A success story becoming reality at Brodart site

The south side of the 1600 block of Memorial Avenue in Williamsport is just a pile of dirt and rubble right now.

But that’s a lot more than it used to be a vacant building, a fire waiting to happen, an invitation to vandals, troublemakers and perhaps drug dealers.

In its day, the Brodart building and its 80-foot stack were a symbol for the West End neighborhood.

It’s resurrection will be in the form of a 40-unit apartment complex, 32 townhouses and two single-family dwellings.

That’s a pretty significant development in a city that desperately needs new housing stock.

What’s also significant is the financial partnership making the $10 million housing project possible a combination of natural gas impact fees, community development funds and private investment.

That’s a formula not possible even a couple years ago before the passage of the natural gas impact fee legislation.

Last week’s groundbreaking on the site looked a lot like hundreds before it dignitaries, shovels and a largely flattened, rubble-strewn site.

But it felt much different because of the future usage and the neighborhood impact that is possible.

In a couple of years, there will be viable housing, street-level enhancements and lighting creating a safe, modern environment.

We hope this turns out to be the success story it appears to be.