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You are viewing 154 articles for 2017 by the author Jake Blumgart

    • Dorothy Shipley White Residence in the snow

Chestnut Hill's modernist trio, fully historically protected in 2017

Even in a city known for its architectural heritage and historic buildings, Chestnut Hill stands out. Long one of the wealthiest neighborhoods in Philadelphia, this sylvan community is home to rambling…

    • Students share converted Victorian homes in the Spruce Hill section of West Philadelphia.

Spruce Hill zoning remapping is backdoor historic preservation

Late this year, a bill quietly slipped through City Council that is intended to protect the iconic Victorian homes in Spruce Hill from demolition. The neighborhood enjoys what experts believe is…

    • Boyd Theater, 1956

Movie theaters strike back in downtown Philadelphia

In the first half of the 20th century, towering palaces to cinema were built in Center City Philadelphia. These massive buildings were ornately decorated with elaborate statues, gilded ceilings, and even orchestra…

    • spruce hill in winter

Historical Commission to begin considering historic districts after years, sometimes decades, of delay

For the past decade, Philadelphia’s Historical Commission has only granted protections to a handful of individual properties each year. As the pace of development escalates, and more remarkable buildings are leveled, preservationists…

    • Cindy Bass | Emma Lee/WHYY

"Stop-and-go" bill passes Council, but deeper tensions underlie debate

City Council approved a controversial “stop-and-go” bill during its final meeting of 2017, which periodically threatened to descend into anarchy as supporters and opponents of Councilwoman Cindy Bass’ legislation flooded Council’s…

    • Cobbs Creek

As it fills in final missing bits, Philly’s nearly-complete city plan exposes gap between neighborhood hopes and political realities

As Samantha Petty considered the Planning Commission’s proposals for her community, she experienced a wave of déjà vu. Standing in the hallway of West Philadelphia High School, at the last…

    • ridge ave

Ridge Avenue demolition moratorium spurs demolition requests

A proposed demolition mortarium on Ridge Avenue, in Northwest Philadelphia, has spurred a wave of demolition applications. The bill, introduced by Councilman Curtis Jones, would apply to a five-mile stretch of…

    • Alex Peay in his North Philadelphia neighborhood

How redlining segregated Philadelphia

About a third of the homes on West Oakdale Street between 15th and 16th in North Philadelphia are empty. Six vacant lots interrupt the narrow rowhouse block. On a recent November…

    • Pennsylvania casino map

Henon blocks possible gambling expansion

City Councilman Bobby Henon sees Philadelphia’s dystopian future. Video poker in every bar, mini-casinos in every neighborhood. A new law signed by Governor Tom Wolf in October massively expands legal gambling…

    • Signage for new housing on the way. February, 2016 | Emma Lee/WHYY

Inclusionary zoning bill clears committee, but final vote delayed until 2018

Maria Quiñones-Sanchez’s controversial bill requiring developers to devote a percentage of new housing to low-income residents incrementally advanced on Tuesday, but don’t expect a City Council vote on it anytime soon.…

    • Cindy Bass | Emma Lee/WHYY

Bill to regulate restaurants gets fiery reception at City Council hearing

After a fiery hearing, which lasted for much of Monday, the Committee on Public Health and Human Services voted to amend a bill to regulate so-called “stop-and-go” restaurants, which critics say…

    • Cover photo for PHA's Part 2A Sharswood project

New phase of housing authority's Sharswood project wins positive review

Plans for North Philadelphia’s Sharswood neighborhood could include brick-clad rowhomes, ranging from one to three stories, with surface parking and open green space behind the units. The Civic Design Review (CDR)…

    • Maria Quiñones-Sánchez | Emma Lee/WHY

Hold the zone: Vote on inclusionary zoning delayed a week in wake of opposition

Facing opposition from neighborhood civic associations and the real estate industry, Councilmember Maria Quiñones-Sánchez asked City Council’s Rules Committee to push back a vote on her controversial inclusionary zoning bill on…

    • A large crane looms over Chestnut Street.

Inconclusive Zoning: Planning Commission not sold on changes to affordable housing bill

The inclusionary zoning bill that City Council spent all autumn crafting now appears to have morphed into what critics say would essentially be an impact fee on Center City development. In…

    • Provident Mutual Life Insurance Building, 2014

Blackwell proposes transit oriented development around Provident Mutual Life Insurance building

On Thursday, West Philadelphia’s Jannie Blackwell became the first City Council member to take advantage of new zoning language to promote transit oriented development (TOD). Blackwell introduced a bill to encourage…

    • Christian Street Baptist Church, image from Google Streetview

In surprise reversal, Christian Street Baptist no longer protected from wrecking ball

When the Historical Commission met earlier this month, it seemed like the Christian Street Baptist Church was added to the local historic register, sparing it from a developer’s wrecking ball.…

    • Allan Domb | Emma Lee/WHYY

Home security? Some opposed to Domb’s bill to securitize liens on tax deadbeats

After almost two years in office, Councilmember-At-Large Allan Domb finally introduced the bill he ran his campaign on. At Thursday’s City Council session, he put forward tax-lien securitization legislation that…

    • Christian Street Baptist Church, image from Google Streetview

Blocking Babylon: Historical Commission prevents demo of church properties in Bella Vista, Lawncrest

UPDATE: On Monday, November 20th, the Historical Commission announced a reversal on its vote to add Christian Street Baptist Church to the loal historic register, following notification that the Commission's…

    • Later this summer a sharrow will likely replace the 10th Street bike lane in Chinatown.

A new plan for Chinatown

Philadelphia’s Chinatown is a mere 0.3 square miles, a postage stamp community that nonetheless enjoys an impressive purchase on the city’s psyche. As Center City booms around it, this little ethnic…

    • horse fountain

No horsin’ around: L+I board upholds sanctions against carriage company

The old-fashioned buggies that pull tourists around Philadelphia’s historic sites are a staple of Old City and Independence Mall. But there may soon be far fewer horses prancing the city streets,…

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You are viewing 154 posts for 2017 by the author Jake Blumgart







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