1100 Wharton (Municipal Complex) Update


There is another opportunity for neighborhood residents to share their perspectives on the redevelopment of the municipal buildings on Reed Street between 11th Street and 12th Street.

Planning since 2012
Since 2012, PSCA has been engaged with City Officials to imagine a reuse of the City owned property across from Columbus Square. The land is currently occupied by the firehouse, a 38 space public surface lot with six additional car share spaces, and an historic (1913) building that serves as a municipal Fleet Maintenance facility.  In 2015, the Planning Commission released the South District Plan that reflected a community supported vision for mixed use development at the site. That plan relocates the firehouse from 12th Street to 11th Street, preserves the historic building, adds residential units to the neighborhood, provides new leasable commercial space, enhances pedestrian connections, and maintains access to public parking.

Developments since Fall, 2018
Last fall, the City released a Request for Proposals (RFP) asking developers, with strong track records of building mixed-use developments, to submit proposals for the purchase and redevelopment of the site.  PIDC, on behalf of the City, presented at the PSCA November General Meeting. PSCA collected comments at that meeting and in the following weeks. Issues like ensuring some number of affordable units and the possibility of space leasable by the school district to address crowding issues at Jackson were surfaced thanks to advocacy from many neighbors. The RFP was amended to reflect these neighborhood desires. Due to the outpouring of neighbor outreach, Councilmember Squilla asked that PSCA representatives serve on the selection committee.

Next Steps
The next step in the process will be to select a Development Team to enter a negotiations phase. During the negotiations phase, the City will negotiate with the developer and the Development Team will come to the community to present in detail their concept for the site. Ultimately Councilmember Squilla will have to introduce an Ordinance authorizing the sale of the site. We anticipate that he would not do that in the absence of broad community support for the redevelopment.

The City received two proposals for mixed-use (residential and commercial) buildings summarized below. Non-disclosure agreements preclude the release of financial information and the names of development teams. However, we can say that the issues which neighbors care about the most are the greatest distinctions between each of the proposals.

Let the PSCA Board (municipalcomplex@passyunk.org), Councilmember Squilla (Mark.Squilla@phila.gov), and Mayor Kenney  (James.Kenney@phila.gov) know which proposal you’d like to see advance and what specific concerns you have. Your feedback resulted in PSCA being included in the RFP Selection Committee, a rarity in city land sale processes, so let’s keep sharing our views with our elected officials.

Public Engagement Opportunity Timeline
2035 Plan Development Numerous meeting 2012-2015
RFP Release Meeting November 2018
Developer Selection Summer 2019
Site Specific Proposal Meetings Fall 2019
Site Sale Council Ordinance Fall 2019/Winter 2020

Park renovations will begin on Monday, Sept. 23rd. To ensure everyone’s safety and for legal liability reasons, the entire park will be fenced off during construction. Fencing will be put around the perimeter of the park on Monday and the park will be closed during renovation. There will be heavy equipment moving in and out of the park during the process. The only way into and out of the Recreation Center will be through the main entrance on the corner of Wharton and 12th street. Programming in the center will continue but the playground, field, dog park, tot lot and patio will be closed. Except for a construction entrance in the middle of Wharton which needs to be kept open, street parking should not be affected.

During the renovation period, visit our sister parks; Capitolo which has a recently renovated playground, or Gold Star Park; both within walking distance from Columbus Square. While this may be a short-term inconvenience, in the long run the community will have a beautiful space to enjoy for years to come.
Details on the renovations are available at: https://mycolumbussquare.org/renovation

Updates on the renovations will be delivered on Columbus Square’s Facebook page (www.facebook.com/mycolumbusquare.) Please check here for any important information on renovation activities or visit the Recreation Center office at the corner of 12th and Wharton.

At our next regular General Meeting on Tuesday, September 3rd representatives from the city will be answering questions and speaking to concerns about the restriping of 11th Street that is currently in progress. We hope you will be able to attend to have questions answer and hear more about this implementation. More details available via this flyer/pdf:

We’ll update this page with a link to meeting minutes after the meeting and any other helpful information that comes from our discussion.


Below is a list of public materials that have been released to date.

January 2019

  • Meetings with Council staff and three civics bounding S 11th Street: Hawthorne Empowerment Coalition, Bella Vista Civic, Passyunk Square Civic to share the concept and agree to public outreach plan

February 2019

  • Project Flyer distributed to civic associations for distribution to their members


  • On-site visits with business owners to assess loading needs

March & April 2019

  • Open House Announcement (April 16th 2019) distributed door to door and to civic associations for distribution to their members


  • Boards from open house posted on website and linked via social media


  • News story in the South Philly Review

June 2019

  • Continuing coordination with businesses and major property owners
  • Notice of July 16th Construction Pop-Up Meeting distributed door to door and to civic associations for distribution to their members


July 2019

  • July 1st – Roadway milling start
  • Boards from July 16th Construction Pop-Up Meeting posted on website and linked via social media


  • News story in the South Philly Review

August 2019

  • Construction continues
  • Continued outreach with property and business owners to finalize loading zones and address concerns
  • News story in the Inquirer


Join us at the ball park! We have tickets for the Aug. 14, 7pm game against the Chicago Cubs.

$15, with all proceeds benefitting PSCA.

Purchase here and we will contact you with pick-up instructions.

Next Page »