December 21: Frankenstein façade alterations | Cross City Communication | Kenney, protected bike lanes

Hearing from Norris Homes residents: WHYY New’s Annette John-Hall covers neighbors’ concerns of displacement due to Temple’s expansion and PHA’s attempts to “incorporate low-income families into the area’s social blueprint.” Local leaders responded positively to the university’s community outreach efforts and receiving a “level of dignity back” with rehabbed affordable housing. A solid five-minute listen.

 “Philly’s long-held tradition of Frankenstein façade alterations is alive and well,” writes GroJLart, contributing to Hidden City. GroJLart tells the tale of the changing faces at 942 Market, home through the years to an office supply company, dentist, and McDonald’s with notoriously bad Yelp reviews. Next up is a Panda Express, with a “new façade screen and a toothy, tiled grin.”

Mayor Kenney responded to another demonstration for better protected bike lanes, explaining that limited funding forces the program to continue at its current pace.

Sharswood’s Blumberg Senior Apartments update: the city broke ground on the only remaining piece of the Blumberg Apartments Wednesday, WHYY News’ Aaron Moselle reports. All the former residents are guaranteed an apartment after the $28 million renovation, which will include “new bathrooms and kitchens, as well as a new community center, elevators, and central air.”

Street art in the El and subway stations, Filthadelphia and illegal dumping, and “cross city communication” through abandoned payphones. Streets Dept rounds up a few favorite moments of the year, many of which include Philadelphians’ attempts to speak to the built environment in a changing city.

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