Preserve the historic building at 40th & Pine Streets in Philadelphia, PA.
  • Petitioning University of Pennsylvania

This petition will be delivered to:

University of Pennsylvania

Preserve the historic building at 40th & Pine Streets in Philadelphia, PA.

    1. Near Neighbors
    2. Petition by

      Near Neighbors

      Philadelphia, PA

The 1850s mansion on the Southwest corner of 40th and Pine Streets in Philadelphia was certified historic by the City of Philadelphia's Historical Commission. The current owner, the University of Pennsylvania, purchased the property in 2003 after it had been designated historic but it now wants to demolish the mansion based on a claim of financial hardship. The purpose of Penn's proposed demolition is to make way for a large, high-density apartment building that would violate the Zoning Code. Near neighbors are advocating to try to save the historic mansion and, if unsuccessful, to advocate for new construction that complies with the Zoning Code.  Press coverage here http://bit.ly/Od9qma  We encourage you to post a comment about why you are signing and to share this petition via social media.  Thank you.  

Recent signatures

    News

    1. reminder - PHC to review proposed Apartment House

      Near Neighbors
      Petition Organizer

      Dear friends,

      A reminder that Penn will be requesting final approval for the 5-story 122-unit apartment they propose to build at 40th & Pine, in place of the mansion that they intend to demolish. The Historical Commission Meeting is at 9 AM, 10th Floor, 1515 Arch Street.

      We continue to maintain that this proposed building fails to reflect the historic character of the site and its neighbors. If you can attend tommorrow, that would be great.

    2. Update on the historic Levy Mansion

      Near Neighbors
      Petition Organizer

      Dear friends,

      This is a brief update on the land use issues surrounding 400 S. 40th Street.

      Regarding a possible settlement, we were negotiating with Penn and in the Spring of 2014 we proposed a framework for reaching a solution. Penn has yet to respond.

      Now we see Penn, next week, is going before the Historical Commission's Architectural Committee for final approval of the 5-story 122-unit apartment building that they propose to build on the site, in place of the historic mansion that they intend to demolish. Presumably they will then take it to the full Commission for approval in October 2014.

      Our appeal of the demolition is now being taken up by the state Commonwealth Court. The lower court judge has recently provided her opinion explaining her decision, and so the Commonwealth Court will now schedule the case for briefing and argument.

      As for the zoning case, as you may recall the same Philadelphia judge did not uphold the dimensional variances, at least not yet. She remanded the case back to the ZBA to get more evidence. We appealed to prevent that as we thought the remand was improper, however, the Commonwealth Court decided that our appeal was premature. Therefore the ZBA may hold another hearing focused on the dimensional variances in the near future.

      We thank you all for your continued support in protecting the character of this historic block.

    3. Judge to Hear Oral Arguement in Demolition Case

      Near Neighbors
      Petition Organizer

      Tuesday April 8, 2014 at 9:30am
      Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas
      City Hall Courtroom #232

      Our appeal focuses on the fact Penn did not attempt to sell the property, as is specifically required by law. We also argue that the Commission erred in accepting 11% return on investment as the test for financial hardship. For their part, Penn and the City are claiming that we don’t have standing (i.e., the right) to bring this appeal.

    4. Judge Rules Zoning Variance Lacks Evidence

      Near Neighbors
      Petition Organizer

      In our appeal of the zoning variances, Judge Ceisler couldn't find any evidence why such a large building has to be built and built so close to the property's edges. Therefore she remanded the case back to the ZBA. She did believe there was evidence to support the use variance, so it is not a 100% victory. We should expect the developer will return to the ZBA attempting to explain the size and placement of their proposed building. If and when they do, we'll be there to fight them.

    5. Press coverage

      Near Neighbors
      Petition Organizer
    6. Reached 250 signatures
    7. More Information, Links and Contact

      Near Neighbors
      Petition Organizer

      Pictures, History, Links and Contact Information
      http://www.heritech.org/advocacy/40Pine.html

    8. Reached 200 signatures

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • A Myers KNIGHTDALE, NC
      • about 1 month ago

      History must be preserved.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Denise DeLoggio-Wool PHILADELPHIA, PA
      • about 1 month ago

      Living in Historic Old City, I have come to appreciate Philadelphia's history and architecture and do not want to see any of it destroye!

      Also this is a birthday gift to my cousin Loretta DeLoggio!.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Loretta DeLoggio DURHAM, NC
      • 3 months ago

      The quality of construction in these historic mansions is unduplicated in modern buildings. Let youth see what "quality" means.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Josh Silver PHILADELPHIA, PA
      • almost 2 years ago

      Our heritage is still being destroyed too often for short-sighted ends.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Jay Schwartz PHILADELPHIA, PA
      • almost 2 years ago

      I believe our rich historical and architectural past is the key to our region's economic future, and beyond simple financial considersations, is vital to the spiritual and moral health of our citizens. Demolition would send the terrible message to youth that the treasures of our ancestors are disposable. Stop this easily-avoidable tragedy!

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:

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