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You are viewing 37 articles by the author Malcolm Burnley

    • The refurbished pool at Pleasant Playground in Mount Airy.

It must finally be summer: City pools open starting Tuesday

Mayor Jim Kenney and City Council have yet to pass a budget for 2019. There’s more than $27 million missing from the city’s primary bank account, and the firm hired to…

    • Young men gather for an afternoon basketball game at Vare Recreation Center.  | Emma Lee/WHYY

Rebuild legislation passes City Council, this time quietly

On a day when those on the fourth floor of City Hall were deafened by the noise of protesters, a key piece of legislation tied to the mayor’s signature capital…

    • Julien Carrasquillo (right) is a 28-year-old leader trainee at Rivera Rec Center in Fairhill.

Attracting a younger generation of recreation leaders for the city

Each year, it takes an army of seasonal employees at Philadelphia Parks and Recreation to make the summer a little more hospitable. By the time public schools close in June, the…

    • Anglers cast their lines for catfish at Pier 60 off Columbus Boulevard

At waterfront development site, a popular DIY rec space hangs in the balance

As rush-hour traffic grinds to a halt along Columbus Boulevard one afternoon in May, a slow flow of bicycles moves in a perpendicular direction, intermittently cutting across the road toward the…

    • Emily Coleman leads a ceramics class at Olney Rec Center.

City Council and Mayor Kenney play nice as rec center 'rebuild' advances

Mayor Jim Kenney’s plan to revamp public facilities throughout the city took another step forward this week, with key legislation passing favorably out of a City Council committee on Monday. The…

    • Implicit-bias trainings were done in the Gayborhood following protests of racist behavior in the neighborhood.

As Starbucks prepares for trainings, here's what Philadelphia knows about 'implicit bias'

You’ve entered a white space. This online publication, right here; it might be less obvious than looking at the demographics inside a Center City coffee shop, but there are digital signposts…

    • Young men gather for an afternoon basketball game at Vare Recreation Center.  | Emma Lee/WHYY

Mayor Kenney announces first rec 'rebuild' as clash over union diversity heats up

Dilapidated Vare Recreation Center in Grays Ferry will be the first city facility improved through Mayor Jim Kenney’s stalled soda tax-financed upgrade for parks, rec centers and libraries. Announced at a…

    • Mayor Kenney says says income from the sugary drink tax will support schools and community centers in the city, March 2016 | Emma Lee / WHYY

Philly mayor threatens council over lagging rec center rebuild

In a fiery letter sent on Friday, Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney told City Council that he is willing to scale back his signature rec center, playground, and library improvement effort in…

    • The city recently renovated Piccoli Playground to meet new standards for

Philly's next generation of playgrounds is here and everyone is invited in

When it comes to places to play, the notion of proximity and convenience are two very different realities for South Philadelphia mother Kelly Palange. A few blocks away from her home…

    • Tayyib Smith and Meegan Denenberg at Pipeline Philly.(Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

Black in Rittenhouse and designing for a diverse city

One week ago, the arrest of two black men at a Rittenhouse Square Starbucks pushed a provocative idea about the racialization of urban space into mainstream conversation. Suddenly, millions of people…

    • Quan King at Cobbs Creek Rec Center (Emma Lee/WHYY)

When it comes to redesigning a rec center, the real experts are the kids on the courts

On his first day of work at Cobbs Creek Recreation Center, Quan King stepped through a metal doorway that led to a barren foyer. It looked less like a lobby and…

    • hood4 1

Inspired by Philly's neighborhoods, landscape architect Walter Hood is changing how cities design public spaces

For a non-archaeologist, Walter Hood has a prodigious habit of exhuming history. He shakes the dust off old blueprints. He revives images and recollections embedded in the collective memory of places…

    • Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney, left, shakes hands with members of City Council at City Hall on Nov. 2, 2017. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

Parks & Rec makeover caught in clash over union diversity rules

A City Council hearing on Rebuild ended on Thursday with still no resolution on which parks, rec centers, libraries and playgrounds will be improved in the first phase of Mayor Jim…

    • Rebecca Rhynhart (center), is sworn in as Philadelphia city controller. (Emma Lee/WHYY)

Sweet promises of soda tax money gone flat, Philly Controller says

City Controller Rebecca Rhynhart sailed into office in January as a transparency-minded reformer who could pair progressive leanings with an eye for efficiency that could help perpetually-broke Philadelphia spend taxpayer dollars…

    • A T-shirt catches the drips from a leaking window frame in a multi-purpose room used by children at Vare Rec Center. | Emma Lee/WHYY

City: 'Too soon' to say if soda tax shortfall will hit parks & rec makeover

There will be no Rebuild without the soda tax. That’s been the message coming from Mayor Jim Kenney over the last several months — a warning that the ongoing legal fight…

    • South Philly Library, Photo by Phillytrax

Down this Street before: Can Rebuild stick to its promise of data-driven, apolitical decisions?

The comparisons are irresistible: Less than three years into office, a Philadelphia mayor pushing through a major legislative initiative that promises to boost equity in long-neglected neighborhoods via a project financed…

    • Tacony library reopening

Tacony's new library spurs hopes of a neighborhood reborn

Over the last few years, there have been signs of a turnaround in the Lower Northeast neighborhood of Tacony. With the help of a  city grant, there are more than 30…

    • Andre Wright paints puts a new coat of paint on a window frame in the Sharswood Athletic Rec Center. (Brad Larrison for NewsWorks)

As city waits on soda tax ruling, private sector pours on support for Rebuild

Given all the news stories that have described Rebuild as a “$500 million initiative,” you might have assumed that, at least by now, the project’s funding was set…

    • Philadelphia City Hall (Emma Lee/WHYY)

City selects first 21 nonprofit 'project users' to put the 'build' in Rebuild

A lot of the consternation surrounding Mayor Jim Kenney’s mega-project Rebuild has focused on the desired delivery structure for the project. From the start, it’s been the administration’s preference to utilize…

    • Students at Cecil B. Moore Rec Center during the announcement of a $100 million grant from the William Penn Foundation to improve civic spaces in Philadelphia, November 2016 (Emma Lee/WHYY)

Before Rebuild is over site selection, oversight board selected for Rebuild

One of the sharpest criticisms levied against Mayor Jim Kenney’s Rebuild initiative last spring, when its enabling legislation was wiggling its way through Council, was a perceived lack of public…

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You are viewing 37 posts by the author Malcolm Burnley






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