January 2014

Zoning19 Jan 2014 12:10 pm
The PSCA Zoning Committee reviewed the following cases at its January meeting. Results are below.

836 Greenwich Street:

Application for a third-story addition with a roof deck in the required front set-back.  Required set-back is 8’-0”; proposed set-back is 1’-9”.  Zoning refused due to the proposed set back is less than required. Single family dwelling, RSA-5 zoning district.  6 votes non-opposition; 1 vote opposition with the proviso to change the proposed set back from 1’- 9” to at least 4 feet. Some neighbor presence. 

1536 Camac Street: 

Application for a 2 story addition with roof deck and pilot house.  Also requesting 2 off street interior parking spaces (Garage).  For use as a 2-family dwelling.  Refused for use, parking and open area in RSA-5 zoning district.  Property was formerly an auto repair garage that has been vacant for many years.  4 votes non-opposition; 2 votes opposition; 1 abstention.  Strong neighbor presence.

1530 South 6th Street: 

Application for a real estate office on 1st floor with existing 2 family dwelling.  Refused for use and multiple main uses on the same lot in RSA-5 zoning district. 5 votes non-opposition; 2 votes opposition.

1308 South 7th Street: 

Application for the erection of an addition to an existing 1story structure in the rear of an existing 3 story single-family dwelling.  Zoning refused due the open area of lot and rear yard depth are under the minimum required amounts.  5 votes non-opposition; 2 votes opposition. Construction already completed; this is a legalization.

The following case was added at the meeting:

708 Federal Street:

Application for a second and third story addition to be extended back 11 feet, to align with the footprint of the first story.  Refused because yard is 7.6 deep while the required depth is 8.6 feet.  (This is really a legalization since the work has been completed): 4 votes non-opposition; 3 votes opposition.


The PSCA Zoning Committee meetings are opportunities for neighbors to hear the details of zoning applications within our civic association boundaries. The Zoning Committee does not make final decisions on the applications, but it does send letters to the Philadelphia Zoning Board Administration. Check facebook.com/passyunksquare or twitter.com/passyunksquare for any last minute changes Please email zoning@passyunk.org with any zoning-related questions.


Planning and Uncategorized and Zoning13 Jan 2014 10:11 pm


Prepared by the Passyunk Square Civic Association¬  AVI = Actual value initiative introduced by the City of Philadelphia (“City”) to revamp the system of real property taxes.  All real property in the City has been reassessed based on market value (i.e. what someone might buy it for on the free market).  The market values of all real property in Philadelphia were determined by the City’s Office of Property Assessments  (“OPA”).   The City’s stated purpose for AVI is to make the values of real estate, and thus the tax obligations of property owners in Philadelphia, accurate and fair.

¬  OPA released the new assessments on February 15, 2013.  The assessments relate to tax year 2014.  Each property owner should receive notice of his/her new assessment in the mail.  You can also check the new assessments online at: http://avicalculator.phila.gov.

¬  The amount of real estate taxes will be determined once the City has determined the tax rate.  The tax rate will be determined when the City has approved the budget for 2014.  The City budget is typically determined around May of the preceding year.  Currently, the minimum tax rate that has been identified by the City is 1.25% of the assessed value of each property.  For example, if your assessment is set at $100,000 and the tax rate is set at 1.32%, your tax obligation will be $1,320.

¬  Owner/occupants can apply for a homestead exemption, by submitting a paper application that was previously mailed, by applying online at http://www.phila.gov/OPA/AbatementsExemptions/Pages/Homestead.aspx, or by calling 215-686-9200 to apply. The deadline to apply for the homestead exemption if July 31, 2013 for applicability in tax year 2014. It should be noted that the homestead exemption measure is not yet finalized, but is currently proposed as a $30,000 reduction of a homeowner’s assessment. For example, if your assessment is set at $100,000 and you are eligible for the homestead exemption, you will be taxed at $70,000 for the period of the exemption. Other proposals for the homestead exemption and other gentrification protection measures are being considered by City Council. The greater the discount measures approved, the higher the tax rate will be.

¬  Property owners may appeal their new tax assessments here http://www.phila.gov/OPA/Assessments/Pages/Appeals.aspx.  First level of review is conducted by OPA.  You must complete a request form by March 31, 2013 and provide information you think is pertinent to your assessment.  It should be noted that the OPA evaluator may increase, decrease, or keep your assessment the same as a result of the review.

¬  If homeowners are not satisfied with the outcome of the first level of review, they may appeal to the Board of Revision of Taxes (“BRT”).  Formal appeals to BRT are due by October 7, 2013 for tax year 2014.

Contact information for our 1st District Councilman, Mark Squilla:

Mark Squilla
District 1
City Hall, Room 332
Philadelphia, PA 19107-3290
(215)686-3458, (215)686-3459
FAX: (215) 686-1931

For contact information for the rest of City Council or to confirm your council district, please visit http://philadelphiacitycouncil.net/council-members/

Education12 Jan 2014 03:29 pm

2014 KirkbrideJoin the Friends of Kirkbride Elementary for their inaugural meeting!

When: Wednesday, January 29th at 6:30pm
Where: Capitolo Playground, 9th & Federal Sts.


The Kirkbride Elementary School is a gem in our own backyard! But we all know the hardships of our school district and the impact that has had on our neighborhood schools. Join the Friends of Kirkbride to discuss the ways our community can assist the school and get involved.


RSVPs would be GREATLY appreciated at
OR EMAIL: southphillykirkbride@gmail.com

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