On Monday, Philadelphia City Council’s Committee of the Whole approved a budget for Fiscal Year 2020 that boosts investment in our neighborhood commercial corridors by $2 million. This budget is on track to be approved by Council by June 20th. This is a significant boost for programs that help create safe, clean, vibrant, and attractive neighborhood shopping districts and help small businesses thrive, and has long been a priority of PACDC’s Commercial Corridor Working Group (learn more here).
PACDC applauds Councilmembers Cherelle Parker and Maria Quinones Sanchez for leading the efforts in Council to expand this funding, as well as the Kenney Administration and other members of Council that have showed strong support for our neighborhood corridors.
In 2018 alone, organizations funded through the Targeted Corridor Management Program and the sidewalk cleaning program on commercial corridors reported:
- 15 organizations collected 19,878 bags of trash and recycling;
- 5 organizations removed 1,547 instances of graffiti, illegal signs, and posters;
- 7 organizations reported 51 storefront improvements;
- 6 organizations organized 27 trainings and workshops;
- 7 organizations reported 21 net new businesses opened on their corridors, creating 108 net new jobs;
- 11 organizations offered business assistance and referrals to 184 businesses;
- 9 organizations filed 203 complaints with 311;
- 6 organizations reported meeting with 951 individual businesses.
A $2 million boost in corridor programs would allow the Philadelphia Department of Commerce, which oversees these programs, to expand them to more neighborhood commercial corridors that are not funded; boost support for under-funded corridors; and launch new programs to help small businesses and corridor management organizations strengthen their economic output.
From Woodland Avenue to Germantown Ave, North 5th to 52nd Street, Torresdale to Kensington & Allegheny, our corridors are safer, cleaner, more vibrant and more attractive places to do business thanks to very modest investments in corridor programs. Our neighborhood commercial corridors are the economic arteries of the city. They provide opportunities for entrepreneurs to open or expand small businesses, provide pedestrian-friendly retail and services for neighborhood residents, and are gathering places for community celebrations. A strong city has strong corridors! PACDC looks forward to working with City Council and the Kenney Administration as they decide how to distribute these funds.