City Seeks to End Troubled, 60-year old Development Agreement in Eastwick

EFNC greatly appreciates the work and words of reporter Samantha Melamed, who posted a compelling article in the Philadelphia Inquirer on October 17, 2015, highlighting city maneuvers, challenges and hopes in the Eastwick community.

News article excerpt below. Click on the title to read the full story by Samantha Melamed. (If link disabled, click here to download PDF article.)


Eastwick community activist Earl Wilson stands at the edge of the elevated Darby Creek after heavy rains on Saturday, October 3rd, 2015 in Southwest Philadelphia. (MICHAEL BUCHER / For the Inquirer)

“City seeks end to troubled, 60-year Eastwick urban renewal effort

The last time the city developed a plan for Philadelphia’s Eastwick section, in 1957, it proved disastrous for residents: Over the next several years, it condemned more than 2,000 acres of private property, evicting 8,636 people to make way for a vision of urban renewal.

Today, that vision remains largely unfulfilled: Suburban-style cul-de-sacs lie curled up in wait for houses that were never built. Those who did move in faced years of flooding, sinking houses, and exposure to pollution from two Superfund sites.

But soon, there could be a new Eastwick plan – one developed with input from the community.

That hinges in part on whether the Philadelphia Redevelopment Authority can reach a deal with developer Korman Corp. The authority wants to retake control of the last large swath of vacant land optioned to Korman as part of a 1961 redevelopment agreement, which expires at the end of this year.

Authority spokesman Paul Chrystie said the agency was in early discussions over the 128-acre expanse. “The PRA’s preferred option,” he said, “would be to return control to the city for the beginning of a community-planning process.”

An attorney for Korman….”

(Read the full article:

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1 Comment

  1. Billy Kelly

     /  January 17, 2016

    My grandfather on dads side was never paid for his home at 77th & Botonical. The old Kelly Store (back of the house). I have pictures of the house , lots of pics of the area and the Original Deeds from 1892. For 2 large lots he inherited from his Irish born father. Grandfather James Kelly was born in that house in 1894. I was told a beverage company is close to that spot now. My parents took the deeds to city hall. They could not find anything on it, but made copys of our Original Deeds and paperwork. That was 15 yrs ago. Still have heard nothing. I used to relic hunt that area near the old airport drive in ( Saw the good,bad and ugly there ,staring clint eastwood), Where the old dump was, now covered. Also salvaged junk from the Heller’s dump near 86th & Buist Ave. We used to ice skate when the fields filled and froze. Grandparents The Messina’s on mom’s side relocated to *86th & Buist Ave.,The old Farm house on corner . Had a giant oak tree . You could not get your arms around, we used to chain a hoist and pull out car motors with the biggest branch. Mulberry tree’s galore. That house dates back before the civil war and was part of the Underground Railroad. The old Gulf gas station that used to stand on corner next to Darby Creek was my Uncle Dom’s. A lot of Eastwick boys served overseas in WW2. A lot never made it home. My Uncle George Kelly of 77th Ave was on the Feb, 26,1945 Cover of Life Magazine. He served in Germany with the 29th Infantry Div . His brother Jim Kelly served in Germany as well.(with the howling wolf patch) And Uncle Frank Garland served in the Marines in the Pacific . We used to go to Ft. Mifflin, and pickup cannon balls out at low tide. There used to be a WW2 German POW camp under the Bridge. But later was a junk yard, I have a lot of memory’s there. Remember watching the planes at the Airport before it got so big. A lot of Eastwick History needs to be saved.


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