PlanPhilly

Development

    • Gallery makeover | PREIT

Squilla introduces stack of bills for Gallery redevelopment

Councilman Mark Squilla introduced 10 separate measures in City Council on Thursday meant to grease the wheels for the planned renovation of The Gallery on East Market Street. The biggest city…

    • Speak Easy event at WHYY | Ifanyi Bell

Neighborhoods in Flux: A Resource Kit

On Tuesday night, WHYY hosted a public conversation about Philadelphia's changing neighborhoods: how to improve them, how to stay in them, and how to treat your neighbors, whether they’re new to…

    • Gallery makeover | PREIT

SRC approves $55 million tax incentive for Gallery mall redevelopment

Philadelphia’s School Reform Commission voted on Thursday night to approve a tax-increment financing district for the area surrounding the Gallery mall on east Market Street that would save the mall’s owners…

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ABOUT DEVELOPMENT

Though it often has a negative connotation, development represents the absolutely crucial element of demand to use the urban form. Once completed, the development project ends up helping to define the built environment for future generations. Without development, there would be no city to plan. Despite the stigma often attached to it, development can meet both community needs and earn a profit when its design and program contributes to the larger urban framework.

It is important that development be regulated so that it supports the public health, safety, and welfare of a neighborhood, though this can be difficult to achieve today given the pressures facing the public sector due to rising social services needs and decreasing tax bases. Private developers often have leverage in these cases, which can lead to some unhealthy compromises that negatively affect our built environment. It is possible for development to be over-regulated, which often discourages investors from investing in particular cities. Philadelphia is often seen as a city that has outdated local controls, which in turn delays the development approval process. However, the re-zoning process currently underway by the Zoning Code Commission should go a long way in addressing this.  The goal is to set standards that encourage a balance of public good and private development.

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