November 21: Convention Center sign | Brandywine Workshop | 4,500 proposals

Restoration, leveraging real estate holdings, and creative revenue streams: nonprofit organization Brandywine Workshop occupied one of the few 19th century firehouses left in the city for nearly 30 years. When façade improvements were needed in 2008, the 45-year-old multicultural print arts organization reconfigured: Brandywine renovated the entire building, consolidated operations to one floor, and converted the other floors into apartments and ground floor retail. 

Plans are in the works to build a sign for the North Broad Street entrance of the Convention Center. It will say “Pennsylvania Convention Center.” Linda Lloyd covers the proposed design and materials, the Art Commission’s “concept approval,” and why it took so long.

Nine multimodal transit projects in Philadelphia received $5.3 million in funds from the Commonwealth Financing Authority, Curbed Philly’s Melissa Romero reports. Romero highlights the nine, including $215,000 to the Olde Richmond Civic Association to revitalize the Lehigh Viaduct Underpass, $376,000 to replace the headhouse and bus stop at East Market, and $500,000 for Vision Zero. The program awarded $59 million total to 112 projects across the state. In a recent PlanPhilly tour of Orinoka Civic House this summer, NKCDC and Impact Service Corporation reps walked us under the Lehigh Viaduct, noting the break in pedestrian activity and the physical, emotional divide north and south of Lehigh Avenue.

Now that Monument Lab’s twenty prototype monuments have come down, what’s next? The data fun begins, dear reader. The citywide project received more than 4,500 public submissions for proposed monuments and thoughts on civic space. Billy Penn writes that for the next six to eight months, researchers will comb through the “treasure trove” of data and present their findings “to city officials and policy makers [either] behind closed doors, or during a public meeting inviting comment.”

Grow PA: the Chamber of Commerce for Greater Philadelphia convened 125 Pennsylvania civic and business leaders to get a sense of priorities for a statewide economic development agenda,’s Tony Abraham reports. The initiative, spearheaded by the chamber and in partnership with, hones in on policy ideas in three key sectors—healthcare, post-secondary education, and infrastructure.

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