Kenney visits Northeast Philly, chats with immigrant entrepreneurs

Mayor Jim Kenney chats with Chung Le, the owner of Pho Saigon Restaurant, in Northeast Philadelphia Monday. (Tom MacDonald/WHYY)

Mayor Jim Kenney chats with Chung Le, the owner of Pho Saigon Restaurant, in Northeast Philadelphia Monday. (Tom MacDonald/WHYY)

Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney visited the city’s Northeast to talk with business owners as part of an effort to recognize the growing contributions immigrants and their businesses make in that part of the city.

The mayor made four stops along Castor, Cottman and Bustleton avenues Monday, visiting restaurants and shops to chat with merchants.

At the Pho Saigon restaurant on Bustleton, owner Chung Le told Kenney he’s expecting the Northeast to become the next site of a housing boom.

“I want to see more tourists, I want to see more people from other parts of the country, and know about the Northeast,” Le said. “We have great potential to become Queens or Brooklyn in New York.”

Michelle Price Randall, who works with the city to support businesses that want to set up in the Northeast, said the mayor’s tour was an important step in calling attention to the city’s diversity.

“This means big things for the Lower Northeast,” she said. “We haven’t had a mayor come out … we have some gems in the Northeast, and people don’t know about it. Great restaurants, very diverse.”

While many think they have to travel to Center City for variety, she said, it’s all over the Northeast — as well as a lot of inexpensive parking.

Kenney said Philadelphia’s growing diversity will help the city flourish.

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