Thursday, August 13, 2020

CCRA Newsletter

Weekly E-Newsletter
News and Updates
What's Happening in CCRA'land

Board Changes

Donna Cordner has resigned from CCRA's Executive Committee.  Donna had been Executive Vice President, in charge of communications and membership.  She worked diligently in these areas, and was responsible for our initiating a more robust social media presence and overseeing a major overhaul of the residential and business membership categories.  We will miss her, but personal and professional obligations prevent her from continuing.  VP Barbara Halpern will assume these responsibilities. 

Richard Gross, who had been serving as Secretary, has agreed to be the Executive VP.  Rick also chairs our Development Committee and has participated in several Major Development Task Forces, activities he will continue to champion.   

Nan Robinson will serve as Secretary.  

Membership Chair, Michele Ettinger, will be joining the EC.  Under our bylaws, per Article IX, Section A, Paragraph 1, the EC "shall consist of . . . . and one member of the Board who shall not be an officer and shall be selected annually by the President with the approval of the Board."  Accordingly, though she must be approved by the Board, Michele would have all of the rights and responsibilities of the other members of the EC. 

By joining the Executive Committee, Nan's board seat is now available.  
If anyone knows of a suitable candidate, please have them contact Travis Oliver or call him at 215 546 6719  so we can arrange an interview. 

Zoning 101 

Recently, we hosted a zoning orientation for Board members led by CCRA attorney Wade Albert.   His presentation can be found here.    

CDR Representation 

Evan Litwin represented CCRA at the August 12, 2020 Civic Design Review meeting regarding the Southern Land multi use proposal at 1608-20 Sansom Street.  CCRA voted to not oppose the project, citing the developer's willingness to work with the community, the stepping back of the building to accommodate more outdoor activity on the sidewalk, the articulation of the building design and materials and the contribution of over $2 million to the Philadelphia Affordable Housing Trust Fund.   
Those things that go "Vrooom"

We have been receiving reports of loud ATVs and dirt bikes revving up and down Broad Street and other areas in the neighborhood through the early morning hours.  The police are aware of it.  If you continue to hear them, please contact 911 immediately. 
Working Group Forming to Rename Taney Street 

A group of community organizations including CCRA, Fitler Square Neighbors and SOSNA has formed a working group that will lead a community engagement process to choose a new name for Taney Street. Taney Street is named for Chief Justice Roger Taney, who delivered the majority opinion in the Dred Scott case. Councilmember Kenyatta Johnson supports the renaming and will coordinate with the working group.

Covid-19 Updates

- City continues to be in a "modified" green phase 

-  Testing Site Map: A testing site finder at helps people find a free COVID-19 test in Philadelphia. Anyone can search for a site by address, click on a map location for specific site information, and filter by day of week and by drive-thru or walk-up.

-Here's an updated restaurant list.   More restaurants are offering outdoor dining.  See if your favorite is on the list. If it's not listed, please inform Travis.  Thank you all for your suggestions.

Visit our special COVID-19 page on our website for more news and info.

If you lost income due to the COVID-19 pandemic, you can apply for rent and mortgage relief through Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency (PHFA).
Dining Out: The Latest Data

 A total of 146 businesses within the Center City District now provide outdoor tables.

The total number of seats equals greater than 3,600.

35 of the above venues feature socially distant tables located in the curb lane (aka "streeteries") in addition to the sidewalk.

In 2019, a total of 188 establishments offered outdoor seating.

As 2020 began, restaurants, food service and retail in Greater Center City accounted for 39,600 jobs, which comprised 13% of all jobs in downtown.

For Real-time News 
and Updates

Would you like to be a member of CCRA?  It's easy to join.
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For more information about neighborhood events, check out CCRA's Community Events Calendar
Community Info

Brendan Avvento is a 14-year-old rising freshman at Boyertown High School who suffered a severe cardiac episode in June during a lacrosse practice with his club team, (read more).  Brandon has just stepped down from the intensive care unit at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP).  For the entire time his family has been staying at a hotel near the hospital.  Their cost to date: $4,000!

Brendan will remain at CHOP receiving rehab through November.  His family has just learned about and asked for lodging through HOSTS for HOSPITALS, a Greater Philadelphia nonprofit which during the time of the pandemic provides donated,  'private-setting lodging'.  e.g., AirBnBs, in-law suites, cottage houses, corporate apartments, a currently vacant homes or apartment, etc. 

HOSTS for HOSPITALS invites everyone to share this message through their own communication networks, with anyone knowing of a possible lodging unit to call or email ASAP: 484-380-2999 /, (  They thank you in advance.

PCI Library Info

In early August, the Philadelphia City Institute Library branch, 1905 Locust Street, began accepting returns of library materials and facilitating pickup of library materials. The best ways to find out about library services and hours are to:
Art Museum to Re-Open Sept. 6

With its scheduled Sept. 6 re-opening, the Philadelphia Museum of Art is the final major cultural institution along the Parkway to provide a date for re-opening. In addition, the Rodin Museum will also re-open Set. 6. Only the north entrance of the Art Museum will be open. Both the café and the restaurant will stay closed. The gift shop will permit a limited number of visitors.
Restaurant Week Returns Next Week with Takeout Option

Over 60 restaurants will participate in Restaurant Week on Sept. 13 through Sept. 15.  The restaurants are working with the Center City District to "create a safe experience so residents and visitors can support local businesses and keep local workers employed."

Click on the pic for more information

Click on the pic to learn more and to register
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Useful Links

CCRA Merchant Member Discount Program
Support our local merchants and save money too. These local merchants will provide a discount (described here) to any member who shows a current CCRA membership card and personal identification.

NextMove Dance - Get $10 off  Dance Performances with your CCRA Membership.  Members use  promo code SAVE10.
Philly Foodworks - Use the code "CCRA" when signing up for home delivery and receive a $20 discount on delivery charges.
Photo Lounge 1909 Chestnut Street (267-322-6651)
Twenty-Two Gallery, 236 S. 22nd St, (215-772-1911)
Raven Lounge, 1718 Sansom St. (215-840-3577)
Rim's Dry Cleaners & Tailors,2203 South St. (215-546-1889)
Rittenhouse Hardware, 2001 Pine St. (215-735-6311)
Ursula Hobson Fine Art Framing, 1528 Waverly St (215.546.7889)
Alimentari Restaurant at Di Bruno Bros., 1730 Chestnut St, 2nd Floor 
Astral Artists - Use promo code "CCRA" to receive a $10 flat rate on all tickets to their concerts.
Di Bruno Bros., 1730 Chestnut St, (uses separate card, see info here)
Dom's Shoe Repair, 203 S. 20th St (215-972-0098)
East West Acupuncture, 419 S. 19th St (415-758-1057)
Eye Candy Vision, 218 S. 20th St (215-568-3937)
Home Helpers Philly, 1835 S. Broad St., Ste 2 (215-334-2600)
Good Karma Cafe, 331 S. 22nd St, (215-546-1479)
Jason Matthew Salon, 1735 Chestnut St, 2nd Fl (215-665-8030)
Koresh Dance Company, 2002 Rittenhouse Sq St. (267-687-1769)
Nature's Gallery Florist, 2124 Walnut St (215-563-5554)
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