Newsletter: 📢 Tonight! Washington Ave open house / 🚌 SEPTA budget hearing / 🤝 Members & Candidates Mixer

Weekly Newsletter, Issue 170


The city is holding a public Open House for Washington Ave tonight, March 1st @ 6:30 PM, to unveil the final plans. It will be held in person at the Christian Street YMCA (1724 Christian St), following COVID-19 guidelines, and a virtual option on Facebook Live.


This Thursday, March 3rd at 10 AM or 4 PM - SEPTA is holding public hearings for amendments to their 2022 Capital Budget.

SEPTA is using $95 million of additional revenue from the federal infrastructure bill to amend the FY22 capital budget, and looks like they made some great choices! They are investing more in Trolley Modernization, Bus Revolution, and improving ADA compliance at several stations--all things we want to see come to completion.

If you are interested in testifying virtually, reply to this email and we will follow up with instructions on how to register and talking points.


Did you sign up for a membership already? Come join us at Buffalo Billiards in Old City and get to know the candidates running in your district, hear their takes on urbanist topics, and sign their petitions to get on the ballot.

Thursday, March 10th, 2022 at 6:30 PM

We will be welcoming candidates for the upcoming PA State legislative races ahead of the upcoming primary on May 17th. This event will kick off our membership voting period to determine our endorsements for the 2022 election cycle. We will also be posting candidate questionnaire responses as they come in.


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. 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!


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!


Join 5th Square and friends for a guest talk by Brookings Metro Senior Fellow Dr. Jenny Schuetz at Woodland Presbyterian Church near 42nd and Baltimore Ave.

Thursday, March 17th at 6:30pm

Fixer Upper: How to Repair America's Broken Housing Systems is the first book assessing how the broad set of local, state, and national housing policies affect people and communities.

Light refreshments (pizza, beer, and seltzer) will be served. Copies of the book will be available for purchase.

Note: Attendees must present evidence of full vaccination to be admitted.


5th Square members James Gitto and Daniel Trubman were quoted in a recent Streetsblog USA article about resistance to lane decreases and general road safety improvements.

Trubman: “At this point, I see this as equity being used as a fig leaf to double down on the inequitable policies of the last century – prioritizing cars over the safety of people. […] When you look at some of these census tracts, the majority of households don’t even own cars. So I think it borders on farcical to demand that streets remain unsafe because of equity issues. I find it disgusting, and frankly, I find it cowardly.”


DVRPC may be issuing a grant to SEPTA for improvement to the 19th and 37th Street trolley stations to make them fully ADA accessible. Voice your approval for this project to the DVRPC board!

The Office of the City Controller is seeking volunteers to serve on a Community Advisory and Accountability Council (Community Council), as part of an independent review of the Philadelphia Police Department.

The City of Philadelphia wants to hear from you about your housing and neighborhood, including what happened the last time you looked for housing. Your answers will help shape our plans to address our housing needs. The survey is in English, Spanish, Chinese, Vietnamese, Russian, French, Portuguese, and Arabic. Be sure to send it to your neighbors!



Grid Magazine / Everything I know about Philadelphia’s plans to clear 120 acres of city-owned forest for a new golf course

Philadelphia Inquirer / New approval process for Philly streeteries gets delayed

The Philadelphia Citizen / Will We Save the Meadows That Saved Us? (Guest commentary)

Philadelphia Inquirer / How a redesign of Washington Avenue got detoured by a clash of competing needs



Making Good Streeteries Permanent / Making Permanent Streeteries Good

Thu, March 3, 2022, 6:00 PM – 7:30 PM EST

Design Advocacy Group is hosting a virtual roundtable discussion on the design of Philadelphian streeteries. We’ll share some photographs of what seems to look good—and what doesn’t, ask for your feedback, and a consult with a panel of select stakeholders, and then open the floor for your ideas about how the streets and sidewalks of Philadelphia should look.

ULI Philadelphia: Multifamily - Shifts in the Suburbs

Thursday, March 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.

DAG Monthly Event: To the Future! Rail Park Feasibility Study Results and Next Steps

Thursday, March 24, 10:00 AM – 11:30 AM EST

The Rail Park is a vision for a three mile linear park and multi-use pathway connecting 10+ Philadelphia neighborhoods and 50 city blocks along the site of former Reading and Pennsylvania Railroad lines. Friends of the Rail Park commissioned a cost estimate and feasibility study in 2021 to determine a viable next phase of the Rail Park, and better understand how the Rail Park can contribute to comprehensive community development. Friends of the Rail Park’s Executive Director, Rebecca Cordes Chan, will share the preliminary results of this work and the path forward. Registration is required. Free.



HOT•BED art installation open call - In partnership with Drexel University and The Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) of Philadelphia. They are seeking 8-10 artists or artist teams to develop art installations to raise awareness of plastic pollution and its impact on the watershed. They will be displayed in prominent commercial lobbies across the city during the summer of 2022. Call for Submissions closes March 15, 2022 at 11:59 PM.

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

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:


Philadelphia City Council / Social Media Coordinator

Makom Community /

Germantown United / Business Development Manager

Schuylkill River Greenways / Trails Project Manager

Bicycle Transit Systems /

Tacony CDC / Executive Director

Tiny WPA /

Oracle / Senior Manager or Director, Analyst Relations

The Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission (DVRPC) /

Green Building United / Executive Director

City of Philadelphia /

Independence Blue Cross / Health Equity Program Manager

Montgomery County, PA / Planner

Congreso de Latinos Unidos / External Affairs Coordinator

Spring Point Partners LLC / Senior Program Officer, Ember

Econsult / Various positions (Analysts, internships)

Carbon Switch / Senior Staff Writer

FabYouthPhilly / Various positions

The Norris Square Community Alliance Zoning Committee is looking for new members. The Committee runs regular meetings about construction projects in the neighborhood that are seeking zoning variances, and engages with both residents and developers. Candidates should live in Norris Square (bounded by Berks, 5th, Lehigh, Kensington, and Front St) and can contact [email protected] for more information.

Amtrak / Program Manager

Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia / Manager of Membership and Annual Giving

Wexford Science & Technology / Assistant Director, Development

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

CIC Philadelphia / Director of Sales & Strategic Partnerships

Philadelphia Office of Sustainability /

The Painted Bride Art Center / Project Manager

The Philadelphia Inquirer / Senior Politics Editor

Generation180 / State Director, Pennsylvania (contract position)

Billy Penn / Investigative Reporter, Deputy Editor, Development & Engagement Manager

The Philadelphia Energy Authority (PEA) / Program Manager

The William Penn Foundation / Investment Analyst

CHOP / Vice President | Development Administration | Foundation

PIRG / Transportation Advocate

Reinvestment Fund / Senior Policy Analyst – Southeast

Starfinder Foundation / various positions

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

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