Meet the Committee Person Candidates: William Gross (2-26)

William Gross for Democratic Committee in Ward 2, Division 26 (Queen Village) Continue reading

Meet the Committee Person Candidates: Ellen Davis (2-8)

Ellen Davis for Democratic Committee in Ward 2, Division 8 (Passyunk Square) Continue reading

Meet the Committee Person Candidates: Jason Tucker (15-11)

Jason Tucker for Democratic Committee Person in Ward 15, Division 11 (Francisville) Continue reading

Meet the Committee Person Candidates: Leigh Goldenberg (1-10)

Leigh Goldenberg for Democratic Committee Person in Ward 1, Division 10 (Passyunk Square) Continue reading

Map: 100+ Urbanist Candidates Running for Committee Person

This year, Philadelphia voters will elect thousands of new Committee People to the Democratic and Republican parties in Philadelphia. Committee People are elected volunteers who make up the base of the local party organizations and these can be powerful neighborhood leadership positions. This year, there are over 100 urbanist candidates running for these positions, and they need your support. Continue reading

Put Safety Over Speed in Lincoln Drive “Restoration”

  This week, the Kenney administration announced a “restoration project” on Lincoln Drive, which primarily consists of repaving the existing roadway. We oppose the Kenney administration’s plan in its current form, which only doubles down on the dangerous status quo rather than making the critical design changes needed to fulfill Mayor Kenney’s Vision Zero campaign pledge. Continue reading

Meet the Committee Person Candidates: Stefan Zajic (18-11)

Stefan Zajic for Democratic Committee Person in Ward 18, Division 11 (Fishtown) Continue reading

Meet the Committee Person Candidates: Kerry Milch (2-24)

Kerry Milch for Democratic Committee Person in Ward 2, Division 24 (Bella Vista) Continue reading

Meet the Committee Person Candidates: Nathaniel Popkin (2-24)

Nathaniel Popkin for Democratic Committee Person in Ward 2, Division 24 (Bella Vista) Continue reading

Meet the Committee Person Candidates: Caroline Tiger (2-15)

Caroline Tiger for Democratic Committee Person in Ward 2, Division 15 (Queen Village) Continue reading


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

Map: Philly's 2019 Land Assessments

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. Adjust the values on the right side of the map to view different land value ranges.Sign up for 5th Square's newsletter for updates on this issue. Continue reading


New monthly urbanist meet-up, Blatstein's Delaware waterfront gas station, Jane's Walks Continue reading


Spruce and Pine Bike Lane Meetings, Call Council for Good Cause, TransportationCamp Continue reading


State Leg. Candidates Respond to 5th Square's 2018 Questionnaire Continue reading

181st General Assembly District Campaign Page

(181st General Assembly District) Continue reading

177th General Assembly District Campaign Page

(177th General Assembly District) Continue reading

184th General Assembly District Campaign Page

(184th General Assembly District) Continue reading

5th Square Endorses Good Cause Legislation (City Council Resolution No. 170854)

5th Square is proud to announce our endorsement for the Good Cause Eviction legislation pending before City Council (City Council Resolution No. 170854). Continue reading

Philly YIMBY | Zoning Tracker

Philly YIMBY (short for 'Yes In My Backyard') is a new initiative from 5th Square, Philly's urbanist PAC, to build grassroots support for infill housing, with the goal of increasing housing availability, affordability, and choice.  As a first step, we're rolling out a Zoning Tracker blog with zoning appeals for urbanist-friendly housing (5+ units, mixed-use, low parking,) along with a semi-weekly newsletter with the latest proposals. Sign up for our newsletter and meeting alerts for projects in your area. Send tips about RCO meetings, project information, and neighborhood chatter to [email protected] Follow Philly YIMBY on Twitter and join our Facebook group. Continue reading

West Chestnut bike lane problems, Center City's disappearing parking lots, Camden waterfront at DAG

The West Chestnut bike lane is great, but it has some real problems the City needs to fix. Read about this issue and more in this week's 5th Square newsletter. Continue reading

5th Square calls for action from City, SEPTA as ridership plummets 7% in 2016

Ridership on the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) fell 7.1% in 2016, driven by a sharp decline in bus ridership, according to data from the Federal Transit Administration’s National Transit Database (NTD). SEPTA bus ridership is at its lowest level in five years, falling 13 million trips last year, roughly 14 fewer trips per bus rider. The city’s rail and trolley lines also fell by 8 million trips.  Continue reading

Petition: Say No to Philly Council's Planter Power Grab

3rd District Councilmember Jannie Blackwell thinks you should have to get a letter of support from City Council for that planter in front of your house. We’re here to tell you how backwards this is. Continue reading

Our 2016 in Review

We took some big steps in just our second full year, and we want to share these successes with you in gratitude for all of your support. First, it's worth highlighting the most important accomplishment: urbanists are now recognized as a powerful and growing political constituency in Philadelphia. We can't claim total credit for this, of course, but it's exactly what happens when people get organized around shared interests and push for change. Continue reading

Mayor Kenney Issues Vision Zero Executive Order

Today Mayor Kenney issued an executive order that established an Office of Complete Streets as well as a Vision Zero Task Force that will be charged with identifying opportunities to eliminate traffic deaths by 2030.  Continue reading

Stand up to Big Litter in Harrisburg

Plastic bags are one of the biggest sources of litter on our streets and in our rivers, and local officials need more tools to reduce plastic bag litter, not fewer. But state lawmakers are rushing through a bill that's expected to pass that would make it harder for cities to reign in plastic bag waste and keep their streets clean. Continue reading

Goodbye, Duckboats

Ride The Ducks has terminated local operations in Philadelphia effective October 5, owing largely to high insurance premiums following a number of crashes involving pedestrians. Duckboat vehicles were designed for WWII supply transport, have extreme visibility issues, and were never intended for operation on city streets. We'd like these dangerous vehicles gone forever. Continue reading

Good Riddance, Free Parking Promos!

Earlier today, the City and the Philadelphia Parking Authority announced they will no longer continue to offer free parking promotions in Center City on Wednesday evenings and in Old City on Friday evenings.  Continue reading

5th Square Joins Vision Zero Alliance

5th Square is proud to join a broad and impressive group of organizations calling for a safer transportation network and the elimination of all traffic deaths through an aggressive and comprehensive strategy known as Vision Zero. Continue reading

Philly Needs a Safer South Broad

Every Philadelphian deserves access to a safer South Broad Street. Whether you live or work on the street or simply travel through it on foot, by bus, by bike, or by car, South Broad can be made safer and more welcoming for all by enforcing existing parking regulations and by putting the median space to better use as either a landscaped median, a protected multi-use path, or some combination of both. Sign our petition to Mayor Kenney for a safer South Broad. Continue reading

5th Square Endorses Terry Tracy, Andrew Stober for Council At-Large

Philadelphia’s urbanist PAC endorses Republican Terry Tracy and Independent Andrew Stober for at-large City Council in the November 3rd general election. Continue reading

Introducing David Curtis as Our Interim Chair

  5th Square co-founder David Curtis has begun serving as Interim Chair.   Continue reading

5th Square, Committee of Seventy, Philadelphia 3.0, and Philly Set Go submit records request for information about City Commissioner Clark

  Four civic leadership organizations committed to fair elections and good governance filed requests for information about City Commissioner Anthony Clark on Tuesday. Continue reading

Leadership Changes at The 5th Square

Philadelphia - Please join me in welcoming David Curtis as the new Interim Chair of The 5th Square. As one of the four original co-founders of our PAC, David has shown an unfailingly positive attitude and leadership style we've certainly appreciated as an organization. He is formerly the organization's Treasurer, a role fellow co-founder Jake Liefer, will now take on. Both David and Jake bring passion, vision, persistence and drive to The 5th Square. I look forward to watching them lead our PAC into the future. Continue reading

Candidate Questionnaire: Andrew Stober, City Council At Large

Earlier this year we posted candidate questionnaire responses in advance of our 5th Square endorsements and the May 19th Primary. Our candidate questionnaire was a way for voters to put City Council and Mayoral candidates on the record regarding issues we are advocating for. Educating voters on urban issues is one of our goals as a PAC. Continue reading

Good News: Councilwoman Cindy Bass Leveraging Vehicle Registration Fees to Fund Vision Zero Legislation

Vision Zero, the international movement to reduce and eliminate vehicle-related deaths and injuries, is finally coming to Philadelphia. Councilwoman City Bass of the 8th District representing Northwest Philadelphia will be introducing legislation to not only acknowledge growing consensus on the problem of traffic violence, that this past weekend claimed the lives of two young people on North Broad Street, but to properly fund the effort to build better infrastructure to help prevent these tragedies. Vision Zero is one of The 5th Square's items in our 12 point platform. We are delighted to hear this news. Continue reading

Schuylkill Seeing Green: How Park Space Supports Development, Our Schools & Our Health

One Riverside could be the easily name of a new luxury condominium tower on the western edge of Manhattan. Coincidentally it is. Just add a “Park” to the end of the name and you’ll find new developments like this popping up along more established park space like Riverside Park in Manhattan or the High Line further down the western end of the island. Hudson Yards is the capstone of billions of dollars in investment along once disused elevated rail line; The High Line that former mayor Rudy Giuliani once sought to tear down. Continue reading

Transit: 30th Street Station District Should Be an Integral Part of the City

The 30th Street Station District Plan Partners will hold an open house at 30th Street Station this evening from 4:00 to 7:00 where they will present concept diagrams for capping the rail yards between the Station, Drexel University, and the Schuylkill River.  Needless to say, this is an enormous opportunity to create a new walkable urban neighborhood in immediate proximity to Philadelphia’s biggest transportation hub.  The diagrams show, as best as a top-down view can, variations of gridded urban streetscapes with tall buildings. Continue reading

The Political Importance of Andrew Stober's Entry Into The Council-At-Large Race

Last week PlanPhilly broke news that Andrew Stober, former Chief of Staff at MOTU (Mayor's Office of Transportation and Utilities), will be running as an Independent for Council At-Large in this year's November 3 general municipal election. This presents a unique opportunity for Stober and supporters of The 5th Square. Continue reading

Dump Bill Greenlee

If you want to maximize your livable streets vote this Tuesday, the best thing you can do is leave At-Large City Councilman Bill Greenlee off your ballot. Continue reading

Candidate Blogging: Tom Wyatt on Growing Our Way Out of Poverty Through Property Tax and Business Tax Reform

Author: Thomas Wyatt When we talk about Philadelphia now, there’s optimism. At the same time, our schools are desperately under-resourced, with a graduation rate just under 65% and our unemployment rate is well above the national average. If you’re Black or Latino, you’re twice as unlikely to find a job. To break the cycle of poverty, we need good jobs. To get good jobs, we need great schools. And in Philadelphia, to get great schools in our communities, we start with fully funding them. Continue reading

Candidate Blogging: Paul Steinke on Getting Assessments & Land Value Tax Right

Author: Paul Steinke As any Philadelphia homeowner knows after Mayor Nutter’s Actual Value Initiative (AVI) was implemented, our property assessment process was in dire need of repair. Property assessments determine the amount of property taxes each property owner – whether residential or commercial – should pay. We need a system that is transparent, accurate, up to date, and efficient. I propose four changes that would accomplish these goals. Continue reading

Read the 2015 Candidates' Answers to the 5th Square Questionnaire

Last week we rolled out our endorsements for Mayor and City Council.We endorsed Jim Kenney for Mayor; Blondell Reynolds-Brown, Sherrie Cohen, Helen Gym, Paul Steinke, and Tom Wyatt for Democratic Council At-Large; Terry Tracy and Matt Wolfe for Republican Council At-Large; and Ori Feibush for the 2nd District Council seat. Continue reading

Our Endorsement Process & How We Determined Our Slate of 5th Square Candidates

The last few weeks have seen a plethora of endorsements for mayor and city council from a variety of sources. Unions, newspapers, and other PACs are weighing in on who they think is best equipped to lead us to 2019 and potentially beyond. Though these organizations have provided rationale on why or why not they are endorsing various candidates, they often have not provided much detail in the process. Continue reading

Candidate Blogging: Anthony Hardy Williams On Encouraging Philadelphians To Use Public Transit

Two weeks ago we sent The 5th Square 2015 Candidate Questionnaire to all candidates for City Council and Mayor. In that questionnaire we gave the option for candidates to reach out directly to voters via our blog. 9 different topics were offered. Below please find Anthony Hardy Williams' response to Topic 3. For the list of other topics offered and the entirety of Williams' responses to our Candidate Questionnaire, please see the link to the PDF at the bottom of this post. Please Note: posting of Candidate Questionnaire responses does not constitute a 5th Square endorsement. Candidate endorsements will be released later today.   Continue reading