Philadelphia City Council overhauling demolition rules


After studying what caused this summer’s deadly building collapse, Philadelphia City Council has introduced a series of bills to revise demolition regulations.


Councilman Curtis Jones says the goal is to make the demolition process safer and avoid a repeat of what happened at 22nd and Market Streets. He expects a lot of debate about how expensive the changes will be.

“We have a legislative process that allows us to have a series of hearings,” Jones said. “I believe there will be a series of discussions and negotiations about what the cost of things are.”

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Councilwoman Jannie Blackwell has a bill calling for a special, independent safety person assigned to each demolition site.

“Whose job if you start at 6 a.m. and end at midnight they have to be watching that job,” Blackwell said.

Councilwoman Maria Quinones-Sanchez says she’s concerned about a requirement mandating ID cards for demolition workers.

“I think that it will unfairly burden some of my undocumented population,” she said.

The bills will be the subject of upcoming council hearings. 

Mayor Nutter issued a statement saying: “With the introduction of the proposed legislation, my staff and I will work with City Council and the public to develop a stronger regulatory environment that ensures safety at all demolition sites in the City.”

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