|Sent on:||Tuesday, April 16, 2013 12:20 PM|
Hi all! Starting sometime this summer, Streets Commissioner David Perri will be offering residents of historic streets in Philadelphia a pilot project to reduce unsightly plumbers' patches. The project will, for the first time, give residents the authority to require their contractors, plumbers, etc. (and/or subcontractors) to reset bricks, Belgium blocks, and other historic elements of the street. In return, the city will lower the permit fee, perhaps by as much as $450.
The original purpose of the fee was to pay for the city to reset the street. unfortunately, the city rarely got back to do the job, which is why these patches have become such a pervasive problem.
In the past, many plumbers have insisted, with some justification, that the Streets Department requires that they pour asphalt patches after their work is done. Although that specific language is not in the permit, it left a procedurally murky situation for all concerned. Many historic street residents persuaded their plumbers to either reset the pavers, or fill the hole and the residents would do the job for them. But that sketchy situation still left many plumbers' patches in its wake.
Regarding utilities, we have been told by staff at the Streets Department that utilities are already required to return any street to the condition that they found it. So, if any utility is excavating your street and tries to leave a concrete or asphalt patch behind, notify Commissioner Perri of the Streets Department (and us), immediately.
This new offer by Commissioner Perri might not put an end plumbers' patches, which is our ultimate goal, but it is a very big step in the right direction. If you want to thank the Commissioner for this offer and let Councilman Squilla (Chair of the Streets Committee) and Jon Farnham (Exec Director of the Historical Commission), know that you support this proposed pilot project, you can email them at the following addresses:
[address removed]; [address removed]; [address removed]
Lynn and Cliff Landes