PlanPhilly.com is an independent, non-partisan, news organization covering design, planning and development in Philadelphia. PlanPhilly was created in 2006 as a project of PennPraxis, and was incubated and supported by PennDesign and PennPraxis until March 2015. PlanPhilly is now a project of WHYY/NewsWorks, expanding its reach to a whole new audience by taking advantage of WHYY’s multiple news platforms like radio and podcasts. PlanPhilly will also, for the first time, develop a revenue generation strategy that will enable it to raise funds from diverse sources to continue its watchdog coverage.
PlanPhilly is integrated into Newsworks, the online home of WHYY News and its network of journalism partners in Philadelphia, South Jersey and Delaware. Since its inception as a project of PennPraxis at the University Of Pennsylvania, PlanPhilly has been managed by Matt Golas, who worked in the daily newspaper business for 32 years, including 20 at The Philadelphia Inquirer, where he was Metropolitan Editor.
For the past nine years, PlanPhilly has worked to hold the city accountable through beat reporting about planning, design, preservation and development news, investigative journalism and data analysis on issues such as tax delinquency and vacant land, as well as through the discerning voice of Eyes on the Street.
Our journalism is also about process, making sure Philadelphians are well-informed about the forces and decisions that reshape our city. It's informational and explanatory, and aims to promote a better-designed city with more transparent planning and development.
With a mandate to create transparency around city government, we cover all commission hearings that concerned planning. We show up with video cameras, ask questions, report out stories and serve the public good by peeling back layers of back-room dealings and obfuscation. Through our work, commissions have become more open and transparent and, we believe, more professional in decision-making.
Since 2007, we have published over 10,000 articles and produced over 3,000 videos. We have created an editorial and commentary component in a separate section called “Eyes on the Street.” We make every effort to engage with our community both on social media and in real life.
WHYY and PlanPhilly are developing a fundraising strategy to support PlanPhilly's ongoing work. PlanPhilly also receives financial support from the Wyncote Foundation; and has an ongoing content and research partnership with PennDesign.
Those are our core values support informed public discourse and awareness, and drive our accountability reporting. Financial supporters do not influence our reporting.
PlanPhilly has over 6,000 registered users and 50,000 monthly unique visitors and has become an indispensable resource for many residents of our region. PlanPhilly has successfully filled a void left by traditional forms of mainstream media and the site has made great strides in creating convergence with other new media models, developing new audiences and keeping Philadelphians informed about planning-related news.
Through Eyes on the Street we seek to connect PlanPhilly's process and policy coverage with the experience of living in the city. This is a place where people who care about planning and development in Philadelphia can share their observations, inspirations, and questions. It’s a place to connect with and learn from one another in an ongoing dialogue about Philadelphia’s future. Want to jump in? Here’s how.