Harrisburg, September 16, 2016 − More than $2.5 million in grant funds from Pennsylvania’s Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program (RACP) will be used to transform a brownfield site near the Reading Regional Airport in Bern Township into an industrial park, State Senator Judy Schwank (D-Berks) and Rep. Barry Jozwiak (R-5th District) announced.

“In today’s highly competitive economy, businesses are looking for shovel-ready sites when deciding where to locate. This project provides Berks County with a much needed ready-to-go location, which will be very attractive to businesses and will result in more jobs coming to our area,” Senator Schwank said. “I commend Governor Wolf for recognizing the potential and importance of this project for our local and regional economies and investing state dollars to make it a reality. I was pleased to join with Representative Jozwiak in strongly advocating for approval of RACP funds for this important economic development initiative.”

The grant approved today for the Berks County Industrial Development Authority (BCIDA) will specifically be used to support infrastructure improvements including reconstruction of Aviation Road, site clearance, environmental cleanup, installation of a natural gas line, on-site internal road development plus water and sewer lines.

“Berks Park 183 is a great example of a success story which recognized the critical and immediate need for strategic planning of a shovel ready, sustainable project,” said Representative Jozwiak. “The RACP funding for this infrastructure improvement project at the Reading Airport will not only positively impact Bern Township, but Berks County as a whole with over 500 full time permanent jobs, real estate tax revenues and helping to boost our local economy.”

The future industrial park, situated on the 155-acre brownfield site in Bern Township will include seven buildings. Once completed, BCIDA hopes to attract small manufactures specializing in assembly, warehousing and research and development. The project is projected to provide more than 200 indirect jobs, 750 construction jobs and 500 permanent jobs.

Funds for the more than $13.3 million project were requested by the BCIDA, a public sector economic development agency focused on identifying shovel-ready sites for local development.

RACP is a commonwealth grant program administered by the Office of the Budget for the acquisition and construction of regional economic, cultural, civic, recreational, and historical improvement projects.