SOUTH BETHLEHEM, PA -- Lehigh University’s Path to Prominence is an ambitious, $1 billion fundraising campaign that will add faculty, students, buildings and infrastructure designed to cement the school as a major research university. But the initiative has not come without consequences.
Some worry that the expansion will further push into South Bethlehem neighborhoods already burdened by a space and parking crunch. They also worry that new construction and increasing rents will push out those who have made South Bethlehem their home. “It’s already causing distress,” says Bethlehem Councilwoman Olga Negron.
A team of four Lehigh journalism students examined the issue during the spring semester – part of a pilot program with PBS39 designed to have students covering issues of town and gown relations. Students who reported and produced the piece were Kendall Coughlin, Jake Epstein, Maddy Hite and Lindsey Taub.