The Mayfair Community Development Corporation and the Allegheny Iron and Metal Corporation have joined together to help revitalize Mayfair. The specifics of the deal will be explained to the public on April 21 at the debut of the Mayfair Farmers Market.
The agreement in place was made possible by Philadelphia’s CDC Tax Credit Program. The program allows private companies to give $85,000 of their business income and receipts tax to a local CDC instead of to the city. The company then presents the city with a voucher satisfying the tax obligation. The Mayfair CDC will receive the sum annually for the next 10 years.
Mayfair CDC Chairman Joseph DeFelice said he applauds the city for giving the Mayfair CDC an opportunity. “I think at first they were a little nervous about it because [the Mayfair CDC] had taken a downturn for quite awhile,” DeFelice said, but that through the help of the Commerce Department, he was able to convince the city of Mayfair’s potential.
DeFelice said he believes that Mayfair’s Frankford and Cottman area, host to the new farmers market, has the potential to become “downtown” Northeast Philadelphia and serve as a destination of choice for the 400,000 citizens who live in the region. The partnership is an important step to making that a reality.
Allegheny’s Marketing and Sales Director Bill McKeown said he believes this partnership is a perfect fit. “They’re sincere, regular neighborhood people and that’s what my company is,” McKeown said as he expressed how gratifying it is to be able to put money directly into the community as opposed to giving it to the city.
DeFelice said the money is a foundation to turn Frankford Avenue into a strong commercial base for the rebirth of Mayfair.
The City Commerce Department failed to respond to several requests for comment.
Raymond Boyd is a student reporting for Philadelphia Neighborhoods, the publication of Temple University’s Multimedia Urban Reporting Lab.