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Frankford Civic Approves the Fence for Karr-Parts

Pete McElroy

At the meeting on Tuesday, December 6th, the board of the Frankford Civic voted to support a zoning variance for an 8 foot tall fence to enclose the lot at 1709 Gillingham Street. The lot will be used by Karr-Parts for storage of its vehicles.  The business has been a long time resident of the neighborhood and there were no objections to the fence. The variance is required for an 8 foot fence since it is outside of the standard for the code.  A 6 foot fence would require no variance but would not provide the owner with the necessary security.

20 residents attended the meeting which also featured:

Peter McElroy from Philadelphia School Partnership  made a presentation on the new web site  The site provides a source of information for families to compare schools when making a choice for their child.  It is user friendly and has information for comparing public, charter and parochial schools.

Kathy Cruz

Kathy Kruz, Citizen’s Engagement Coordinator at Philly311, spoke about the 311 system and highlighted the new mobile app that was recently released.

Manny Citron of PhillyRising gave an update on their activities.

There was some informal discussion on the recent policing activities.  In addition, the residents of the 5000 block of Griscom street noted that two properties are being rehabbed by new owners which has had a positive effect on life on their block.

The next Frankford Civic Association meeting will be on January 10th at 7PM at Aria Hospital.



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AmeriCorps in Frankford

From Manny Citron of PhillyRising:

PhillyRising is working with a team of volunteers from the AmeriCorps to do some clean up work around the city. The National Civilian Community Corps (NCCC) is a nation wide Americorps program that has teams working across the US. The City of Philadelphia is hosting a 9-person NCCC crew for an an eight week work rotation assisting with projects in PhillyRising neighborhoods across the city. A few weeks ago they built a community garden in Swampoodle. Last week they were cleaning out back alleys in Point Breeze. This week they are working in Frankford.

Here are some photos of the clean up work that has been performed at Overington Park and the work that was done on the 1700 block of Foulkrod Street with a work crew from the City’s Community Service Program.  The last set is of a cleanup at 4735 Duffield Street.


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Frankford Civic Association Meeting 2/2/2012

Former T&T Bar

Mention of the T&T bar once again raised eyebrows at the Frankford Civic meeting on Thursday night.  Neighbors have been watching with concern as work has been going on at the now closed bar at Margaret and Hawthorne Streets. It has been not quite a year since young Christopher Spence lost his life there in a senseless shooting.   Jason Dawkins, Councilwoman Sanchez representative at the meeting assured everyone that the building was not ever going to open up as a bar again.  The building is for sale and the community will have input as to its future use.

In other news at the meeting, the representative of the owner of Torresdale Appliance and Furniture (4571 Torresdale Ave.) presented their zoning case.  The use of the building has changed and they are looking for support from the Civic.  They board voted unanimously to

Torresdale Appliances

support their application.

Stephanie Clymer made a presentation on behalf of the Tookany/Tacony-Frankford Watershed Partnership.  From Manny Citron of PhillyRising, they are working on a community garden or gardens in Frankford that will hopefully be available in the Spring.  From Edgardo Gonzalez of Tony Payton’s office, there is still interest from the The Center for Urban Theological Studiesin taking over the old Frankford Community Y building.  No decision has been made as yet.

The next Frankford Civic meeting will be on March 1st at 7PM at Aria Health.


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The process of writing an action plan for PhillyRising in Frankford began last night.  Jimmie Saunders, Ade Fequa, Manny Citron and John Farrell led a group of 25 Frankforders through the process of visualizing the future.

The Subject issues were identified in previous meetings of Frankford residents as being at the top of their wish list:

  • After school activities
  • Infrastructure
  • Community health
  • Vacant lots and green space
  • Economic development

What amazed me was the qualified people who walked through the door of Denby’s last night.  Everybody seemed to be an expert at something except me, so I just took notes.

I’m kind of cautiously optimistic about this PhillyRising thing because I am tired of people making promises they don’t keep.  PhillyRising only promises to help us find out what we can do using what is already available.  There is no magic, no smoke and mirrors.  We’ll get something done if we focus and plan and make use of existing resources.

Some great ideas emerged at the meeting but it is far from final yet.  There will be another followup meeting in a few weeks.