Rozzi announces 10 grants to improve local infrastructure

READING, March 16 – State Rep. Mark Rozzi, D-Berks, today announced that 10 projects in his legislative district have been awarded grant funding totaling $2.97 million. 

“These awards will benefit several projects throughout my district that aim to improve residents’ quality of life. Thanks to these grants, we can continue upgrading a local park, strengthening ADA accessibility, improving water quality and building up Berks County’s infrastructure. All of these grants will greatly serve our community and they show how state dollars can go to work for Pennsylvanians,” Rozzi said. 

The grants are administered through the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development. Investments in Rozzi’s district come specifically from three different grant programs. 

Grants from the Statewide Local Share Account:

  • Dominic Manzella Park: $482,255 awarded to Laureldale Borough to construct a bathroom facility at the park. 
  • Antietam Valley Municipal Authority: $376,679 for a vehicle and equipment upgrade project for use in Lower Alsace Township, Mt. Penn Borough, Exeter Township, St. Lawrence Borough, and the City of Reading. 
  • Muhlenberg Township: $294,000 for streambank restoration and riparian buffer conservation of Laurel Run Creek. 
  • Mount Penn Borough: $275,000 for reconstructing handicap ramps. 
  • Mount Penn Borough Municipal Authority: $207,100 for SCADA system upgrades in Exeter Township. This project will add operational data to items currently not monitored such as well water level, well flow rate, water system pressure, and water storage tank level. 
  • Reading Area Water Authority: $165,649 for construction, engineering and administrative costs toward SCADA and IT upgrades for the Maidencreek Filter Plant. 
  • Mt. Penn Fire Company: $60,000 to renovate the firehouse’s day room. The proposed project will update flooring to include baseboard trim, update base and wall cabinets, replace countertops, painting, replacing ceiling tiles, and updating windows. 

Grants from the Berks Local Share Account:

  • Berks County Redevelopment Authority: $125,000 to renovate an old school building into office space. These office spaces will be available for rent to nonprofit corporations/organizations. The Redevelopment Authority applied for the grant on behalf of the Berks County Nonprofit Development Corporation. 
  • Greater Reading Chamber and Economic Development Corporation: $142,346 to develop the Franklin Street Transit-Oriented Development Strategic Plan. The goal is to re-establish passenger rail service from Reading through the Schuylkill River corridor to Philadelphia and along the Northeast corridor to New York City and Washington D.C.

“These grants will increase job opportunities and transportation options in Reading, two revitalization initiatives that go hand in hand,” Rozzi said. “I look forward to seeing the positive impact that the nonprofits who utilize this new space and the future public transit system will have on our area.” 

Grant awarded from the Multimodal Transportation Fund:

  • Lower Alsace Township: $850,000 for sidewalk construction along Carsonia Avenue in Reading. 

“Carsonia Avenue is a busy roadway that has a lot of foot traffic. Installing a sidewalk will ensure both driver and pedestrian safety,” Rozzi said.