Keep up with all things Germantown! We post resources and opportunities for local businesses and entrepreneurs, news about community-driven planning efforts and the equitable development of Germantown, and relevant programs and events for residents.
Germantown United Community Development Corporation (GUCDC) has retained Real Estate Strategies, Inc. (RES) to conduct a market study and develop a revitalization strategy for the Chelten Avenue commercial corridor in Germantown. GUCDC is actively working to bolster and reinforce the vibrancy of Chelten Avenue to meet the needs of the surrounding community, attract visitors from outside the immediate neighborhood, and provide employment opportunities for neighborhood residents. Building on these efforts, the purpose and objectives of this study are to explore opportunities to strengthen and diversify the mix of commercial uses in the corridor, the potential to reuse vacant or underutilized properties, business and job attraction strategies, and available sources of funding to support recommended revitalization strategies.
RES provides advisory services in real estate and economic development and has extensive experience in preparing market analyses and developing revitalization strategies for commercial corridors and neighborhoods in Philadelphia and throughout the greater mid-Atlantic region. Additionally, RES principals have over 25 years of experience working on development plans and initiatives in the Germantown neighborhood. Careful market research underpins all RES engagements, with the understanding that the best business attraction and economic development strategies begin with a realistic understanding of market dynamics.
The mission of Germantown United Community Development Corporation (GUCDC) is to promote and facilitate the revitalization of the business corridors in the Germantown neighborhood of Northwest Philadelphia through a sustainable, creative, and community-driven approach to economic development. Learn more at www.germantownunitedcdc.org.
FOR SATURDAY, MAY 14, 2016
WHAT: Germantown Second Saturday Festival, presented by Historic Germantown and Germantown United Community Development Corporation. Featuring: A pop-up dance performance by BalletX, Philadelphia’s premier contemporary ballet; Art & Craft Marketplace; Live Music; Food Trucks; Historic Re-enactors; Family Friendly Programs; Free Bus Tours to Historic Germantown Sites; and more.
WHEN: Saturday, May 14, 2016 from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.
WHERE: Market Square Park (5501 Germantown Avenue, Philadelphia PA 19144); Germantown Avenue between School House Lane and Coulter Street
Germantown, Philadelphia, PA – The Germantown Second Saturday Festival will be held on Saturday, May 14, 2016 from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. in Northwest Philadelphia’s Germantown neighborhood. The festival will take place along a one-block stretch of Germantown Avenue, between School House Lane and Coulter Street, and surround Market Square Park (5501 Germantown Avenue). Rain or shine.
The community festival, presented by Historic Germantown and Germantown United Community Development Corporation, invites the public to experience Germantown. The festival will celebrate the kick-off the Second Saturday series–when all 16 Historic Germantown sites are open monthly–and showcase the many thriving cultural, civic and business attractions and activities that make Germantown an exciting place to live and visit.
Throughout the day, musicians, poets, and creative performing artists will take to the main stage on Germantown Avenue. BalletX, Philadelphia’s premier contemporary ballet, will present a 45-minute pop-up dance performance from 1 p.m. to 1:45 p.m., thanks to generous support from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. BalletX unites distinguished choreographers with an outstanding company of world-class dancers to forge new works of athleticism, emotion, and grace.
Musical talent includes popular local artists: Amari Rebel, Bethleham and Sad Patrick, Clef Club Youth Jazz Ensemble, Jim Dragoni, and many others. Germantown resident Yolanda Wisher, the City of Philadelphia’s Poet Laureate, will host the festivities.
Visitors will learn about Historic Germantown’s 16 extraordinary historic houses, destinations, and museums at the festival, including Awbury Arboretum, Ebenezer Maxwell Mansion, Grumblethrope, and Wyck. The adventurous can board free bus tours to Historic Germantown sites, located throughout Germantown, departing from the Festival’s main area (register for bus tours in advance at freedomsbackyard.com). Throughout the day, historic reenactors will share neighborhood history.
Pictured: Market Square Park
Over 30 vendors will participate in the Art & Craft Marketplace, coordinated by Germantown United CDC. Local Germantown eateries and visiting food trucks including The Lunchbox, a specialty peanut butter and jelly food cart, will be on-site. Attendees can also get to know many of Germantown’s civic and community organizations, including Episcopal Youth Mission, Friends of Vernon Park, Germantown Artists Roundtable, and Germantown Life Enrichment Center. Alongside Germantown United CDC, city planners from the Philadelphia City Planning Commission will share development plans for key Germantown sites.
The Germantown Second Saturday Festival is a new venture, and combines Germantown United CDC’s Re-imagining Maplewood Mall Festival and Historic Germantown’s Second Saturday Season Opener. In an effort to bring renewed attention and interest to a little-used neighborhood park and public space and more broadly promote the Second Saturday series, Germantown United CDC relocated their annual spring festival to Market Square Park and joined forces with Historic Germantown.
Performance start times are approximate.
12:00 p.m. Festival Start Time
12:00 p.m. Welcome and Kick-off from Yolanda Wisher, City of Philadelphia’s Poet Laureate
12:10 p.m. Settlement Music School Adult Jazz Band
12:30 p.m. Wissahickon Dance Academy (modern and jazz)
1:00 p.m. BalletX, Philadelphia’s premier contemporary ballet
1:45 p.m. Irma Gartner as “Dinah” (historical reenactor)
2:00 p.m. Bethlehem and Sad Patrick (singer/guitarist)
2:12 p.m. Adam Monoco (singer/mandolin)
2:25 p.m. Clef Club Youth Jazz Ensemble
2:43 p.m. Lillian Hightower (vocalist)
2:55 p.m. Yolanda Wisher and the Culture Keepers (poetry)
3:05 p.m. Wissahickon Dance Academy (tap and hiphop)
3:15 p.m. Jim Dragoni (musician)
3:30 p.m. Karen Smith (drummer)
3:50 p.m. Dominique London (poetry/vocalist)
4:05 p.m. Amari Rebel (singer/drummer – band)
4:20 p.m. Ashley Phillips (vocalist)
4:40 p.m. prod (drummers/band)
4:55 p.m. Yolanda Wisher (poet)
5:00 p.m. Festival End Time
Street parking is available beyond the festival grounds. The 5400 block of Germantown Ave and the unit block of E Church Ln will be closed to all traffic from 7 a.m. – 7 p.m. for the Festival.
Free off-street parking is available thanks to our generous community partners. Parking lots are located at:
Citizens Bank Lot
5500 Germantown Ave (enter lot from W Schoolhouse Ln)
Wells Fargo Lot
5500 Germantown Ave (enter lot from W Schoolhouse Ln)
St. Luke’s Episcopal Church & Germantown Friends School Lot
SE Corner of 5300 block of Germantown Ave & E Coulter St (enter lot from Germantown Ave or E Coulter St)
Historic Germantown is a partnership organization serving historic sites in Philadelphia’s Old German Township that works collaboratively to preserve its extraordinary historic assets, increase access, interpret them to the public and raise their visibility. Learn more at freedomsbackyard.com.
Germantown United CDC
The mission of Germantown United Community Development Corporation (GUCDC) is to promote and facilitate the revitalization of the business corridors in the Germantown neighborhood of Northwest Philadelphia through a sustainable, creative, and community-driven approach to economic development. Learn more at http://germantownunitedcdc.org.
BalletX, Philadelphia’s premier contemporary ballet, unites distinguished choreographers with an outstanding company of world-class dancers to forge new works of athleticism, emotion, and grace. Founded in 2005 by Christine Cox and Matthew Neenan, and now under the direction of Cox as Artistic & Executive Director, BalletX challenges the boundaries of classical ballet by encouraging formal experimentation while preserving rigorous technique. The company is committed to producing new works of the highest quality and integrity that bring the combined visions of choreographers and dancers to life and cultivate in audiences a collective appetite for bold, new dance.
With generous support from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, in its 10th Anniversary 2015-16 Season BalletX presents a series of 10 free pop-up performances around the Philadelphia community. Visit www.BalletX.org to find out where the company will be next!
Commercial Corridor Manager
Germantown United CDC
215-844-1683, Ext. 101
# # #
Germantown United CDC applied for and received the American Planning Association’s Community Planning Assistance Team (CPAT) to conduct a brief and focused planning effort on a small area of Germantown. Since GUCDC’s focus is on commercial corridors, the portion of West Chelten Avenue between Morris Street and Greene Street was selected as the study area.
The CPAT consists of volunteer urban planners and professionals from all over the country who come into an area to work for one week’s time, as part of a rapid planning process. Our project will take place during the week of May 16-20, 2016 and include two public events on May 16 and May 19. You’re invited to participate! Residents, business owners, and other stakeholders will be asked to contribute their local knowledge and ideas towards building a collective vision of this commercial corridor.
1. Monday, May 16th at 6:30PM
Interactive planning/design workshop to gather community input | Share on Facebook
2. Thursday, May 19th at 6:30PM
Presentation of the results and discussion | Share on Facebook
Both public meetings will be held at the Pegasus Room at The Flying Horse Center, located at 5534 Pulaski Ave (Chelten and Pulaski). During the week, the Community Planning Assistance Team will be using the Imperfect Gallery at 5601 Greene St as their central workspace and headquarters (stop in and say hello). To RSVP to either event, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 215-856-4303.
Since 2014, Germantown United CDC (GUCDC) has been working with several other groups in Germantown to seek planning resources for Germantown. (Organizational partners include: Historic Germantown, Germantown Community Connection, G’town Restoration CDC, the City Planning Commission.) In that spirit, GUCDC applied for and received the American Planning Association’s Community Planning Assistance Team (CPAT) to conduct a brief and focused planning effort on a small portion of Germantown.
West Chelten Avenue between Morris Street and Greene Street was selected as the study area. This stretch includes one of Germantown’s busiest SEPTA train stations and bus stops, one of the most dangerous intersections in Philadelphia for pedestrians/vehicular accidents (Wayne Ave/Chelten Ave), along with a large swath of vacant properties with lots of potential (former CareerLink building; former House of Jin property; continued vacancies at Chelten Plaza; etc.) along with many other key spaces (Mastery Picket Charter School, the Burgess Center, the former-Pathmark building, and more).
We hope that the results of this project, which will be shared and available to the public, will give all of us who are dedicated to bringing jobs and economic improvement to Germantown some new tools to achieve that end. There is value in keeping the momentum going, and the focus on a critical part of Chelten Avenue.
The American Planning Association provides leadership in the development of vital communities by advocating excellence in planning, promoting education and citizen empowerment, and providing our members with the tools and support necessary to meet the challenges of growth and change.
Through the Community Planning Assistance Team program, the APA organizes volunteer planning teams tailored specifically to a community’s needs. Members offer their time and expertise to people and places where additional resources are needed. This program is supported through donations.
The Festival will be held at Market Square Park, located at 5501 Germantown Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19144 on Saturday, May 14, 2016 from 12 p.m. – 5 p.m. The event will be held rain or shine.
Tents (bring your own) are available for use in the 12ft x 12ft space only.
Please consider signing up to vend, sharing this information with your creative and entrepreneurial friends, and attending!
For additional questions about vending at the Germantown Second Saturday Festival, or to submit a completed application contact email@example.com.
More detailed information about vending at the Festival is provided in the full Vendor Application & Agreement. Additional instructions on vendor load-in, setup, and breakdown will be provided after you have submitted your Application.
Make Your Payment Online:
Germantown United CDC’s Reimagining Maplewood Mall Festival in 2015 attracted 1,000 guests; because we have ramped up programming and partnered with Historic Germantown this year, we anticipate the same or more participation this year. View the Facebook event listing here. As of 4/10, 1.7K have expressed interest in the event on Facebook alone with nearly 500 already confirming attendance.
The 9th Annual Philly Spring Cleanup is set for Saturday, April 16th from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. (rescheduled from April 9th)! This is a great way for you, your family, your friends and your neighbors to get involved and do your part to keep our City looking its best. Dedication like yours, along with the can-do attitude of thousands of volunteers all over the city, is exactly what we need to meet our goals.
In Germantown there will be a huge presence felt all over the neighborhood with over a dozen official projects registered! Can you feel it? It’s momentum. Keep up the sweep up!
Germantown United CDC has one big project planned for the big day – we’ll be partnering with the Penn Knox Neighborhood Association on a cleanup of the Lower Germantown Business District along Germantown Avenue.
See the full list of Philly Spring Cleanup projects in Germantown below and sign up to volunteer!
Join Germantown United CDC and Penn Knox Neighborhood Association‘s cleanup of the lower Germantown business district. Volunteers will clean the grounds of the historic Trinity Lutheran Church at 5300 Germantown Avenue and the stretch of Germantown Avenue between Penn Street and Seymour Street (5300, 5200, 5100, 5000 blocks of Germantown Ave). Supplies will be available for cleanup participants! This is a family-friendly volunteer group.
Questions for GUCDC or Penn Knox Neighborhood Association? Contact Germantown United CDC at firstname.lastname@example.org or 215-856-4303. Contact Penn Knox Neighborhood Assoc. at email@example.com or 215-833-3483.
Sign up in advance or just show up to lend a hand!
1. 5200 Knox Street Block Clean Up
Location: 5200 Knox Street, Philadelphia, PA, 19144
2. Baynton Hill Clean Up
Location: Wister Train Station, Wister Station, Rufe St., E Penn St., Baynton St., Philadelphia, PA, 19144
3. 4800 Germantown Avenue Block Clean Up
4800 Germantown Avenue, Philadelphia, PA, 19144 – Activities: clean up and bag trash and recyclables
4. Chew & Belfield Neighbors,Inc.
Location: 6211 W. Chew Ave., Philadelphia, PA, 19138 – Activities: Clean empty lots, Prune And cut down trees, Paint curbs, Remove debris, Teach how to keep community clean & safe, Clean yards and alleys
5. Clean lot on Manheim and Tocoma St.
Southside Church, 5058 Wayne Ave., Philadelphia, PA, 19120
6. Duval Improvement Association Neighborhoold Cleanup
Sherman & Pomona Streets (6328 Sherman), Philadelphia, PA, 19144
Activities: Cleanup various areas including under the railroad bridge at Pomona and Sherman Streets.
7. Educators and field Study Instructors Partner with Philly Spring Clean Up Volunteers at Awbury Arboretum
Location: Agricultural Village at Awbury Arboretum, Across from Septa’s Washington Lane Train Station, 901 E. washington Lane, Philadelphia, PA, 19138
Activities: Digging, cutting and pulling invasive plants
8. Germantown Ave. and Wayne Junction Clean Up
Location: Germantown Ave. and Stenton Ave., 4518 Germantown Ave., Philadelphia, PA, 19144
Activities: Cleaning up from Manheim and Germantown south to Stenton Ave. and Germantown Ave. and the Wayne Junction area.
9. Hood Cemetery Clean Up
Location: The Hood Cemetery, 4901 Germantown Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19144, Philadelphia, PA, 19144
Activities: Street clean up down historic E Logan St, from Wakefield St to Germantown Ave, and along Germantown Ave from the corner of E Logan to New Germantown Pizza (4923 Germantown Ave).
10. Keep Lingelbach Community Clean
Location: Lingelbach Elementary School, 6340 Wayne Avenue, Philadelphia, PA, 19144
Activities: Clean area surrounding Lingelbach Elementary School that is most widely traveled by our students as they walk to and from school.
11. Let’s Get These lots clean!
Location: 126 E Herman St , Philadelphia, PA, 19144
Activities: Help clean up abandon lots in Germantown! We need help removing trash and cutting down over grown grass and bushes.
12. Lower Germantown Business District Cleanup with Germantown United CDC and Penn Knox Neighborhood Association
Location: Trinity Lutheran Church, 5300 Germantown Avenue, Between Penn St and Queen Lane, Philadelphia, PA, 19144
Activities: sweeping and bagging up litter/trash along the sidewalk and street of the Germantown Avenue business corridor (5300, 5200, 5100, 5000 blocks); raking leaves, picking up sticks, general cleanup and maintenance of Trinity Lutheran Church grounds (5300 Germantown Avenue)
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Germantown, Philadelphia, PA (March 31, 2016): In an effort to align grant funding for community improvement efforts with the warmer weather months for outdoor projects, Germantown United CDC (GUCDC) is changing the grant application dates for the Fund for Germantown, the organization’s micro-grant program supporting community-driven beautification projects in Northwest Philadelphia’s Germantown neighborhood. In 2016, the deadlines will be Friday, April 15, and Friday, September 30. Funding guidelines may be found on Germantown United’s website at www.germantownunitedcdc.org. To request an application, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 215-856-4303.
Germantown United CDC distributes small grants ranging from $100 to $1000 to local organizations, civic associations, businesses, and individuals seeking to beautify the Germantown neighborhood. The grant program is part of GUCDC’s ongoing efforts to promote and facilitate the revitalization of Germantown’s business corridors through a sustainable, creative, and community-driven approach to economic development.
The focus of the Fund for Germantown is to support projects that will have an immediate physical impact on the neighborhood. The fund provides grants for physical improvements across Germantown including, but not limited to, landscaping, signage, painting, reclaiming empty lots, and waste removal.
Since the Fund for Germantown launched, 19 micro-grants have been awarded, with funds supporting a wide range of projects from greening to murals, neighborhood bulletin boards, cleanups and other community-building activities.
In 2015, seven projects were funded in the July 2015 round, and two were funded for the December 31 round.
Winning project ideas from 2015 include:
The Fund for Germantown us supported through generous seed funding by local real estate developers Howard Treatman and Ken Weinstein. “We are excited to support these small projects that have a big impact”, says funder Ken Weinstein. “These kinds of initiatives are exactly what we had in mind when we envisioned the Fund for Germantown”, said Howard Treatman. “It’s been great to see how Germantown United has been able to empower the community and leverage grassroots efforts.”
Germantown United Community Development Corporation is a 501(c)3 organization that was created to promote and facilitate the revitalization of Germantown’s business corridors through a sustainable, creative, and community-driven approach to economic development. Founded in 2011, Germantown United CDC’s focus is to work with residents, businesses and community organizations to create an inspirational vision of Germantown’s business corridors and surrounding neighborhoods, create innovative case studies and sustainable business models to attract green-oriented developers, and recruit forward-thinking investors committed to fostering sustainable economic growth and development for all Germantown residents. Learn more at http://germantownunitedcdc.org.
Germantown United CDC
Andy Trackman, email@example.com
Emaleigh Doley, firstname.lastname@example.org
A panel of experts will discuss the importance of establishing a strong team, solid inventory, well managed operations, and a marketing strategy to achieve success at Germantown United CDC’s next Business Info Session, co-organized by The Business Center for Entrepreneurship and Social Enterprise. The event will be held on Wednesday, March 9th from 9:00 a.m. – 11 a.m. at the Germantown Historical Society, 5501 Germantown Ave (near School House Lane). After the discussion, attendees will have the opportunity to ask questions, talk one-on-one with our presenters and network with other local businesses an entrepreneurs in attendance.
Renee Brandon, Principal, Virtual Chief Marketing Officer, Open Door Expressions
Bill Dorsey, Consultant, The Business Center For EntrepreneurshipStephen Robertson, MBA, Executive Change Management Consultant, The Paradigm Group
Victoria Tyson, Owner, Victoria’s Kitchen
Colette deChalus Lee, Lender Relations Specialist, U.S. Small Business Administration
Steve Oakman, Board President, The Business Center For Entrepreneurship
Pamela Rich-Wheeler,MBA, Executive Director, The Business Center For Entrepreneurship
Anyone who owns a local business, or is interested in opening a business in Germantown is welcome to attend. Programs are FREE to attend.
Business Info Sessions are held bi-monthly and feature invited speakers who give brief presentations about resources that can benefit local businesses, and updates on GUCDC’s work as it relates to the local business community. All sessions include time for attendees to network, ask questions, and offer feedback.
Wednesday, March 9 from 9 a.m. – 11 a.m.
5501 Germantown Ave Germantown Historical Society (near School House Lane)
Philadelphia, PA 19144
GUCDC Office: 215-856-4303
Emaleigh Doley, Commercial Corridor Manager: email@example.com
GU’s Germantown Business Info Session series is made possible with support from First Niagara Foundation.
We’re currently accepting proposals for Germantown United CDC’s (GU) Storefront Activation Program – a low-cost, high impact initiative that pairs local artists and makers with neighborhood businesses and property owners to upgrade storefront window displays, and interior spaces visible from the street. The grant program aims to enliven the street for pedestrians, attract more customers to existing businesses, market available commercial properties, and promote Germantown to prospective businesses. If you’re a business and want your storefront redone, or if you’re a maker and have an idea for a project, get in touch with Emaleigh Doley at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Above: Inspiration for the Storefront Activation Program. Below: Looking out from inside The Sugar Bowl at 6104 Germantown Ave. The Sugar Bowl is participating in the Storefront Activation Program! Do you have an idea for how to remake their window display? Get in touch today!
Germantown United CDC’s (GU) Storefront Activation Program (SAP) is a low-cost, high impact initiative that pairs local artists and makers with neighborhood businesses and property owners to upgrade storefront window displays, and interior spaces visible from the street.
The SAP supports GU’s efforts to revitalize Germantown’s business corridors by strengthening current businesses, activating street-level storefronts, and improving the overall appearance of the corridor by adding a visual richness to the walkway. The grant program also aims to enliven the street for pedestrians, attract more customers to existing businesses, market available commercial properties, and promote Germantown to prospective businesses.
The Storefront Activation Program will:
What we are looking for:
Participating artists and makers will provide:
Germantown United CDC will provide:
Project budgets may range from $250 to $2,500.
Projects that re-use and re-purpose materials, and include in-kind donations of supplies and materials are highly encouraged; Germantown United CDC can assist with outreach to potential partners.
The duration of the displays will be determined in part by the each participating business or property owner.
Contact GU’s SAP Project Lead:
Emaleigh Doley, Commercial Corridor Manager
This grant is supported by PNC Charitable Trusts, which manages the Rowell Family Foundation.
Germantown United CDC is 1 of 158 finalists in The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation’s Knight Cities Challenge!
Civic innovators from across the country submitted more than 4,500 ideas to this year’s challenge. Submissions came from many nonprofit and government organizations, as well as design experts, urban planning organizations and individuals focused on making their cities more successful.
Here’s our one sentence pitch:
Beyond the Census: Building a Positive Data Story of a Community’s Human Resources
Increasing economic opportunity by discovering new data about underserved neighborhoods that attract new businesses and investment.
Germantown neighborhood is well-represented, with three projects proposed by Germantown residents making the final round – congratulations also to Amanda Staples and Vashti DuBois! Winners will be announced in Spring 2016. Stay tuned.