Go to MarkSquilla.com, and you won’t find a word about the South Philadelphia Councilman bearing its name. JannieBlackwell.com, too, has nary a sentence about the longtime Councilwoman representing parts of West Philadelphia.
Nothing is set in stone yet, but if things go according to one advertising company’s plans, Center City could get closer to taking on a “digital district” look not unlike a mini-Times Square (We have digital displays on the Lit. Brothers building now, after all).
PlanPhilly’s Jared Brey reports Catalyst Outdoor had an informational presentation before the Planning Commission on Tuesday regarding their proposal to build “three-dimensional digital billboards in a few corners of Center City.” In addition to featuring regular ads, these “Urban Experiential Displays” would “promote local nonprofit organizations, share news and ‘infotainment,’ and carry police and municipal alerts.” (You can see a video of their vision here.)
A zoning bill that would make things easier for Carl Dranoff to build his proposed SLS International Hotel was approved by City Council’s Committee on Rules yesterday. These revisions permit Dranoff to build on more land without having to seek additional zoning approvals.
Sponsored by Councilman Mark Squilla, the bill amends certain chapters in codes “Overlaying Zone, “Development Standards,” and “Parking and Loading.” In response to the suggested revisions, the Washington Square West Civic Association sent Squilla a letter. According to PlanPhilly’s Jared Brey, the group’s board agreed to not fight the bill, “provided certain agreements are made with respect to noise and activity at the hotel and other matters of operation.”
Market8 has been endorsed yet again, this time by state and local legislators: Rep. John Taylor, Rep. Michael O’Brien, and Councilman Mark Squilla. They join a line of supporters that includes the Washington West Civic Association and the Philadelphia NAACP.
The casino bidder’s presentation at last month’s hearings before the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board made a stronger impression than those of the other contenders.
Yesterday Councilman Mark Squilla told reporters that it was a lit cigarette that sparked the explosion at 428 Daly Street–a nugget of information traveled far and wide. In USA Today, the headline blared: “Official: Cigarette may have caused Pa. gas blast.” The AP article read:
Councilman Mark Squilla was at the scene and said a contractor had been trying to light the pilot on a water heater. Squilla says neighbors reported that the man lit a cigarette at one point and the house exploded.
Today, however, Mayor Nutter called it “speculation” when confronted with rumors of cigarettes and gas leaks. In his press conference, he made it clear that neither of those facts had been confirmed.