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Planning Commission Recommends Approval of Fraser Centre Plan

by on July 24, 2014 8:32 PM

The State College Planning Commission is recommending approval of the plans for the long anticipated Fraser Centre.

Thursday night commission members voted 4-to-0 to recommend that borough council approve the plan. Members Charles Dumas, Richard Kalin and Michael Roeckel were absent.

Gary Brandeis is one of the new developers and owners of the site on South Fraser Street at West Beaver Avenue. They took over the property in October and say the now vacant lot will be transformed into a 153-foot high structure with hotel, retail and residential space. A Hyatt hotel entrance will be on Beaver Avenue.

The commission asked Brandeis how soon construction will begin. He says he's reluctant to give a specific date, but the project will take roughly 22 months to complete. At the same time, he says a lot of work is being done "behind the scenes," including final approvals with the borough and negotiations with retailers.

"We are working very hard to get started. We want to get started and we're working toward that," says Brandeis.

The property will feature 26 residential units, which are expected to be owner-occupied, as opposed to general or student rentals.

The mixed-use project has been in the works since 2008. The previous developer, Susquehanna Real Estate, had similar plans for the site. But the ambitious project never made it off the ground.

The site was previously occupied by the municipal building, a parking lot and office building.

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Jennifer Miller is a reporter for StateCollege.com. She has worked in journalism since 2005. She's covered news at the local, state and national level with an emphasis on crime and local government.
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