April 18: DiCicco, ZBA chair | Brady and friends | Powerhouse honored

It’s official: Former First District Councilman Frank DiCicco was appointed to the Zoning Board of Adjustment as its chair. Before leaving office DiCicco served on the Zoning Code Commission, which worked for nearly five years to rewrite the city’s outdated zoning code. Since leaving office he’s lobbied for developers and the billboard industry.

Why is Congressman Bob Brady still in charge on Philly Democrats? Holly Otterbein takes a look at the longtime “unapologetically transactional” leader, working politically with “friends” – from ward leaders to congressmen. “Brady’s allies say his relationships have enabled him to do everything from stitch together the city’s Democratic Party to help save the Sunoco refinery in Southwest Philly. What they don’t say is that these close ties are likely also why he’s stood idly by in recent years as the city’s elected officials have incinerated the public’s trust.”

Writing for Keystone Crossroads, Alan Jaffe has the rundown of Preservation Pennsylvania’s annual list of historic sites at risk across the Commonwealth. Near Philly is the Corson Homestead in Plymouth Meeting, a stop on the Underground Railroad, and the Meadowbrook Farmstead in Chester County.

ISA won an AIA Housing Award this year for its work on Powerhouse, a 31-unit energy-efficient multi-family housing development in Francisville for Postgreen.

And for those of us still keeping score: Buildings remain our biggest source of CO2. Lloyd Alter explains why, and why it’s not the transportation sector, on Treehugger.

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