A new map published by the James Street Improvement District shows that the JSID now includes part of Manheim Township. Whereas the JSID formerly showed Race Avenue as its western boundary, this new map shows that the JSID now includes land on both sides of Harrisburg Pike as far as the Norfolk Southern Rail Bridge, near the Post Office. All of Harrisburg Pike west of Race Avenue is in Manheim Township.
This map was published in the latest annual report of the JSID, that gives as its purpose “to promote, plan and advocate for a growing, diverse, urban community in Downtown and Northwest Lancaster.” The report further says that “Lancaster City is a national model for urban redevelopment and strengthened neighborhoods.” So if the JSID is a City improvement organization, why does it include part of Manheim Township?
Was there ever any public discussion of the inclusion of part of Manheim Township in an urban renewal plan for Lancaster City? Was this ever an item of business at a meeting of the Manheim Township Commissioners? Were the citizens of Manheim Township ever informed of this and given the opportunity to comment?
Or was this decision made exclusively by representatives of High Real Estate Group and Norfolk Southern—both of whom have development plans for land adjacent to Harrisburg Pike—along with F&M and LGH, who are partnering with them in these plans? High Real Estate Group is planning a shopping center across from Long’s Park while Norfolk Southern plans an expansion of its Rail Yard on a remediated landfill behind the Post Office. Could this be the reason the JSID borders were expanded to include this territory?
It should come as no surprise that Bob Macina, LGH’s senior vice president and general counsel, is the new chair of the JSID. He replaces John Fry, [President of F&M,] who was JSID’s first and only board chairman since the organization was founded by Mr. Fry six years ago.