Saving Room For Arts & Culture

 

La Peg at FringeArts | Photo by Kevin Monko, via Philadelphia magazine

La Peg at FringeArts | Photo by Kevin Monko, Philadelphia magazine

  • As Philadelphia’s building boom and the economic development that it engenders become the new normal, Fringe Arts’ Nick Stuccio argues that its officials, planners, and developers would be wise to include the arts and culture sector into their evolving vision of the city’s built environment. Stuccio cites his organization’s redevelopment of the old Fire Department pumping house at Columbus Boulevard & Race Street as a proven model, one in which they have embedded their “work as an arts presenter within the fabric of the city’s nightlife.” Without such a culture plan, he fears “the arts and culture sector will be left in the dust.”
  • Work on the renovation of the Germantown’s Chelten-Greene Plaza is expected to begin early next year, reports Flying Kite, this after the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission’s announced last month that it would award $370,000 in federal TAP (Transportation Alternatives Program) dollars, to be matched by the Commerce Department. “We want to redesign it in a way that maximizes space, utilizes it to the fullest, [and] allows for some sort of programming to happen there,” says city planner Matt Wysong. The intersection of Chelten Avenue & Greene Street is a busy one, with a prominent bus stop, a library branch, and a charter school close by. Vernon Park, also adjacent, is only circuitously accessible, as a metal fence blocks the way. Wysong explains that that fence will be removed and a promenade will laid to connect the park with the improved plaza.
  • Over at Philadelphia magazine, Sandy Smith reviews some of the weightier infrastructure projects that SEPTA has in store for during the 2017 fiscal year: $168 million on vehicle acquisitions and overhauls, $99.7 million for financial obligations, $77.2 million on the implementation of SEPTA Key, $43.5 million on safety renewal projects, $33 million on bridge repairs and replacements, and another $7 million for renovation of the 15th Street – City Hall station complex.
  • La Salle University’s journalism website, Germantown Beat, profiles the Miraculous Medal Shrine in East Germantown, a Romanesque (with Greek Orthodox elements) chapel that draws some 68,000 visitors each year.
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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