Philadelphia's Commerce Director quits

    The City of London has wooed Philadelphia’s Commerce Director. Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development Andrew Altman will be leaving the city to lead the economic development connected with London’s 2012 Olympic games.

    The City of London has wooed Philadelphia’s Commerce Director. Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development Andrew Altman will be leaving the city to lead the economic development connected with London’s 2012 Olympic games.

    Altman says it was an offer he couldn’t refuse. He will be in charge of revitalizing the area of East London, a poor neighborhood that will be the site of the 2012 Olympics. Countless cities, which hosted past Olympics, hoped for renewed development and increased tourism. But the games have often failed to live up to their expectations.

    Altman says it’s his job to make sure that doesn’t happen in London.

    Altman: I think the mistake that’s been made in other places is they haven’t thought about the day after the games. London is thinking about that today. And that’s what I think will be fundamentally different for them.

    Altman says there are plans for housing, infrastructure development and the largest park in Europe on the 500 acre site.

    He says his experience managing Philadelphia’s economic development has given him the confidence to in essence “build a city within a city.”

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