BOARD OF DIRECTORS MINUTES – Meeting of March 6, 2017

PRESENT:   Matt Ruben, President; Michael Coyne, Vice-President; Steve Richman, Treasurer; Janet Finegar, Secretary; Donald Hoegg; Monika Kreidie; Jeremy Lindemann; Joe Mikuliak; Don Phillips; Barbara Saverino; Chris Somers;

ABSENT:  Troy Crichton; Roneil Jackson; Ira Upin; Anne Waginger.  

ALSO PRESENT:      Lara Kelly

The meeting was called to order by the President at 7:05 p.m.

Motion: By Jeremy Lindemann, seconded by Donald Hoegg:“To approve the minutes of the February Board meeting as presented.”  Passed 8-0-1

President’s Report: Matt Ruben: written report attached and reviewed.

— Steve reported on the progress of the Community Center yard project. The project was delayed by some changes and typical planning issues and by the need to request a zoning variance. The hope is that the project will get into the ground on April 1. As a result, the plant sale will be occurring at the Rec Center for this year. The Operations Committee will need to make a number of adjustments and plans to deal with the construction period.

— Monika reported that George Milton has agreed to be a facilitator for our Board Retreat. We will need to choose a date as soon as possible.

President’s Report, March 2017

  • Construction Impacts – Larry Freedman got quick action restoring pedestrian access on N 3rd St between Fairmount and Green. Nothing else out of the ordinary
  • Festival Pier Site (Delaware & Spring Garden) – I hope to have an update by our meeting Monday night on whether or not the developer has come out of due diligence. If so, I will press hard for a public presentation that can be the centerpiece of a late March or early April general membership meeting – at which we could kick off the 2017 board nomination period.
  • Business Improvement District (BID) – The first open BID meeting was followed by an equally well-attended first meeting of the expanded Steering Committee. At least 20 people attended, and progress was made on defining a study area and otherwise moving forward.
  • Board Retreat – Monika has found a facilitator. Details and next steps will be detailed at our board meeting.
  • General Membership Meetings – The February 21 Quality of Life/Trash general membership meeting was quite well-attended and went well. As a follow-up, the first working meeting of the reinvigorated Quality of Life committee is the day after our board meeting: March 7, 7PM at the NLNA office. Board members are encouraged to attend if they can.
  • Town Watch – Just a reminder that we might want to have a small spring kick-off “party” for Town Watch patrols, to kick them off again and hopefully widen the pool of folks willing to do them.
  • Marketing/PR – A team of graduate students from Temple’s Fox School of Business is slated to help us with marketing and PR issues this summer – thanks to Don Phillips. Don also has met with neighbor Lori Schuster, who does similar marketing and is interested in helping out as well. Thanks to Don for these efforts, and for agreeing to help shepherd these collaborations moving forward.
  • The Facebook Group continues to grow quickly, with more than 3,300 members.


Treasurer’s Report: Steve Richman: written report distributed and reviewed.

Motion: By Barbara Saverino, seconded by Monika Kreidie.“To accept the Treasurer’s report as presented.”  Passed 10-0-0


2016-17 Budget: February Financials – tables attached

  • For the five months ended on February 28th all funds income was $163,341; this was $18,200 more than projected.  Expenses totaled $60,730, which was about $3,300 less than anticipated.  Net income was $102,611– $21,475 more than projected. These amounts include $80,100 in grant income and about $3,900 in grant expenses outside the General Fund and Liberty Lands.
  • Excluding grant fund activity yields a more accurate representation of our financial position.  Thus, if we limit the calculation to income and expenses from the General Fund and Liberty Lands accounts, our financial position after the first three months of the fiscal year is as follows:
    1. GF & LL Income (rounded):  $83,200 — $17,700 more than anticipated.
    2. GF & LL Expenses (rounded):  $56,800 — $4,200 less than anticipated.
    3. GF & LL Net Income:  $26,400 — $22,000 more than anticipated.
  • Significant variations from budgeted projections through February included:
  1. Income from fundraising activities – which totaled about $30,900. This was $2,650 higher than anticipated. Most significantly, the Annual Appeal has already surpassed its goal of $17,600 (by $400) and the Winterfest took in nearly $9,000, nearly $1,500 more than projected. In addition, income from the Fall Fest exceeded expectations by nearly $1,800. 
  2. Higher than anticipated general donations totaling $11,200. This was nearly $9,300 more than projected and accounts for more than half of the current positive balance.    A number of large matching donations constituted most of the amounts we received. 
  3. Rental income, which totaled $32,230 and exceeded expectations by nearly $4,000, although $800 of this amount was pre-paid rent.
  4. Grants totaling $5,820 received from PTSSD for Operation Santa, Parade of Spirits, the Fall Fest and Winterfest. An additional $2,000 grant was received from the Frick Foundation for repairs at Liberty Lands.
  5. Lower than anticipated spending for professional and program services and repair and maintenance (-$6,300). This difference is almost entirely due to timing and seasonality.
  6. Lower spending in these categories was partially offset by higher than anticipated spending (+$1,900) in legal services. This additional spending was for the appeal of a recent ZBA decision.
  7. Other Items
  • Capital Grant from PTSSD – We successfully appealed the refusal we received for our zoning permit and have been working with KT to make some changes to the architectural plans for the yard and formulate an MOU that will help guide the construction process. The changes to the plans affect only the landscaping and do not affect the design of the pavilion.  Final plans should be available the week of March 6th.  Once we have “stamped” plans we will apply for expedited approval of building permits.  At the same time we have received some proposals from contractors interested in working on the project and have begun to develop contracts to secure their services.
  • New Grants from PTSSD – Penn Treaty SSD has approved new grants for a mulching project at Liberty lands ($2,850) and for Winterfest ($1,500). Both grants will cover costs that otherwise would have been met by the NLNA.
  • Garden Hub – The NLNA co-sponsored a grant application by Garden Hub to Penn Treaty SSD. Penn Treaty approved the application and will award Garden Hub a $33,941 grant this month.   NLNA will act as a fiscal intermediary for Garden Hub.


Liberty Lands Committee Report: Janet Finegar: written report attached and reviewed.

Liberty Lands – March 2017

  • Lots of good funding news! Councilman Mike O’Brien (really his chief of staff, Mary Isaacson) connected us to a grant from the state Department of Conservation and Economic Development. I have put in a request for about $50,000 to partner with the $31,000 PHS has already promised us in order to re-do the community garden fence. The project proposes taking out the current fence entirely and replacing it with a metal fence that includes 10 unique panels made by artists (and selected by the community from proposals). It ALSO proposes completely re-doing the Bodine Street side of the garden, eliminating the planters along that side and replacing them with a concrete sidewalk and curb (which would make the parking along that stretch “official” and also, ideally, encourage people to park well enough that they aren’t widening out into the street). The metal fence would go around that edge as well, and probably widen the garden by a few feet. That proposal is under review right now.
  • PTSSD agreed to sponsor our March 25 “mulch” workday, and we need to start advertising for that soon. PTSSD will cover the cost of the mulch ($2,800!), so it’s a big help to the budget.
  • And finally, Jen got funding from PTSSD for a pilot project that will happen at Liberty Lands and other gardens in the riverwards – Gardenhub. It’s an initiative to reduce food waste in community gardens, get that food to local food donation sites, and provide internship opportunities for workers in transition to learn new, marketable job skills. It also includes a includes a web app to enable e-communication among community gardeners and with the “harvest gardener” who will help improve the harvesting and donation process. This season’s pilot will happen at Seedy Acres, Orianna Hill, La Finquita, and Port Kensington Farm as well as Liberty Lands’ garden.
  • In other fundraising/benefit to the park news, Paul Hubert has been working like crazy on the Farmers’ Market and it looks like it will really take off this season. He has something like 15 vendors signed up to start on April 8 (our “cement” workday), including J&J Farms back, selling just greens in April but building through the season. Acme is going to “sponsor” it by allowing us to offer parking to the vendors, which makes the numbers possible! Because the market is going to be weekly, I’m suggesting that we don’t plan to do a flea market this spring (they feel like competition for each other). We might plan one for the fall, though?
  • Paul is also offering to watch over an information table for Liberty Lands/NLNA at the Markets – which means that the NLNA especially needs to get itself together to have good information there! Because it will take a little time for that to happen, but the Market starts on April 8, I knocked together an information sheet for Liberty Lands that is a placeholder until we have a better design. It’s attached: let me know if you have comments immediately.
  • PHS’ City Harvest program is revving up for the season. We’ll need to do 10 hours of CH volunteer work over the course of the summer (I’ve put in four already, she brags) – contact Jen if you can do a 2 hour stint some Saturday morning (or a weekday in this spring).
  • As a part of the garden-fence proposal requirements, we need to have a community-wide Liberty Lands meeting a.s.a.p. to review the idea with the community and take comments. There’s plenty of other stuff to discuss as well, of course. I’ve put that on the calendar for April 6 and hope that it will also be an NLNA general meeting, but that’s still up in the air. The rest of that grant schedule (as proposed): The meeting in April to present the project and discuss ideas for the artists RFP. Another big meeting in the fall – community design charette – to select panels from those proposed. Then installation in early spring 2018.
  • Given that it’s another crazy-busy spring and summer for the LL core volunteers, we’re again/still seeking volunteers to take on any one of several specific jobs now being done by the crew. In particular, if someone would take over managing our trash worker, it would be much appreciated!
  • Apparently the battery in the water meter doesn’t work. I have to contact the Water Department and make it happen that they come replace it. For those who didn’t hear, by the way, the stormwater charge exemption for community gardens came through, so now it’s just governmental process on forgiving our back charges. Yay.
  • MARCH 25 PLAYGROUND WORKDAY: The Streets Department has verbally approved letting me close 3rd on the morning of March 24 to get the mulch delivery. I’ll start a “heads up” blast of information about that and parking restrictions soon. The official paperwork is on the way. That workday will be mostly centered on the playground.
  • APRIL 4 – Liberty Lands Community Meeting: about the fence project and anything else people want to talk about (like new volunteers!)
  • APRIL 8 Cement workday/Philly Spring Cleanup/GLBC-sponsored workday/Farmers’ Market opening: We will install signs, two new grills, the Little Free Library, and maybe other things? We will plant four new sour cherry trees, and do a mass of cleanup jobs.
  • May 6: Plant Sale – taking place at the NLRec Center this year, so more difficult than usual. Tons of volunteer help will be needed!
  • May 13 – Love Your Park Workday: Who even knows? So far away. . . But the City would love it if we had an “event” as well as the workday this year, so ideas are welcome.


Operations Committee Report: Monika Kreidie: written report attached and reviewed.

NLNA Operations Committee Report – March 6, 2017

  • On-line rental form: check the NLNA website for the new on-line rental form and share it with potential renters.
  • ALARM COMPANY: still looking into alternatives to our existing alarm company.
  • Center Rentals: On-going weekly rentals provide $250 weekly. We had a total of $1,770 in rental fees for February and expect $1,600 for March.
  • Third Floor Apartment: The NLNA will renew lease with the current tenants at $1600/month from April 1, 2017 to April 30, 2018.
  • On-line marketing group: Monika met with NLNA resident Ryan Oliveira from Atmos FI, a start-up that provides free WiFi to local shops and collects email data to provide back to the merchant. (The customer requests to be added to merchant list). Ryan reached out to us to help market our events on his service. This would be free to the NLNA as a “community service”. See attached information.


Quality-of-life Committee Report: Lara Kelly: written report attached and reviewed.

Quality Of Life Committee – Notes from 2/21/2017 “Trash” meeting

Short form notes:

  • The meeting was well-attended (30 people?) We began by making a list of as many problems/sources of trash on the street as possible. [This list, with a lot of more details about all of the below, will be sent to everyone who attended the meeting or expressed an interest in getting information, and will also be posted on Facebook as a document sometime later today. If you’re interested in getting more information, send a message to Lara at]
  • The list of problems inevitably led to some suggestions of small-scale solutions. We quickly reviewed the various actions that the City of Philadelphia and the NLNA are already taking to combat trash on the street and discussed some of the difficulties, limitations, and roadblocks to those efforts.
  • There was a general agreement to the assertion that our community needs to take local action in addition to what’s already in place to make a real difference. A few ideas were floated as ways that community members can help with a variety of skills:
    • EVERYONE: use the City’s 311 reporting system for problems, and then tell Lara about the report and ticket number so she can track and follow up ( 311 can help with all kinds of issues – even things like repeat-offender neighbors putting out trash wrong.
    • ANYONE: join the Quality Of Life committee to keep helping with ongoing issues (especially with city-based issues like getting more/better street trash cans or to build resources/connections within the neighborhood). Let Lara know at that you want to be a part!
    • GRAPHICS SKILLS: help create fliers/brochures/signs/education for the community
    • ANYONE: Start hyper-local organizing on your own block – reach out to neighbors to solve problems right there, organize a block cleanup for the citywide clean up day (4/8) or any other day (NLNA has tools/resources), start a Facebook group/listserv for your block, and keep the NLNA in the loop about what you’re doing.
    • DATA SKILLS: Help create a database for Northern Liberties that could record all kinds of block-by-block information (street can locations, problem areas, vacant lots, street trees, parking issues. . . everything)
      • Once that database exists, many volunteers needed to do data input for their own block
      • Plus ongoing maintenance of the database once it exists
    • SOCIAL SKILLS: Help develop, plan, and implement a community-wide direct outreach program to reach every door in the community with Quality of Life information, NLNA information, and a small gift.
  • That’s the very broad outline. I’m about to work on the detailed description of all this, but the main point is that what we need most of all right now is community commitment to enforcing a set of standards that we all live by – effective complaining, if you will.
  • A lot of questions and a lot of thornier issues remain – many of them centered around what to do when these kinds of friendly outreach don’t work. Those are the conversations going forward and are things for us all to think about. Many many more ideas are welcome!

Long form notes:

  • The meeting began with a brainstorming session of “problems” – this generated a long list (which follows these notes). Janet and Lara presented a list of things that the city and NLNA already do to improve trash conditions (also attached). Finally, the group discussed some ideas for actions that we can take at the local level to make a difference.
  • A major theme that rose out of the list of problems was the idea that people doing the wrong thing are the real problem. There was a general sense that some people contribute to the trash out of ignorance (such as thinking that plastic bags are recyclable), some out of lack of awareness that their actions are a problem at all (such as using recycling containers without a lid), some out of a sense of entitlement (such as assuming that someone is paid to sweep the streets), with a few true scofflaws.
  • There was optimism at the meeting that many people fall into the first two groups and can be educated, and that an increased expression of a higher community standard would improve many people’s behavior. Still, concern remained about repeat offenders and scofflaws, and the question of how to enforce the standards remains open.
  • The list of problems included issues at a number of levels – some were hyper-local issues of a specific block (or neighbor) where conversation between neighbors could solve it. Some were completely within the city’s domain (such as the issue of a recycling truck with a hole in the bottom so that glass falls back out onto the street: the NLNA will advocate with the Councilmen’s offices to get this corrected). Most, however, were issues where one would hope that a conversation between neighbors would lead to people correcting their behavior, but where enforcement from the City might be needed.
  • There was general agreement that cleaning up by itself does not work. As a short term solution, obviously the answer is to dispose of the trash appropriately. However, unless we stop it at the source, this simply means that a few responsible people are endlessly cleaning up after the rest: a recipe for burnout and conflict.


  • Neighborhood property database: This is something that would be really useful for the NLNA to have for a resource for tracking trash problems, seeing where we need or could place street cans, understanding the issues around hyper-local problems, and maybe foreseeing some issues and dealing with them ahead of time. It would also be useful for other issues: street trees, storm drains, bike racks, etc. WE NEED – someone to set up the database format, and then volunteers to fill it in block by block, using information from the city as a base but adding by block residents (updates, corrections, local knowledge, etc.)
  • Neighborhood block captains: Ideally a local program, since the city program we have found to be unsupported. Can be a variety of levels of involvement, from just a resource number to put people in contact with the NLNA, up to someone willing to go door-to-door contacting neighbors, organizing cleanups, etc. To have someone the NLNA can reach out to who knows each block would be great. WE NEED – volunteers from all around the neighborhood to represent their blocks.
  • Neighborhood-initiated Quality of Life brochure: This would be a basic set of information that could be given to any neighbor. Ideally both printed by NLNA and provided in a .pdf format so that volunteers can print out new ones when they need to. WE NEED the whole thing, from figuring out what the basic info is that people need (NLNA contact info; Streets Dept. website; recycling/trash basics?) to designing the brochure. Maybe it could be connected to a more detailed web page with all the information we’d want to make available but doesn’t all fit onto a brochure?
  • Block cleanups!: April 8th is the city-sponsored Clean Up day (with a party afterwards at Liberty Lands!), but any day that works for the block is fine. NLNA has tools and trash bags to loan/give. WE NEED: people to organize these block by block
  • Neighborhood Q of L handout/introductions: This is an idea from Janet/Lara: to have people who are willing actually go door to door (ideally on their own blocks), and give people the Quality of Life brochure plus a gift (like a plant or a discount coupon to a local business – NLNA would provide). This is an idea that needs lots of planning and volunteers, but would help us reach people not being contacted through Facebook/other means. (It also connects to the neighborhood database, since it’s a great way to collect information for that).
  • Business Advocacy: Especially businesses in some way connected to these issues – pet-centered businesses should advocate for picking up after dogs (Melanie volunteered to contact some to ask them to do this). Realtors are a resource for contacting new neighbors and spreading the word to neighbors.
  • Building Relationships: This was mentioned specifically about the sanitation workers – who have a difficult job, but who are occasionally sloppy and contribute to the trash on the street. City laws forbid them from taking tips, but we would like to think of other ways to show appreciation and request good habits. Also: schoolkids are a common source of litter on the streets – is there a way to work with the local schools to improve the kids’ habits?
  • Public Shaming (Creatively): It was suggested to create a stencil so that volunteers could spray-paint around poop on the sidewalk – the semi-permanent mark allowing people to see over the course of a year how much there really is. There was also a call for more signage – on public trash cans (no household trash), about littering, etc.
  • Public Education: Lara could post a weekly “trash tip” on Facebook – how to recycle and put out trash right, but also the many little-known facts about what NLNA/the city is doing about trash.
  • More public trash cans: This is a common desire but one that is more complex than it seems (it was discussed at some length at the meeting). The city prefers the Big Belly solar cans to the old wire cans and does not want to add wire cans to the street, but the Big Bellies are expensive and limited. For individuals to put out public trash cans, they have to get a license from the city and take responsibility for maintaining the cans. Public trash cans tend to gather household trash, which is a frustration for the person responsible for it. There was some agreement that we need to keep discussing this and that adding public cans was still a goal for the future.
  • A few specific issues:
    • NLNA will look into advocating for trash pickup on narrow streets so that neighbors on those streets don’t pile their trash on the nearest larger street.
    • The recycling truck with a hole in it despite 311 calls. NLNA will help appeal the City Council to fix this
    • Many people still use the old, small recycling bins. Is it possible to jerry-rig them to give them lids?
    • Is there a City Clean Block award? Could we create a local one? “BYOB” – Beautify Your Own Block or Business campaign to recognize those who improve their blocks?
  • VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES: Joining Quality Of Life Committee; help with April 8 Cleanup/ organize cleanups for April 8; being a block captain; doing door-to-door flier distribution; create/improve fliers; work on advocacy to the city; work on getting some kind of a trash can system for the neighborhood; working on database; reaching out to property management companies to have them get our informational brochures to their tenants

Issues/Problems we thought of (in no particular order):

A: Curbside trash issues: windblown trash from curb receptacles people put out correctly, but something happens. Possible that it would be better to put out trash in a.m. rather than evening before? Windblown trash from people putting out curb trash “wrong” — wrong day, bags not sealed, inadequate bags, trash not in bags. Windblown recycling from curb receptacles that can’t handle it: no lid, too full/too small, or in paper bags/boxes/other wrong containers. Windblown trash/recycling from containers opened by trash pickers/animals. Windblown trash/recycling from sloppy sanitation workers (not including crap bags that break). Other mess from sanitation worker error (hole in truck bottom, cans all over street)

B: Permanent dumpster trash issues (such as dumpsters at apartments): windblown trash from inadequate dumpsters (not emptied often enough for the amount of use); windblown trash from poorly used dumpsters (stuff piled next to them, etc.); smell/vermin from the dumpsters themselves

C: Public receptacle issues:  businesses without one; inadequate emptying by businesses that do have one; household trash in public cans; overflow: simply not enough of them; blown over/bag blown out; “private” cans left out on street all week

D: Dog poop: not picked up at all; the abandoned bag; untied bags in public cans; bags in private cans on the sidewalk

E: Construction trash:  windblown trash from construction sites – both their own and trash that accumulates there; poorly maintained temporary dumpsters – overflow, leaking, stays too long and neighbors overflow it; construction debris in the street; the actual fences themselves (sand, stormwater blocks, etc.); materials on street (sand, dirt) from dumping and vehicle tires; Unsecured sites – not just safety but also a dumping issue

F: Moving trash: new neighbors unfamiliar with trash day or restrictions; neighbors leaving who abandon trash/furniture before trash day; lots of large boxes

E: Snow/Ice removal: not done at all; done badly (ice forming after snow removed); dog paws/other method arguments; snow thrown in road or clogging gutters/storm drains

F: Vacant properties/lots: abandoned/not developed; unsold houses/unrented apartments

G: Graffiti: tags; wheatpaste/artistic stuff; posters/fliers on poles (neighborhood specific different?); bandit signs; on street signs

H: Random litter: fliers/newspapers left on doorsteps; plastic bags in wind; litter dropped by pedestrians (schoolkids especially); trash dumped out of cars; cigarette butts; bottle caps, rubber bands, receipts (“little” trash); trash blown down from the highway; abandoned bike corpses on posts; schoolkids specifically a big source of this

I: Organic waste: leaves from street trees; weeds in sidewalk; abandoned tree pits

J: Intentionally using the storm drain as a trash can: litter/trash; liquids, especially car liquids and paint!

  1. Not enough cans/in bad places: not enough street cans leads to littering; people without outside trash storage dropping poop bags; maybe also putting out trash early
  2. Trash collection points: fences; foliage (trees, especially); stormdrains/gutters
  3. Straight-up Short Dumping (vacant lots, highway, etc.)
  4. Curbside trash location issues: bad locations because of intersections; too much volume; relates to small street pickup
  5. Neighbors who don’t take care of all sides of their property (back yard street frontage, sides for corner houses)

Things ALREADY being done about trash:

The City of Philadelphia provides: curbside trash pickup; Big Bellies (installs and maintains); very occasional street sweeping (but traffic lanes only); graffiti removal; citywide cleanup days (organizes and provides tools); “no fliers” stickers and penalties; sanitation convenience centers for trash/recycling dropoff

The City has rules and laws about: Trash – bag law, hours, amount of trash, etc.; Recycling – what can be recycled and in what containers; Street or public trash cans (they must be licensed); Dumpsters (licensing, hours for pickup, maintenance); Snow/ice removal; Dog waste; Construction sites – cleanliness as well as safety

You can report infractions of any of the above through 311

In addition, the NLNA: Pays for sidewalk cleaning every week (they cover 6-10 blocks per week); Provides reminders about changes in trash pickup; Sends letters to residents/businesses about issues with their trash; Advocates for street cans/big bellies; Follows up on citizen 311 reports to city (when you tell us about them!); Tracks problems (particularly patterns with repeat offenders); Organizes block events for citywide cleanup days; Distributes cleanup materials throughout the year when asked


Zoning Committee Report: Joe Mikuliak; written report attached and reviewed.

Motion: By Janet Finegar, seconded by Donald Hoegg. “To ratify the recommendations of the Zoning Committee in the matter of 124 Pollard St., i.e.: ‘Please return with a plan that incorporates 2 parking spaces off Pollard Street.’”  Passed 10-0-0


Motion: By Donald Hoegg, seconded by Michael Coyne. “To ratify the recommendations of the Zoning Committee in the matter of 1143 N. 3rd St., i.e.: ‘A letter of support will be issued after you go to the UDC with plans that show a trash/recycling area, size of the deck on the roof, a pedestrian door on Bodine Street, and a schedule of materials for the facade and detailing.’”  Passed 10-0-0


Motion: By Steve Richman, seconded by Donald Hoegg. “To ratify the recommendations of the Zoning Committee in the matter of 138 – 46 W. Wildey St., i.e.: ‘To reduce the building height to 38’ feet, increase the backyard space, eliminate the garages and/or consider a multi-family building with parking.’”  Passed 10-0-0 


Motion: By Janet Finegar, seconded by Barbara Saverino. “To renew the terms of the current Zoning Committee members for one year”  Passed 10-0-0


Old Business


Lara briefly reported that the holdup with the street sweeping machine at this point is that we do not have spots to dump the filled bags without exceedingly lengthy times driving back to Liberty Lands, where we’ve planned to dump the trash. There was a suggestion that we go ahead and buy the machine and begin by focusing on areas closest to Liberty Lands while looking for sites further away. It was suggested that Lara solicit volunteers at the meeting tomorrow night to help her with finding dumping locations.


New Business


There was a conversation about the question of enforcement of community standards. The possibilities of public shaming or a Community Court system were discussed and the problems with them were pointed out. Joe mentioned that the Friends of the Wissahickon offers training to its volunteers on dealing with issues by users. Matt suggested that we could create a boilerplate form letter scolding people that could go out with a cc to the volunteer and include a report of the misbehavior to the city. This was generally approved as a plan; someone (probably Janet) needs to draft the letter and collect Board signatures for it.


The meeting was adjourned by acclaim at 8:37 p.m.



Zoning Committee Meeting – Monday 2/27/17

Members Present: Larry Freedman (chair), Kenny Grono, Joe Mikuliak, Melissa Magness, Sharon Richman, Jonathen Sher, Abbey Spector, Ira Upin      

Members Absent: Charlie Abdo, Chris Issacson, Michael Simon


124 Pollard St. – RSA5 – Francis Mastromarco/Herc Grigos: A return visit with a proposal for a 3 unit bldg.

Motion from 3/28/2016: 9-0  We support this project as presented.  They returned with 3 units and NO parking because of issues with PECO.  Floors 1 and 2 had 1 bedroom flats. Floors 3-4 are now one bi-level unit with 2 bedrooms and a roof deck.  It was claimed that dwellers could park under I-95. Discussion:  lack of parking, outdoor metal stairs/landing could be dangerous in freezing weather.

Motion (Kenny) – 2nd (Melissa): Vote 7-0-0: Please return with a plan that incorporates 2 parking spaces off Pollard Street.


1143 N. 3rd St. – IRMX – Herc Grigos : A return visit with a proposal for a mixed use building with 24 residential units, 2 live/work spaces and 8 parking spots. Motion from 1/31/2017: 3-0-1 We will support an apartment building on this mostly residential block if it has 25% open space and keeps a parking ratio of 3 spaces per 10 apartments. Neighbors and the committee preferred the plans shown to us by this developer that had natural light and air to all bedrooms. Two units were removed from the top floor and put on the 1st floor (light industrial use).  Building height dropped from 72’ to 60’.  The building was stepped back on the upper floors and some outdoor space was provided but it is still short by 10% of required open space. Discussion: There was no place for trash and recycling and materials were not detailed. 

Motion (Joe) – 2nd (Kenny): Vote 7-0-0: A letter of support will be issued after you go to the UDC with plans that show a trash/recycling area, size of the deck on the roof, a pedestrian door on Bodine Street, and a schedule of materials for the facade and detailing.


138 – 46 W. Wildey St. – RSA5 – Herc Grigos:  A proposal for 8 townhomes. This was an informational meeting.  Three houses will be on Allen Street and 5 houses on Wildey.  The width and depths of each house varies.  All are 4-stories (45’ high plus a pilot house) and have a garage in the front of the house.  There is a 29’ curb cut in front of two of the proposed houses for Allen Street.  They would likely get a refusal for insufficient open space for the 2nd -> 4th floors. Discussion: The front facing garages would eliminate all existing street parking.  The homes exceed the 38’ height limit for RSA5 and there is insufficient outdoor space

Motion Group: Reduce the building height to 38’ feet, increase the backyard space, eliminate the garages and/or consider a multi-family building with parking.


NOTE:  The Zoning Committee members will be up for a one-year renewal at the next NLNA Board Meeting.