Philadelphia’s new Licenses and Inspections website is working to change the way local residents view their communities.
At this week’s Wissahickon Neighbors Civic Association Meeting, president Drew Bantly showcased the website as a means to find information on rentals in the area, property violations, vacant properties and zoning board appeals. It also includes information on Philly 311 requests.
“You just type in an address, hit search and it loads the website to tell you the breakdown for that location and what they have on file for each one of those,” he said. “We can see rental license information on students who live there – zoning, violations and vacancies.”
Earlier this year, The Coalition of Civics, which is made up of six civics in the 21st Ward, including WNCA, met with L&I and the Councilman’s office to express concerns such as problem rentals in their neighborhood. Bantly said the Coalition took no part in the planning or creation of the city’s website (which was completed under the supervision of former Commissioner Fran Burns and current Commissioner Carlton Williams) but lauds the city for working to address some of their concerns by creating a system that is open and easy for residents to follow.
“This puts a little more information in the community’s hands,” Bantly said. “For L&I to come forth with this is a big step forward.”
Sean Chambers contributed to this report.