Good morning, Streeters. Here's your Thursday morning Buzz:
Along the North Delaware there has been slow and steady progress building new riverfront parks and greenway trails but new development has yet to follow, reports Hidden City Daily. Private development has yet to take off, despite rezoning to enable residential and mixed-use projects. And with active industry still present on this part of the waterfront, some even expanding, planners wonder if they should reconsider permitting more industrial uses along the North Delaware.
Mayor Nutter toured construction of the Delaware Valley Intelligence Center – a new regional homeland security hub at 20th and Oregon – that is finally well underway. A US Senate report issued this fall harshly criticized the project as a useless, waste of $11 million in federal dollars. The federal funds will be put toward technology purchases, while local dollars are going toward gutting and renovating the building.
Yes, delivery trucks and weekend churchgoers can still park in bike lanes, NewsWorks confirms. The Complete Streets bill states that parking is prohibited in bike lanes, and violators will be fined $50-$75, and it did not stipulate any exceptions that rule. Still, Councilman Mark Squilla who sponsored the bill said the long-standing agreement with churches stands. “You can’t park there all day though,” Squilla said.
More details emerged about the city’s property tax reform efforts under the Actual Value Initiative: The Inquirer reports the reassessed market value of all taxable property in the city is $96.5 billion. “To collect the same amount of property tax in the next fiscal year - $1.2 billion - the administration figures the tax rate would have to be 1.3 percent of a property's value, if no tax relief measures are added.” Councilman Bill Green heralded the news, but Councilman Jim Kenney is vowing to find ways to bring tax relief measures for long-time homeowners in neighborhoods where taxes will spike to reflect increased property values. Mayor Nutter says he will not seek a property-tax hike in addition to the new property-tax assessments under AVI.