Newsletter: 🎩 Run for Committeeperson / 🏆 Blatstein's Wawa Withdrawn / 📋 Shape our Questionnaire / 🏙️ Need Public Housing in West Philly

Weekly Newsletter, Issue 167

Philadelphia's political parties are holding local elections at the precinct level in 2022, and you can run for and win a seat in your neighborhood with just a few dozen votes. The next ward committee election is in May of 2022, and petitions start around Valentine's Day. It only takes 10 signatures to get your name on the ballot.

Why does this matter? 5th Square's mission is all about reforming Philadelphia's planning politics around transportation, housing, and public space, and elected officials really listen to grassroots community leaders on these topics. That could be you!

Sign up for more info about how to get involved in running where you live


Right now, we are working on our 2022 questionnaire for candidates for the State House Representatives and want your input! Submit questions for us to to include in our questionnaire here.


Help us decide which Philly-area candidates to support for 2022 races in the PA State Senate and PA State House.

Members will gain exclusive access to vote on our candidate endorsements and can join our discussion to shape our priorities for the upcoming election cycle.

Become a 5th Square member TODAY

Annual Subscriber, $60 per yearMonthly Subscriber, $5 per monthOne Year of Membership, Starting at $60

Kick off 2022 by helping us advocate for a more sustainable, walkable, and bicycle-friendly Philadelphia!


Back in 2019, we rallied with neighbors to fight a Super Wawa suburban-style gas station / convenience store proposed for Columbus Blvd and Tasker Ave. This would have put in jeopardy plans for a walkable, bikeable, and mixed-use Delaware River waterfront.

We are happy to report, after a zoning board rejection and a protracted battle in court, that the developer, Bart Blatstein, has abandoned this proposal.


In an Op-Ed for WHYY's PlanPhilly, West Philly neighbor and 5th Square member Leonard Bonarek makes the argument for more public housing in his neighborhood to counteract the inevitable displacement that will stem from a historic investment to his community school by Penn.

Source: Kimberly Paynter/WHYY

"I and others are fighting against Penn's self-serving choice of my kid's school as one for it to support, but if we lose that fight, there's another option".


5th Square transit committee member Alex Davis made his latest YouTube video covering the world of Amtrak history, politics and legal obscurity to figure out just how hard it will be for this agency to expand with its new-found infrastructure money.


Pennsylvania Post-Pandemic Public Transit and Mobility Demand: General Public Survey - Please take this brief online survey to tell us a bit about your past, current, and future travel behaviors by Friday, February 4. The information you provide will assist the Pennsylvania Transportation Advisory Committee in painting a picture of the state’s future public transportation system and the overall transportation needs in Pennsylvania.

PennDOT has opened a Virtual Public Meeting showing the future plans for Cobbs Creek Parkway & 63rd Street. Available until 2/16/22.




Washington Post / Opinion | Why cars and cities are a bad match.

Transportation For America / Our solutions for congestion are worse than the problem

CNN / Double-decker highways are back. But they're not going to solve traffic jams


SEPTA Forward Bus Revolution - Transit Talk: Year 2 Kick-off

Thursday, Feb 3, 2022 06:30 PM

SEPTA invites you to attend a virtual Transit Talk for an update on plans to revolutionize our bus system with a comprehensive bus network redesign. Join us to learn more about the State of the System report, Market Analysis, Route Evaluation profiles, and survey results - all of which will be published on the project website.

Virtual Town Hall - Philadelphia Peace Plaza

Wednesday, February 9, 2022 at 5:30 PM

The City of Philadelphia Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy (OACCE), Philadelphia Commission on Human Relations (PCHR), and Office of Immigrant Affairs (OIA) invite the community to a virtual Town Hall discussion about the Statue of Peace project, now known as the Philadelphia Peace Plaza.

This proposed public art installation and newly renovated public space will be located at 805 S. Front Street in the Queen Village neighborhood of Philadelphia.

ULI Philadelphia: Multifamily - Shifts in the Suburbs

Thursday, Mar 3, 2022, 8:30 AM - 10:30 AM EST

Join the ULI Philadelphia Housing Council as we explore a “Shift in the Suburbs” and discuss the challenges and opportunities facing residential development in Philadelphia’s neighboring counties.


2022 AARP Community Challenge - The AARP Community Challenge provides small grants to fund quick-action projects that can help communities become more livable for people of all ages. This year, applications will be accepted for projects to improve public spaces, housing, transportation and civic engagement; support diversity, equity and inclusion; build engagement for programs under new federal laws; and pursue innovative ideas that support people age 50 or older. Deadline: Tuesday, March 22

West Philadelphia Skills Initiative - Patient Services Representative program built in partnership with Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP). This program focuses on connecting participants to sustainable long-term strategies for gaining employment, retaining employment, and advancing at work. Graduates of this program can earn the opportunity to interview for Patient Service Representative openings with CHOP. Due 2/11

The Pennsylvania Department of Conservation & Natural Resources is now accepting applications for the 2022 round of Community Conservation Partnership Program grants. Applications accepted until April 6. More information:

The #PhilaLandBank has issued an RFP for Pastor James Allen. Land Bank is soliciting proposals from developers to acquire and develop 25 parcels located in Philadelphia’s Haddington neighborhood for affordable homeownership. Get more RFP info Due 2/28


City of Philadelphia - The Managing Director’s Office of Transportation, Infrastructure, & Sustainability (OTIS) / Transit Program Manager, Transportation Engagement Coordinator

The University of Pennsylvania - Data Driven Discovery Initiative / Postdoctoral Fellow

PHILADELPHIA250 / Director of Programs

CIC Philadelphia / Director of Sales & Strategic Partnerships

SEPTA / Senior Transit Data Analyst in the Office of Innovation

Working Families Party / Campaign Services Manager - Mid Atlantic

City of Philadelphia / Community Initiatives Specialist

Fairmount Park Conservancy / Volunteer Program Manager


Philadelphia Office of Sustainability /

The University of Pennsylvania / Manager, Research Project C (Emergency Medicine)

The Painted Bride Art Center / Project Manager

The Philadelphia Inquirer / Senior Politics Editor

Generation180 / State Director, Pennsylvania (contract position)

Philadelphia Parking Authority / PARKING ENFORCEMENT OFFICER (PEO)

Billy Penn / Investigative Reporter, Deputy Editor

The School District of Philadelphia / Substitute Teacher

The Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission (DVRPC) / Environmental/Active Transportation Planner

Fairmount Community Development Corporation (FCDC) / Business Services Manager

The Philadelphia Energy Authority (PEA) / Program Manager

The William Penn Foundation / Investment Analyst

Glitter / Part Time Marketing Lead

Philadelphia’s Office of Sustainability (OOS) / Program Strategist for Place-Based Initiatives, Program Manager, Infrastructure and Floodplain Resilience, Food Policy Advisory Council Manager,

CHOP / Vice President | Development Administration | Foundation

LISC / Program Officer, Equitable Neighborhoods

Kensington Corridor Trust (KCT) / Construction Project Manager

Fastmail /

Connect the Dots / Project Manager, Community Engagement

PIRG / Transportation Advocate

Reinvestment Fund / Senior Policy Analyst – Southeast

Starfinder Foundation / Director, Development & Communications, Finance Assistant (Part Time), Operations Manager, Impact Manager, Development Assistant

City of Philadelphia - Office of Innovation and Technology (OIT) / Multiple openings

Next City / Senior Editor

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

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