The vacuum repair shop has closed and is transitioning into Valena’s Simple Cafe! Pennsport and Whitman neighborhood have been sorely lacking in independently owned coffee shops. This new cafe, opening right at the border of Pennsport and Whitman, will be located at the corner of Front st and Snyder ave.
There are two major issues that get South Philadelphians riled up: street cleaning and parking. And since the only major criticism against street cleaning is that it requires parked cars to move, the only issue that truly troubles South Philadelphians seems to be parking.
Illegal median parking on south Broad Street has long been a topic of discussion and debate. Cars park on the median of Broad Street, Oregon Ave, Washington Ave, and wherever it the PPA and Philadelphia police turn a blind eye. Other neighborhoods don’t get it, and South Philadelphians don’t really think anything of it. It’s the way it has always been, legal or not.
Since the Democratic National Convention, when median parking ban was enforced, the controversy has only escalated. Median parking practice is technically illegal, but is it dangerous? 5th Square, a political action committee, seems to think so. 5th Square started an online petition to ban median parking that has since gained over 900 supporters. The organization recently hosted a fundraiser, “No Parking on the Dance Floor” at our own Dolphin Tavern to support the banning of median parking. According to 5th Square, the funds will be used to “pay for the next phase of the Broad Street campaign, which will include professional planning and design work, and multiple public engagement sessions that empower South Philadelphia neighbors to reimagine what Broad Street can be.”
Leading the other side of the median parking war are many vocal long-term South Philadelphia residents. Most notably, the administrator of Taking our South Philadelphia Streets Back (TOSPSB), a local pro-police/anti-crime Facebook group, has led a social media campaign to support maintaining illegal median parking in South Philadelphia. The TOSPSB Facebook group is a page for community residents to warn each other about local crime and share events to support the PPD. The Facebook group identifies as diverse, with majority vocal members being traditional, long-term South Philadelphia residents.
Although noncommittal about the issue, Mayor Jim Kenney has encouraged the PPA to start ticketing some of the worst violators, according to Philadelphia Magazine.
“The mayor, the PPA and members of the administration met to discuss the median parking issue a few weeks ago, before the administration met with 5th Square this week,” said Kenney spokeswoman Lauren Hitt. “In that meeting, we agreed that PPA should ticket in the median when a car is fishtailed, in the turning lane, and in the crosswalk. We also agreed that any other changes should be community-driven.”
Mayor Kenney’s compromise, although agreeable to both parties, was criticized by some community members as “weak and noncommittal.” Such criticism has been said of our mayor many times since his taking office in January. Kenney has not pushed to action some of his campaign promises, notably ones that involve a firm stance. Tough decisions often offend, and Jim Kenney is not one to offend. As Kenney is currently involved with scandals and an FBI investigation, perhaps the non-offensive route is his best position.
Polls, action calls, and surveys are flooding Facebook, with South Philadelphians split nearly 50/50 between the sides. Enforce the law and ban median parking or continue the South Philly tradition and let it be? Is it simply a battle of new residents vs old residents? Will Mayor Kenney’s efforts be enough to peacefully settle this deeply divided issue?
When is the Convention? When do we expect Convention attendees to arrive and leave?
The Democratic National Convention (DNC) begins Monday, July 25th, and ends Thursday evening, July 28th. Attendees will arrive as soon as Friday, July 22nd, and leave by Friday, July 29th.
Where does the Convention take place?
The Convention takes place at the Wells Fargo Center in the evening hours, typically from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. There will be smaller caucus and council meetings during work hours at the Pennsylvania Convention Center as well.
How many people are coming to Philadelphia for the Convention?
The City expects approximately 50,000 Convention participants between delegates, media, and other attendees.
Are there any changes to trash and recycling service during the DNC? Are there any changes to municipal services, such as; court hours, jury duty, and city employee work schedules?
At this time, all city services are expected to operate as scheduled. If that changes, the information will be available on the City’s DNC home page: www.phila.gov/democraticnationalconvention.
Will police and fire services be affected in my neighborhood due to re-assignment of first-responders?
Philadelphia Police, Philadelphia Fire and EMS services will not be impacted by the DNC.
Will highways or streets be closed during the DNC?
At this time, we do not anticipate extended road or highway closures in Center City and other areas outside of the Stadium District. There may be rolling closures due to dignitary movements or protests.
Before you leave the house, we encourage you to check @PhiladelphiaGov for any traffic news.
There will be traffic restrictions around the sports complex, and we expect United States Secret Service to announce those by early July at the absolute latest. When they are announced, you can find the information here: www.phila.gov/democraticnationalconvention.
How can the public be aware if large demonstrations are going to affect them?
Planned permitted demonstrations that impact traffic or require road closures will be included on the City website road closure page, and updates provided via social media. For more information visit: www.phila.gov/democraticnationalconvention and follow @PhiladelphiaGov.
Demonstrations that deviate from the planned route or do not attain a permit will be updated via social media. Follow @PhillyPolice and @PhiladelphiaGov.
Will any SEPTA routes change during the DNC?
Additional service along the Broad Street Line (BSL) will be added during the convention. Travelers should expect crowds on public transit similar to sporting events when Convention programming begins and ends. While the Convention has not yet released their full schedule, historically sessions have begun at 5 p.m. and concluded at 11 p.m.
Transit riders can sign up for SEPTA alerts regarding system delays and service disruptions through the City’s mass notification system, ReadyPhiladelphia: www.phila.gov/ready.
SEPTA also offers information through their website and social media: http://www.septa.org/realtime/status/system-status.shtml and http://www.septa.org/alert/twitter.html.
Will there be special parking or towing restrictions?
There will be some parking or towing restrictions, though we do not expect it to be nearly as extensive as last year’s Papal Visit. Before the weekend of July 23, and throughout the week of the DNC, please be sure to check the street signs near where you normally park each day to ensure there are no temporary parking restrictions.
Will the City allow camping?
Because of the resources needed to manage the Convention, no permits will be issued for camping.
Will it be difficult to go out during the Convention? Will restaurants have available seating?
Because the Convention historically takes place from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. each evening, Center City and other area dining destinations should have open tables, especially during dinner hours, should you want to take advantage of them.
Can I get into the Wells Fargo Center if I am not a credentialed media member or delegate? Can anyone attend the convention?
Only those who are credentialed have access inside the Wells Fargo Center, which include media, delegates, politicians, and volunteers. However, the smaller councils and caucus meetings which take place during the day at the Pennsylvania Convention Center are open to the public.
How can I participate in the DNC?
There are a number of fun Convention-related events happening around town for the public, even if you’re not interested in politics. For more information and a list of events, go to www.phldnc.com.
What if I have questions that aren’t answered here?
We encourage you to first go to www.phila.gov/democraticnationalconvention. If your questions aren’t answered there, you can always call 3-1-1 for non-emergencies. The week of the Convention, 311 will have extended hours from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Philadelphia city’s bike-sharing system, Indego, celebrates its first birthday last Thursday. Playing off its wide success from the first year in the city of brotherly love, Indego will implement 24 new docking stations throughout the city this coming year, including the inclusion of 300 brand new bikes.
Once again, the new bike share locations will include very few locations in South Philadelphia, drawing negative feedback from South Philadelphia residents. Concentration of regular bikers are most dense in South Philadelphia, where supplies of biking stations are fewest. Higher supplies of bike-sharing stations would help lower the demand for parking in the already congested South Philly neighborhoods.
The new NACTO bike share guide suggests that studies show that “bike-share stations placed within a 3- to 5-minute walking distance of each other throughout a contiguous service area are essential to a system’s success.”
Indego stations to be added:
- 10th and Federal Streets
- 11th and South Streets (Magic Gardens)
- 15th and Market Streets
- 15th and South
- 19th Street and Girard Avenue
- 22nd Street and Cecil B. Moore Avenue
- 24th Street and Cecil B. Moore Avenue
- 26th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue
- 26th and Poplar Streets
- 27th and Master Streets
- 29th and Dauphin Streets
- 29th and Diamond Streets
- 31st Street and Girard Avenue
- 33rd and Dauphin Streets
- 33rd and Diamond Streets
- 33rd Street and Reservoir Drive
- 34th Street and Mantua Avenue
- 42nd Street and Lancaster Avenue
- 46th and Market Streets
- 4th Street and Washington Avenue
- Front and Berks Streets
- Moyamensing & Tasker Avenues
- Delaware Avenue and Beach Street (Penn Treaty Park)
- Columbus Boulevard and Race Street (Race Street Pier)
Shoprite of Snyder Plaza will finalize its move to Whitman Plaza this Fall. When Shoprite purchased bankrupt A&P’s Pathmark in Whitman last year, they promised an early opening in Spring 2016. It seems that the old Pathmark building required a lot of fixing up because the final move and opening date is now set for September 2016, months behind schedule.
Shoprite is now hiring for their new location at Whitman Plaza on 3rd and Oregon. The new renovations and expanded space includes plans for their nutritionists and a sit-in coffee shop. There has been no word of a new pharmacy opening to replace the closed Pathmark pharmacy that previously serviced the neighborhood.
With all the neighborhood changes and plans for new development in the area, Whitman is up and coming indeed.
From Shoprite Facebook:
We’re Hiring for Our New Location at Whitman Plaza!
Please share with your friends – We will be holding a JOB FAIR – By Appointment Only, for several dates in April & May.
Please apply online at http://www.shoprite.com/career-opportunities/
Must apply to our current location: “ShopRite of Snyder Plaza”
WE WILL CONTACT YOU WITH A DATE/TIME & LOCATION AFTER REVIEWING YOUR APPLICATION.
Vietnamese Medical Charity Organization hosts their annual Fundraising Social at Irish Pub to raise money for the Vietnam Medical/Pharmacy Mission, a healthcare mission led by Philadelphia’s Temple University School of Pharmacy students and staff. 100% of proceeds from the social admission and raffle goes to buying medical and medical supplies. You can read more about the mission or donate at vietmeds.com.
VMCO Fundraising Social
When: April 14, 2016 from 7PM-10PM
Where: Irish Pub @ 2007 Walnut St, Philadelphia, PA 19107
RSVP: $5 wristband @ door or RSVP on the event page.
Complimentary Appetizers, Drink Specials, Raffles, Prizes, Games
In the spirit of Philadelphia’s annual Spring Cleanup, local organizations are hosting additional cleanup and volunteer events throughout the season.
Volunteers helped clean over 17,000 lbs of debris and recyclables from the Delaware water and it’s banks during the last two events hosted by United By Blue. This year, the clothing and coffee retailer returns with a special Tuesday evening service project for staff and students of the Youth Volunteer Corps of Philadelphia.
The event takes place on Tuesday, April 19th from 5-7pm. Cleanup volunteers will meet at Pier 68 and fan out to the North, up to Washington Ave, and to the South beyond the piers.
The Delaware River has a significant fish habitat, identified by the Philadelphia Water Department, and many fisherman enjoy the pier for recreation and solitude, despite the polluted waters. The DRWC helped to transform the previously abandoned Pier 68 into a new waterfront destination for active recreation and waterfront enjoyment. Because of heavy use, the newly developed and still abandoned piers alike collect trash left by visitors and debris blown over from Columbus Blvd. and beyond.
This year’s Philly Spring Cleanup will take place on Saturday, April 9th, between 9am and 2pm. You can participate in a local cleanup event in your neighborhood or find an existing event to volunteer. Additionally, you will have until April 1st to register your own event, apply for supplies, and gather volunteers to help clean up your neighborhood or support your project.
Mayor Kenney recently announced his proposal for a potential bond issue which would provide updates to our Philadelphia’s park, recreation, and library infrastructure. The Philadelphia Parks Alliance is gathering petitions for their campaign to support the improvement the parks and recreation facilities. Local communities, groups, and individuals can support the efforts by getting or signing a Rebuilding Community Infrastructure petition.
On the topic of green Philly, Tree Philly’s Spring 2016 Free Tree giveaway is now open. Each resident can sign up to reserve 2 free trees. This year, pick up sites will take place at four different TD Bank locations in April. Act quickly if you are interested in reserving a tree or two. Trees run out fast, especially in the easily accessible South Philly location.
Registrants will be able to pick up their yard trees at one of the following location:
- 2201 S. Broad St., 19148
- 2267 E Butler St., 19137
- 6635 Frankford Ave., 19135
- 3930 Woodhaven Rd., 19154