Business & Industry

graphicThe Bethlehem area's work force is productive and determined to prosper. The future growth in the area is assured. Both small and large companies make Bethlehem their place of business.

Two Fortune 500 companies are located in the area: Bethlehem Steel Corporation and Dun & Bradstreet Information Services.

Lehigh Valley Industrial Park, Inc. - This prestigious park system had its beginnings in the Economic Development Committee of the Bethlehem Area Chamber of Commerce in 1959, and remained under the Chamber's umbrella until 1986. At that time, LVIP I and II were flourishing with new and expanding companies, and construction of Park III was nearly complete.

Today, LVIP boasts 350 industries in the five-park system, which totals 1,300 acres. As of January 1, 1999, LVIP has created 16,000 jobs with an annual payroll of $422 million and generates over $9.6 million in city, county, school and local payroll taxes.

Upon full buildout of the parks, which is estimated to take place in the year 2010, it is projected that up to 20,000 jobs will have been created.

Iacocca Institute - Formed in 1988 by Lee A. Iacocca and Lehigh University, the Institute was established to increase the global competitiveness of American organizations. Its mission is to help companies help themselves and to ensure the availability of a competitive workforce today and in the future. The Institute's primary function is to serve as a facilitator in nurturing visionary thinking and intellectual leadership.

Manufacturers Resources Center - Based in Bethlehem, the Manufacturers Resources Center is a non-profit corporation whose primary clients are small to mid-sized manufacturers committed to improving their operations to be more competitive. MRC offers programs that support implementation of change and new ideas among the manufacturers it serves. This is accomplished through competencies in productivity, organizational effectiveness, quality work force training and information technology.graphic

The MRC focuses its activities on
* Workforce Training/Human Resources Services
* Quality Assessment
* Operations Assessment
* Strategic Marketing and Business Planning Practices

Each component of the MRC curriculum is designed to show manufacturers how to incorporate higher quality and greater productivity into their operations.

Northeast Tier Ben Franklin Technology Center - As part of a statewide network of resource facilities, this organization was formed to help strengthen the area's economy and to create and retain high-wage, high-skilled jobs in northeastern Pennsylvania. The Center's mission is to guide both established and new businesses to achieve leading market positions through strategic modification in products and manufacturing systems. The facility, which is part of Lehigh University, engages in three types of activities:
* Initiating and fostering community partnerships that address related issues such as work force preparation.
* Helping technology-oriented start-up firms develop and grow.
* Helping established manufacturers develop and strategically apply visionary personnel, technology and organizational practices to their process.

Within the community, the center provides leadership and support for activities in order to enhance the region's capacity to support modern businesses. This support includes collaborative efforts, promoting and piloting fundamental changes in the educational process.graphic

Small Business Development Center - Based at Lehigh University, the SBDC assists firms in the beginning stages of development to grow and survive in today's highly competitive marketplace. SBDC counsels business owners on making critical decisions and helps them turn budding ideas into businesses. The SBDC offers assistance and training through four programs:

* The Management Assistance Program - provides information and recommendations through financial and accounting analysis, marketing studies, business and marketing planning, operations analysis, new venture planning and small business financing.
* Government Marketing Assistance Program - assists small business in contracting with local, state and federal governments.
* International Trade Development Program - provides assistance and advice to firms looking to develop, explore, and implement import/export strategies.
* Financing Assistance Program - helps clients determine financing strategies, identifying sources of financing, and prepare loan packages for those sources.

Bethlehem's waterfront plans include a $400 million Bethlehem Works cultural, educational and entertainment district on 160 acres of Bethlehem Steel land. Part of this project includes collaboration with the Smithsonian Institute. The Smithsonian has proposed an $80 million National Museum of Industrial History slated to open in 2002. Bethlehem Works promises to be a tribute to the industrial era, using existing structures from the old Bethlehem Steel site on the banks of the Lehigh River. Bethlehem Works will also include a multiplex cinema, a two-rink ice skating center, a natatorium, and various restaurants and shops.graphic

The Bethlehem Commerce Center - Consisting of 1,600 acres of prime industrial-zoned property located predominately within the city of Bethlehem, with 90 acres in Lower Saucon Township, the Center will offer the distinct advantage of being one of the largest rail-served industrial parks in the region with rail connections to two Class 1 railroads. Transportation options will be further enhanced through the on-site BethIntermodal Terminal and the adjacent interstate highways. A full range of utility services will be available on site. In addition, the site is in an Enterprise Zone and qualifies for attractive economic incentives through the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Route 412 Development - The Route 412 Development will be the "Gateway" to the city of Bethlehem as well as to the Bethlehem Commerce Center and Bethlehem Works. The "Gateway" invites people into the city through a tree-lined boulevard and features office and commercial development in a park-like setting.

BethIntermodal Terminal - The Bethlehem Commerce Center, together with the BethIntermodal Terminal, will be one of the few heavy industrial parks in the Lehigh Valley with multiple options for transportation service. The PB&NE Railroad with connections to two class 1 railroads, Norfolk Southern and Canadian Pacific, will provide rail service within the Bethlehem Commerce Center. The BethIntermodal Terminal provides transport carrier transfer and storage service of containers shipped by rail and truck. Approximately 200 acres are reserved for full build-out of the Intermodal Terminal. Phase 1 opened in 1999 with capacity to handle up to 100,000 lifts per year.

 

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