Toll Brothers Scale Back Plans For Society Hill Playhouse Replacement


The Society Hill Playhouse at 8th & Lombard will close on April 1 | Photo: Plan Philly

The Society Hill Playhouse at 8th & Lombard will close on April 1 | Photo: PlanPhilly

  • Toll Brothers has decided to forgo its controversial proposal to construct a 17-unit condominium project where the Society Hill Playhouse now stands at 8th & Lombard Streets, reports PlanPhilly. While that structure is still to be demolished soon after the theatre company departs on April 1, its replacement will elicit less backlash from neighbors, who had thought the original 51-foot-tall building design too incongruous with their lower density homes. The Horsham-based development firm will instead opt to construct, by-right, 20 rental units in keeping with the current 38-foot height limit.
  • Councilman Mark Squilla, representative of the district that is home to the vast majority of Philadelphia’s nationally prominent music venues, unwittingly procured himself a deluge of hate mail yesterday after Gawker picked picked up  blog Billy Penn’s piece reporting his proposal to require the contact information of all musical artists to be shared with city officials (not to be permanently kept on file, we are rather unconvincingly assured) prior to performing in the city in order to allow the police department veto power over special assembly licenses (SAOLs). Critics—nearly 10,000 have signed an online petition against the motion—allege that such authority is arguably racist, and would do much to harm Philly’s music scene. An official statement from the councilman’s office has done little to allay fears that the regulation would be abused by authorities.
  • NewsWorks’ Tom MacDonald looks at a private-public partnership now underway to fight both recidivism and urban blight. The $500,000 “land care re-entry initiative,” realized in part by the efforts of Councilman Kenyatta Johnson, aims to employ ex-convicts with the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society to beautify 2,000 of the city’s vacant lots. “We cannot arrest our way out of the situation,” stressed Johnson. “People will go away on state roads, they will go away to Graterford. But at the end of the day, people will return to the communities.  I am proud to stand here to be supportive of this particular initiative that focuses on not only reforming individuals coming home from our criminal justice system but also addressing the issue of blight,” said Johnson
About the author

Stephen Currall recently received his BA in history from Arcadia University. Before beginning doctoral studies, he is pursuing his interest in local history, specifically just how Philadelphians engage their vibrant past. Besides skimming through 18th century letters, Steve is also interested in music and travel.

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