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Community Development Funds for Frankford


Keystone Communities Program grants totaling $122,000 will support the revitalization of commercial and mixed-use properties along the Frankford and Kensington avenue corridors.

State Senator Tartaglione announced the award of Keystone Communities Program grants totaling $122,000 to two local community development corporations (CDCs).

Frankford CDC was awarded $96,977 in support of its continued revitalization of 4663 Paul Street, while New Kensington CDC was awarded $25,000 in support of its Kensington Avenue Commercial Corridor Plan.

“I am thrilled to bring these much-needed Commonwealth funds back to the 2nd Senatorial District. I know they will be put to great use,” Senator Tartaglione said. “I have worked side-by-side with the Frankford CDC and the New Kensington CDC for many years as we invest in these neighborhoods and strive to overcome the many socioeconomic challenges that impact the diverse groups of people who live and work here.”

Among its many ongoing projects, Frankford CDC is rehabilitating two formerly vacant and dilapidated commercial properties on the 4600 block of Paul Street, adjacent to the CDC’s own headquarters. The plan includes the development of two new commercial units/storefronts on the ground floor and eight affordable rental units on the second and third floors.

The effort is part of Frankford CDC’s Reimagining Margaret-Orthodox strategy for the Frankford Avenue commercial corridor and around SEPTA’s Arrott Transportation Center.

New Kensington CDC will use its Keystone Communities funding to develop a new Kensington Avenue Commercial Corridor Plan to guide the CDC in the purchase and redevelopment of properties that will be used to provide opportunities for diverse entrepreneurs. The effort will focus on the avenue as well as connecting corridors that link to Frankford Avenue.

Funding will help the CDC hire a consultant, engage the community, and provide incentives for stakeholder participation with a focus on streetscape, façade, and signage improvements.

Administered through the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED), the Keystone Communities Program is designed to encourage the creation of partnerships between the public and private sectors that jointly support local initiatives such as the growth and stability of neighborhoods and communities; social and economic diversity; and a strong and secure quality of life. The program allows communities to tailor the assistance to meet the needs of its specific revitalization effort.

Grants may be used in a variety of ways including planning activities, façade improvement programs, accessible housing programs, and development grants. Eligibility is open to units of local government; redevelopment and/or housing authorities; nonprofit organizations engaged in economic development or housing; CDCs; business, neighborhood, or downtown improvement districts; or similar organizations incorporated as authorities.

For more information about the Keystone Communities Program, visit the DCED website. Information is also available via the Frankford CDC and New Kensington CDC websites.

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Frankford CDC Gets Funding for Paul Street

State Senator Christine Tartaglione visited the headquarters of the Frankford Community Development Corporation (CDC) on January 14th to deliver a $54,610 state grant that will help the CDC to stabilize and rehabilitate a fire-damaged mixed-use property in the heart of the local commercial district.

“The CDC has made great strides in recent years to revitalize the Frankford Avenue corridor, remove blight, and promote the growth of new businesses. This public investment will enable the CDC to continue its work, which has had a tremendous positive impact throughout the community,” Senator Tartaglione said.

The grant was awarded through the Department of Community and Economic Development’s Local Share Account program, which reallocates a portion of the funds generated by casinos that operate slot machines within Philadelphia.

“The Local Share Account grant will allow the Frankford CDC to stabilize what is now a hazardous and blighted site at 4663 Paul Street,” said Kimberly Washington, Esq., executive director of the Frankford CDC. “This vacant property is the last remaining site on the block in need of improvements, making it vital to the Frankford CDC’s goals to revitalize Frankford Avenue as set out in its Reimagining Margaret-Orthodox initiative.”

4663 Paul Street shown before the fire

On October 26, 2018, flames ravaged the three-story storefront, which is just two doors from the Frankford CDC office and less than a block from SEPTA’s bustling Market-Frankford El. The multi-alarm blaze largely gutted the property, which was being used as an unlicensed boarding house. It burned for several hours and spread to a neighboring building, causing severe damage to the second and third floors of both structures.

Frankford CDC bought the property last fall and will use the new grant funding for the first phase of its rehabilitation, including cleanout, demolition, framing, roof replacement, and floor stabilization. These measures will address any immediate safety issues and prevent structural damage to neighboring buildings.

The non-profit CDC will seek to raise additional funding to complete final renovations that will include commercial space on the ground floor, as well as four affordable housing units on the second and third floors.

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Senior Expo September 19th

State Sen. Christine Tartaglione invites older Philadelphians and their primary caregivers to her annual Senior Expo series in the coming weeks. The senator will host the Expos at three community venues in the 2nd Senate District, including the Lawncrest Recreation Center for the first time!

All three events will present information about many senior-oriented programs and services offered by public agencies and private providers. The Expos will be held from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Join Senator Tartaglione and dozens of presenters on the following dates at the corresponding locations:

Thursday, Sept. 19: St. Anne’s Parish-PAL Center, Memphis and Tucker streets.
Thursday, Oct. 3: Lawncrest Recreation Center, 6000 Rising Sun Avenue.
Thursday, Oct. 10: Mayfair Community Center, 2990 Saint Vincent Street.