U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Pennsylvania > Philadelphia
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
View Poll Results: Which formerly forlorn sections of the city will see the most transformative changes in the 2020s?
Lower North Philly 10 29.41%
Central North Philly 1 2.94%
Upper North Philly 1 2.94%
West Philly--South of Market 7 20.59%
West Philly--North of Market 3 8.82%
Southwest Philly 2 5.88%
Kensington 9 26.47%
Frankford 1 2.94%
Voters: 34. You may not vote on this poll

Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 11-08-2019, 07:56 PM
 
590 posts, read 435,555 times
Reputation: 946

Advertisements

Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilliesPhan2013 View Post
I haven't really had time to respond to some of the questions presented in this poll, but now I do.

1.) I really wanted to include Germantown, but I ended up leaving it out due to the fact that I've never really considered any part of the Northwest to be forlorn. Northwest Philly is one of the few sections--possibly the only section--of the city where no neighborhood is overwhelmingly bad. Germantown is so huge and diverse that, even though there are some pockets of poverty, I can't consider the neighborhood itself to be formerly forlorn. I suppose I could've included East Germantown in the poll, but large sections of it are middle-class and stable.

I could've also included the Dogtown section of Mt. Airy (a narrow but VERY weird sliver of Mt. Airy) by the above logic, but East Mt. Airy is also too economically diverse. There is also new construction activity, especially towards the western Germantown Avenue side.

2.) Most of Kingsessing falls under the "Southwest Philly" option. I should've further specified that option to exclude the triangle formed by 52nd Street, Kingsessing Avenue, and the Media/Elwyn Line tracks. That section of Kingsessing is undergoing a healthy revitalization, as some people (including myself) see it as no different than living in Squirrel Hill, minus the need to cross over or under the Regional Rail tracks.
I’m not trying to crap on Germantown but the 19144 zip code has a 33% poverty rate and median household income below $30k. There is plenty of poverty in Germantown not just pockets. The “pockets” are the relatively more affluent parts of the neighborhood. Germantown is shadow of its former self economically and in terms of social status. It has its strengths to build on but it is still a neighborhood that hasn’t recovered from de-industrialization and white flight.

As for Dogtown, it’s not weird. It’s been a historically black enclave dating back to the 19th century with all that entails given US history where black folks are concerned. It’s not an accident that it is historically the least affluent part of EMA.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 11-09-2019, 07:21 AM
 
Location: Philadelphia, PA
525 posts, read 207,588 times
Reputation: 821
Quote:
Originally Posted by kyb01 View Post
FWIW, there are Fairmount/Spring Garden kids who go to Germantown Friends. They're bused there.
Oh totally, I’m sure many neighborhoods are represented at GFS. I was highlighting the convenience of living in the same neighborhood at which your child(ren) attend school, and the great space-for-your-buck value of Germantown.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-09-2019, 07:44 AM
 
590 posts, read 435,555 times
Reputation: 946
Quote:
Originally Posted by Muinteoir View Post
Oh totally, I’m sure many neighborhoods are represented at GFS. I was highlighting the convenience of living in the same neighborhood at which your child(ren) attend school, and the great space-for-your-buck value of Germantown.
Yeah, the convenience of paying $30k/child/year (grades 1 - 3) - $38.5k/child/year (grades 9 - 12). This is why people move to the suburbs so that their children can live in the same neighborhood in which their children attend school. The vast majority of GFS students don’t live in Germantown.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-09-2019, 08:20 AM
 
Location: Germantown, Philadelphia
5,551 posts, read 2,711,899 times
Reputation: 3500
Quote:
Originally Posted by BR Valentine View Post
I’m not trying to crap on Germantown but the 19144 zip code has a 33% poverty rate and median household income below $30k. There is plenty of poverty in Germantown not just pockets. The “pockets” are the relatively more affluent parts of the neighborhood. Germantown is shadow of its former self economically and in terms of social status. It has its strengths to build on but it is still a neighborhood that hasn’t recovered from de-industrialization and white flight.

As for Dogtown, it’s not weird. It’s been a historically black enclave dating back to the 19th century with all that entails given US history where black folks are concerned. It’s not an accident that it is historically the least affluent part of EMA.
The first part is true, but the point I'm at pains to make is that very few poor neighborhoods in this city have as many middle-class and affluent people living in them as Germantown does. Have you ever visited Uncle Bobbie's Coffee and Books on Market Square? Neither the owner of that store (who is probably among that 5 percent of Germantown householders who earn >$125k/year) nor the clientele are poor (though the owner makes it clear that he would love to see some of the poorer folk who head from a social service agency a few doors south of the store to a good-and-cheap breakfast-and-lunch place a block to its north patronize UB's too. The owner and I are acquainted). I refer to this bookstore/café as "the place Germantown didn't know it wanted until it opened." It's also down the block from a place I call "the best jazz club you've never heard of" - aficionados know, but few others do.

And as I mentioned already, my very poor Census tract (MHI ~$21k annually) has one of those pockets of affluence in it - the pocket WHYY reporter Annette John-Hall described in this report from the station's series "Gentrified: Notes from a Changing Philadelphia." (I've yet to run across the main subject of the article in the supermarket mentioned in it, which is the same one I patronize. Uncle Bobbie's owner is also mentioned in it. The empty lot in the photo is located right next to Germantown Regional Rail station on East Chelten Avenue; I live six blocks to the east of that lot. And I have "Gentrifier" on my to-read pile; its rather dense academic prose has kept it there.)

As I wrote in that Next City feature, the difference between Germantown and the other neighborhoods that experienced white flight is, not all the whites fled. It didn't do a Mt. Airy and make a conscious stand against white flight, but it did retain some of its white population, and middle- and lower-class whites (there's a family of the latter on the 5600 block of Bloyd Street, around the corner from me) move into the neighborhood still for the same reasons the people who stuck around stick around.

Germantown's business district has indeed fallen far from what it was, which was the second-busiest shopping district in Philadelphia after Center City itself. You can see the ghosts of two of its three department stores still.

I described Germantown to my classmates in my 35th college reunion report thusly: "Everyone who lives here loves it, everyone who lives here knows it isn't what it once was, everyone who lives here believes it could be what it once was again, and nobody has a clue about how to bring it back." A Mt. Airy native two classes behind me who I've known since college and who is an associate pastor at First Presbyterian Church in Germantown (which I attend) corrected me on that last one: "No, everyone who lives here knows exactly how to bring it back if only everyone else would listen to them."

That probably doesn't help things either. I've been learning the truth of his observation more as I get involved in an effort to bring back community journalism here with the editors of this East Falls-based newspaper. (It just opened a Germantown office. I recently met a relative of the person they rent the space from.)

About Dogtown vs. the rest of East Mt. Airy: Walking up Chew Avenue, the transition you see as you walk along the block between Meehan Street and Gorgas Lane is so dramatic, it's as if you passed through a force field.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-09-2019, 08:36 AM
 
9,932 posts, read 5,631,457 times
Reputation: 3478
Quote:
Originally Posted by MarketStEl View Post

Germantown's business district has indeed fallen far from what it was, which was the second-busiest shopping district in Philadelphia after Center City itself. You can see the ghosts of two of its three department stores still.

I described Germantown to my classmates in my 35th college reunion report thusly: "Everyone who lives here loves it, everyone who lives here knows it isn't what it once was, everyone who lives here believes it could be what it once was again, and nobody has a clue about how to bring it back." A Mt. Airy native two classes behind me who I've known since college and who is an associate pastor at First Presbyterian Church in Germantown (which I attend) corrected me on that last one: "No, everyone who lives here knows exactly how to bring it back if only everyone else would listen to them."

That probably doesn't help things either. I've been learning the truth of his observation more as I get involved in an effort to bring back community journalism here.

I remember the Germantown retail/business district back in the late 50s/60s and it was exactly how you infer. The other one that I remember is Caster and Cottman Aves which still has some okay retail.

Every reference you make about First Presbyterian makes me laugh because that church used to kind of rival Bryn Mawr Presbyterian with its level of pretentiousness. Once upon a time half of my family(my mother's side) were Presbyterians. My mother's paternal grandfather was a Presby minister.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-09-2019, 09:08 AM
 
Location: Germantown, Philadelphia
5,551 posts, read 2,711,899 times
Reputation: 3500
Quote:
Originally Posted by kyb01 View Post

Every reference you make about First Presbyterian makes me laugh because that church used to kind of rival Bryn Mawr Presbyterian with its level of pretentiousness. Once upon a time half of my family(my mother's side) were Presbyterians. My mother's paternal grandfather was a Presby minister.
You might consider this further evidence of its level of pretentiousness, but FPCG points with pride to its racially integrated congregation: about half of the parishioners are white and half black. (That associate-pastor friend of mine is also black.)

As the church points out, about 0.1 percent of all Protestant churches in the country have racially integrated congregations. The Rev. Jesse Jackson famously quipped that 10 a.m. on Sunday is the most segregated hour in America.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-09-2019, 09:10 AM
 
590 posts, read 435,555 times
Reputation: 946
Germantown is what it is. It has its pockets of affluence in part because you can buy a large house similar to those in WMA or Chestnut Hill but for far less money. And white people never abandoned the west side of the neighborhood which makes white people less afraid to consider living in the neighborhood as well. But it’s still a high poverty neighborhood with a considerable amount of crime. It’s not going to significantly change until more affluent people get priced out of other neighborhoods such as EMA.

The boundary at Gorgas is still somewhat dramatic but Dogtown has changed a lot over the past twenty years. There is far less crime and house prices are much higher. Quite a few more white folks living below Gorgas too.

As for G’town department stores, I’m old enough to have shopped in all three.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-09-2019, 09:14 AM
 
Location: Philadelphia, PA
525 posts, read 207,588 times
Reputation: 821
Quote:
Originally Posted by BR Valentine View Post
Yeah, the convenience of paying $30k/child/year (grades 1 - 3) - $38.5k/child/year (grades 9 - 12). This is why people move to the suburbs so that their children can live in the same neighborhood in which their children attend school. The vast majority of GFS students don’t live in Germantown.
Lol, obviously the cost isn’t too inconvenient for those families, lest they’d make other arrangements.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-09-2019, 09:45 AM
 
9,932 posts, read 5,631,457 times
Reputation: 3478
Quote:
Originally Posted by MarketStEl View Post
You might consider this further evidence of its level of pretentiousness, but FPCG points with pride to its racially integrated congregation: about half of the parishioners are white and half black. (That associate-pastor friend of mine is also black.)

As the church points out, about 0.1 percent of all Protestant churches in the country have racially integrated congregations. The Rev. Jesse Jackson famously quipped that 10 a.m. on Sunday is the most segregated hour in America.
I'm not a Christian anymore and this was after being indoctrinated with Calvinism(Presbyterianism) on one side of my family and Methodism( Wesleyism) on the other. I "jumped ship" so to speak and was confirmed as an Episcopalian. Then there were big leaps into Charismatic Catholicism during the mid-70s.

Now, I'm none of those things because outright and veiled homophobia makes it impossible for me to even step foot in any church or any religious institution. There have been times when I have made exceptions to that but they are extremely rare. I know you and Pete Buttigieg are sincere but I just can't go along with it anymore.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-09-2019, 10:34 AM
 
557 posts, read 404,289 times
Reputation: 533
The bottom line is this: Germantown, while zoned as part of Philadelphia, is barely connected to the Philadelphia in which most (not all) people desire to reside. There is just nothing to do in Germantown that one would associate with a city. Unfortunately, this will be its downfall.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply

Quick Reply
Message:


Options
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2016 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram


Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > Pennsylvania > Philadelphia
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top