July 14: Blatstein’s $40M tax credit | Rebuild prelim work | PPA’s TNC rules?

The city’s deal with Bart Blatstein for the former Inquirer Building allows the developer to retain $40 million in federal historic tax credits, Jacob Adelman reports. A city spokesperson says that the tax credit, regardless of who is the direct recipient, ultimately reduces the city’s cost. PlanPhilly’s Jake Blumgart breaks down the specifics of the renegotiation between Blatstein and the city. The $280.8 million renovation will be second most expensive tax-credit project in the city’s history.

Parks and Recreation Commissioner Kathryn Ott Lovell discusses the preliminary work for the Rebuild initiative with WHYY’s Jennifer Lynn. Lovell recognizes that $500 million is limited—the initial assessment of the city’s facilities priced improvements closer to a billion dollars—and shares the city’s priorities and figuring out what rec centers need the most. For a primer and updates on Rebuild, check out Malcolm Burnley’s ongoing coverage for PlanPhilly.

It is unclear when, or if, the PPA will create regulations governing transportation network companies (TNCs), the Philadelphia Business Journal’s Alison Burdo writes. While Act 164, the state law legalizing TNCs, outlines the rules for the rest of the state, the statute says that Philadelphia ‘may’ promulgate regulations. The PPA’s director of the taxi and limousine division says the authority is “working on it.”

Philadelphia should take full advantage of the “Excessive Heat Warnings” to “rouse the masses into audacious neighborhood action over climate change,” urges WURD’s Charles Ellison for the Philadelphia Citizen. Ellison chides the current “quaint, cocktail conversation about climate change,” arguing that vulnerable residents suffering from the extreme heat cannot wait until 2035 to experience the benefits of the city’s renewable energy targets. To bring the discussion to the forefront, Ellison calls for city officials, thought leaders, and the media to “connect the climate change debate with the actual frontline realities.”

Lake Garrison and Bellmawr Lake are two of the last cheap swimming lakes by Philadelphia, writes the Inquirer’s Jason Nark. Short of the Shore and far away state park swimming beaches, Nark explains, Philadelphians do not have many safe and affordable swimming options (people down in the Delaware and Schuylkill Rivers every summer). Lake Garrison’s general manager points out too that the lakes provide an “important place for community for everyone, the migrant workers especially.”

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