Grant supports Angelica Park road improvements


The Commonwealth Finance Authority approved a state Multimodal Transportation Fund grant in the amount of $1 million to support road improvements and bridge replacement along Saint Bernardine Street in Angelica Park in the City of Reading's Millmont Section, according to State Representative Thomas Caltagirone and State Senator Judy Schwank. The grant provides partial funding for the $2.7 project. Additional efforts are underway to secure the remaining resources.  

The project involves the upgrade of St. Bernardine Street through Angelica Park, including replacement of a bridge and installation of pedestrian walkways, bike pathways, and street lighting. While significant additional funding is required before the project can begin, the approval of the state grant funding represents a significant step forward, according to Alvernia President Tom Flynn. "This is exciting news that will have a large impact on making Angelica Creek Park more accessible to all those living in Reading," said President Flynn. "Upgrades to the road and replacement of the bridge on Saint Bernardine Street will improve road safety also allow the park to accommodate future access to BARTA buses, and a bus stop in the park, as needed."

"I am pleased that these grant funds have been approved for this important project," said Rep. Caltagirone, whose office worked closely with Alvernia officials to prepare and develop the grant application. With increased traffic to Alvernia University and the Millmont Section of Reading in recent years, this roadway and bridge is in dire need of upgrades for the safe growth of the University and community. These state funds will help provide safe access for vehicular traffic, pedestrians, and bicyclists."

In addition, the project will enhance access to the park for pedestrian and bicycle traffic, said President Flynn. "We believe that's important, especially with the continued popularity of the park for those who enjoy its running and cycling trails. It also is important to the Environmental Exploration Center located in the park, and the Berks County Conservancy which has plans to relocate its new headquarters there in the future."

"These state funds represent an important investment in the safety of local residents and in the economic future of the city," noted Senator Schwank, who strongly advocated for the approval of the grant funds for the project. "With Alvernia University, the expected completion of the Berks County Conservancy Facility in the Park, several significant large employers already in Millmont, and additional parcels available for development in the neighborhood, this project will serve as a catalyst for continued growth in the area, which is good for the city."

"Many individuals played important roles in helping secure this funding," said President Flynn. "In particular we would like to thank our state Rep. Thomas Caltagirone who was instrumental in gaining the needed support for this initiative in Harrisburg, as well as state Sen. Judy Schwank whose assistance on the project was invaluable."

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