With all the recent conversation related to the projects at 2101 and 2201 Washington Avenue, SOSNA wanted to provide some clarity around the Community Benefits Agreement (CBA) that was presented to OCF.
What is the purpose of the CBA?
As with all development projects in the neighborhood, SOSNA is dedicated to providing a forum from which neighbors can voice their opinions and ask questions. In the case of 2101 and 2201 Washington Ave, two projects that are rarely matched in size and impact on the neighborhood, the SOSNA Board of Directors decided a CBA was an appropriate way of sharing the neighborhood’s consolidated feedback on the projects.
What is included in the CBA and how was it created?
The major components of the CBA include the following:
Open & green space
Safety & livability accommodations
Use of high-quality building materials
A desire for minority business inclusion
Commercials tenants that address neighborhood needs
Employment opportunities for local workers
Everything included in the CBA is derived from community input from the three prior community meetings about the project at 2101 Washington Ave. SOSNA also sought input from local community development organizations, neighboring Registered Community Organizations, elected officials, and community-based organizations.
Is OCF required to accept the terms of the CBA to get SOSNA’s approval?
No. In fact, SOSNA submitted the CBA with the hope that it can help spark a productive dialogue and provide a means from which common ground can be found. Despite multiple requests to engage in a dialogue, OCF has repeatedly refused, nor has it provided counter proposals or reasons why they are against the CBA. Furthermore, OCF was very clear in its intentions that it would not sign a CBA regardless of its content.
SOSNA was extremely disappointed to hear this and hopes OCF will reconsider. However, even if they do not, this will not automatically disqualify OCF from receiving project approval.
Did SOSNA send a letter of opposition for the 2101 townhome project?
No. SOSNA sent a letter of support for the project to the Philadelphia Zoning Board of Adjustment (ZBA) as well as a separate letter to the Civic Design Review (CDR) that accurately reflected community comments. Furthermore, at the CDR meeting, SOSNA voted in favor of the 2101 Washington townhomes project as requested by OCF.
Where can I learn more about the CBA?
For more information about the CBA and what it entails, please read our full press release on the topic.
SOSNA recognizes there are many opinions about these projects, as their development will have a major impact on the future of our neighborhood, as well as the redevelopment of Washington Avenue West. SOSNA is firmly committed to improving our community and providing a voice for all neighbors. That is why we ask you to come out and make your opinion heard.
Please attend the SOSNA Zoning Meeting on October 15 at 7pm at Shiloh Baptist Church to cast your vote on the future of 2201 Washington Ave.