Frankford residents got a potpourri of information about local parks, recycling, a summer food program, politics and new trash collection rules at the June 26 meeting of the Northeast EPIC Stakeholders.
Plans are progressing to put a small park and a mural on vacant land on Paul Street at Frankford Avenue, said Kimberly Washington, the Frankford Community Development Corporation’s executive director.
On Saturday afternoon, Mayor Michael Nutter and Councilwoman Maria Quiñones Sánchez (D-7th dist.) and Washington unveiled the design for the “Frankford Pause” pop-up park that is expected to be ready next spring. The park, adjacent to Margaret-Orthodox Station, is part of the broader Destination Frankford initiative, a project of the Philadelphia City Planning Commission supported by a grant from ArtPlace America, a collaboration of national and regional foundations, banks and federal agencies accelerating creative placemaking across the country.
The unveiling took place as part of a block party that featured demonstrations by the Philadelphia Wooden Boat Factory and performances by El Caribefunk and the All-Star Movements School of Dance.
The grand opening of the small pocket park at Hedge and Orthodox streets will be at 12:30 p.m. on July 9. The site, which decades ago had a pool, has gotten plenty of improvements planned out by the Frankford Parks Group with financial help from the office of Councilwoman Sánchez. New playground equipment and other gear have been installed and the vandalized mural that once covered two walls has been painted over.
Hedge Street is the second of two smaller parks that have been upgraded over the past few years. The other is at Wilmot Street, across from the Second Baptist Church at Mulberry and Meadow streets, where the Stakeholders meet.
Democratic legislative candidate Jason Dawkins said the two parks really need new names. One suggestion was to name one park for the late jazz great Butch Ballard, who was from Frankford.
Residents also learned:
• Kids younger than 18 can eat free during the summer. The city’s Summer Meals Program includes breakfast, lunch, snacks and some dinners. No registration or ID is required. Kids can just show up; they don’t have to be accompanied by adults. To find the nearest site, call the program’s hotline at 1-855-252-MEAL.
• PhillyRising recently gave away 50 trash cans and 100 recycling bins, and helped people sign up for the city’s RecyclingRewards progam.
• City residents now may recycle cartons, like orange juice cartons, and aerosol cans. Plastic bags and styrofoam (even if it has a recycling symbol on it) are not recyclable in Philadelphia.
• Residents who put out old mattresses for trash collection must put them out in mattress bags. This requirement is to stop the spread of bed bugs. Some shopping around is required. Mattress bags range in price from $3 to $20.
• Dawkins said his current office is at Paul and Orthodox streets. He will be consolidating his planned town hall meetings after he takes office with monthly Northeast EPIC Stakeholders sessions. Dawkins recently won the Democratic nomination for the 179th Legislative District seat in his party’s primary. He said he has no GOP opponent in the November election. He said he will be sworn in Jan. 6, but will begin working Dec. 1. ••