Francisville: Urbanstead Farm Teaches Neighbors About Food, Responsibility

Francisville: Urbanstead Farm Teaches Neighbors About Food, Responsibility

When Urbanstead founder Lisa Gaidanowicz was given a plot of land in Francisville to create a farm a few years ago, she didn’t realize it might be the first time neighborhood residents saw food coming from soil. “To you and me, an urban farm is a really big garden,” she said. “You don’t really find […]

 By Kyle Gauss

Francisville: Commercial Redevelopment is Progressing

Francisville: Commercial Redevelopment is Progressing

From an outsider’s perspective, Francisville has always appeared to be living in the shadow of its neighbor, Fairmount.  While Fairmount was developed with high-price townhouses and fancy restaurants, Francisville remained, for the most part, in the same state. That’s not for a lack of trying, however, and recent projects, spearhead by the Francisville Neighborhood Redevelopment […]

 By Stephanie Mullen and Mary Mazzoni

Francisville: Parks Create More Than Just Grass

Francisville: Parks Create More Than Just Grass

A cleaning and greening initiative has swept Philadelphia including the small, historic neighborhood of Francisville. Vacant lots in Francisville are disappearing at a surprisingly fast rate thanks in part to Penelope Giles, founder of the Francisville Neighborhood Development Corp. (FNDC). In 2008, Giles decided to assemble a team of five to 10 people – called […]

 By Stephanie Mullen

Francisville: Does A Better Future Await?

Francisville: Does A Better Future Await?

  Although the newly emerging “Philadelphia 2035” is a comprehensive plan to energize this historic city for more improvements over the next 24 years some of the improvements will be visible within the next year in many neighborhoods including Francisville. The Philadelphia City Planning Commission is developing “Philadelphia 2035.” The CPC created a website, phila2035.org, […]

 By Stephanie Mullen and Mary Mazzoni

Francisville: The New ‘It’ Place To Live?

Francisville: The New ‘It’ Place To Live?

“Francisville is a good model for a mixture of housing types and a mixture of income levels coexisting in the same neighborhood,” said Richard Redding, director of community planning at the Philadelphia City Planning Commission. This has been a prevalent trend in the real estate community in this small, historic neighborhood. There have been recent […]

 By Stephanie Mullen and Mary Mazzoni

Francisville: An End to Vacant Lots?

Francisville: An End to Vacant Lots?

“Francisville is filled with vacant lots and we are working hard to stabilize them,” said Penelope Giles, the president of the Francisville Neighborhood Development Corp. Recently, the Planning Commission of Philadelphia has released a draft of the first comprehensive plan for the city called “Philadelphia 2035.” The plan entails how the commission intends to improve […]

 By Mary Mazzoni and Stephanie Mullen

Francisville: 16th and Poplar Project Almost Finished

Francisville: 16th and Poplar Project Almost Finished

The Francisville East development at 16th and Poplar streets is nearly finished, developers said. Community Ventures, a nonprofit affordable housing developer, broke ground on the project last February – a time when construction projects were at a standstill all over the city. Developers are confident the project will be completed by March. Francisville East includes […]

 By Stephanie Mullen and Mary Mazzoni

Francisville: The Vineyard

Francisville: The Vineyard

Though many Philadelphians lump Francisville in with Fairmount or Spring Garden, any resident will tell you the neighborhood’s history sets it apart. In the late 1600s Francisville was home to “Springettsbury Manor,” an estate historians believe was home to William Penn’s personal vineyards. After the turn of the century, a portion of the land came […]