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New Philly Media Outlet Metropolis Produces In Depth Expose On Frankford

We got an email from Mike  Newall a month ago looking to do an interview a couple weeks ago for a story about crime and development in Frankford for a new Philly-centered news website called Metropolis.  Inside his four part series he scored some notable misses(like Friends restaurant was opened for under a year, it was Mozaic that opened during a so-called reneasance). Anyways check out all of his piece, it’s nice to see Frankford get some in depth attention.  Although it does make me cringe when the title of part one is “The Frankford Story: In a Free Fall”.  It’s like he asked someone from Mayfair for the title.  If he had come in and done just that story it would have been the regular bullshit that Frankford gets from the area media.  I am so sick of hearing where Frankford has been.  Yes it sucks.  I know how awesome it used to be.  Try telling me why it sucks now and point out some things I can do to start changing it.  So this bastard spends the next three articles doing just that.  It is by far the most comprehensive report on the past, present and future of this neighborhood I have ever seen.  And it’s a testament to this so-called “media revolution” that it should come out of a web based outfit as opposed to print. If paper and ink are too valuable to waste on forgotten places like Frankford, then let the printing presses die.

Part 2 covers the crime and drugs. Crime reporting to me is generally sensational, but tell me everything you can come up with about the drugs, especially about the drug rehab houses which he talks at length in part 3.  I think the more residents know about how they open up and operate, the better prepared they are to fight it.

Part 4 is my favorite and most important to helping understand what’s going in Frankford now.

Here’s a quote from the piece about the political infighting I always considered too nuanced to even try bringing up:

Factions at war

It’s civic and business organizations are beset by nasty political fighting. Frankford has had had three city council representatives in the last four years – Rick Mariano, Dan Savage, and now Maria Quinones-Sanchez. All three have tried to stuff the boards of the local organizations with their own followers and now it’s all a big mess.

The Frankford Civic Association has had some recent success in fighting the zoning of recovery houses. But the civic consists almost entirely of Savage supporters seemingly more focused on winning the former councilman his seat back than taking bold action for Frankford. For her part, councilwoman Quinones-Sanchez has been no great friend to civic association, seemingly putting politics above constituent need.

“The political fighting is destroying the neighborhood,” said Rita Lugrine, a member of the Frankford Community Development Corporation.

But at the end of the day, what am I, a lone resident, able to do to help?

“We’ve been telling the community folks, pick a parcel of land, come up with an idea, shop it around to developers,” said Michael Thompson of the City Planning Commission.

I’m gonna think on this one, I’ll get back to this.

Overall I’m a huge fan on this piece of reporting, if this is how the future of reporting is going to be, it’s going to be an exciting time, not just for Frankford, but for any forgotten section of Philly. Mike Newall is a Philadelphia reporter who writes about neighborhoods. Yeah he does.

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Northwood Civic Association

At their meeting last week the Northwood Civic Association voted to approve a new car wash in the Juniata Plaza shopping center on Castor Avenue reports the Northeast Times in this weeks edition.  Read all about that and the other issues they are working on now in the Northeast Times.

car wash

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Frankford Civic Association

The Northeast Times projects the agenda for the meeting of the Frankford Civic Association this Thursday.

Developer Vaughan Buckley wants to build 16 rental units at 1710 Pratt St., a few blocks from Frankford Avenue near Duffield Street. Buckley came before the civic association May 7 because he wants members’ OK for a zoning variance he needs to build on the property. The parcel currently is zoned for one structure.

Also at the June 4 session, members expect to hear more about city inspections of neighborhood drug rehabilitation facilities and recovery houses.

Sounds like another meeting that everyone will want to attend.

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Frankford Civic Association Meeting

The Frankford Civic Association Met on Thursday May 7th at Frankford Hospital.  Over 30 were in attendance.  On the agenda for the meeting:

  • Dan McElhatton, candidate for the nomination for District Attorney on the Democratic party primary, made his pitch for your vote.  YOu can check out what he has to say at this link.
  • Jason Dawkins of Maria Quinonnes-Sanchez office updated the group on the activities of the task force charged with addressing the growth recovery house businesses in Frankford.  Jason made the point that they are not targeting properly run and licensed businesses.


    Jason Dawkins adddresses the Frankford Civic Association

  • A developer outlined a proposal to build 16 affordable rental houses on a lot near Pratt and Duffield Streets.

The next meeting of the Frankford Civic Association is scheduled for June 4th.

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Frankford Civic Shows Some Teeth

Close to 50 people crowded into the conference room last night at Frankford Hospital for the Frankford Civic Association meeting.  Concern about  the possibility of a recovery house at 1522/24 Church Street, in a residential area,  so close to a church and school, seems to be having an effect.

Related to that issue, Jason Dawkins, of Maria Quinones-Sanchez office noted that a Frankford stakeholders meeting is scheduled for next week to update the community on the progress being made on the overall problem of the drug businesses in Frankford.  This is not a public  meeting so hopefully news will get out.

Zoning issues were discussed with approval given for several applicants.  However, the representatives of one applicant were sent packing after being confronted with evidence gathered by the Civic that work was being done to the property without permits and of doubtful quality.  Frankford just will not put up with this foolishness any longer.  The Civic has given notice, do it right or don’t do it.

A new applicant for the expansion of a business on Frankford Avenue, along with his representative, made his presentation and did a very professional  job of informing the Civic of his proposed plans.  That was a model for how the process should be.

The next meeting of the Frankford Civic Association will be on May 7th.