Governor Shapiro Announces $10.6 Million in New Funding for Site Development Pilot Program to Create More Shovel-Ready Sites for Businesses in Pennsylvania

PA SITES pilot program will fund 7 sites all across the Commonwealth, helping local economic development agencies secure necessary permits, build out critical infrastructure needed for these sites, and prepare them for major businesses and employers who want to expand in Pennsylvania.


Compared to neighboring states, Pennsylvania lacks readily available sites for major business expansion, so the PA SITES pilot program was created to build those sites to help the Commonwealth attract more companies and create more jobs.

Allentown, PA – Today, Governor Josh Shapiro and Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) Secretary Rick Siger announced more than $10.6 million in grant funding awards through the PA SITES (Pennsylvania Strategic Investments to Enhance Sites) pilot program to help sites across the Commonwealth become “shovel ready” in order to attract more businesses and create more good-paying jobs.

Governor Shapiro and Secretary Siger made the announcement in the Lehigh Valley, where the Allentown Commercial and Industrial Development Authority is receiving over $1.1 million from PA SITES to run utility extensions for water, sewer, and natural gas from the existing city infrastructure to the proposed site, which is approximately half a mile.

“It’s great to be back here in the Lehigh Valley – where just a few months ago, Secretary Siger and I announced our Commonwealth’s first economic development strategy in nearly two decades. That strategy recognizes that in order to compete and create opportunity, we need to invest – and we’ve heard loud and clear that Pennsylvania needs to develop more sites we can use to sell our Commonwealth to companies that want to grow and thrive here," said Governor Josh Shapiro. "Last year, we launched a pilot program for site development through DCED, asked for applications, and made $10 million in grants available for developers and companies to begin that process. These sites are key to growing our economy, creating more jobs and thriving communities, and helping Pennsylvania compete – and win.” 

Last year, Governor Shapiro and Secretary Siger invited a group of leading site selectors from across the country to the Capitol and asked for their honest feedback – and they shared that while Pennsylvania is home to a highly-skilled workforce, bountiful natural resources, and a strategic location, the Commonwealth does not have enough sites readily available, making it harder to attract businesses to Pennsylvania or expand existing operations here. As a result of these conversations, Governor Shapiro and DCED announced the launch of the PA SITES pilot program and started accepting applications in September 2023.

“Today’s announcement is another exciting step forward in positioning the Commonwealth to win more business investments, create jobs, and spur our economy,” said DCED Secretary Rick Siger. “There is significant demand for this investment across every region of Pennsylvania, as we received 102 applications requesting more than $236 million in funding through this pilot program. The Governor’s proposed $500 million investment in PA SITES in his 2024-25 budget proposal will continue to help businesses grow and succeed here in Pennsylvania.”

PA SITES pilot program funding is being awarded to the following recipients:

  • Allegheny County – $2,326,733 to the RIDC Southwestern Pennsylvania Growth Fund for continued development of the Carrie Furnace site in Rankin Borough. PA SITES funds will be used for earthwork, utilities, and asphalt paving.
  • Bedford County – $338,880 to the Bedford County Development Association for developing a pad-ready site at the Bedford County Business Park II in Bedford Township. PA SITES funds will be used for excavation, removal of unsuitable soils, seeding and mulching, and creation of a gravel access drive.
  • Bucks County – $2,500,000 to the Bucks County Industrial Development Authority for transportation improvements supporting the development of two sites totaling 78 acres in Middletown Township. PA SITES funds will be used for offsite transportation improvements, including the construction of a new fully signalized intersection, stormwater management infrastructure, erosion, and sedimentation controls, and paving extra turning lanes at the proposed intersection.
  • Indiana County – $1,000,000 to the Indiana County Development Corporation for site improvements at the Windy Ridge Business & Technology Park in White Township. PA SITES funds will be used for engineering, environmental cleanup, demolition, and the construction and site preparation for a 500-foot extension of roadway to Lot 21 and an intersection connecting to Lot 1. Additionally, funds will be used for street lighting, utility facilities, signage, sanitary sewer, stormwater management, and E&S controls.
  • Lehigh County – $1,124,528 to the Allentown Commercial and Industrial Development Authority for utility extensions to support the construction of a 50,000-square-foot industrial facility. PA SITES funds will be used to run utility extensions for water, sewer, and natural gas from the existing city infrastructure to the proposed site, which is approximately half a mile.
  • Wayne County – $900,000 to the Wayne Economic Development Corporation for the expansion of the wastewater treatment plant within the Sterling Business & Technology Park located in Sterling Township.
  • Westmoreland County – $2,500,000 to the Westmoreland County Industrial Development Corporation for public infrastructure improvements at the site of a former industrial plant that will be developed into a new industrial park in Hempfield Township. PA SITES funds will be used for highway improvements, permits, site remediation and utilities including water, gas, electric, and communications.

“The PA SITES program will allow AEDC to accelerate our redevelopment of a vacant brownfield and return the property to productive use. Thanks to Governor Shapiro and his team, the launch of the PA SITES Program this past fall was perfect timing to assist us in making this unique site ready for development,” said R. Scott Unger, Executive Director of the Allentown Economic Development Corporation. “The funding will address a unique need of this property that requires utility extensions and with the help of the pilot program, AEDC can continue our mission of increasing access to manufacturing employment and restoring economic activity to underutilized sites throughout the City of Allentown.”

Compared to neighboring states like Ohio, New York, and Virginia who allocate more annual funding to site development incentives, Pennsylvania lacks readily available sites to support companies’ major business expansions. To change this, Governor Shapiro secured $13 million in PA First funding in the 2023-24 budget, of which this $10.6 million is being made available, for the PA SITES pilot program to provide grant funding to municipalities, economic development organizations, and industrial development agencies.

DCED received 102 applications requesting more than $236 million in funding – outweighing the existing funding from the 2023-24 budget and demonstrating the need for more state investments to make sites more competitive for prospective businesses through better transportation access, utility extensions, or grading of pad-ready sites. These enhancements will help previously utilized or underdeveloped sites become shovel-ready for businesses to relocate, expand, and create jobs in Pennsylvania – and the Governor’s 2024-25 budget proposal includes $500 million in PA SITES funding to build on this progress.

“We are thankful to Governor Shapiro for making economic development a priority in Pennsylvania. Programs like PA SITES provide much-needed support, making hard-to-do properties economically feasible for development,” said Don Cunningham, President and CEO of Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corporation. “Bringing sites to market sooner will allow us to compete for new and expanding businesses and meet the high demand for manufacturing and industrial space in the Lehigh Valley.”

“Governor Shapiro recognizes the central role that Allentown’s residents have played in the economic success story of the Lehigh Valley, and today’s announcement affirms the value of making smart investments in growing regions,” said Allentown Mayor Matt Tuerk. “The PA SITES program will help Pennsylvania win and this project will help create good jobs for people in our community, strengthen our local economy, and help build a resilient Allentown.”

In addition to the $500 million for PA SITES, the Governor’s 2024-25 budget proposal calls for the following investments:

  • $25 million for the Main Street Matters program, to support small businesses and commercial corridors that are the backbone of communities across our Commonwealth. This new program will build upon and modernize the Keystone Communities program.
  • $20 million to support large-scale innovation and leverage Pennsylvania’s best-in-class research and development assets. This funding will be used to incentivize additional private venture capital, positioning Pennsylvania as a national leader in innovation while proactively investing in entrepreneurs who have historically lacked access to venture capital funding.
  • $3.5 million to create and launch the Pennsylvania Regional Economic Competitiveness Challenge, which will incentivize regional growth, build vibrant and resilient regions, and support communities by investing in the development of comprehensive strategies to propel entire regions forward.

“By getting sites pad ready for manufacturers eager to expand, today’s announcement of PA SITES funds for this parcel is absolutely nothing short of a historic victory for Allentown,” said Representative Josh Siegel. “It’s a win that will drive job creation, new tax revenue, and most importantly, offer a pathway out of poverty for residents here.”

“This project is an exciting opportunity for our region. A new industrial facility will include robust job creation, economic development and manufacturing. Being a lifelong resident of Allentown, I have seen the transformation that has taken place in the Lehigh Valley by investing in our economic development,” said Senator Nick Miller. “However, there is still work to do and progress to be made. We want to continue to support our existing businesses and encourage expansion, innovation and modernization of even more businesses. This project will provide utility extensions for water, sewer and natural gas from the existing city infrastructure. I am excited about all the potential we have under this new program. I applaud Governor Shapiro for his support of business development and the contribution to help businesses realize the potential Pennsylvania has to be their home. I look forward to advocating the expansion of PA SITES in this year’s budget.”

You can read Pennsylvania’s first economic development strategy in 20 years here. For more information on how the Governor’s proposed budget will create economic opportunity for all Pennsylvanians, visit

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