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South Philly Review 6-18-2015

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The fate of 24th Street and Washington Avenue is being rigorously debated. Plus more South Philly news, opinions, and entertainment.
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    E ith real estate in South Philly east of Broad Street at a pre-mium, the swath of South Philly that includes Gradu-ate Hospital, Point Breeze and Grays Ferry is, perhaps, the next frontier of development in coming years. And with a zoning approval to move forward on an empty parcel at 24th Street and Washington Avenue, the fate of Washington Avenue West is being rigorously debated among

    business owners, residents, develop-ers, planners and politicians.

    With a recent zoning board deci-sion, 2401 Washington Ave. is poised to be converted into a 113-unit resi-dential and retail mixed-use com-plex. A mix of studios, one and two bedrooms for rent with 57 car park-ing spots and room for parking for 53 bikes, the complex will be five floors at its highest. Green Construction LLC is the developer, and Hercules Grigos is their attorney.

    [Green Construction] build and develop a number of properties in

    the South of South neighborhood and other neighborhoods in Center City, Grigos said. Was it a push to get Reg-istered Civic Organization (RCO) and resident support for a mixed use complex? I wouldnt say its a push, I would say the zone has changed and its really not viable for industrial use as you see a lot of change going up and down the avenue. And the con-struction of Childrens Hospital of Philadelphia and [the University of] Penn coming across the river, I think its a natural progression of develop-ment.

    The South of South NeighborhoodAssociation (SOSNA) and the Wash-ington Avenue Property Owners As-sociation (WAPOA) have given theirstamp of approval, but the Northof Washington Avenue Coalition (NWAC) isnt sold.

    We support people being impacted by it they dont want it, NWACspresident Madeline Shikomba says. Those on Kimball Street and on24th and 25th Street, they dont want it, especially on Kimball.

    Shes been at the intersection in

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    2448 S. 12th Street, Philadelphia, Pa. 19148 (215) 336-2500 Fax (215) 336-1112Website: southphillyreview.comEditorial e-mail: [email protected] Bill Gelman-ext. 121 [email protected] EDITOR Joseph Myers-ext. 124 [email protected] WRITER Bill Chenevert-ext. 117 [email protected] MANAGER Daniel Tangi-ext. 129 @

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    ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Publisher reserves the right to accept or reject any advertising submitted. Publisher assumes no responsibility for errors made except to reprint that portion of any ad having an error. Display ad rates available upon request.Advertisers: Check your ads weekly. The Review can be responsible only the first time an ad appears. 2015 R.P.M. Philly, LLC.

    Police Report: Police pounce on pair

    $ 0g8]aS^V;gS`aAuthorities arrested a man and a woman in conjunction with a Pennsport residents death.News: Stoked for City Council at-large run

    & 0g0WZZ1VS\SdS`bAndrew Stober stepped down managing Mayor Michael Nutters Of-fice of Transportation and Utilities on May 15 to begin campaigning for an independent at-large seat on City Council.

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    0g8]aS^V;gS`aPaul Frost fostered such warm youthful feelings about entering the culinary world that he yearned to run a business before acquiring the acumen to cook.

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    My dad bought himself some cigars, and hes going to say theyre from me for his Fathers Day gift.

    Chloe Rapp, Broad Street and

    Washington Avenue

    Im from England, [where] Fathers Day is on a different date. So I plan to Skype my dad. Its been almost a year since Ive seen him.

    Joe Hardy, Broad Street and

    Washington Avenue

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    Im going out to eat with my brother and parents. Im not sure what to buy my dad, though.

    Orela Suku, Broad Street and

    Washington Avenue

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    To the Editor: Imagine taking your family to Cape

    May, N.J., and youre looking forward to walking around the outdoor mall. But first, lets change things a bit and imag-ine that the seashore town a magnet for tourists is managed by the City of Philadelphia. What would you have? Take a look at South Philadelphia, zoom in on the area of Ninth and Wharton streets, and you might get a clue.

    First off, as a tourist you would have no substantial parking lots. You would be orbiting the area waiting for a neighbor to leave in his or her car. Frustrated, you may even risk being towed by parking in the nearby Acme lot, which is private

    property. And when you find a spot and your daughter has to run to the bathroom, where does she go? The city has abso-lutely no concern about that. But Cape May, not managed by Philadelphia, does indeed have concern. The Jersey town is user friendly to tourists.

    A nearby bank executive told me that he always has people coming in asking to use the bathroom. They are out-of-town-ers daytripping to the Italian Market. He is not allowed to accommodate. Residents see these tourists all the time coming in school buses or family cars. And we are glad to have them appreciating our neigh-borhood. We also appreciate the interest of developers and entrepreneurs. But for

    planners, movers and shakers and resi-dents, we should all consider this. Just because something is new, filling a void or breathing life into an old building, does not mean its a good idea. If the planned development does not consider quality of life concerns, what is the point? The de-velopment may be more about building it haphazardly, dumping it profitably and run away indifferently. In short, we call this pattern build it, dump and run.

    If planners wanted to convert that four- story city owned auto repair site at 11th and Reed into a triple decker parking lot, I might not be writing today, but no such plans are in the making. There seems to be a disconnect with city planners about the current evolution the Capitolo Play-ground region. Message to city planners: The cheesesteak is a great success story and so is the Italian Market. And so are the residents who preserved the commu-nity spirit and increased real estate value. This success has generated a bonanza of tourists and new dwellers. Wake up, city planners.

    So with that in mind, shouldnt we all consider the benefit and wisdom of hav-ing a new four-story, 18-unit apartment complex with five commercial stores and no onsite parking built across from Pats King of Steaks? Is there anyone with a car from Britton Estates to Bella Vista who believes there is plenty of parking in South Philly to go around? Does the zon-ing board have any idea? Id asked them to come around Capitolo Playground five nights a week at around 6 p.m. Soft-ball players need parkin