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Reading Eagle: Apartment Units Expected to be Available Soon at New Wyomissing Retail-Residential Complex

April 25, 2009

Developers of a $49 million residential and retail project in Wyomissing expect to start renting apartments as early as this summer.

Construction of the Wyomissing Square development at Park Road and Hill Avenue is nearly finished.

The project is a combination of upscale apartments, a hotel and retail space adjacent to Viva Good Life Bistro & Lounge.

Brickstone Realty, a Philadelphia company developing the site, expects to soon start renting the 248 apartments in the complex, said John J. Connors, managing partner for Brickstone.

A 135-room Courtyard by Marriott hotel is expected to open in August or September, he said. Retail space will likely open in the fall.

Despite the economic downturn, Connors is confident that the apartments and retail storefronts will fill quickly.

A two-bedroom apartment will go for about $1,400 a month, although rents have not been finalized.

"We still think there is a lot of demand for a project like this, and we can deliver," Connors said.

Brickstone initially tried to lure companies that do not have a presence in Berks County to fill retail space, Connors said. Although corporations are hesitant to try new markets in the current economic climate, there still is interest from franchises, he said.

Brickstone has signed letters of intent with several clients, but Connors declined to name those companies.

Wyomissing Borough Councilman Frederick C. Levering said that it is a tough time to roll out projects like this.

However, he expects that Wyomissing Square will succeed and trigger other development in the borough.

"This is a unique project, and I think that helps," he said. "These will be arguably some of the nicest apartments in Berks County."

The development is significant for Wyomissing because it is turning a former industrial building into a mixture of new uses, Levering said.

Construction on the project, built at the former Goss Graphics site, began in 2007.