Tag: old city civic association

The Nerdiest Neighborhood in Philadelphia: Old City

brave new worlds

Just another day in one of Philadelphia's 15 nerdiest places: Brave New Worlds in Old City. Photo via the store's Facebook.

Chris Cummins has a terrific list over at Topless Robot (itself an incredibly nerdy name for a site) of “The 15 Nerdiest Places in Philadelphia.” They are all businesses or locations that every good cosplayer could love. (Philebrity makes a good point, however, which is that Cummins missed a key spot: ”Wherever Eric Smith is standing right now.”)

From a real estate perspective, however, things shake out rather interestingly, which is to say that of the seven neighborhoods represented, Old City crushes the others: It has fully a third of the nerd nirvanas, including Brave New Worlds, National Mechanics, and a mysteriously named Torchwood grocery store. Perhaps the nerds should unite and form a new civic association now that Old City Civic Association no longer exists. Cummins made no mention of N3rd Street.

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R.I.P. Old City Civic Association

old city civic association

Screen shot of OCCA's homepage today

Without a zoning committee and status as a Registered Community Organization, the Old City Civic Association (OCCA) has decided to call it quits entirely. PlanPhilly released a copy of a letter from former OCCA president Ryan Berley that was sent to Old City District’s Graham Copeland. Titled “Re: Old City Civic Association (OCCA) – Cessation of Business,” it reads:

I regret to inform you that at a special board meeting on May 6th, 2013, a board vote was taken to discontinue all civic and social activities and to cease doing business as OCCA, as the Association can no longer afford the risk of liability associated with its mission.

This difficult and painful decision is driven by the lack of insurance coverage.

Consequently, going forward, the entity formerly known as OCCA will play no role nor participate in any decisions relative to land-use, zoning, planning, licensing, permitting, historic preservation, enforcement of regulation or code, nor conduct any other business as OCCA.

At this time I wish to express my sincere gratitude for your support of our work over the past 35 years that the OCCA has endeavored to preserve, protect and improve the Old City residential and business community.

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Old City Civic Association Disbands Its Anti-Development Committee

old city civic association

Screen shot of OCCA's homepage today

Some developers have seen the Old City Civic Association’s frequent objections to new projects in the neighborhood as obstreperous and stifling. Others have seen the same objections as essential bulwarks to the destruction of the neighborhood’s historical legacy. Whatever the opinion, OCCA has decided to disband the committee that fought the battles against developers–both those of large projects, like 205 Race, and smaller ones, like a corner bar.

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