PlanPhilly

Vacant Property

    • Gardener Phil Forsyth in St. Bernard Community Garden, May 2016 | Max Marin

After dodging sheriff’s sale, community gardens look ahead to the Land Bank

Two long-tenured community gardens in West Philadelphia are breathing a temporary sigh of relief. For the second time in a few years, St. Bernard Community Garden in Cedar Park has narrowly…

    • Chinese Cultural Center, 125 N. 10th Street, May 2016

Conservatorship approved to stabilize Chinese Cultural Center

The Chinese Cultural Center’s richly ornamented, timeworn façade lords over 10th Street just north of the Friendship Gate. It is one of Chinatown’s most expressive buildings, but its wood balconies and…

    • York and Jasper streets | Google Streetview

City Council approves Land Bank’s first two property transfers

City Council unanimously adopted a pair of resolutions today authorizing the Philadelphia Land Bank to make its first two property transfers. There is symbolism in the first pair of properties to…

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ABOUT VACANT PROPERTY

How many vacant lots are there in Philadelphia? The question seems so simple.

The answer, however, is not. Take "40,000," the number most frequently cited in recent news articles. That count first began to circulate widely after appearing in a study in 2010 by Econsult.

Or "24,000 to 25,000," the number of vacant properties identified by the city's Department of Licenses & Inspections in preparation for a new push to bring privately owned blighted properties into compliance, as City Paper recently reported.

But do a little digging, and you'll find that both numbers are really only rough estimates. In fact, you'll quickly discover a startling fact: No one knows exactly how many vacant properties there are here. And as the Nutter administration tries to come up with a comprehensive policy around vacant land, that elusive number represents a question mark in its equations.

UPCOMING EVENTS IN VACANT PROPERTY

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