Community Forum
Mar. 10, 2004

Preliminary Principles

Members of the University City community - residents, merchants, students and other stakeholders - gathered at the Rotunda on March 10, 2004. They broke into 3 groups, each working with professional moderators, to talk about 40th Street and its potential. By the end of the evening each group had developed preliminary planning principles for 40th Street - draft principles that will be consolidated with the work of other groups that evening and with the work of groups from subsequent forums. The questions they addressed were:

1. Who are the current users of 40th street?
2. What uses of 40th street - past, present and future - do you find most interesting or exciting?
3. What factors make some or all of those uses easier? What factors make those uses more difficult?
4. As you think of all of the above, what principles do you think ought to guide the development of 40th street?

Group A
Notes from the Group Discussion

· Stay diversified in economic and racial/cultural ways by having a plan to keep smaller businesses and long term businesses (help with $$ to renovate facades and also $$ to stay in business)
· Need economic development that impacts at the community level - jobs for U. City kids
· Create jobs with a 'living wage'
· Homegrown businesses keep the $$$ here
· Preserve the CHARACTER of the neighborhood
· develop a plan to manage the vehicular traffic better for a variety of reasons -pedestrian safety, crossings, 2-way traffic, but not cut off traffic for cars
· Parking - maintain parking for businesses and improve parking on street- meters needed?
· Create an active route for the West Phila Trolley Loop
· Displacement- minimal displacement; no forced displacement; resources to prevent displacement; help for those displaced
· Method of communicating plans to the neighborhood needs to be advertised, publicized and have a REAL transparency to the process
· Business entrepreneurship help for existing businesses

Group B
Notes from the Group Discussion

· Make everyone feel welcome
· Coalition: community residents, Drexel, Penn, VA Hospital, HUP, CHOP
· Anything on 40th must appeal to people who live there first.
· Safer streets, more people to feel secure, a two way street of respect (University/Residents)
· Public relations to dispel misconceptions (where misconceptions are a constraint)
· The look of 40th street
· Make the ambassadors more effective. There needs to be more and better trained ambassadors. Ambassadors are currently at risk themselves.
· Fill up vacant spaces
· New stores must provide a good mix of services.
· A mix of small, privately owned stores and large stores
· Actively go after stores that make a good mix.

A vision of 40th street
o Open-air market with vendors
o Planters and greenery/ twinkling lights
o Tables and chairs out doors
o Refreshments
o Friendly people
o Renovated library
o Foot traffic

Group C
Notes from the Group Discussion

- Inform and promote landlords - they are assets; communications between landlords and Block Captains (relates to site control)
- Marketing - ask the people who live here what they want (as well as the university)
- Have all the fun and excitement at the street level. Make the street itself exciting
- It's one thing to have something out in public, its another to have it separated out and in private
- Incentives - Keystone Opportunity Zones (KOZO)

© 2004, 40th Street Community Forum and Serendip