Properties of the former Joe Root’s Grille, Sandbar, Manor Motel and back side of the Bel Aire Hotel are planned to begin demolition by the end of 2023.

The Millcreek Township General Authority put out a request for the proposal once they acquired the ownership of all the properties on June 30.

Township Supervisor Kim Clear said they plan on completing everything along West 8th Street in about five years.

“We’re going to see a lot of changes come to that corner. Starting with the demolition of course, but also then installing the infrastructure that will be necessary in order for development to occur in that area, including green infrastructure when it comes to stormwater as well as updated water systems too,” said Clear.

David Skellie, who is a Millcreek resident and on the planning commission, explained what the township has in store, in terms of streetscape.

“Four-foot planting strips on either side, plus five-foot sidewalks on either side, so that’s going to be a huge improvement in terms of pedestrian traffic. The City of Erie just finished their section to Pittsburgh Avenue from Frontier Park. It looks great and so will Millcreek’s,” said Skellie.

One Millcreek resident is looking forward to the project’s environmental aspects.

“It’s also good for people to walk through, is aesthetically pleasing, is a place for the stormwater to go and the tax base is better,” Skellie added.

Supervisor Clear emphasized the green spaces within the future multi-purpose area.

“Most people that are coming into their late 20s and early 30s and post-pandemic, they live and work in the same location. We need to start creating a place where you can live work and play all within a few acres of each other,” Clear said.

Skellie says that he’s looking forward to the project’s completion as it will be a huge improvement to the corridor on the way to Presque Isle State Park.