PlanPhilly

Development

    • Orinoka Mills, June 2014

Pinning future for New Kensington on Orinoka Mills reuse

The story of Orinoka Mills is tangled in the many tired, typical Philly tropes about disinvestment, deindustrialization and decrepitude. Once known for producing fine textiles, Orinoka Mills’ more recent history is…

    • Econsult: Subregion House Prices Q2

Chart: South Philly home prices are taking off

One chart worth pulling out of the Econsult report Jared Brey covered yesterday is this one, with the price trends for different subregions. In the second quarter we saw the Lower…

    • 205 Race facing north - Gluck and Partners

205 Race construction to begin next year, developer says

Construction on the long-vacant lot at the corner of 2nd and Race streets in Old City should begin by the first quarter of next year, according to Jeffrey Brown, one of…

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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 Philadelphia is often seen as a city that has outdated local controls, which in turn delays the development approval process.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.

UPCOMING EVENTS IN DEVELOPMENT

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