Reflecting on the economic landscape of 2023, our community has much to celebrate. Join us as we revisit the top economic development stories of the year and anticipate the continued growth and progress that lies ahead for Greater Reading in 2024 and beyond.
1 Schuylkill River Passenger Rail Authority received confirmation from the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) that its application to participate in FRA’s Corridor Identification and Development Program was accepted. An important step towards restoring passenger rail service to Reading! – Read More>
2 City of Reading launched a City Revitalization and Improvement Zone (CRIZ) Working Group – Read More>
3 New businesses open in Berks*
- Tractor Supply Company – Shoemakersville
- West Reading welcomed A Light in the Attic, Legacy Cigar Lounge, West Reading Motor Club, and Zerbe Photography
- The Cottage Bakery & Café – Kutztown
- 7 Brew Coffee – Sinking Spring
- Buck Mason Reopened Historic Mohnton Knitting Mills
- Bobcat of Reading – Ontelaunee Township
- Winnie Tea Bar opened 2nd location – Muhlenberg Township
- Fritura Kings opened 2nd location in Downtown Reading
4 GoggleWorks Center for the Arts broke ground on Art Park – Read More>
5 IMAGINE Berks, a strategic economic development action plan, marked one year of implementation – Read More>
6 FirstEnergy Stadium, Home to the Fightin’ Phils, Ranked Most Affordable Ballpark – Read More>
7 Construction began on the highly anticipated Reading Skatepark – Read More>
8 Greater Reading Ranked in top 10 best places to live in PA and to retire – Read More>
9 Keith Haring Fitness Court at Kutztown University was unveiled – Read More>
10 Reading Regional Airport ranks in the top 10% of all PA airports – Read More>
11 Kutztown Strand Theater is set to be revitalized – Read More>
*This list is a curated selection to showcase the diversity of new businesses opening and is not exhaustive of all new business openings in Berks County.
GRCA Top Economic Development Headlines of 2023
Launched a national talent attraction and retention campaign through the Meet Greater Reading brand.
Launched an innovative talent attraction program to connect employers with prospective new Greater Reading residents – Read More>
Hosted the biannual Building Berks Awards & Expo which featured 30 nominated projects and represented:
- $148 million in investment
- 1.2 million square feet of development
- 2,100 jobs created
In partnership with the County of Berks, launched an interactive, local food directory and map featuring over 230 producers and farmers – Read More>
In partnership with Neighborhood Housing Services, launched $430,000 small business loan fund – Read More>
Over $1.4 million in grant applications submitted to support local non-profits and development projects.
$925,000 submitted through the Small Business Credit Initiative (Pennslyvania Loan Catalyst Fund) on behalf of Berks County companies – Learn More>
Hosted over 150 economic development professionals at the Pennsylvania Economic Development Association (PEDA) Fall Conference in Downtown Reading!
Welcomed Centro Hispano and U.S. Representative Chrissy Houlahan’s Reading District Office to 201 Penn Street – a Downtown Reading property owned by Greater Berks Development Fund.