Minutes from March 4, 2014 PSCA General Meeting @ Annunciation BVM
Meeting began at 6:35pm, ended at 7:30 pm. Attendance: Approximately 25.
Board Members Present: D’Ippolito, Morris, Knapp, Emma, Anton, Fioretti, Wilder, Wyatt, Klein; Absent: Zenzola, Knox, DiCapua
Welcome and Introductions: Angel D’Ippolito welcomed guests.
Zoning: Jared Klein announced two cases to be heard by the Zoning Committee next Tuesday at 7:00 PM at Annunciation BVM Church Hall at 1511 South 10th Street, Dickinson Street Entrance. The first is 1114 Annin, application for a two-family dwelling, not permitted in this zoning district. The second is for 1403-09 S. Darien, to create six lots from one existing lot to build six attached single family homes, each with a roof deck accessed by a roof deck access structure (enclosing stairs/landing), and each with one accessory interior parking space. Refused for use (accessory parking to be accessed from front of property), roof deck setback, minimum lot area, minimum open area, minimum rear year depth, and maximum height.
Events: Sarah Sitzler from the Art Auction Committee announced that the PSCA Art Auction will take place Friday, March 28 from 7-10pm at Annunciation BVM Church Hall, and tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at the door.
Fundraising: Ilene Wilder reminded everyone that it is not too late to give an annual gift to PSCA, from the 2013 annual appeal mailing. In addition, we will be hosting an event in the future to thank all businesses in the neighborhood that have donated or assisted PSCA.\
Trash and Recycling: Carmela Fioretti announced that the next monthly cleanup is March 29, 9:30 to 12 noon, meeting at Passyunk Gardens (E. Passyunk Ave and Wharton Streets) to pick up supplies and decide on a location for the cleanup; bring your own gloves. The City of Philadelphia’s 7th Annual Philly Spring Cleanup will be Saturday, April 5, 2014 (rain date is Saturday, April 12, 2014). We are also excited to announce our first document shredding event in the neighborhood on Saturday, May 31 from 10-12, at the parking lot of Reed & East Passyunk Ave. We have contracted with ProShred for our onsite shredding event. The documents will be permanently destroyed as you watch, and the paper will be recycled! A suggested donation of $5 is requested to cover the cost of the service.
Education: Tom Wyatt announced that PSCA will participate in a consignment sale April 5 and 6, with proceeds going to local schools. The Education Committee is planning a fundraising dinner and cocktails on the rooftop of the Wharton Lofts for May 15, with proceeds supporting Jackson School. The next meeting of the committee is March 18, location TBD.
Beautification: Sarah Anton announced that there will be a spring Tree Care Day on April 26. We are still taking tree applications for the fall planting. Passyunk Gardens will be opening sometime in March. There are a number of murals planned for the neighborhood.
Planning: Karin Morris announced that the final public meeting for the for the Philadelphia City Planning Commission’s Washington Avenue Transportation & Parking Study (funded by the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission) will be on Tuesday, March 11th at 6pm at Grace and Peace Church at 1701 Washington Avenue. All are welcome to attend to hear the preferred alternative for restriping Washington Avenue to better accommodate all users.
Translation: Ilene Wilder announced we are now offering ESL classes in partnership with Columbus Square, as well as translating our monthly newsletters into Spanish, which are available under the “Espanol” tab on our website.
Outreach: Angel D’Ippolito announced that the next Neighborhood Ambassador Program meeting is March 18 at 7:30pm at 1321 S. 9th Street. The next Neighborhood Meet and Greet (held on the 2nd Saturday of every month) will be at Zoe’s Frozen Yogurt on S. 9th Street this Saturday March 8 from noon to 1pm (note Zoe’s has a full coffee bar). Angel also reminded members to report graffiti to 311. Community Relations Police Officer Ace Delgado handed out information about keeping your home safe from burglaries. In addition, on Saturday, March 8th from 8-11pm, 10th Street Laundromat at 1143 S. 10th Street, one of our sponsors, will be having a party with wine, beer, food & art! They will have five artists displaying their work, while Stacy Papa of Sugarplum Catering will be bringing some light goodies, and there will be plenty of neighbors to mull about art in this unconventional setting! Donations accepted for PSCA.
Dan Pohlig, Chair of the PSCA Nomination Committee, presented the PSCA Nomination and Election Process. Nominations will be formally submitted at the April Membership Meeting and the Election will occur at the May Membership Meeting. There are 12 Director positions up for election this year. Serving on the Board is a great way to make your neighborhood a better place while getting to know some great neighbors. Nomination forms are due March 28. Find out more at www.passyunksquare.org. Dan thanked committee members Aubin Clever, Cassie Knox, Sue Petrone, and Ben Cardell.
Andrew Stober from the Mayor’s Office of Transportation and Utilities (and our neighbor) presented the city’s plans for Bike Share. Philadelphia is preparing to join 40 other U.S. cities, including Washington, Boston, Chicago, New York, and Denver, as well as international cities such as Toronto, Montreal, London and Paris, in deploying a bike sharing system that will provide convenient, on-demand access to bicycles for short distance trips. Bike sharing will be an affordable, healthy, safe, environmentally sustainable addition to Philadelphia’s transportation options. A yearly membership fee will be less than $100, with options for one-day or three-day memberships for tourists/visitors. Philadelphia plans to have 200 stations or 2,000 bikes deployed, with an initial service area from Lehigh Avenue to the Navy Yard, extending into West Philly. The City will announce the rollout of the program this spring or summer, and will install 75-100 stations initially in Zone 1, near public parks or plazas, rather than removing parking. The city will be divided into Zone 1 (System Core, where stations will be more closely spaced), and Zone 2 (Neighborhood Scale, with stations spaced farther apart). Northern portions of PSCA fall into Zone 1 and southern portions in Zone 2.
Regarding safety, you must be 16 to ride, so there will be no child seats nor can the bikes accommodate such seats. Helmets will not be required, as Philly has no helmet law. So far, in North America, there have been 6 million trips on bike share systems with no fatalities. This may be because the bikes are heavy, big, bright, with front and back headlights, and professionally maintained. Regarding theft, the bikes are impossible to tear out of their stations, and theft-resistant as all of their parts are custom-made and fitted, so their resale value is negligible. In Washington D.C., for instance, 16 bikes out of 2,000 were stolen in the early days of their system, but thefts have decreased, as thieves quickly figured out the bikes cannot be sold to bike shops or their parts to chop shops. Philadelphia’s system will be unique as compared to other cities because the City will not require that users have a credit card, which will open the program to those that are lower income. The City is also hoping to install more bike lanes, as now the City reviews every street that gets repaved for bike lane feasibility. 13th and 15th Street may also become neighborhood bikeways, which will be improved streets for bicyclists. The City is also streamlining the process to install bike racks in front of commercial businesses (which is separate from Bike Share, as that has its own racks).
Gregg Kravitz, a Deputy Commissioner from the Office of City Commissioner Al Schmidt, presented the department’s new website, www.philadelphiavotes.com, which includes the most time-sensitive information on upcoming elections. Information is organized according to four users: voters/prospective voters, candidates for office and their campaign personnel, election board officials, and individuals conducting research. You can easily find out who your elected officials are, where your polling place is, and which elections are coming up. The website is also available in Spanish. Our next election day is May 20, with polls open from 7am-8pm, with many offices up for primary election, including Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Congress, State Senate, etc.
–Submitted by Karin Morris, PSCA Secretary, March 5, 2014.