Funding will boost tourism, hospitality throughout region
HARRISBURG – State Sen. Gene Yaw (R-23) and Rep. Jeff Wheeland (R-83) today announced that they have secured a $2 million Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program (RACP) grant for a Lycoming County project.
The project, located in the City of Williamsport, will play an integral role in enhancing Lycoming County’s existing foundation as an international home to youth baseball and softball. The legislators noted that the $2 million Williamsport Ballpark project grant will help transform a blighted and abandon brownfield commercial site into a multi-field baseball and softball complex.
“It is a brownfield restoration project that will bring new life to our community,” Sen. Yaw said. “Nationally, it is estimated that more than $10 billion is driven into the economy through youth sporting events. We are fighting to ensure Lycoming County can be a larger part of that economic opportunity.”“I was happy to support funding for this project, which will provide greater opportunities for area youth,” said Rep. Wheeland. “We have a great community here in Williamsport and this project will only enhance its attractiveness to homeowners, business owners and tourists.”
The project is slated to invest approximately $16 million in the revamped site and will create a regional draw for large-scale baseball and softball tournaments — events that will bring thousands of families and spectators to Lycoming County and boost both its tourism and hospitality industries.
“The Williamsport/Lycoming Chamber of Commerce greatly appreciates the hard work and support we received of Senator Yaw and Representative Wheeland in advocating for the RACP grant to aid our ballpark project here in Williamsport,” said Jason Fink, President and CEO, Williamsport/Lycoming Chamber of Commerce. “Both Gene and Jeff have been strong advocates for the greater Williamsport and Lycoming County community during their time serving us in Harrisburg. We appreciate their diligence for not only the ballpark complex but for the many others they’ve assisted over the years. This project will take a brownfield property that was once a city dump and transform it into a seven field baseball/softball complex that will greatly enhance the local travel and tourism industry, which has been severely impacted by the pandemic. Thank you as well to Governor Wolf for his support of the funding towards this development. Having the bi-partisan support at the state level for this complex shows that economic development is one area that can bring all together as we work to grow and enhance our community.”
The RACP is a Commonwealth grant program administered by the Office of the Budget for the acquisition and construction of regional economic, cultural, civic, recreational, and historical improvement projects. RACP projects are authorized in the Redevelopment Assistance section of a Capital Budget Itemization Act, have a regional or multi-jurisdictional impact, and generate substantial increases or maintain current levels of employment, tax revenues, or other measures of economic activity.
CONTACT: Rita Zielonis (Sen. Yaw) (717) 787-3280
Alison Haas (Rep. Wheeland) (717) 772-9843