Platform Five

Platform Five

Going up! 5-story apartments, rooftop bar, slated next to hotel in Easton’s Centre Square

It’s a modern building that pays homage to Easton’s past.

Developer Platform Five’s plan to raise the three-story building at 8 Centre Square to five stories got the nod Monday from Easton’s Historic District Commission because the developer was mindful of how the new portion of the building might look to pedestrians.

The terra cotta facade with the columns and “Easton Dollar Savings and Trust Co.” logo carved into the front will be maintained, according to Platform Five President Hagai Feiner.

“It’s very important to us to maintain what’s there,” Feiner said via Microsoft Teams, calling in from California.

The new floors are recessed several feet back from the existing facade, so they won’t be visible from the front. A seven-story hotel was approved next to the building, so the hotel will block the view of 8 Centre Square from the north.

Architect Scott Voelker said there will be seven apartments in the building. A first-floor restaurant will be connected via elevator to a rooftop bar. They’ll be run together by a to-be-determined tenant.

Voelker said the project needs zoning approval because they’re putting a commercial use on top of a residential one. The city is in the process of revising its codes to allow commercial on top of residential downtown, so he anticipates a favorable zoning review of the project.

He said the planning commission won’t review the expansion project since it’s part of an existing building and not completely new.

The historic district commission recommended a certificate of appropriateness for the project in a 5-0 vote.

The building runs along the north side of Lehns Court. The city approved a $10,500 contract last week with Barry Isett & Associates for design work to improve Lehns Court as a pedestrian pathway.

Platform Five agreed to call in an outside consultant to determine whether to paint the first-floor exterior brick wall or leave it unpainted. It’s unclear whether the bricks were previously painted and it’s unclear whether paint will help protect the bricks from moisture or trap in the moisture.

The addition will have aluminum panels. Although they’re unusual for the historic district, the new Easton police station and Lafayette College’s Buck Hall have similar panels, Voelker said.

Historic district commission member Diane Haviland congratulated Feiner on the project.

“Thank you for your investment in Easton,” she said.

Feiner Investments bought the building last year for $675,000, according to online Northampton County property records.

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