A Better Way To Incentivize Development

 

Bill 385 could support transit-oriented development (TOD) projects like Paseo Verde, seen here (from the platform of the Temple University regional rail station) in 2013 as construction was wrapping up. | Photo: Bradley Maule

The passing of Bill 385 could support transit-oriented development (TOD) projects like Asociación Puertorriqueño’s Paseo Verde, seen here (from the platform of the Temple University regional rail station) in 2013 as construction was wrapping up | Photo: Bradley Maule

  • Citified “insider” and Penn Urban Studies professor Ariel Ben-Amos urges Harrisburg to pass Senate Bill 385, a pilot measure that, if expanded, would allow the City and SEPTA to float bonds to pay for planning and construction of transit-oriented development projects. These bonds would then be recouped through various taxes—liquor, sales and use, personal income, corporate net income—generated by that redevelopment. This would be a far more effective—not to mention politically viable—alternative means of incentivizing neighborhood development than Councilman Allan Domb’s proposal from last week to extend the city’s tax abatement for properties worth less than $250,000 undergoing construction. Ben-Amos notes that over 60% of the estimated 10,000 publicly owned vacant properties throughout the city are located within a quarter-mile of rail transit.
  • KYW Newsradio spoke with some of the Temple students protesting their university’s Board of Trustees meeting yesterday, adamant that the school’s proposal for a $126 million football stadium at Broad & Norris Streets is not in the best interests of its surrounding North Philadelphia neighborhoods. “We’re getting emails about a $175 million deficit,” reflects one student protestor. “We still don’t have a sexual assault crisis center on campus; workers on campus are still paid poverty wages. We’re out here telling Temple that we don’t think a stadium should be the top priority, and we want to go to a university that respects the community around it.”
  • Local photographer Lawrence S. Williams passed away on March 5, aged 98. Curbed Philly remembers his masterful work, which for three decades focused on the historic and contemporary architecture of Philadelphia. For an extended retrospective, check out a sampling from The Athenæum of Philadelphia’s collection of a quarter-million of his shots HERE.
  • Geekadelphia explains that Dilworth Plaza is one of four sites around the country chosen by HBO for this week’s promotion of the latest Game of Thrones DVD. An animated dragon will be projected on buildings starting at 13th & Market at 8:15PM tonight.
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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