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NEWS
April 20, 2015
Discounting mall plans By creating an outlet mall, Center City will be cursed for another 40 years as quality retailers continue to mark Philadelphia as off limits to quality retailing ("In-city outlets," April 16). Center City needs, and can afford, destination stores such as Saks Fifth Avenue, Bloomingdale's, Nordstrom, and a flagship version of Macy's - not discount stores. I hope the Gallery's owners consider the opinion of Center City residents and avoid another retail failure on Market Street.
NEWS
April 18, 2015 | By Julia Terruso, Inquirer Staff Writer
Philadelphia City Council on Thursday passed sweeping billboard-regulation changes - the first major ones since the 1970s - that could mean fewer billboards but more digital displays. Sixth District Councilman Bobby Henon sponsored the bill, which allows companies in certain areas to remove two regular billboards for each billboard they want to convert to digital form. The measure passed by 15-0. The bill sets brightness limits, height restrictions and requires companies to pay a higher licensing fee that could bring in an extra $350,000 annually to the city.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 18, 2015 | By Inga Saffron, Inquirer Architecture Critic
Councilman Mark Squilla's political base lies deep in South Philadelphia and along the Delaware waterfront, in what are still called the "river wards. " But that didn't stop him last month from driving through a major bill allowing two free-standing, high-definition digital billboards in the heart of Center City. The tacky digital kiosks will diminish Philadelphia's downtown, bathing the prime tourist area in a relentless barrage of flashing advertisements. Neighborhood residents were beside themselves, and the local civic association pleaded with Council to reject the measure.
BUSINESS
April 18, 2015 | By Linda Loyd, Inquirer Staff Writer
Hometown convenience retailer Wawa will open its first store featuring interior bar stools and a counter for dining at Broad and Walnut Streets this year. At a Wawa Day celebration Thursday, with Mayor Nutter on hand, the company announced plans for a 5,300- to 5,500-square-foot "flagship store" at the former Robinson's Luggage location at one of Center City's busiest intersections. Construction will begin next month and be completed by the end of the year, said spokeswoman Lori Bruce.
NEWS
April 17, 2015 | By Robert Moran, Inquirer Staff Writer
Edward J. Lowry, 71, of Langhorne, founder of a center in Philadelphia that provided training and counseling services to thousands of military veterans and operated transitional housing for homeless veterans, died at home Sunday, April 12, of pancreatic cancer. Mr. Lowry, a Vietnam War-era veteran, in 1980 founded the Vietnam Veterans Multi-Service Center, now Philadelphia Multi-Service & Education Centers Inc. The organization operates programs out of a five-story facility at Fourth and Race Streets in Center City, as well as transitional housing for men and women on the grounds of the Coatesville VA Medical Center.
NEWS
April 16, 2015 | By Chris Hepp, Inquirer Staff Writer
Philadelphia finance director Rob Dubow was a bit more politic than his boss, but his message on Tuesday was the same: the plans offered by the Democratic mayoral candidates to fund city schools just don't add up. "It is not like these are all horrible ideas," Dubow told a room of reporters. "It is they just don't get the district what it needs. " That was a more measured assessment than one offered last week by Mayor Nutter, who called the candidates' solutions to the school funding crisis "bogus.
NEWS
April 15, 2015 | BY MENSAH M. DEAN, Daily News Staff Writer deanm@phillynews.com, 215-854-4172
CITY COMMISSIONER Stephanie Singer may have something to sing about if her reading of court transcripts is accurate. After poring over those transcripts from the late March hearing which resulted in Singer getting kicked off the primary ballot for lacking enough valid voter signatures, it has been discovered that she actually has the required 1,000 signatures, her campaign manager said yesterday. One thousand on the dot. "It's amazing, but it's true," said Shannon Marietta.
NEWS
April 11, 2015 | By Julia Terruso, Inquirer Staff Writer
Mayor Nutter has allowed controversial 3-D animated billboards to come to Center City, after negotiating for modifications to how the displays will be regulated. The five-story installations, dubbed "urban experiential displays" (UEDs), are limited to a portion of Center City. One is to be built outside the Convention Center, another outside the Reading Terminal Market, pending approval from the Art Commission. Councilman Mark Squilla introduced the legislation, which met with resistance from the Center City Residents Association and Scenic Philadelphia, a group advocating for green spaces.
NEWS
April 10, 2015 | Chris Hepp, Inquirer Staff Writer
No one can say she isn't a good sport. The day after fainting during the first televised Philadelphia mayoral debate, an upbeat Lynne M. Abraham determinedly went about her campaign, refusing to allow even 50 Cent to get in her way. With the rap star's "In da Club" blaring as an intro, the 74-year-old former district attorney good-naturedly endured a request that she, along with the other would-be mayors, dance her way to the candidates' table...
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