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 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 email@example.com 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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
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 email@example.com or 215-856-4303. Contact Penn Knox Neighborhood Assoc. at firstname.lastname@example.org 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 email@example.com 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, firstname.lastname@example.org
Emaleigh Doley, email@example.com
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: firstname.lastname@example.org
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 email@example.com.
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.
PHILADELPHIA, January 12, 2015 — Germantown United Community Development Corporation (GUCDC) has received a one-year, $25,000 civic engagement grant from the Pennsylvania Humanities Council (PHC) centered on pre-work for a comprehensive neighborhood plan.
Understanding the need for a resident-driven approach to community planning and development, Germantown United CDC has joined forces with the theater-based nonprofit Just Act to connect organized groups of residents operating at the micro level – from block associations to neighborhood civics with limited boundaries – and map both the formal and informal networks currently contributing to community improvement efforts in Germantown. This community network analysis will identify shared values and visions for Germantown, aid in healing historic and invisible divisions, and insure that all parties are well-represented and prepared for their role as stakeholder in the larger effort to revitalize greater Germantown and the neighborhood’s shopping district and commercial sector.
“The information gathered during this civic engagement project will shape Germantown United CDC’s priorities and plans for successful, community-responsive business corridor revitalization,” said Emaleigh Doley, Germantown United CDC’s Commercial Corridor Manager.
“So much of the work that Just Act undertakes is rooted in creating space for community members to engage in new ways with one another around pressing topics that impact everyone’s lives,” said Lisa Jo Epstein, Executive Director of Just Act. “Our story and theatre-based techniques will mobilize an array of residents to dialogue openly about the needs of Germantown’s business corridor, providing vital information that Germantown United – and city government – can use to insure inclusive community growth.”
PHC’s civic engagement grants support humanities-focused approaches to community development throughout the commonwealth. Germantown joins three other Pennsylvania communities that will receive civic engagement grants from PHC this year: Carlisle, Meadville, and Williamsport.
To achieve the greatest impact and broadest reach through the civic engagement grants it awards, PHC has partnered with the Orton Family Foundation to bring its Community Heart & Soul™ method to PHC’s grant communities. Community Heart & Soul is a proven process that empowers people to shape the future of their communities by creating a shared sense of belonging that improves local decision-making and ultimately strengthens social, cultural, and economic vibrancy.
Key to the process is learning what matters most to the community through gathering stories from and engaging as many residents as possible, including those who don’t typically participate in public processes.
“We believe the humanities can inspire people to come together and make a difference in their communities,” said Laurie Zierer, PHC’s executive director. “With storytelling at the heart of planning and development, local values and voices become the foundation for building communities that are connected, innovative, competitive, and strong.”
About Germantown United Community Development Corporation
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 germantownunitedcdc.org.
About Just Act
Just Act ignites public dialogue and action planning using theatre-based tools with collaborating partners invested in making meaningful social and civic change. As a multi-dimensional resource across sectors, Just Act is a distinctive, innovative hybrid of artistic & community engagement. Collaboration and relationship-building are central to Just Act. Through a spectrum of aesthetic, activist and educational tools, Just Act activates creative strategies for groups to collectively imagine, rehearse and plan just actions for making change. Our process advances interpersonal and citizenship skills by bringing out participants’ innate creativity, catalyzing positive relationships among people in places, and between people and places, as well as strengthening personal and community capacity for civic engagement. In all that Just Act undertakes, we strive to enliven empathy and increase understanding and awareness about human interaction, the roles we play within larger systems, and the impact of choices on combating injustice. Learn more at justact.today.
About the Pennsylvania Humanities Council
The Pennsylvania Humanities Council (PHC) connects Pennsylvanians to each other through stories, ideas, and experiences that can change lives and transform communities. PHC champions and redefines the role the humanities play in educating citizens and strengthening communities through programs that create pathways for learning and creativity, spark dialogue and civic engagement, and encourage diversity of expression. An independent partner of the National Endowment for the Humanities, PHC is part of a network of 56 state humanities councils that spans the nation and U.S. jurisdictions. Learn more at pahumanities.org.
About the Orton Family Foundation and Community Heart & Soul
With its Community Heart & Soul™ method, the Orton Family Foundation empowers people to shape the future of their communities by improving local decision-making, creating a shared sense of belonging and ultimately strengthening the social, cultural and economic vibrancy of communities. The Foundation assists the residents of small cities and towns in the use of the Community Heart & Soul™ method, a barn-raising approach to community planning and development that invites residents to shape the future of their communities in ways that uphold the unique character of each place. For more information visit orton.org.
Commercial Corridor Manager
Germantown United CDC
Mary Ellen Burd
Director of Communications
Pennsylvania Humanities Council
215.925.1005 ext. 121
GUCDC received a grant from the Philadelphia Commerce Department to develop the website, which will promote the revitalization of Germantown’s business corridors by formally connecting businesses throughout the corridor and raising awareness and support in the community.
The new website will feature:
The Philadelphia-based website development company P’unk Avenue was selected as the firm to assist in building the website.
As part of the research process, the development team toured Germantown, and interviewed residents, the owners of local businesses, and other stakeholders about amenities, attractions, and businesses in our community, and the potential needs of both residents and tourists when it comes to accessing information online. We also held a small workshop with prospective site users at the Germantown Mennonite Historic Trust.
In the coming months, we’ll be working with Germantown businesses and attractions to get them listed in the business directory. If you have questions, or would like your business listed on Germantown’s new website, contact us.
Please note, this is not the final design of the website. The text and photography included in these mockups may not appear on the final website; the images/text were used to help inform the design process and are placeholders for final images and text. We are looking forward to working with local photographers to source photos for the website and businesses & organizations to create original copy that is reflective of each individual business or organization.
(click to enlarge images or view in a separate window)