concessions being made for the project. Redoing of a driveway for transit buses and streetscape reconstruction to improve safety on Pine Street are being postponed.

The question still lingers: Could the timing of this project have been more practical to assure all the funding was in place before the Midtown Deck was demolished? We admit to not having the answer to that question. We concede we are not as close to the project’s funding nuances as those seeking the funding for it.

But to the average person, the perception is not good when they are informed as one parking deck comes down that the grant to replace it has fallen through.