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Schuylkill County gets $1 million grant for downtown housing

Schuylkill County is now investing in affordable downtown living, creating opportunities for landlords and local businesses.

SCHUYLKILL COUNTY, Pa. — The abandoned apartments above downtown businesses in Pottsville and Tamaqua are getting a boost thanks to a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) Keystone Communities Program.

“We're looking for good quality housing where people can live close to where they work and so we found a half million for Tamaqua and a half million for Pottsville to fix up some of these beautiful old but empty apartments on the main street,” said Senator David Argall, (R) 29th District.

Sen. Argall says this $1 million initiative will increase the number of market-rate housing options for the county's growing workforce.

This gives business owners like James Connolly an opportunity to renovate three floors of apartments that have been vacant for at least 50 years.

“Financially, this should affect all of the businesses around here. I mean, the small businesses mostly thrive on events that happen here, that bring people into our town. If we can have them living here, it's a lot better,” said Connolly.

Sen. Argall says improving downtown livability in Pottsville and Tamaqua will boost the local economy in surrounding towns.

“These are people, they're going to be living, studying, working in downtown Pottsville in downtown Tamaqua. And the goal, of course, is once Pottsville and Tamaqua figure it out, then we want to try the same thing in other communities across the region,” explained Sen. Argall.

If you are a local business in Tamaqua or Pottsville and you want to see if you qualify for this grant, you can find out more information here

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