December 8, 2014 |
Center City's grimy alleys are the equivalent of Philadelphia's attic, stuffed with forgotten architectural treasures. And there may be no richer trove than the stretch that runs behind the former Lits Bros. department store. There's now a parking garage at one end and a prison at the other, but with your eyes half-closed, the alley almost suggests a canal in Venice, canopied by its own moody Bridge of Sighs. Designed in 1912 by Castor & Stearns, the Renaissance-style arch is tightly notched into the narrow opening between Lits' back wall and Arch Street's Cast Iron building, connecting their second and third floors.
March 29, 2014 |
Philadelphia spent the last decade working out a single, knotty planning problem: How should the old industrial spaces on the Delaware waterfront evolve? The consensus was that vacant land would be developed to resemble the rest of the city, with walkable streets, a mix of uses, and lively ground floors. No one was naive enough to think such projects could be realized without parking garages, but the expectation was that the structures would not dominate the river. It's a shame the conversation was never extended to the city's other riverfront, the Schuylkill, which has come alive since a trail park pushed into Center City.
February 10, 2014 |
Christopher Aiello broke into tears - again - when he got a call last month about Madison Holleran, a promising scholar-athlete at the University of Pennsylvania who jumped to her death from a Center City parking garage, stunning her family, friends, and campus community. The call came from a friend, who in an eerie coincidence, knew Holleran's father. Aiello lost his own daughter, Paige, the same way nine months earlier. Tennis team captain and an A student at the College of New Jersey, she was weeks shy of graduation and had been accepted to nine law schools when her body was recovered from the Hudson River.
January 22, 2014 |
On her social media accounts, Madison Holleran presented herself as a happy 19-year-old freshman at the University of Pennsylvania and member of the varsity track-and-field team. The North Jersey native's last photograph on Instagram was a twilight scene of holiday lights still twinkling in the trees of Rittenhouse Square. She liked sharing pretty images of sunsets and sunrises, so there was nothing outwardly unusual about her post. An hour later on Friday, police said, she jumped from the roof of a nearby parking garage.
December 6, 2013 |
Seven restaurants in LOVE Park? That was the vision that Philadelphia City Council President Darrell L. Clarke unfurled on Wednesday. He would pay for long-overdue upgrades to John F. Kennedy Plaza by leasing the rights to create 26,000 square feet of restaurant space in the iconic but aging park. Drawings Clarke's office commissioned show seven restaurant spaces - both open-air and enclosed - along all four sides of the park, along with a new stage for concerts and public events on the Arch Street side.
November 24, 2013 |
THE MAYOR'S OFFICE has chosen the highest bidder to purchase the parking garage under JFK Plaza, but a Nutter-backed bill sent to City Council on Thursday morning saw no introduction, and a spokesman for the administration says Council is dragging its feet on what could be a huge windfall for the city. Nutter spokesman Mark McDonald said the city plans to award the contract to Chicago-based Interpark LLC, which already runs a garage at 13th and Locust streets. The plaza above the garage, at 15th Street and JFK Boulevard, commonly known as LOVE Park for its iconic statue, is set to be rebuilt as the parking structure is repaired.
November 24, 2013 |
PHILADELPHIA A company has offered the City of Philadelphia $29.6 million for the parking garage under John F. Kennedy Plaza in a deal that includes a major upgrade to LOVE Park. But the project appears to be snagged in yet another dispute between Mayor Nutter and City Council. The mayor sent a bill to Council on Thursday to approve the deal, but no member would introduce it. "We are concerned that the bill has not been introduced," said his spokesman, Mark McDonald. "This winning bidder and the proposal we have is a very good one for the city's bottom line and the future of an iconic park.
September 24, 2013 |
Villanova University is looking to score on the rebound. The school's first shot at a major expansion that would bring new dormitories, a parking garage, performing arts center, and stores to the Lancaster Avenue campus was rejected in May by Radnor Township as officials sided with angry neighbors who thought Villanova's scheme was too large. Now, the university is back with a slightly scaled-down version - with reduced heights for some buildings, a smaller garage, and a bridge across Lancaster Avenue - and it's taking the new proposal straight to the Radnor Township Board of Commissioners on Monday night for what it hopes will be a final up-or-down vote.
June 8, 2013 |
TRENTON - The mayor's corruption trial has been pushed back again. Tony Mack is now scheduled to go to trial in January on six counts related to what prosecutors say was a scheme to accept $119,000 in bribes in exchange for using his influence over the development of a parking garage on city-owned land. Attorneys in the case attended a status conference in federal court Thursday. Mack pleaded not guilty in December. A trial was scheduled for February but then was pushed back to the summer.
June 1, 2013 |
Cooper University Hospital in Camden has beefed up security slightly after two incidents. In one a nurse was assaulted, in the other a staff member was robbed. The two staff members were outside the hospital when the incidents occurred. Although both crimes were in the last two weeks, they were described as isolated by the hospital and police and do not appear to indicate a trend. Both led to quick arrests. "These are isolated incidents that just happened to be on our campus. . . . Totally separate incidents, but we look at every incident that happens.