Steve Powers signage | why our streets flood | Philly competes in Mayors Challenge | glass block comeback

Good morning, Streeters. Hope your weekend was enjoyable– we spent some of ours exploring Bartram’s Mile, which we’ll tell you all about later. Today marks the final hours before polls open for Election Day 2012. Bill Clinton will be at the Palestra late this afternoon, as part of a last-minute Keystone state blitz. Be certain to make time to vote tomorrow. And as prep: check out the nonpartisan Committee of Seventy’s practical guide to voting, advice on the ballot questions, and locate your polling place. Remember: You don’t have to show ID in order to vote – unless it’s your first time voting (ever or in a new division – for example, if you’ve moved).

Steve Powers is giving free, “classic” commercial signs to businesses along Philly’s struggling commercial corridors, reports Next American City. Powers aka ESPO, the graffiti and public artist behind the Love Letters project along the El in West Philly, started Icy Sign Co, a collective with retail and studio spaces in New York, and a storefront space for production on Girard Avenue in Brewerytown. The retail outfit will benefit pro bono projects in Philly.

Why and how do Philly streets flood? Historian Adam Levine explains three typical reasons in the Inquirer: steep topography, historic streams-turned-sewers that no longer have natural edges to help absorb stormwater, and combined sewer system overflows.

Philadelphia is a finalist for Bloomberg Philanthropies’ Mayors Challenge, competing for its share of $9 million in grant funding, reports Next American City. Philly’s grant proposal would open up the city’s RFP process to attract broader participation from the city’s growing startup and entrepreneurial communities.

Glass block is making a comeback in architectural taste. For some glass block may seem dated, but for others it is making a comeback as an uber-chic material. The Inquirer reports on this revival among Philly designers who are embracing the trend.


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