Zoning Meeting

Tuesday, April 11, 2017 - 7:00pm

118-20 Richmond St
Proposal for legalizing an existing building

250 E Girard Ave
Proposal combining two lots into one and renovating existing buildings into a four story building with (6) dwelling units and commercial on the ground floor.

This meeting will take place at the Fishtown Rec Center, 1202 E Montgomery Ave. All residents and business owners in Fishtown are eligible to vote. Please bring proof of residence or business ownership in the form of a driver’s license or a photo id and a lease, utility bill, or recent piece of mail addressed to your home or business.

Comments

roman's picture

250 E Girard Ave: Wow! Talk about squeezing them in. Six units: will people have to sleep standing up?

Megan's picture

250 E Girard is Ekt, right? Those buildings are ripe for renovation, but I hate to see Ekta go.

Also, that building at 118-20 Richmond is absurd. But it's already built. If it's refused do they have to tear it down?

bonzombiekitty's picture

roman wrote:
250 E Girard Ave: Wow! Talk about squeezing them in. Six units: will people have to sleep standing up?

Ekta takes up two storefronts there, and it appears that each building has two residential units it for a total of four units. I get the impression that they want to combine the two buildings into one, add a 4th story and make a total of six residential units. That doesn't seem like it would be squeezing them in. One unit on each floor above the store front in each of the existing buildings.

Thompson Skret's picture

I'm almost positive I read somewhere Ekta is staying. and like what's said above... they're adding two stories to the building

Avocado's Number's picture

Didn't I hear that the people that own Ekta also owned the stucco monstrosity across the street at Marlborough & Girard? If so, gotta say I'm super-excited to see the design on this one!

roman's picture

bonzombiekitty wrote:
roman wrote:
250 E Girard Ave: Wow! Talk about squeezing them in. Six units: will people have to sleep standing up?

....That doesn't seem like it would be squeezing them in....

It depends on how you look at this.
Screenshot (2198)a

Megan's picture

My flight probably won't get in early enough to make this meeting tomorrow, but I encourage neighbors to vote "no" for the Richmond Street project, which is essentially asking permission to allow these guys to continue parking on and blocking the sidewalk. I tried to get a picture but the owners of the shop next door came out and started threatening me because he thought I was taking pics of his license plate. I have a sense there is a lot of animosity among people on that block.

roman's picture

I was late to be able to vote on 118-20 Richmond St. Megan was not the only one who experienced harassment. Those in attendance voted in favor.

The resulting vote for 250 E Girard Ave was in total a rare tie. Yes. It's good to see improvement of an old building on Girard Ave. No. It's not good that it's not being done right by further setting the president of further increasing unchecked density and that no back yard that inhibits another option to egress the building in a crisis situation.
More unfavorable density is being constructed also on Girard Ave between Montgomery and Palmer, Berks and Girard, between Frankford and Front, Moyer and Berks and soon to come at Palmer and Girard.
Don't forget the proposed 23 units at St Laurentius. There are others examples not mentioned here.
The lease I can say is do it right to reasonably improve and old building aside from the concern of unbridgeable growing density to the size of the Fishtown community.

Megan's picture

Can I get information about submitting a letter and/or attending the ZBA meeting for this 118-120 Richmond Street property? The person that has been threatening me identified himself as the shop owner, but he wasn't at the meeting on Tuesday. I also have more photos of them blocking the sidewalk from the last two days that I would like to include with my letter to the ZBA. Nice of them to take neighbors' concerns into consideration since the meeting.

roman's picture

Megan it's too late. They won because of the community vote. There is no need for a ZBA hearing because it was, again, approved by the community. Fishown Zoning/ Matt Karp need to post the break down of the voting. This information continues, more often than not, to be absent from all three FNA web sites.
The question that needs to be asked is whether an appeal can be filed as result of a favorable community vote to the ZBA or if it's allowable in court. The FNA zoning board and/or Matt can or could answer this.
Leo M can be of legal help to answer this.

I'll spare you all my full interaction with three people who voted yes for 250 E Girard Ave. Two, in my opinion, should have voted no because of clear indefensible opposing reason. The result of the vote, again, was a rare tie.

RAMiller's picture

Megan,
Regardless of the outcome of the vote, you can go to the ZBA hearing and make your concerns known. They have to listen. It cannot hurt - and if you are legitimately concerned about being threatened, I would bring this up. Hell, if you are seriously being threatened, I would contact the police.

If you are unsatisfied with the ruling of the ZBA, you can appeal to the Court of Common Pleas - but in this case - it would likely be on your dime - with perhaps other neighbors that share your concern.

Megan's picture

I was at the meeting. I actually cut my trip short to take a red eye and make that meeting. I think it's bullLOVE that anyone would be intimidated over zoning issues, and at this point that's a bigger concern to me than the property dispute.

roman's picture

RAM: Your opening staetment reeks of "hog wash." The procedure and presecdent is not the ZBA over ruling iself and hearing out a person to provide meaningful relief other than directing someone to make an appeal before Common Plea Court.

Leo's picture

Rumor has it there's going to be a new Zoning chair starting Tuesday, April 18th—Frank DiCicco. I'm not sure how that's going to change operations at the ZBA.

But what I can say is that warm bodies at the ZBA hearing have historically make a difference, no matter how the community vote went, especially if you live close to a project. And if you can't personally make it, you can always send in a letter or hire counsel to make it for you.

RAMiller's picture

roman wrote:
RAM: Your opening staetment reeks of "hog wash." The procedure and presecdent is not the ZBA over ruling iself and hearing out a person to provide meaningful relief other than directing someone to make an appeal before Common Plea Court.

Roman, It was an honest description of the process. The ZBA often overules the will of the neighborhood and being there in person has a very big impact on the process. AND, you can appeal a ZBA decision if you do not agree with it.
The most recent case I can think of when this happened was when the neighborhood and the ZBA ruled in support of the Filmore development down at Frankford and Del ave - and several neighbors appealed the decision and delayed the project for some time. It happens.

I am not sure where your calling this 'hogwash' is coming from - but I would suggest you actually familiarize yourself with the process. It seems that you do not really understand it.

And for what it is worth, I was trying to help out with Megan's concerns. I honestly have no idea what your motives are here beyond trolling and starting meaningless fights.

Your antics are not helping anyone.

roman's picture

To make an appeal "after the fact" ruling by the ZBA and/or a community approved vote, outside of a court appeal. is not and has not been an effective method.

Megan's picture

Thanks for the suggestions. I'm submitting a letter, along with pictures of the sidewalk being blocked at various times throughout the day and night, since the meeting. I don't think it's too much to hold businesses like this accountable to neighbors, and insist they be considerate by not blocking the sidewalk for pedestrians. I'm not trying to block the project or anything radical. I just don't think they should be permitted to park blocking the sidewalk. I'll respect the ZBA's decision even if they disagree with me.