Harrisburg developer answers questions about proposed apartments, grocery store

Harrisburg

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — A local developer is looking for feedback on planned housing projects in Midtown Harrisburg but some neighbors aren’t on board with the plans.

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On the corner of 4th and Harris streets, there’s a proposed five-story apartment building with a grocery store on the first floor.

Camille Hippensteel lives in the house right next to the now-empty lot. She says she doesn’t want to live next door if that’s built.

She says when she first bought her house in 2015, the previous developer promised more family housing.

“What’s being proposed here for the market rate prices are like $1,250. That’s well in advance of my mortgage. I could not afford to live in these apartments,” Hippensteel said.

Matt Long, vice president of Midtown Development LP, says not everything will be expensive.

“All of our proposals have a mixture of affordable and low income and market rate with them,” Long said.

Across the street from the proposed grocery store will be a 38 unit apartment complex with a first-floor parking garage. Plus, a second building with 22 apartments and possibly a UPS and a daycare. Long says he’s gotten mainly positive feedback.

“Of course you have some that any development’s going to scare them. They voice their opinion. We try to work with them. That’s why we’re here today,” Long said.

Long says after some feedback, they’ve already nixed plans for a parking garage behind the grocery store.

You do not have many options without going up to 7th Street or Klein Plaza,” Long said. “You have a few small grocers scattered throughout there, but you don’t really have that anchor big store that is affordable.”

Hippensteel wants it to remain a neighborhood, not a business district.

“Make it be a walkable embraced city where kids can play, come in and out their house, they can rent to the little shop. Don’t turn this into a commercialized area,” Hippensteel said.

The entire project for midtown is in several phases, and the one on Fourth Street still has to go through the planning and zoning commissions before they can start construction.

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