Tag Archives: park cleanup

The Problem With Triangle Park

Triangle Park in better days. Courtesy Naked Philly.

Bella Vista’s Triangle Park, at the intersection of 6th and Christian Streets and Passyunk Avenue, is a small, beautiful plot of green in a neighborhood boasting several small, beautiful plots of green. It, however, also sits satisfyingly right in the middle of the neighborhood, surrounded by beautiful houses, cafés, and other small business.

Oh, and it’s privately owned.

That’s why the owner fenced it in earlier this summer, in an “attempt to signal its availability”, despite its half-decade of cheerful local use, much to the displeasure of the neighborhood–a neighborhood which has been working to acquire the parcel so it can stay a park ever and anon…

The overgrown site. Courtesy Naked Philly

But wait, there’s more! According to this Naked Philly piece, the parcel was a gas station before the community covered it with greenery. And gas station sites tend to have nasty underground surprises, particularly for verdanture atop. Environmental sampling and (likely) remediation has to be done before the property can be conveyed, which has to happen before the fencing can come down–remediation which would also destroy the landscaping already in place.

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Christmas Tree Recycling in Philadelphia

Christmas Tree Recycling

Now that the energy and excitement of the holiday season has begun to die down and a New Year approaches, Christmas trees begin to line the streets of Philadelphia. Like old relics of good times gone, tress collected with the garbage are just added to the general population of trash. This upcoming weekend, Philadelphia residents will have the opportunity to take their trees to local drop off sites so that their trees may be recycled. Benefits of Christmas tree recycling range from saving valuable space in landfills to trunks being used as mulch in parks and gardens.

Greenlimbs is teaming up with Whole Foods MarketQueen Village Neighbors AssociationBella Vista United Civic AssociationSouth Street Headhouse District and other neighborhood associations for their 2013 Tree-Cycling event. Trees brought to the following locations will be chipped and turned into mulch for local parks, playgrounds and recreational centers. They will also be collecting holiday wreaths for wreath recycling.

There is a suggested donation of $5 for trees and $3 for wreaths. For any further questions or concerns, please feel to free email treecycling@greenlimbs.com.

Collection Sites for Saturday, January 5th, 2013:

Weccacoe Playground – 400 block of Catherine Street – 9:00 am-12:00 pm

Whole Foods Market – 929 South Street  – 10:00 am – 4:00 pm

Sartain Garden – Sartain & Locust Streets – 10:00 am – 1:00 pm

Columbus Square Park  – 13th & Reed Streets – 10:00 am – 4:00 pm (no early drop-offs)

Marconi Plaza – Broad & Oregon Streets – 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm

If you aren’t able to make it out Saturday to one of the above listed locations, have no worries. The City of Philadelphia will be conducting their own Christmas Tree Recycling Program. The program will run for two weeks from Monday, January 7 through Saturday, January 19. Residents may drop off their trees for recycling at any of the following Streets Department Sanitation Convenience Centers Monday through Saturday from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm:

3033 South 63rd Street

Domino Lane and Umbria Street

State Road and Ashburner Street

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The History of Cianfrani Park

A History of Cianfrani ParkCianfrani Park is an oasis and gem in the heart of Bella Vista. At 8th and Fitzwater, the green space plays host to a myriad of important events that build and strengthen the community. We will look back on it’s history and understand how Cianfrani Park became the hard-won, cherished public space it is today.

Many believe the park is named after former Pennsylvania state senator Henry J. “Buddy’ Cianfrani who lived from 1923 to 2002. Cianfrani was well known for many services to his country.  He served in the U.S. Army during World War II and was awarded the Purple Heart and the Silver Star. However, after winning political office, he also became known for scandal. Cianfrani Park is actually named in honor of Henry’s mother. While Cianfrani’s life was cluttered with drama and headline-making news, the park has also had a tumultuous historical path.

Cianfrani Park sits on land that was once occupied by the Campbell Elementary School. The Campbell School is where Joe Venuti, the proclaimed Father of the Jazz Violin, attended grade school. A plaque at one of the entrances to the park marks this important factoid. Sometime in the 1960’s the school was demolished, thus bringing birth to the park. Neighbors carefully attended and took care of the space. However, by the early 1990’s, the park became a neglected wasteland and eye sore.  A home for the homeless, both dogs and human beings, became the park’s sole purpose.

In 1993, neighbors banded together and created the organization Friends of Cianfrani Park to quickly rehabilitate the park.  Raising funds themselves, these upstanding citizens spent countless hours working towards the common goal of bringing life back to the land. Local architect David Morse observed Friends of Cianfrani Park’s goal was to make the park, “the green heart of our community, everyone’s front yard and urban living room.”

History of Cianfrani Park

The website for the park reads, “With the financial help of many neighbors, small business people and supportive city and state officials, we have accomplished much of it. Gardens fenced with attractive wrought iron, urns overflowing with flowers, benches filled with seniors engaged in conversation, mothers with children playing with pets are all now a reality. Through our efforts, Cianfrani Park is once again the green heart of our community.”

Cianfrani thrives to this day having most recently received First Prize in the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society 2012 City Gardens Contest. Some widely attended events that take place year round include a Summer Concert Series, Spring Festival, and Holiday Tree Lighting, It’s good to know that when people band together and work towards a common goal, great results can be produced. Cianfrani Park is a perfect example of that.

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Local Groups Head Passyunk Avenue Clean Up

Passyunk SquareLitter and trash continue to be a problem throughout Philadelphia, especially in the smaller neighborhoods and communities. However, local groups have taken it upon themselves to work toward fixing the problem. One initiative that has made great progress in its quest to clean up has been led by the Passyunk Avenue Revitializaion Corps. A local non profit real estate development firm, the PARC leads the Passyunk Avenue Corporation Neighborhood Sidewalk Cleaning Program. This program runs in coordination with the East Passyunk Avenue Business Improvement District and is managed by ABM Janitorial Services.

The primary focus of these efforts are on East Passyunk Avenue from Federal Street to Broad Street.  Passyunk Avenue is victim to the carelessness of passer bys and trash not properly bagged. This commercial corridor will be cleaned six days a week, twice per day. In addition, a surrounding residential area, bounded by Ninth Street (east), Snyder Avenue (south), South Broad Street (west), and Federal Street (north), will be cleaned two times a week. See a map of the service area to the right.

Passyunk Square Litter Control

Assigned Residential Areas

  • Zone 1 Tuesday & Thursday (once per day)
  • Zone 2 Wednesday & Friday (once per day)
  • Zone 3 Monday through Saturday (twice a day)
  • Zone 4 Monday through Saturday (twice a day)
  • Zone 5 Tuesday & Thursday (once per day)
  • Zone 6 Wednesday & Friday (once per day)

Local civic associations such as the Passyunk Square Civic Association are also joining this fight against trash by sending out employees to aid. PSCA Neighborhoods not being covered by the PARC in the above listed zones get cleaned almost daily.

Trash only brings more trash. As business and traffic only grow as Passyunk Square and the Avenue become more of a sought out destination, hopefully community members and visitors alike will start seeing a difference. What can you do? Bag trash properly, set out trash at appropriate times and above all else, don’t litter. Then, maybe the PARC can start focusing on some of their other initiatives such as fountain maintenance and neighborhood greening.

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