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$10 million buyback plan could save gardens and green space

Councilmember Kendra Brooks introduced a plan to allocate $10 million to buy back thousands of “vacant” Philadelphia land plots.

  • The move could save dozens of community gardens residents have created on the empty lots, which has been shown to calm violence. It could also create space for affordable housing.

The land is owned by U.S. Bank, which received the parcels from the city in 1997, Jordan Levy reports, and is now sending them to sheriff’s sale.

What could the city do to help Clark Park craft vendors?

Since rumors began circulating among Clark Park craft vendors that officials would start enforcing permit requirements, the weekly market has felt emptier.

  • Some continue to sell at the West Philly park each Saturday, even if setting up shop comes with a new set of nerves. Officials in Council and Parks & Rec have pledged to look for ways to make them legal.

Skip enforcement? Create a new, cheaper pop-up permit? Emily White looks into the feasibility of some solutions that have been floating around.

RECAP: What else happened?

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Weekly brief on gun violence prevention (with PCGVR)

We publish this report each week in partnership with the Philadelphia Center for Gun Violence Reporting at the Community College of Philadelphia. 

By the numbers in Philadelphia

  • 58: Shooting victims recorded last week, vs. 47 the week prior [PPD Google Drive]
  • 833: Shooting victims this year, up 1% from last year [PCGVR]
  • 188: Year-to-date homicides, down 9% from last year, but up 54% vs. five years ago [Philly Police]

MAYOR WATCH

Mayor Kenney joins the biweekly briefing on the city’s gun violence response (1 p.m.), alongside Health Dept. and PHA officials to intro a new initiative to provide behavioral supports and workforce opportunities. You can listen live on WURD Radio 900 AM / 96.1 FM or watch on Facebook.

ON THE CALENDAR

Bands supporting Billy Penn: We’re emceeing a music show at The Fire, the woman-owned indie music venue and bar on Girard Avenue. Come hang at our table as you check out local bands with sounds ranging from blues-rock to surf-goth. Tickets are $15, and a portion of sales benefit BP’s journalism. (8 p.m. to midnight, Wednesday, June 1)

? Under the Stars in Clark Park is back with a screening of “Prince’s Sign O’ The Times,” a high energy concert film featuring the High Priest of Pop. Free with RSVP. (7:30 p.m. Friday, May 27)

? Kick off the summer season with a free fireworks show over the Delaware River. Festivities start with a show by the 78th Army Band’s Latin Ensemble at Penn’s Landing. (Show 8 p.m., fireworks 9:30 p.m. Saturday, May 28)