Feb 18: Gentrified and boring | preserving the Magic Gardens | staffing up Parks and Rec | saving American Chestnuts | architectural Hot or Not

Good morning, Streeters. Today is Presidents Day, which means that government offices are closed – and don’t forget: Trash and recycling pickup will be pushed back a day. Here’s what’s making news this morning:

In an article for The New Republic Inga Saffron writes about the monotony that gentrification has wrought on urban neighborhoods, focsuing on the example of Graduate Hospital. “It turns out that the old complaint against gentrification, that it drives out minorities, is far too simplistic. Instead, we should be worrying about a different concern: It hasn’t built the diversity that Jacobsian urbanists envisioned, and that cities need.”

Can the Magic Gardens be preserved? Isaiah Zagar’s ad hoc mosaic artworks stretch from the core of the Magic Gardens on 3 lots along the 1000 block of South Street to 33 nearby blocks. Because most of Zagar’s work is on private property, Grid/Hidden City Daily wonders how to ensure that Zagar’s works are protected and appropriately conserved.

Thanks to $2.6 million in additional funding Parks and Recreation facilities will be better maintained, reports the Inquirer. The budget increase will allow the department to hire 63 full-time employees and 75 seasonal employees, largely to focus on upkeep and repair. “The money will allow the department to approach maintenance more systematically, DiBerardinis said. With the larger staff, his department will be able to review major systems – heaters, lighting, roofs – every year and spot problems more quickly.”

Roxborough is home to several American Chestnut trees, rare remains of a once-prevalent species of tree that was over-forested and nearly wiped out by blight in the 20th Century. NewsWorks reports on the Schuylkill Center’s work to restore the American Chestnut population as part of a nationwide effort.

Play a game of architectural Hot or Not with new construction in Philly. Hidden City Daily rates 10 new projects, from Penn’s super hot Krishna P. Singh Center for Nanotechnology to the definitely not hot Hilton Homes2 Suites next to Reading Terminal Market. See if you agree.

The Buzz is Eyes on the Street’s morning news digest. Have a tip? Send it along.

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