? Want this daily digest emailed to you? Sign up for the free Billy Penn newsletter and it’ll land in your inbox every morning.
Center City is surging back to life
Foot traffic in Center City is nearing pre-pandemic levels — and it’s not necessarily because of return-to-office mandates.
- If they can afford it, people just like living downtown. Resident foot traffic is now higher than in 2019, while the percentage of remote workers has doubled. And millennials are driving the growth.
Will they stay? Experts tell Lizzy McLellan Ravitch it largely depends on the city finding an effective way to reduce gun violence and improve schools.
Tierra Whack is bigging up the Philly comedy scene
Since the release of 2018’s critically acclaimed album “Whack World,” North Philly rapper Tierra Whack has been known for her wit.
- Now she’s spreading the love. After an open call for participants, Whack put together a comedy night to showcase eight up-and-coming Philadelphia artists — and it sold out in under an hour.
The comics on stage told Jordan Levy it was a rare but welcome opportunity to shine in their hometown.
RECAP: What else happened?
$ = paywalled
- Across Pa., the more Latino voters a precinct had, the bigger the turnout drop in this November’s election. Over half of Latino voters in Pa. said they didn’t receive any voter outreach until late in the cycle. [Inquirer$/Billy Penn]
- Officials broke ground on eight new houses in Grays Ferry, kicking off City Council’s “Neighborhood Preservation Initiative” to provide 1,000 mid-priced homes ($230k) in gentrifying areas over the next year. [WHYY’s PlanPhilly]
- Two Philadelphia churches — Holy Trinity in Old City and St. Peter Claver in Wash West — will no longer be designated Roman Catholic. Neither has been active for a while, and one was slated to be sold, before the process was paused over community concerns. [CBS3/WHYY 2018/Arch Phila PDF]
- Some blocks in Germantown have water-activated art, which shows poetry about neighborhood flooding whenever the pavement gets wet. [NextCity]
- Attention curling enthusiasts! The sport is coming to Franklin Square. To celebrate the launch on Thursday, Councilmember Squilla will don his Santa costume; seems unlikely Mayor Kenney will join to reprise his old role as Buddy the Elf. [PhillyVoice/YouTube/Inquirer$/@PhillyMayor]
The story you didn’t read
? Highlighting good BP articles few people clicked on ?
- WP Gallery in Rittenhouse is hosting a 30th anniversary exhibition featuring “stikman,” the recognizable street art figures that grace roadways and signs throughout Philadelphia and around the globe.
No public events on Mayor Kenney’s schedule. On his social accounts, he posted design plans for the new Cobbs Creek nature playground that broke ground yesterday.
ON THE CALENDAR
?? BP Quizzo on the Schuylkill River! Join us at Padelphia, just over City Line Avenue across from Manayunk. We’ll have three rounds of local trivia, drinks, snacks, prizes — and a chance to find out more about the racket sport called Padel. Free RSVP here. (7 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 15)
? Acclaimed chef Ange Branca, formerly of Sate Kampar, hosts a series of tasting dinners featuring Japanese Wagyu beef. $200 per person includes seven courses plus a cocktail. (Wednesday, Dec. 14, and other dates)
? Part dance, part improv, part fabric exhibition, Adam Kerbel’s show called “Motion Sickness” at the Christ Church Neighborhood Theater invites audience participation via movement and music. Tickets are $5. (Friday-Sunday, Dec. 16-18)