August 21: Sharswood/Blumberg groundbreaking | Papal playbook | Paseo Verde award | Windrim whimsy | Philly’s tech diversity | Q&A with Jan Gehl

Sweet Friday! Here’s what we’re reading today:

The city held a groundbreaking for the 10-phase, 10-year Sharswood/Blumberg redevelopment project on Thursday. The project will replace the Philadelphia Housing Authority’s Blumberg Apartments with rowhouse scale buildings. Additionally the city is making the controversial move to take 1330 privately owned properties by eminent domain.

Starting Monday there will be a new one-stop-pope-shop for all public details about the pontiff’s visit in September from the World Meeting of Families.  

The uber-green affordable housing project Paseo Verde was named project of the year by the US Green Building Council.

Philly has some wildly exuberant late 19th-century public buildings, including some spectacular firehouses by John T. Windrim. PhillyHistory takes a look at these exceptional buildings from a building-boom more than 100 years ago.

Next City takes a look at the diversity-by-necessity in Philly’s tech scene.

For your Friday longread, may I recommend this Q&A with Danish urbanist powerhouse Jan Gehl on livable cities and urban design, healthy street life, and what we can learn from historic cities to mend car-dominated places.

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