Gureilla Mug Assault | casino deadlines loom | Civic Design Review begins | challenges of preserving Furness’ 19th Street Baptist Church

Good morning, Streeters. Did a stranger hand you a handmade clay coffee mug during your morning commute today? NewsWorks reports that The Clay Studio set out to five undisclosed Center City locations this morning to hand out 500 hand made mugs to folks drinking coffee from disposable cups. In exchange for the mug, the new owners are invited to send feedback and pictures back to the artists. The “Guerilla Mug Assault” was funded by a $15,000 Knight Arts Challenge matching grant. (Tell us if you got one!)

Today’s the deadline for interested casino operators to file their Local Impact Report with the city, one week before applications are due to the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board, reports PlanPhilly’s Kellie Patrick Gates. As of Wednesday none had been filed, though late filing would not disqualify operators from the PGCB application process. Deputy Mayor Alan Greenberger said that the city is developing a public input process for the casino proposals, and he expects it will take until spring for the state to announce which applications are eligible. Richard McGarvey, spokesman for PGCB, said the state would release the applicants and proposed locations within days of the November 15 deadline.

The new Civic Design Review Committee held its first meeting Wednesday to consider the impact of a new senior housing development proposed for East Kensington. PlanPhilly’s Jared Brey reports that the Committee’s discussion of the relatively low-impact St. Francis Villa proved “detailed and cordial.” In this case, CDR review came early on, which leaves room for some of the Committee’s suggestions to be incorporated.

For Hidden City Daily’s Furness Week, Penn preservation professor Aaron Wunch writes about the history of the 19th Street Baptist Church in Point Breeze, and recent efforts to stabilize the building long enough to figure out how to save it from demolition. As EOTS reported in January, emergency stabilization work by volunteers like Wunch and members of the congregation bought the church time. Now, Wunch writes, comes the tricky task of overcoming the challenges to the church’s long-term preservation: location, sustained and substantial fundraising, and the difficult nature of the required repairs.


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