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Allentown Parking Authority completes purchase of parking garage. How much did it cost?

The Allentown Parking Authority recently closed on a deal to buy a parking garage on the 900 block of Linden Street. (April Gamiz/첥Ƶ)
April Gamiz/첥Ƶ
The Allentown Parking Authority recently closed on a deal to buy a parking garage on the 900 block of Linden Street. (April Gamiz/첥Ƶ)
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The Allentown Parking Authority has completed the purchase of a downtown parking garage for $13 million.

Lehigh County real estate records say the structure at 940-952 Linden St. was bought from Somera Road 835 West Hamilton Garage LLC on Feb. 22.

The Parking Authority board of directors voted unanimously to accept acquisition and financing of the 1,200-space garage at its January meeting. It now runs seven parking garages downtown.

It is near the new Da Vinci Science Center, which is scheduled to open downtown May 22, along with the future Moxy Hotel and Archer Music Hall.

Somera Road was the previous owner of the former PPL Plaza, now known as Grand Plaza, at 835 Hamilton St. It sold that building to DLP Capital, a private real estate investment and finance firm with roots in the Lehigh Valley, for $15.3 million in December 2021. It was announced last year that four floors will be converted into luxury apartments.

The 330,827-square-foot parking garage was built in 2002 and was packaged with the Grand Plaza, which was erected in 2003. Somera split the properties in 2020, according to county real estate records.

The acquisition comes at a time when the parking authority is going through some changes.

It is facing a $1.8 million shortfall in its approximately $13 million 2023 budget, which it partially attributed to a rollback in parking patrols last year in response to resident outrage.

In response, the parking authority will raise parking deck and permit rates this year. It is also asking Allentown City Council to allow it to raise on-street parking rates and the price of parking ticket violations.

Last week, Executive Director John Morgan announced he will leave the organization May 1 in a “mutually agreed” upon decision.

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