November 26, 2013 |
Maybe City Councilman Bobby Henon said it best on Thursday: "Right now, we have opportunity to make historic changes. " Henon, chairman of Council's Public Property Committee, was talking about the bill to create a land bank. It's a system Atlanta, Cleveland, St. Louis, and other cities have adopted and that supporters say could help cure the blight haunting many Philadelphia neighborhoods. But with history at stake, the proposal seems stuck. The bill introduced in Council last month would establish a land bank, a uniform system for acquiring and disposing of Philadelphia's 40,000 vacant and abandoned properties, a quarter of which are city-owned, and putting them to productive use - whether as community gardens or upscale townhouses or affordable housing.
November 26, 2013 |
IF IT HADN'T been for a band of pragmatic dreamers, the neglected and crumbling North Philadelphia community would have remained neglected and crumbling. Among those dreamers - and they were people who knew how to back up their dreams with practical solutions to the problems they faced - was Robert Walden Smith, a man who served the city, especially those in greatest need of help, for more than 25 years. In various ways, Bob Smith helped in the development of North Philadelphia, particularly the Cecil B. Moore Avenue corridor, advised businesses on how to improve their performance, get through bureaucratic red tape, and generally improve their bottom line.
November 25, 2013 |
I saw a lot of interesting costumes while watching the Philadelphia Marathon last Sunday: Santa Claus with real beard and jingle bells, Barney Rubble, Forrest Gump, and a lot of tutus (on men and women). Then a woman dressed as Captain America ran by, smiling, holding a small shield in her hand. When a man dressed as Captain America ran by soon after, I thought it was a coincidence, especially given that the Captain America sequel is coming out in April. I was wrong. Karl Leitz and Aya Takeichi-Leitz are a married couple from Jersey City.
November 24, 2013 |
Being just a kid himself, 7-year-old Sam Hornikel isn't concerned about his ability to have children of his own yet. He's thinking more about the soccer game he missed, or his math homework. But researchers around the world are working to give boys like Sam - who fought off cancer when he was only 3 years old - the opportunity to have their own family one day. Often, chemotherapy or radiation treatments can harm fertility. Typically, older patients can bank sperm, but for those who haven't gone through puberty yet, researchers are deep-freezing tiny pieces of their testicular tissue.
November 22, 2013 |
PHILADELPHIA Even as it limps through this school year with a shortage of staff, supplies, and programs, the Philadelphia School District must plan for another crisis on the horizon - a hole that could reach $400 million or more for 2014-15. As it does this year, the district will likely need $300 million just to open schools at bare-bones levels, plus as much as $100 million more to pay next year's bills. The district got some help from the city and state this year, chief financial officer Matthew Stanski told City Council's education committee on Wednesday, but virtually all of that aid was one-time funding.
November 21, 2013 |
'BEND BUT don't break. " "Get twisted like a pretzel, but don't snap. " "Give up chunks of yardage; lose the time-of-possession battle; it doesn't matter as long as you don't give up touchdowns. " I remember this because it was part of my lead in a column concerning the propensity of the Eagles' defense to give up a bunch of mileage over the first 80 yards and tighten things up when an opponent crept into the red zone. But it wasn't something I wrote this year about the Birds.
November 21, 2013 |
Hello there Kathryn and Gordon met for what was supposed to be an early dinner in January 2011. But when dinner was over, their conversation wasn't. "We moved from our table to the bar and continued talking," said Kathryn, a financial representative with the Northwestern Mutual Financial Network and owner of the Eventchic event management company. They stayed at Derek's Restaurant in Manayunk for eight hours. About a week earlier, Kathryn had started their dialogue with an electronic wink on Match.com.
November 20, 2013 |
US Airways Group Inc. announced Monday new nonstop daily flights between Philadelphia and Scotland's capital city of Edinburgh, beginning in May. When the service begins May 23, Philadelphia's dominant airline, which transports more than 70 percent of air travelers who use the airport, will fly to 19 trans-Atlantic destinations from Philadelphia International Airport. The Edinburgh flights will be seasonal, between May 23 and Oct. 1, 2014. The airline will operate 176-seat Boeing 757 aircraft.
November 19, 2013 |
The U.S. Green Building Council is raising the bar for sustainable construction with the launch of the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design version 4 (LEEDv4) rating system at the 2013 Greenbuild International Conference and Expo this week at the Convention Center. "The market is capable of doing a lot more than it does," said Scot Horst, a Green Building Council senior vice president who oversees LEED. The new system streamlines the arduous LEED certification process, updates previously established guidelines to match more recent building codes, offers a new breakdown of standards by sector, and encourages collaboration among the architects, builders, and others involved in the construction and design process.
November 19, 2013 |
Irina Alexandrova of Russia was simply following in her agent's footsteps. Nearly a decade after her agent, Larisa Mikhaylova, won the women's Philadelphia Marathon in 2004, the 33-year-old Alexandrova duplicated the feat in Sunday's 20th annual event, which began and ended on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. It was the first Philadelphia Marathon for Alexandrova, whose winning time of 2 hours, 39 minutes, and 3.74 seconds was 1 minute, 6.58 seconds ahead of second-place Tezeta Dengersa.