Newsletter: ❄️ So close to our Philly Phreeze goal! / 🍴 Streetery recap / 🍻 Candidate Meet & Greet Events

Weekly Newsletter, Issue 220


The chill of winter may make us long for a summer day by the pool, but our public pools are still in jeopardy. Parks and Rec needs more lifeguards and updated buildings, otherwise pools will have to stay closed.

Well maintained public spaces are vital to curb violence, but are also fun for everyone in a neighborhood. This is where you come in--5th Square will match your donation here dollar-for-dollar up to $2,500, and we only have $1200 more to go!

  • Donations $60 and above will get you 5th Square membership for 12 months, which gains exclusive access to vote on our candidate endorsements.

  • The first 10 people who donate over $100 will be invited to join us in jumping into a phreezing Kelly Pool on Saturday, February 25th!


If you're a new member but jumping in an outdoor pool sounds too cold, come warm up with two events! We will be joined by candidates for the Mayor and City Council running in the upcoming primary on May 16th. This will be a great opportunity to come and get to know the candidates and start conversations around roadway safety, public space, public transit and housing. These events will kick off our membership voting period to determine our endorsements for the 2023 election cycle.

Are you a candidate that wants to attend this meetup? Consider filling out our candidate questionnaire, too! It's mostly yes/no questions based on our platform, with space to elaborate if the issue is more complex.


5th Square member Asia Mieleszko wrote a great article about the streetery debacle for the Strong Towns blog. Strong Towns is a group that advocates for more human-centric city design. Mieleszko talked to two local establishments, Stina Pizzeria and Good Dog Bar. It was difficult for both of them to deal with the difficulty of the new streetery guidelines, and resulted in loss of business. The piece is a great recap of what went down and for those elsewhere to learn from the City's missteps.

From Stina Pizzeria, streetery before and after the ordinance.

"Even for those in the approved districts, the regulations mandated design standards and, according to several restaurant owners, offered too tight of a timeline to build everything up to code. According to the Streets Department, permit processes could take up to 30 days before approval, and that includes paying over $1,700 for a license, in addition to making necessary structural changes." [Read more...]

If you are thinking about becoming a member, now is the perfect time to join! Join us and help choose our endorsements in this important election cycle. Become a 5th Square member today!

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


Our Citywide Issue Platform is out, focused on our core issues:

  • Roadway Safety
  • Public Space
  • Transportation & Transit
  • Housing & Land Use

If you know someone running for Mayor or City Council and would like our endorsement, send them the questionnaire or reach out to us at [email protected] for more info on our endorsement process.


ULI Philadelphia: Parking Wars

Thursday, March 9th from 8:30 AM - 10:30 AM EST
Venue in Center City TBD

Join ULI Philadelphia and the NEXT 2022 Cohort for a lively discussion on the future of parking. Hear from our expert panelists (Anne Fadullon, Frank Robinson, Jon Geeting, Leslie S. Richards) about their vision for the region amid current and future intersections of the TOD boom, public transit, the electric vehicle wave, as well as the rising density and demand for parking. We look forward to exploring the regional impact of car-centered planning, case studies of successful parking management programs in comparable cities, and other potential uses for our region’s inventory of car storage. Tickets range from $30 to $80.

The Future of The Roundhouse

Thursday, March 9th @ 10am (via Zoom)

The former Police Administration Building at 7th and Race Streets, known colloquially as The Roundhouse, was conceived in the late 1950s during the progressive administration of Mayor Richardson Dilworth. Completed in 1962, The Roundhouse soon entered a dark phase due to associations with destructive urban renewal programs and brutal, racist policing. That said, the Roundhouse can and should be repurposed as an opportunity to wrestle with and reclaim the building’s unintended legacy as a symbol of police oppression. Join Design Advocacy Group, Andy Toy, Paul Steinke, and Ian Litwin to discuss more. Register here.

BUILDPhilly Mayoral Forum

Tuesday, March 14 from 8:00 AM — 10:30 AM EST
Kimmel Center (300 S Broad St)

Join BUILDPhilly (Built environment, Urban, Infrastructure, Land use, and Development) and the Democratic candidates to be Philadelphia's next mayor. BUILDPhilly is a coalition of professional organizations and nonprofits addressing issues in the City of Philadelphia related to the built environment.

Vision Zero Conference 2023

Friday, March 31st from 9:00am to 3:30pm.
Temple University Student Center South (1755 N 13th St)

Join Bicycle Coalition for the 2023 Vision Zero Conference focusing on approaches to Vision Zero that help move toward an equitable future. The conference will be followed at 4:00pm by the 2023 Better Mobility Mayoral Forum, where the Philadelphia mayoral candidates will have an opportunity to speak about their views on sustainable mobility and Vision Zero. Daniel Pearson, Inquirer Editorial Writer, will moderate the discussion. Tickets are on sale now, ranging in price from $20-$95.




Community Green Grants Program
Deeply Rooted is a community-academic collaborative that uses the healing power of nature to promote
health and wellbeing in Black and Brown Philadelphia neighborhoods. Proposed grant activities and programs must directly benefit one of four initial Deeply Rooted communities - Kingsessing, Cobbs Creek, Haddington or Mill Creek. Priority will be given to applicants located within these neighborhoods.
Proposals should relate to greenspace or nature through innovation, improvement, organizing, or entrepreneurship. Applicants can be individuals or community-based organizations or groups and must be located in West or Southwest Philadelphia. Community leaders and Urban Health Lab staff will evaluate proposals based on impact, creativity, feasibility, and alignment to the goals of Deeply Rooted.
Virtual info session on Feb. 20 from 7-8pm via Zoom. The application deadline is March 3rd at 5pm. Grants will be announced by April 14, 2023.

Vision Zero Conference Poster Application
Postering will take place in the main conference room, where speakers and attendees will have opportunities to explore prior to, between, and after plenary and breakout sessions. Bicycle Coalition will provide poster stands at numbered locations around the room for easy identification by both authors and attendees. Backing boards are not provided. Applications are due by February 17. There is no application fee, but for-profit companies have a $150 fee due if your poster proposal is accepted. (Students and nonprofits are free.) Accepted applicants will receive one complimentary ticket to the 2023 Vision Zero PHL Conference on March 31, 2023. More information is available here.

Community Conservation Partnerships Program Grants
Counties, municipalities and municipal agencies, pre-qualified land trusts, nonprofits and other eligible organizations can apply now for state conservation, recreation, trail and related grants. Administered by the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, the Community Conservation Partnerships Program (C2P2) is funded with a variety of state and federal funding sources including Pennsylvania’s natural gas Impact Fee. Applications will be accepted through April 5. Online tutorials are available on YouTube to aid organizations in the application process.


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

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