Corbett to sign land bank bill | beyond food access | Central District planning | Arch Street Meeting House honored

Governor Tom Corbett is expected to sign state legislation that would enable Philadelphia to establish a municipal land bank, reports the Daily News. State Rep. John Taylor, the bill’s sponsor, said: “If you don’t pay your taxes [now], nothing much happens. This will incentivize the city to move on properties quicker and … dispose of them in a timely manner. You can change entire blocks at once now.” Expect debate to resume in City Council in November.

Thinking beyond mere food access, Philly’s urban nutrition initiatives are using creative education and engagement opportunities to change what’s on people’s plates. Flying Kite profiles Equal Dollars Food Market and Urban Farm’s efforts to involve community members in food production, cooking demos by Farm to Families, and Earth Keepers and From Plant to Seed which both teach kids how food grows through hands-on experience.

Should the Reading Viaduct cut, west of Broad, be repurposed for rapid transit and the elevated portion become a park? How about real-time bus updates at stops? These are among the ideas floated at the first of two public meetings about the Central District Plan, looking to improve public spaces, transportation, cultural institutions, housing, safety, and vacant properties. PlanPhilly’s Kellie Patrick Gates was on hand  for last night’s meeting. A second (duplicate) meeting will be on Thursday evening at the Independence Visitor Center Liberty View Ballroom (6th & Market streets).

A plaque celebrating the designation of the Arch Street Meeting House as a National Historic Landmark was unveiled this month, reports PlanPhilly’s Alan Jaffe. The building at 330 Arch Street is the only remaining work from Owen Biddle, a Quaker master builder, and was honored for its “elegant expression of Quaker simplicity.” Fewer than 2,500 places have been designated National Historic Landmarks.


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