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Monday, June 15, 2015

Newsworks: Mayfair business improvement district moving forward in Philly City Council


A business improvement district aimed at bringing some extra services to Mayfair has gotten through a first round of City Council committee approvals. 
Merchants testified one by one that a business improvement district is urgently needed in the Mayfair section of Northeast Philadelphia.  

Mark McCafferty grew up there and came back to live and to run the family business.

"It will mean a livelier, more vibrant, more attractive and safer business environment, with better marketing and outreach," he told Council members. "All this spells prosperity for the future for those who work live and own property in Mayfair, for many of us that is all rolled into one."

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Zoning Decision - 6300 Frankford Ave

Via Email                                                                                                                                June 10, 2015
Ms. Julia Chapman
Chairperson
Zoning Board of Adjustment
Municipal Services Building
1401 John F. Kennedy Blvd.
Philadelphia, PA  19102
Re:                          Letter of Non-Opposition
6300 Frankford Ave
Applicant – Mamraj Singh represented by Shawn Ward
Special Exception to sell hot food
Appeal No. 24430 Permit No. 582909
Dear Ms. Chapman:
                Please accept this letter on behalf of the Mayfair Civic Association (“MCA”) which represents the neighbors of the Mayfair Community as their Registered Community Organization (RCO) as a Letter of NON-OPPOSITION with Provisos.  A second meeting for this applicant was held at the Mayfair Community Center, 2990 St. Vincent St on Monday May 18, 2015, at 7PM due to Applicant’s Lack of Preparation at first Meeting.  Fortunately, Applicant corrected prior issues and came prepared for this meeting. Therefore, our Members decided, by a count of 12-3, to NOT OPPOSE WITH THE FOLLOWING PROVISOS:
                1.  Join and maintain Membership within the Mayfair Business Association;
2.  The outside of your establishment must be kept clean, maintained, graffiti free, and swept at all times;
3.       Signage to be kept to a minimum -
                                                - No nailing of banners to the walls
- No excessive signage in the windows (all windows should be easily seen through at all times)
- Grand Opening signs, flags, garland, streamers etc to be removed within 30 days of store opening
4.       Add and maintain an outdoor trashcan;
5.       Snow removal to be done within 6 hours of the storm, and during business hours;
6.       Contact information (Name - Phone Number - Email) to be provided to the Mayfair Civic
          Association for the tenant, as well as the property owner / landlord, and property manager;
7.       Notify the MCA and Mayfair Business Association that you are seeking new hires and hire within
          the community if possible;
8.       Removal of Clothes Drop-off Box;
9.       No seating for Food Consumption;
10.     Trash Cleanup/Pickup 3x a day; and
11.     Food cannot be sold after 10:00 PM.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at the number below.  

                                                                                                Very Truly Yours,
                                                                                                Joe De Felice sig      
                                                                                                Joseph J. DeFelice, Esq.                    
                                                                                                Legal Counsel                                                                                                                                                                         (215) 292-3926
cc:            Andrew Dick, Councilman Bobby Henon
                Mike Scotese, Mayfair Business Association
                Donny Smith, Mayfair Civic Association
                Larissa Klevan, Philadelphia City Planning Commission

                Shawn Ward, Attorney for Applicant

Zoning Decision 2000 McKinley Street

                     
Via Email                                                                                                                              June 10, 2015
Ms. Julia Chapman
Chairperson
Zoning Board of Adjustment
Municipal Services Building
1401 John F. Kennedy Blvd.
Philadelphia, PA  19102
Re:          RCO Meeting Summary (2nd Meeting)
Re: 2000 McKinley Street
Dear Ms. Chapman:
                Please accept this letter on behalf of the Mayfair Civic Association (“MCA”) which represents the neighbors of the Mayfair Community as their Registered Community Organization (RCO).  A second meeting for this applicant was held at the Mayfair Community Center, 2990 St. Vincent St on Monday May 18, 2015, at 7PM to address some issues put forth by the Planning Commission and the Zoning Board of Adjustment.  Our Members decided OVERWHELMINGLY to NOT OPPOSE WITH THE FOLLOWING PROVISOS:
                1.  Join and maintain Membership within the Mayfair Business Association;
2.  The outside of your establishment must be kept clean, maintained, graffiti free, and swept at all times;
3.       Signage to be kept to a minimum -
                                           - No nailing of banners to the walls
- No excessive signage in the windows (all windows should be easily seen through at all times)
- Grand Opening signs, flags, garland, streamers etc to be removed within 30 days of store opening
4.       Add and maintain an outdoor trashcan;
5.       Snow removal to be done within 6 hours of the storm, and during business hours;
6.       Contact information (Name - Phone Number - Email) to be provided to the Mayfair Civic Association for the tenant, as well as the property owner / landlord, and property manager; and
7.       Notify the MCA and Mayfair Business Association that you are seeking new hires and hire within the community if possible

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at the number below.  
                                                                                                Very Truly Yours,
                                                                                                Joe De Felice sig      
                                                                                                Joseph J. DeFelice, Esq.                  
                                                                                                Legal Counsel                                                                                                                                                                      (215) 292-3926
cc:           Chris Creelman, Councilman Bobby Henon
                Mike Scotese, Mayfair Business Association
                Donny Smith, Mayfair Civic Association
                Alonzo Coates,  Petitioner

                Philadelphia City Planning Commission

Wednesday, June 03, 2015

Timeline Re: Devon Zoning from President Donny Smith

To clear up any confusion and to hopefully answer as many questions as as I can, below is a "Devon Timeline" of sorts
The Mayfair CDC (previous administration) purchased the Devon and completely restored it to the beautiful building that it is today. It was restored and zoned to be used as a theater, and at that time it was operating as such. Its restoration was intended to revitalize Frankford avenue, and to bring the arts to Mayfair and surrounding neighborhoods.
Sadly, the CDC lost the Devon due to lack of funding, and the CDC returned the Devon back to the bank in lieu of foreclosure
The bank sold the Devon well below market value in February of 2014. It was valued at over $1.5 million dollars, however it was purchased for $487,500. by The Devon Frankford LLC / Mark Riscioli
The exact arrangements are complicated, however it appears as though Roscioli sold the Devon to Kingdom Life Christian Center in December 2014 for $500,000., however the mortgage is for $950,000.
Mark Roscioli is now the former owner of the Devon, however he is now acting as the banker and is holding the mortgage
The Kingdom Life Christian Center, after signing the agreement with Roscioli and finalizing the deal, apparently then discovered that the Devon was not zoned to be used as a church, and it required a Special Exception from the Philadelphia Zoning Board in order to be in compliance.
The Kingdom Life Christian Center went to Councilman Henon for help in getting zoning approval, and Councilman Henon's office contacted the Mayfair Civic Association (the coordinating Registered Community Organization or RCO) to set up a meeting.
On February 28th, The Kingdom Life Christian Center held a "Building Dedication" at the Devon.
The Kingdom Life Christian Center has opened and is currently operating a Food Bank at the Devon location
Without the proper zoning in place, The Kingdom Life Christian Center is currently operating illegally at the Devon
A meeting was held at the Devon and it included representatives from the Mayfair CDC (new administration), Mayfair Civic Association, representatives from the Kingdom Life Christian Center, and representatives from Councilman Henon's office. Since Mayfair currently has several Daycare facilities located along Frankford avenue which Mayfair orgs. are working hard to revitalize, and a Food Bank already in operation at St. Johns church on Tyson avenue, Mayfair representatives asked the Kingdom Life Christian Center to withdraw from using the Devon as a Daycare Facility, or as a Food Bank Center. During the meeting, Mayfair representatives also asked Kingdom Life Christian Center to allow the Devon to become a polling location, to keep the Devon marquee in place, and to allow community usage of the Devon (school plays etc) up to 12 times a year.
During follow up conversations and meetings, the Kingdom Life Christian Center agreed to allow the Devon to become a polling location up to 2 times a year, and to keep the marquee intact, however the church felt that the 12 times community usage was excessive, and the church refused Mayfair's requests to refrain from opening another Daycare center on Frankford avenue, or another Food Bank in Mayfair
On Sunday May 31st, there was a "Grand Re-Opening" titled "The Broadway On The Delaware". The organizer of this event had an arrangement with the Kingdom Life Christian Center for this event, and there are no guarantees that these performances will continue in the future.
The Mayfair Civic Association is hosting a Special Zoning Meeting on Monday June 15th at 7:30pm at the Mayfair Community Center. During this meeting, Mayfair Civic Association Members and neighbors residing in the immediate RCO's will have the opportunity to voice their opinions, and to vote on this issue.
The Kingdom Life Christian Center is scheduled to appear before the Philadelphia Zoning Board on June 23rd 2015 to obtain the Special Exception required to legally operate. Part of the requirement needed to obtain proper zoning approval will be for the Kingdom Life Christian Center to be able to provide 1 parking spot for every 10 seats at the Devon. The Devon has approximately 440 seats. This would require the Kingdom Life Christian Center to provide no less than 44 off street parking spots. All residents are invited to this hearing as well.

Tuesday, June 02, 2015

Movie Night at Pennypack on the Delaware

Hello Mayfair Civic,
Please share with colleagues, family and friends! 
DRCC is presenting a FREE outdoor Movie Night on Wednesday, June 17at 8:30PM. Location is at Pennypack Park on the Delaware (see attached flyer). Thanks! 


Alexia Sotirchos

Friends Program Coordinator
Delaware River City Corporation
3460 N. Delaware Ave. Suite 306

Friday, May 29, 2015

DEVON THEATER ZONING FLIER - PLEASE PRINT AND CIRCULATE

In order to access this document in order to view and print, please click here

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

NE Times: Mayfair Civic to host zoning meeting for Devon Theater

North­east Times
The May­fair Civic As­so­ci­ation settled two old zon­ing is­sues dur­ing the group’s monthly meet­ing on May 18, but a much big­ger one may be just get­ting star­ted.
MCA lead­ers an­nounced that the group will hear a po­ten­tially con­tro­ver­sial zon­ing case in­volving the Devon Theat­er at a spe­cial meet­ing on June 15 at 7:30 p.m. at the May­fair Com­munity Cen­ter, 2990 Saint Vin­cent St. In short, a church group is seek­ing city per­mits to set up re­li­gious ser­vices, a day­care cen­ter and a food bank in the 70-year-old theat­er once known at the “Dirty Devon” be­cause of the por­no­graph­ic films that showed there.
The days of porn at the Devon are long gone. With busi­ness at the single-screen ven­ue dwind­ling in the late 1970s, the op­er­at­ors began show­ing adult fea­tures. Neigh­bors ran the skin flicks out of town a few years later.
But that doesn’t mean today’s com­munity lead­ers want a church oc­cupy­ing an an­chor prop­erty in the middle of May­fair’s busi­ness dis­trict. Speak­ing at last week’s meet­ing, MCA Pres­id­ent Donny Smith re­por­ted that the church bought the site late last year from a real es­tate in­vestor who had ac­quired it a few months earli­er. The same in­vestor holds the mort­gage on the prop­erty, Smith said.
City re­cords show that the King­dom Life Chris­ti­an Cen­ter bought it for $500,000 in Decem­ber. The prop­erty is as­sessed at $1.78 mil­lion. The land is more than one-third an acre, with the build­ing foot­print cov­er­ing most of that.
Joe De­Fe­lice, the zon­ing chair­man and leg­al coun­sel for the civic as­so­ci­ation as well as the board chair­man of the May­fair Com­munity De­vel­op­ment Cor­por­a­tion, noted that the CDC has been try­ing to get cer­tain types of prop­erty uses re­stric­ted on the av­en­ue in an ef­fort to pro­mote an ec­lect­ic mix of re­tail that will at­tract vis­it­ors. Re­li­gious ser­vices, day­care cen­ters and food banks are three of those uses that are less than ideal, De­Fe­lice said.
The CDC has long been a key play­er in re­devel­op­ing the Devon. With the help of state fund­ing in the mid-2000s, the CDC spent mil­lions to buy and re­hab­il­it­ate the old theat­er in­to a mod­ern per­form­ing arts cen­ter with the latest au­dio-visu­al tech­no­logy. Res­id­ent pro­du­cers staged sev­er­al shows there in 2009 and ’10 be­fore the CDC lost its pub­lic fund­ing due to re­ces­sion­ary budget cuts and sur­rendered the theat­er to Be­ne­fi­cial Bank.
Ac­cord­ing to the civic as­so­ci­ation, the re­li­gious group is already con­duct­ing ser­vices and host­ing con­certs in the theat­er pending zon­ing ap­prov­al.
In un­re­lated busi­ness, the MCA voted not to op­pose two old zon­ing ap­plic­a­tions. 
At 2000 McKin­ley St., the own­er wants to con­vert a gar­age in­to a cook­ing fa­cil­ity for third-party cater­ers. There will be no food con­sump­tion or take-out busi­ness on-site. At 6300 Frank­ford Ave., the own­er of a gas sta­tion and mini-mart wants to in­stall a deep fry­er so he can sell hot chick­en wings.
• Ruthanne Mad­way, ex­ec­ut­ive dir­ect­or of the May­fair CDC, re­por­ted that her or­gan­iz­a­tion is “in the home stretch” of es­tab­lish­ing a busi­ness im­prove­ment dis­trict along Frank­ford Av­en­ue and ad­join­ing blocks that will al­low mer­chants to be­ne­fit from pub­lic grants and oth­er pro­grams. The CDC is also host­ing a farm­er’s mar­ket on the 3500 block of Ry­an Ave. every oth­er Sunday from May 31 through Oct. 18.
• Mia Hylan, co-chair of the May­fair Me­mori­al Play­ground and an aide to state Rep. John Taylor, in­vited res­id­ents to May­fair Com­munity Night on May 28 at 6:30 p.m. at the May­fair Com­munity Cen­ter. Taylor will dis­trib­ute in­form­a­tion about seni­or rent re­bates.
• Two city traffic en­gin­eers presen­ted sev­er­al pro­pos­als for the in­stall­a­tion of a left turn lane on east­bound Cottman Av­en­ue at Row­land Av­en­ue. Prob­lem is, space is so tight at the in­ter­sec­tion that a dozen or more curb­side park­ing spaces could be lost. 
Neigh­bors didn’t like any of the ideas. The pro­ject re­mains in the design phase. ••
Read Story HERE

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Special Zoning Meeting: Devon Theater and 7728 Fairfield Street


Monday June 15th, 2015
7:30 pm
Mayfair Community Center

The Kingdom Life Christian Center formerly of 6814 Torresdale avenue is seeking a Special Exception to operate a
• Church
• Daycare
• Food Bank/Pantry
at 6235 Frankford avenue – Formerly the Devon Movie Theatre

Residents are invited to this Special Zoning Meeting to share their opinions, and Members of the Mayfair Civic Association are invited to cast their Votes


Also, we will be hearing from 7728 Fairfield St to erect a one story structure, semi detached from a single family dwelling.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Mayfair Plans for Three Days of Community Betterment: Run, Festival, Market and Meeting


Mayfair Plans for Three Days of Community Betterment
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact:                                    Joe DeFelice, Chairman                    
Phone:                                      215-292-3926
Email:                                       josephjdefelice@mayfaircdc.org
Twitter/Facebook:         @MayfairCDC
THE MAYFAIR CDC, MAYFAIR CIVIC ASSOCIATION & MAYFAIR BUSINESS ASSOCIATION ANNOUNCE THE 7TH ANNUAL MAYFAIR FALLEN HEROES RUN, MAYFAIR MAY FAIR, MAYFAIR FARMERS MARKET AND MAYFAIR CIVIC ASSOCIATIION MEETING
            Mayfair, Philadelphia, PA -     May 12, 2015.  The Mayfair Community Development Corporations (MCDC), Mayfair Civic Association (MCA) and the Mayfair Business Association (MBA) are proud to announce three days of community betterment; complete with athletic activities, festivals, markets and a culminating with a community meeting.

Mayfair May Fair and Mayfair Fallen Heroes Run Saturday May 16, 2015
Mayfair officially kicks off summer 2015 with the 7th Annual Mayfair Fallen Heroes Run on Saturday, May 16, 2015. Chairman of the Mayfair CDC and one of the run organizers, Joe DeFelice says “This year we are honoring Police Officer Gennaro “Jerry” Pellgrini, who was killed in Iraq.  This will be our second year including a portion of Frankford Avenue, our main business thoroughfare along with some residential streets. It’s a bit of an uphill run along Frankford Avenue too, which makes it a little bit of a challenge and we’re hoping returning runners and new runners will enjoy the scenery.  We have included camouflage into this year’s run logo, courtesy of neighborhood resident Mike Ennis, to compliment Jerry’s service to our Country.”  Lisa Greco, co-organizer and owner of BellaLisa Hair Studios stated "We're really looking forward to having more runners participate so we can raise even more money for the FOP Lodge 5 Survivors Fund and to unveil our Badge of Honor which lists all previous year’s Honorees.”  The race kicks off at Rowland and Ryan Aves at 8:30AM on Saturday May 16, 2015.  Runners and Walkers can still register on race day starting at 7:30AM at the Mayfair Memorial Playground (Rowland Ave. and Vista St.).  “Since its inception, our Run has raised over $50,000 for charities that honor Police and Fire that were killed in the line of duty,” further added DeFelice.

On that same day, starting at 12pm is the Mayfair Business Association sponsored Mayfair May Fair. Organizers Donny Smith, president of the Mayfair Civic Association, Mike "Scoats" Scotese, president of the Mayfair Business Association and owner of the Grey Lodge Pub, and Mia Hylan, Mayfair CDC Board Member have been working hard with the planning. States Hylan, "This year we will, yet again, close down Frankford Avenue from Cottman to Bleigh Ave.  We will have live music from local artist REV  as well as artisans and crafters, a showcase of MBA members, face painting, balloon animals and local schools and organizations like Lincoln High School's Horticulture Department and Bisirri Pansy Garden who will assist children plant potted plants. We will also have a special presentation of our annual Mayfair Award, presented at noon to kick-off the Fair, to local resident Jim Berghaier who has had long and distinguished career in public service.”  Donny Smith added, "The Original Soft Pretzel Factory will also hold their Customer Appreciate Day with huge inflatable's, contests, and giveaways on the same day so it really is a great kid-friendly event, too.  We will also welcome back the Grey Lodge and their famous Beer Garden and are adding a video game trailer courtesy of the Game Train and will showcase military vehicles from the Greater PA Military Historical Society."  MBA President Mike “Scoats” Scotese, proprietor of the Grey Lodge stated, “It's great to have people walking the Avenue and seeing the great things the Mayfair Business community has to offer along with information booths and fun family activities; it's growing every year as we add more and more."

Mayfair Farmers Market Sunday May 17, 2015 10am-2pm Cottman & Frankford Aves.
Returning for its third season is the Mayfair Farmers Market sponsored by Republic Bank and the Mayfair Community Development Corporation and Allegheny Iron and Metal Co., Inc.  We've gone back to every other week but have added more vendors to our list.  Those vendors include
-           Fresh produce/plants/cheeses/specialty items from Capriotti Bros.
-          Artisan breads from DePalma’s (in Holmesburg)
-          Fifth of a Farm Jams & Jellies (in Fishtown)
-          Kathy’s People Kreations – cupcakes
-          Kathy’s Kanine Kreations – Gourmet dog treats
-          Dove Chocolates Discoveries ( Yvette Stinson, Dove Representative)
-          Mayfair Shop n’ Bag
-          PB & U Food Truck – Breakfast Sandwiches & home-cooked treats
-          Undrgrnd Donuts will rotate in as well
-          Mill Creek Apiary
-          Live music and pop up vendors will appear during the season

The Market will take place on the following Sundays: May 17, May 31, June 14,
June 28, July 12, July 26, August 9, August 23, Sept. 6, Sept. 20, Oct. 4 and Oct. 18 at Cottman and Frankford Aves from 10am-2pm.

Mayfair Civic Association Meeting Monday May 19, 2015 7PM at Mayfair Community Center
Agenda
·         Pledge of Allegiance - (Please silence all cell phones)
  • Treasurer's Report 
Announcements / Updates
  • Membership - (Must reside within Civic boundaries) - $10 per year / $40 - 5 year / $100 - Lifetime - Applications available at the rear or online at MayfairCivicAssociation.com
  • Mayfair Community Development Corporation Update - Business Improvement District
  • Mayfair Business Association Update
  • Mayfair Memorial Playground Update
  • Special Zoning Meeting – Monday June 15th – 7:30pm – Mayfair Community Center – To address The Devon
Zoning
1.  2000 McKinley St. – Commercial Appeal – Alonzo Coates (2nd Meeting)
Seeking a Zoning Variance to convert a pre-existing garage located behind a triplex into a Commercial Food Prep. Kitchen

2. 6300 Frankford Ave. – Commercial - Sean Ward – Express Fuel Gas Station (3rd Meeting)
Seeking a Special Exception for Food Preparation including serving hot food for take-out at a gasoline station
Presentations
1.  James W. Kennedy – District Director for U.S. Rep. Brendan Boyle
-           To provide information about services, recent legislative developments, and upcoming district developments

2. Alex DeSantis – Office of the Inspector General
-           To discuss eliminating fraud, corruption, and misconduct within City Government

3. Streets Department
-           To discuss adding a turning lane at Cottman and Rowland

4. Councilman Bobby Henon
-           To discuss Northeast 2020

Open Discussion

For more information visit www.mayfaircivicassociation.com