5TH SQUARE WEEKLY NEWSLETTER: APRIL 25, 2018

ZBA punts on Blatstein sprawl plan, Francisville downzoning, West Philly eviction rally

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ACTION ITEMS 

Darrell Clarke is trying once again to downzone big sections of Francisville at the request of new residents who want to keep out multifamily housing, and against the wishes of long-time community leaders like Penelope Giles of Francisville Neighborhood Development Corporation. If you live in the Francisville area or just want to help organize against Clarke's zoning remapping bill, FNDC will be talking about it at their monthly meeting this Thursday, April 26th at the Francisville Rec Center (1737 Francis Street) from 6-8 pm.  

The Zoning Board of Adjustment punted on Bart Blatstein's waterfront sprawl plan at their meeting last week, but the fight's not over. The hearing will be rescheduled in 30 days, and we'll let you know when that meeting is scheduled. If you live east of Broad, call Councilman Mark Squilla and tell him you want the ZBA to vote NO on Blatstein's zoning variance: mark.squilla@phila.gov, (215) 686-3458


EVENTS

Friday, April 27, 7:00 pm
Code for Philly Civic Engagement Launchpad
The Civic Engagement Launchpad is a month-long community initiative to launch public, open source, and multi-disciplinary projects. Evolving from weekend hackathons, launchpads provide the resources, setting, and framework for teams and individuals who want to make a positive impact. The event welcomes anyone who wants to engage with their fellow citizens and local government. The best teams bring together a diverse set of talents and experiences.

Monday, April 30, 4:00 pm
Dorset/Admiral Court Mass Eviction Rally 
A West Philly landlord is trying to illegally evict dozens of people with just six days notice, without a rental license. The Philadelphia Tenants Union is holding a rally and press conference on Monday at 4 pm, at 4701 Locust St. This illustrates why Council needs to pass the Good Cause eviction protections bill, and provide Philly renters with the same level of housing security and displacement protections they've put in place for homeowners

Thursday, May 3, 6:00 pm
Riverwards Urbanists Walking Tour + Meet-up
Live in Fishtown, Northern Liberties, or Kensington and want to meet other people interested in urbanist issues like transit, housing and zoning, architecture and design, and safer streets for walking and biking? There's a walking tour and social meet-up next Thursday, featuring a walking tour of the "Frankford Ave Connector" area with staff from Delaware River Waterfront Corporation and PORT Urbanism, followed by a social meet-up upstairs at Front Street Cafe.

Friday May 4, 5:00 pm
The effect of PennDOT roads on university safety
Drexel University is an urban school surrounded by state roads. These routes prioritize vehicle speed over pedestrian safety. Join 5th Square volunteer Dave Brindley on a Jane's Walk walking tour of University City's problem streets, and a conversation about the simple changes that would yield safer and streets for pedestrians and cyclists.


NEWS

The Office of Property Assessment's 2019 assessments are out, and many have noted some odd patterns in the land assessments. 5th Square volunteer Aaron Bauman created this interactive map of land assessments alone to help residents, journalists, and decision-makers continue to research the issue and fix Philadelphia's unfair land assessments.

As Philly awaits the results of Jarrett Walker's analysis of SEPTA's bus network, New York City is committing to rolling out some impressive bus network reforms like all-door boarding that we should also be looking at.

Density is goodf or the city's economy, even aside from the affordability arguments for it.

Nobody seems to like the new LOVE Park



OPPORTUNITIES

Urban Land Institute - Philadelphia is hiring an Associate

NKCDC is hiring a Housing Advisor

TRA is hiring a Project Analyst

Grassroots Community Foundation is hiring a Program Fellow

The Philadelphia Parks Alliance is hiring a community outreach manager/organizer

The West Philly Tool Library is hiring a part-time Program Manager

The City's Millennial Committee is looking for new members



5th Square is Philadelphia's urbanist political action committee.
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