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What's Happening in:  Pennsport 

Pump the brakes: L&I to revoke permits for waterfront auto repair shop?

The Department of Licenses and Inspections has issued a notice of intent to revoke permits from 1601 S. Columbus Boulevard – the site of the proposed AAA Mid-Atlantic Auto Repair facility that caused a stir when it was given the go-ahead in January.

Orange Sticker Alert from November

Orange sticker alert from November

The letter, dated Feb. 28 (more on this in a bit), explains that L&I intends to revoke the zoning and use registration permit due to a failure to submit a “Plan of Development” to the City Planning Commission, which was required when the original application for this permit was submitted in June.

During the Plan of Development (POD) process, the PCPC would need to approve the plan if it has determined that the POD “provides for development appropriate in scale, density, character and use for the surrounding community…the approval or disapproval of a POD by the Commission shall constitute the final decision of the City on the proposal.”

Why is the date of Feb. 28 important? The group behind the AAA Mid-Atlantic proposal has 10 days to either submit a Plan of Development to the PCPC as per zoning requirements in effect on June 4, 2013 or submit an entirely new permit application and plans for review under the current Zoning Code. They can also appeal the decision by contacting Michael E. Fink, Deputy Commissioner, Department of L&I.

If no action is taken within 10 days, the permit will be revoked.

So what does the Pennsport Civic Association think about all of this? From PlanPhilly:

Moylan notes that Pennsport takes no issue with the developer. “It’s not Triple A’s fault they were given the permits improperly,” he said. Pennsport is development-friendly, and would be willing to talk to AAA about building the proposed facility somewhere else in the neighborhood, he said. He doesn’t sound angry with L&I, either, now that they’ve taken this action. “People make mistakes,” he said. He wishes L&I had listened to the community sooner. And he thinks this situation proves that Pennsport pays attention.

Will there be a new waterfront auto repair shop at the mouth of the proposed Tasker Street Connector? We should find out within the next eight or so days.

- James Jennings is the founder of the blog Pennsporter — a site dedicated to exploring the neighborhood  from Washington to Snyder, the Delaware to Fourth.

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