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Frankford 2012 The Year in Review

2012 was a very active year in Frankford.

A computer lab opened in the Frankford CDC office with the help of PhillyRising & Temple University. It has since become the go to place for residents who need to do a resume, job search, Financial Aid applications for college or learn new technology.

The sun set on the Frankford Special Services District which had been coordinating the cleaners on the Avenue. It was replaced in September when a grant from the City Commerce Department made it possible for the CDC to take over the cleaning task directly under the direction of Mr. Ray Gant.

It was sad to see the former Central United Methodist Church building demolished.

Church front undamaged

Church front undamaged

Two new school buildings were under construction in 2012. The addition to Frankford Friends School was completed and occupied by the end of the year. The addition to the Northwood Academy Charter school will be completed in time for the opening of school in 2013. At the same time, after 107 years, the Aria Health School of Nursing left Frankford for new facilities.

H.R. Edmund’s school was converted to a charter and opened in September as the Philadelphia Charter School for Arts and Sciences.

33 newly installed Federal military gravestones for the Union veterans buried in the “Circle of Honor” surrounding the monument at the Civil War Memorial in Cedar Hill Cemetery were re-dedicated. This year the 30 foot tall monument will be restored in time for a Memorial Day ceremony.

3 Frankford institutions were named to the Northeast Hall of Fame: Unity Monthly Meeting Frankford, founded 1682, ; Presbyterian Church of Frankford, founded 1770; and Campbell AME Church, Frankford, founded 1807, the nation’s second oldest African Methodist Episcopal Church.

After two years of planning, a rain garden came to Womrath Park. The park was reopened the week before hurricane Sandy blew through and did not get the coverage that it deserves. Womrath park now has a new look and feel and at the same time the garden acts as a device for diverting storm water away from the underground pipes during heavy rain fall.

Northwood and Frankford Civic Associations both had changes of leadership and personnel. Attendance was high in both groups throughout the year with issues to be addressed. EPIC Stakeholders continued its record of excellent programs each month. Attendance at the monthly PSA meeting has soared as residents came out to push for the resolution of safety concerns.

Flying Kite Media came to Frankford in the Fall and covered our local scene from a different point of view. They sponsored several public events that brought people to Frankford who had never been here before.

The Mural Arts Program became a reality in the triangle surrounding Womrath Park. It is the ideal location as the southern gateway to Frankford to display what the residents spoke about in the interviews conducted over the previous 6 months. They are visible from street level and from the El. The project will be completed in the Spring when the last mural goes up near St. Marks Church.

After several years of vacancy, the Frankford Y is being brought back to life by a new board and is re-branded the Northwood Frankford Community Y.

The Frankford El, with no fanfare at all From SEPTA, marked its 90th anniversary.

Philadelphia 2035 completed a plan for the lower Northeast which will shape the Frankford of the future. It is an ambitious blueprint for development.

The Frankford CDC found a sponsor for the Gazette print edition with KidzPartners and now we have a print run of 1000 copies each month which is distributed mainly along Frankford Avenue. In addition, we implemented TextBlast with the help of our friend Tim Wisniewski.

There are only a few of the highlights. Now on to 2013.