The issue of housing for those in recovery programs has surfaced again on the 4700 block of Leiper Street.
There are presently two large houses being used for this purpose. The Joy of Living program at 4716 Leiper is well known. In addition there is another residence at 4747. Mary, the owner of 4719 recently found out that the house next to her, 4717 has been purchased by the owner of Joy of Living. She is concerned that it will be used as a residence for those in recovery. The question is, how many houses of this type can one block support. This is not a case of “Not in my back yard” but more of concern of how the neighborhood can support the density of concentration of short time residents. Northwood Civic and those attending the meeting voiced their concern and pledge support. Jason Dawkins also committed to setting up a meeting between the owner of the property and Joy of Living.
Mary says: “My family feels trapped here on Leiper Street, sandwiched in.. having to accept the constant turnover of neighbors on every side of us. Constantly there are people coming and going on this block, no peace and quiet. Men that we do not know hang outside, from very early to late at night, smoking cigarettes and talking inappropriate dialogue for a residential neighborhood. The environment here is starting to feel like a bus station. It is a terrible feeling knowing that you will never get to know who will be living next door to you (on every side). I feel that eventually all families are going to choose to move away because leaders of the community are not acting on their promises. Promises like limiting the concentration and overpopulation of transient like living. People like myself with kids are going to chose to move away to a better place more conducive to family life. Surrendering the block and the neighborhood entirely to passersby.”
In other news from the meeting on September 15th:
- Joe Krause, Presdent of the Civic, reported that he had sent a letter of support to the zoning board for Amuneal Manufacturing for their application for a paint booth at their new facility on Torresdale Avenue. A letter was also sent to support the application of the owner of 1301 Fillmore who wanted to add take out food to the services provided at their store. These letters are in the interest of giving the neighborhood a voice in zoning issues. At present the ZBA only requires applicants to appear before the Frankford NAC for approval. The NAC has instructions to allow only residents living within two blocks of the applicant to vote on the issue. The result is that a few people who attend a meeting are giving a disproportionate voice in determining the future.
- The homeless veteran who had been living in his car on Herbert Street has moved. He caused no trouble and residents were more concerned about him the frightened.
- The Castor Avenue traffic study has moved to stealth mode using radar guns. This is to collect data and is not an enforcement tool. By the time you read this it will be over but the data will be used to make recommendations for speed control.
- Bandit signs are back. Call 311 and take pictures if you report them on a mobile app. There is a fine for each one they put up.
The next meeting of the Northwood Civic Assocation will be held on October 2oth at 7 PM at St. James Church at Castor Avenue and Pratt Street.